November 2016 marks the beginning of the Benaki Museum’s partnership with the National Theatre of Greece in a pioneering project that challenges Greek cultural norms. This is a museum visit like no other: actors will bring texts to life, casting light on aspects of history that are given voice by pieces in the display cases.
When museum exhibits are removed from their normal surroundings, they usually need detailed explanation if visitors are to understand the complex system of information that they convey. A narrative that can be read on many levels imbues every piece. Texts, theatrical or not, that take into account the chronological context of the exhibits provoke challenging interpretations and uncover the emotional weight tied up with both their use and their very creation.
The performances will run for five months (November 2016 to March 2017) and will focus on the collections in the museum’s main building, where they will be enacted. One exhibit from each collection (i.e. the Prehistoric, Ancient Greek, and Roman Collection; the Byzantine and Post-Byzantine Collection; the Neo-Hellenic Art Collection; and the Collection of Historical Objects) will provide the spark for a theatrical performance. Each will be prefaced by a short presentation of the featured exhibit/s by the relevant curator, ensuring a smooth transition from discussion of the object to dramatized work.
Director: Stratis Panourios
Costume manager: Myra Vazaiou
PERFORMANCES:The initiation of Neoptolemos
(8, 15, 20, 22, 29 November & 4, 6 December, 2016)Twelve heads of garlic and fifteen onions
(13, 20, 27 December, 2016 & 10, 17 January, 2017)Erofili’s needlework
(24, 31 January & 7, 14, 21 February, 2017)What the Old Man said
(28 February & 7, 14, 21, 28 March, 2017)
The performances starts at 20:30