Ancient Greece Brought to Life

Liz Monroy / el Don

A long-gone temple of the gods serves as inspiration for Big Love set

By Jocelyne Poblador

A pool illuminates the surrounding marble statues towering over the actors. Not far off, Anna Ferris is slicing a foam board with a utility knife.

Farris is prepping the board for a coat of paint that will transform it into a stone piece similar to those used to build courtyards in ancient Greece.

“It’s a bit cumbersome,” Anna Ferris, a theater technology major said while working on the statues.

In five weeks a team of students, part-time staff and faculty turned Phillips Hall Theatre into a scaled down version of ancient Greece for the theater department’s production of Big Love, which is based on Aeschylus’ The Suppliant Women.

In the modern version written by Charles L. Mee, Big Love tells the story of 50 women revolting against incest when they face arranged marriages with their cousins.

The play is dotted with tawdry sex scenes, gender politics and murder.

[quote]“I think the play didn’t reach its full potential until now. It was almost prophetic. It’s not that the scenes in the play weren’t relevant back then, but I think they’ve become more relevant now,” theater director Chris Cannon said.[/quote]

Cannon and set builder Sean Small wanted to capture the play’s inspiration while making the set relevant to today’s audience.

The set for Big Love is simple in aesthetics but still maintains the grandeur of Greek design.

Small took his inspiration from ancient temples and Syracuse-style architecture.

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