a teacher's guide to the National Theatre's video collection.A collection of videos drawn from the National Theatres production of Antigone, directed by Polly Findlay, in 2012. They can be used to support the teaching of Antigone, Greek Theatre and Greek Tragedy. Video: An introduction to Greek Theatre[length 6m53s] The video explores the defining aspects of Greek Theatre; from the festival of Dionysus where three dramatic genres tragedy, comedy and satyr emerged, to its influence on modern theatre.
Video: An introduction to Greek Tragedy[length 6m33s] This film looks at the characteristics of Greek Tragedy and why the plays resonate with audiences today.
Video: An introduction to Antigone[length 8m34s] Edith Hall introduces Artistole's 'Theory of Tragedy' and the play Antigone by Sophocles. Polly Findlay speaks about her interpretation of Don Taylor's translation of Antigone for the National Theatre's Olivier Theatre. Discusswhytheplayssettingofan underground bunker works well as a concept. MichaelGrady-Hall(Chorus)explains howtheworldoftheplaywascreated. How would you create a 'world' for your own version? Theplayisover2000yearsold,why do we still engage with its themes?
Video: State versus Family[length5m05s] This video looks at a central conflict within the play;Creon'sbeliefinStateweighedagainst the actions of his family. Whyisit'importanttothinkof Antigone as a family tragedy'? Commentonhowyouwoulddirectthe playsopeningexchangebetweenAntigone and Ismene. Howcouldyouuserehearsalsto ensure that the idea of both family and the state were present in the scene?
National Theatre Learning Teacher's Guide
a teacher's guide (continued)Video: Creon and AntigoneThe central relationship in the play is between CreonandAntigone.ChristopherEccleston (Creon)andJodieWhittaker(Antigone)discuss the relationship between their characters in the2012production. ConsiderthedynamicbetweenCreon andAntigonesrelationshipthroughoutthe different stages of the play. Watchthevideoanddiscussthe statement:Creonisnottheenemy,hejust thinksdifferently.Howwouldthisaffectyour direction of this character?
Video: Haemon and Antigone[length 4m48s] Luke Newberry talks about his character, Haemon, and looks at how his relationship with Antigone creates tension in his relationshipwithCreon. Reflectonhowyoucoulddirect HaemonsloveforAntigone,whentheynever share the stage. Howwouldyoudirectthereporting ofAntigonesandHaemonsdeathstohis mother? WatchtheclipofTheMessenger reporting the deaths of Haemon and Antigone. Considertheproxemicsoftheactorsused.
Video: Creon and Haemon[length4m20s] HaemonisCreon'slastlivingsonofthree. InthisfilmChristopherEccleston(Creon) discusses the loss that his character suffered prior to the start of the play and how this affected his relationship with Haemon. Discusstherelationshipthatexists betweenCreonandHaemon. Identifyhowyouwoulddirecttheir struggle to communicate?
Video: Religion and modern context[3m20s] This looks at the role of religion in Antigone and how this can be effectively staged in a modern interpretation of the play, for a modern audience. PollyFindlay,thedirector,believes thatactingchoiceiskeytomakingthe political and religious lines of the play plausible. Discuss how this works.Creon(ChristopherEccleston). PhotobyJohanPersson.National Theatre Learning Teacher's Guide 2
a teacher's guide (continued) WatchtheclipofAntigonestating theclaimforreligiouslawoverCreonsstate law.CommentonAntigonesdeliveryoflines; making reference to pitch, tone and intonation as well as her movement.
Video: The Chorus[length6m20s] This video offers an introduction to Greek ChorusfromEdithHallbeforePollyFindlay speaks about her contemporary interpretation oftheChorus.Thisofferspracticaladviceon how to workshop and arrange personalities andpointsofviewfortheChorus. Lookatthechoralpiecesintheplay and work out which lines could be prescribed toindividualmembersoftheChorus. InrelationtotheChorusbeingstaff members of a war office, decide what other groupsofprofessionalpeopleaChoruscould belong to.Chorus(CraigeEls),Creon(ChristopherEccleston), andChorus(PaulDodds). PhotobyJohanPersson.
Video: Heightened Language[length4m51s] Ancient plays are often problematic because of their use of language. Discusswhatproblemsareassociated with the language of a play like Antigone consider both the central characters and the Chorus. WatchtheMiracleofManspeech inperformance.Whatisgainedbyoneactor takingonthevoiceofthewholeChorus?
Featured in these videos From the National Theatre and the cast of Antigone: Christopher Eccleston (Creon); Polly Findlay (Director); Michael Grady-Hall (Chorus); Kobna Holdbrook-Smith (Messenger); Luke Newberry (Haemon); Ben Power (Dramaturg); Jodie Whittaker (Antigone). Other contributors: Edith Hall (Professor of Classics, Kings College, London); Dr Sean McEvoy (Varndean College); Laura Swift (Open University).
National Theatre Learning Teacher's Guide