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21st Century Tragedies

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Apr 17, 2023
Apr 17, 2023
Martin E. Segal Theatre

Join us for a book talk with theatre scholar and director Avra Sidiropoulou discussing her
latest publication Staging 21st Century Tragedies. Τheatre, Politics, and Global Crisis
(Routledge 2022). Accompanying the presentation and the conversation with panelists Carol
Martin and Peter Campbell, will be live excerpt readings from New York playwright and
activist Karen Malpede’s Troy Too, which features in the collectionm. With Avra
Sidiropoulou, Karen Malpede and members of The Theater Three Collaborative.. The book
will be introduced by Professor Marvin Carlson. Di Zhu and David Glover will read from the

Staging 21st Century Tragedies. Theatre, Politics and Global Crisis examines ways in which
the political, ecological and social tragedies of our century are being negotiated on
international stages. Sidiropoulou explains who how the globally reemerging practice of
politically engaged art—a “Theatre of Crisis”—represents our century’s equivalent to the
genre of classical tragedy.

Using an interdisciplinary perspective, the book discusses participatory, immersive and
documentary theatre practices that emerged in the public sphere—creating the theatre of
“modern tragedy”. The coexistence of scholarly essays with provocative manifestos,
interviews, original works, theatre texts and diaries by theatre artists is meant to provide a
multifocal, rich lens for performance analysis and a better understanding of the creative
process. This new international collection published by Routledge in 2022, consists of
essays, interviews, plays and manifestos by leading academics, artists, writers and curators,
including Anestis Azas, Taiwo Afolabi, Silvia Bigliazzi, Peter Campbell, Freddy Decreus, Ana
Contreras Elvira, Lupe Gehrenbech, Hanane Hajj Ali, Karen Malpede , Carol Martin, Yana
Meerzon, Aldo Milohnic, Ana Fernandez Caparrós, Avra Sidiropoulou, Ogah Mark Onwe,
Stephen Ogheneruro Okpadah, Frank Raddatz, Miguel Rojo and Javier Hernando, Tadashi
Uchino, Su Xiaogang, Daniel Wetzel and, Constantina Ziropoulou.

Troy Too is a short play Karen Malpede wrote for Sidiropoulou’s Staging 21st Century
Tragedies as an attempt trying to figure out what was happening to our world. Surreal and
documentary, it is a study in people’s laments when their old life is ripped away. It focuses
on Covid, climate and race. Avra Sidiropoulou, who commissioned the play, will direct the
play at HERE Arts Center, New York (May 11 th -21 st ).