‘Medea’ and ‘Lysistrata’ at Ascension Community Theatre

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Just to get this out of the way, the Greek tragedy, “Medea,” is not for the faint at heart or the emotionally challenged. And if “Medea” is PG-13, then “Lysistrata” is rated R. These ancient plays get straight to the point. “Medea” is centered on betrayal and vengeance, while “Lysistrata” turns the battle of the sexes into a hilarious sex war. Not exactly family fare at Ascension Community Theater this time, but if heart-wrenching drama and bawdy comedy are what you are looking for, then come to ACT’s second stage production of its first ACT ’n Translation series, ACT ’n Greek, April 7-10.

In “Medea,” by Euripedes, Jason has found the Golden Fleece, married Medea and carried her away from her native country. To aid him, she has killed a huge snake, helped him overcome flame throwing bulls and an army that grew from the ground and even murdered her own brother and Jason’s uncle — all for love. She ain’t nothing nice. They have settled in Corinth and Jason, the sly dog, has just married another woman, Glauke, daughter of Creon the King of Corinth. As the play begins, we discover that Creon has banished Medea and her two sons from Corinth. Of course, Medea is not the kind of woman to take such mistreatment lying down. She swears bloody revenge and begins her frenzy to kill them all.

To be true to the Greek traditional performance, the comedy, “Lysistrata,” by Aristophanes, follows “Medea.” Set during the Peloponnesian wars, the plot finds Lysistrata and her friends agitated and lonely with all the men away at war. Even though this story is mostly about sex and love, it is also about who controls whom and the early days of women suffragists. How does the battle rage? The women band together and staunchly renounce sex until the men drop their weapons. Who would have thought a pillow fight could lead to peace?

Call the box office for tickets at 225-647-1230. ACT ‘n Greek will be performed from April 7-10 at Ascension Community Theatre, 823 Felicity Street, Gonzales. Tickets are $12 each. All performances start at 7 p.m., except for the Sunday matinee, which begins at 2 p.m.

Contact Jean X. Brager, Director at 504-782-7957 or H. Aaron Ambeau, Production Manager at 504-329-4532 for further information.

“Madea” cast

• Lorna C. Bourgeois as Medea

• Sam Bryan as Jason

• Annette M. Ambeau as Nurse to the house of Jason and Medea

• Mattie Olson as Chorus of Corinthinians

• Aaron Ambeau as Tutor to the house of Jason and Medea

• Jack Wilson as Creon, King of Corinth

• Derek Bourque as Aegeus, King of Athens

• Zac Thriffiley as Messenger

“Lysistrata” cast

• Ami C. Johnson as Lysistrata

• Christian Watts as Calonice, an Athenian woman

• Gloria Cosenza as Myrrhine, an Athenian woman

• Carolyn Bowman as Stratyllis, an Athenian woman

• Brigitte Gomane as Lampito, a Spartan woman

• Lauren Meyers as Ismene, a young Athenian woman

• Aaron Ambeau as Archon, an Athenian Magistrate

• Derek Bourque as Cinesias

• Zac Thriffiley as A Spartan Herald

• Mitchel Courville as An Athenian Citizen