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The Long-Term Care Trilogy: Oedipus at Colonus

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Free Event

Please RSVP through the link provided. The event Zoom link will be distributed via email, and available to registered attendees starting 2 days prior to the event.

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Thu, Oct 27.2022

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A series of free, interconnected, hybrid events, The Long-Term Care Trilogy will bring together actors, activists, authors, public figures, and caregivers to perform readings of plays by Sophocles and Shakespeare as a catalyst for engaging diverse audiences—both in-person and on Zoom—in crucial conversations about the challenges of caring for those our society has marginalized and left behind, especially elders. The Long-Term Care Trilogy will be broadcast live out of Tranzac, a community-oriented performance space in Toronto, in front of a small in-person audience. Using Zoom to join audiences—both physical and digital—in global dialogue, the project will also engage participants on their personal devices and gathering at “ground sites” linked to long-term care homes throughout Ontario.

Featuring performances by Margaret Atwood, David Strathairn, Adrienne Clarkson, Vanessa Sears, Jani Lauzon, Deena Aziz, Evan Buliung, R.H. Thomson, and a Chorus of Caregivers: Dee Hope, Michael Booth, and Carol Lemen.

Presented by Theater of War Productions, the Toronto International Festival of Authors, Family Councils Of Ontario, and Writers Collective of Canada with support from Canada Council for the Arts and TD Bank Ready Commitment.

Support for Theater of War Productions' digital programming is provided, in part, by the Mellon Foundation.

Translated, directed, and facilitated by Bryan Doerries. Produced by Marjolaine Goldsmith.

The Long-Term Care Trilogy will include:

October 26, 2022, 7:00pm - 9:30pm EDT

Theater of War: Philoctetes presents readings of Sophocles’ Philoctetes—an ancient Greek play about a warrior who abandoned by his friends on a desolate island on account of a chronic illness—as a catalyst for facilitated discussions about the challenges of witnessing suffering and healing wounds, both visible and invisible.

October 27, 2022, 7:00pm - 9:30pm EDT

The Oedipus at Colonus Project presents readings of scenes from Sophocles’ final play, Oedipus at Colonus, as a catalyst for powerful, community-driven conversations about the challenges of eldercare during and after the pandemic.

October 28, 2022, 7:00pm - 9:30pm EDT

The King Lear Project presents streamlined readings of scenes from Shakespeare’s King Lear to engage diverse audiences—including older adults, caregivers, and family members—in open, healing, constructive discussions about the challenges of aging, dementia, and caring for friends and loved ones.

Each presentation will consist of three components:

  1. The Performance: A dramatic reading of scenes from plays by Sophocles or Shakespeare, performed by professional actors and community members. (45-70 minutes).
  2. The Panel: Comments from a panel of community members—caregivers, health care workers, family members, advocates, activists, patients, etc.—relating the ancient plays to their personal and professional experiences (15 minutes).
  3. Audience Discussion: A facilitated discussion about each play, its core themes, and how they relate to the challenges of caregiving and long-term care (60 minutes).

About the play

  • Oedipus at Colonus by Sophocles

    After years of wandering in exile, without shelter or protection, the blind, elderly beggar Oedipus stumbles upon the sacred grove of the Furies on the outskirts of Athens in an area called Colonus, with his daughter Antigone by his side. Upon discovering where they are, Oedipus reveals that an oracle has foretold he will finally find refuge and rest in Colonus, and Oedipus’ body—after he is dead—will protect the city that houses it for all time. No longer the polluted and banished man, whose very presence brings bad fortune to anyone who comes in contact with him, over the course of the play, Oedipus transforms into a holy suppliant, sacred to the gods, bestowing gifts upon those who show him compassion and mercy. Oedipus at Colonus interrogates the impulse to exile, warehouse, and dehumanize people seeking shelter, asylum, and protection, and explores why showing reverence and respect for the less fortunate always makes communities stronger.

Cast Members

  • Margaret Atwood Headshot

    Margaret Atwood

    Stranger

  • David Strathairn Headshot

    David Strathairn

    Theseus

  • Vanessa Sears Headshot

    Vanessa Sears

    Antigone

  • Evan Buliung Headshot

    Evan Buliung

    Creon

  • Deena Aziz Headshot

    Deena Aziz

    Ismene

  • Dee Hope Headshot

    Dee Hope

    Chorus of Caregivers

  • Michael Booth Headshot

    Michael Booth

    Chorus of Caregivers

  • Carol Lemen Headshot

    Carol Lemen

    Chorus of Caregivers

The Long-Term Care Trilogy Partners

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