In light of the COVID-19 Pandemic and restrictions placed upon public gatherings that will continue for many months, Theater of War Productions has retooled as a company to produce dynamic online performances and discussions, in the style of its live events, aimed at addressing the unique challenges posed by the Pandemic in diverse communities throughout the world. The goal of these performances will be to create free, easily-accessible opportunities for people struggling in isolation with trauma, loss, illness, and distress to communalize their experiences with others who share them, while accessing local and national resources and information.
The COVID-19 Pandemic demands bold and decisive action in order to meet the needs of thousands of people who may have few outlets during this period of quarantine and isolation to engage with others in healing dialogue. Theater of War Productions is in a unique position to take such action, by presenting its projects for large, diverse audiences online. At present, Theater of War Productions has more than twenty-five projects that address pressing public health and social issues, such as domestic violence, suicide/depression, alcohol and substance abuse, end of life care, eldercare/dementia, and the challenges of witnessing suffering—all issues that have been intensified and exacerbated by the COVID-19 Pandemic. In addition to offering these existing projects online, Theater of War Productions is developing several new projects born out of the needs of individuals, families, and communities during the pandemic.
Highlights from our online events
The Oedipus Project Trailer
Learn more about The Oedipus Project here.
Oscar Isaac plays Oedipus in The Oedipus Project
on Zoom / 2020
The Oedipus Project premiered on May 7th 2020. Read about it in this article,
David Strathairn plays Philoctetes in Theater of War for Frontline Medical Providers
Theater of War for Frontline Medical Providers is an innovative project—developed by Theater of War Productions, the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics and the Johns Hopkins Program in Arts, Humanities & Health—that presents dramatic readings by acclaimed actors of scenes from ancient Greek plays for audiences of frontline medical providers to open up powerful dialogue about difficult subjects, fostering a sense of connection and promoting health-seeking behavior. By presenting ancient plays to doctors, nurses, EMTs, respiratory therapists, and other healthcare providers about emotionally-charged, ethically complex situations, Theater of War Frontline aims to create a brave space for open, candid dialogue and reflection, fostering compassion, a renewed sense of community, and positive action.
Public Advocate Jumaane Williams plays the Fool, Kathryn Erbe plays Goneril, Frankie Faison plays King Lear, Amy Ryan plays Regan, David Zayas plays Kent, Marjolaine Goldsmith Plays Cordelia in The King Lear Project.
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.
King Lear was first performed in 1606, a year in which a plague ravaged London, and the play is full of references to pestilence. Some scholars even believe that Shakespeare wrote the play in quarantine. Seen through this lens, King Lear seems all the more relevant to framing conversations about the challenges of caring for older adults during the COVID-19 pandemic.