Greek Drama in the Community


Hamartia was a devised piece, created in collaboration between the Byre Youth Theatre’s Collaborative Performance Group, led by Stephen Jones, and Dr Jon Hesk and Dr Ralph Anderson in the School of Classics in the University of St Andrews.  This original short play was inspired by the themes and conventions of classical Greek Tragedy. The piece was devised by a group of four young actors from the local community, under the direction of Stephen. It was developed through discussions, talks and workshops on Greek drama and ritual led by Jon and Ralph. It was performed on 22nd June 2017 at the Barron Theatre in St Andrews before an invited audience. The performance was part of a project funded by the University of St Andrews’ Knowledge Exchange and Impact Fund. Below are a number of resources (a brochure, two blogs, two documentary videos and a film of the performance itself). We hope that these can be used to inspire similar projects worldwide.  Do be in touch with us to let us know how you are using these resources and if you are interested in working with us on further projects.

Two people kneeling, one person standing

The terrible mistake or fatal flaw that brings a hero low…

In a post-apocalyptic world of drought and environmental ruin, an ambitious politician tries to save his city, but only causes more suffering. Summoned from the dead by a chorus of vengeful spirits, he must stand trial for the actions he took while he was alive. The trial takes place in a realm which is intermediate between that of the living and the dead; something akin to the Tibetan Buddhist state known as‘Bardo’. The case against the politician is developed through the testimony of three characters: his wife, a colleague and a political rival. The allegations are serious, but is he really to blame? Can he defend himself successfully? And what will happen to his spirit if he cannot?