The King’s Theatrical Society is kicking off their fall season with a production of Antigone, set to be performed on Friday, October 22.
The Greek tragedy is directed by Tessa Hill, continuing the KTS tradition of starting each year with Classics in the Quad.
The pandemic dealt a heavy blow to the KTS; the inability to meet in person meant executives had to get creative with engagement, making online workshops to keep the theatre spirit alive.
“We definitely tried to connect with first-years through the workshops and through Instagram,” says Faith Saar, vice president of the KTS. “Now the goal is just to get the ball rolling again. We have a lot of very eager theatre people at King’s who are desperate to create something.”
Hill feels that Antigone, despite being written around 440 BC, is still relevant to a modern audience. “Even though it’s a classic, it’s a breathing piece,” says Hill. “It’s about (asking) ‘who is Antigone in our lives?,’ instead of trying to emulate an idea of who these old characters were.”
While Antigone is the first play Hill has directed, she is no stranger to visual storytelling. She comes from a family of theatre directors and learned to make her own films in high school. Hill has published over a dozen short films. Her latest film, this is a completely normal home movie, won the Best Experimental Award at the 2021 CineYouth festival.
Antigone tells the tale of the titular daughter of Oedipus as she seeks justice after her brother is refused a proper burial, risking her life and relations with those around her for the sake of morality.
“She puts her body on the line and uses her power because it’s all she has left, and I think that was such a powerful idea to pull out and make relevant again,” says Hill. “She is the only one in her world that is ready to act and confront suffering. I think that concept is important.”
Though things are returning to normal for the KTS, 2021 will still be different from previous years. This fall season will only consist of two shows, unlike the usual three. Additionally, all fall performances will take place outdoors, without masks so long as social distancing among actors is maintained.
“A lot of us on exec right now … our first year was a pandemic year, so we don’t really have many members who have experience with the KTS way of producing and putting on shows,” says Elise Boyle, president of the KTS. “We’re wanting to ease back into things after having to take a year off … just to see what our capacity as an executive is.”
Boyle says the winter season is yet to be fully outlined, hoping for a return to the standard three-show season with indoor performances.