More than Two Millennia Later, Ancient Greek Play Finds Relevance with Syrian Refugee Women


Transcending generations and countless wars, the Ancient Greek tragedy “Trojan Women” by Euripides is set to hit the London stage this summer, followed by a 3-week tour of the United Kingdom— led by a cast of Syrian refugee women.

The original anti-war play, written in 415 BC during the Peloponnesian War, is considered a commentary on the capture of the Aegean island of Melos and the subsequent brutal slaughter and subjugation of its people by the Athenians.

The women of Troy — led by Queen Hecuba — have been enslaved and are lamenting the loss of their land.

Like today, the Syrian women— most of whom have never acted before, have lost their families and homes and ended up in a refugee camp in Jordan, where the group formed and the concept to stage the Ancient Greek tragedy was born.

First performed in Amman, Jordan, in 2013, “Queens of Syria” is as much a theatrical presentation, as it is an opportunity for the women to indirectly convey their personal tragedies and the tragedy of their nation, whose brutal civil war has claimed almost a half million lives and millions more homeless and refugees.

The original play, which depicts the aftermath of the fall of Troy over 2,000 years ago, when women including Queen Hecuba and children were enslaved by the victorious Greeks, is one of the world’s most timeless anti-war expressions.

Siamo Tornati – We Are Back from Yasmin Fedda on Vimeo.

Photos from rehearsals and readings of The Syrian Queens, an Arabic-language adaptation of Euripides’ The Trojan Women.


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