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Published February 25, 2021
A free virtual reading of “The Wasps,” a Greek comedy by playwright Aristophanes, will be presented Thursday, March 4, as part of a University of Wyoming Department of Modern and Classical Languages course.
UW Senior Lecturer Laura De Lozier, who teaches “Athenian Democracy,” is producing “The Wasps.” The event will be presented in conjunction with Laramie’s Relative Theatrics. The production will be at 7 p.m., followed by a community discussion facilitated by De Lozier and her students.
To receive the Zoom link, register at www.relativetheatrics.com/virtual-programming.html.
“Although all members of the public are welcome, the content contains sexually explicit language and some violence,” De Lozier says.
The production is a collaboration among UW Classics, Relative Theatrics and Western Nebraska Community College’s theater department. It is a translation of Aristophanes to this moment with gender-bent casting -- women play men’s roles and vice versa. The cast includes theater, television and film actors from the U.S. and Canada, and features original music for three choral songs.
The virtual reading, enhanced by Zoomcraft, features Aristophanes’ play, first produced in 422 B.C. in Athens, Greece. It pokes satirical fun at the Athenian demagogue Cleon and his power base -- the law courts. The story follows the old juror Philocleon -- who is addicted to jury work -- and his child, Bdelycleon, and Bdelycleon’s ill-fated attempts to reform his parent.
“It examines how we treat older people in our society -- in particular, their experiences of involuntary lockdown, and the tension between the old and the new,” De Lozier says.
The event is sponsored, in part, by a UW College of Arts and Sciences faculty research creative activities grant from the Wyoming Arts Council, through funding from the National Endowment for the Arts; Wyoming Humanities; and the National Endowment for the Humanities.
A recording of the play will be available after the event on Relative Theatrics’ YouTube page. A companion exhibition for “Athenian Democracy” that explores aging in democracies at the UW Art Museum can be viewed here.
For more information, email De Lozier at firstname.lastname@example.org.