ROME. Beneath this title lies an epic brimming with reflections on power, democracy and the paradoxes these issues raise. By combining in a single evening The Rape of Lucrece, Coriolanus, Titus Andronicus, Julius Caesar and Antony and Cleopatra - Shakespeare’s five Roman tragedies - the project delves into the rise and fall of Roman civilization, a world where chaos is born of the struggle for power between various factions.
Governance, opportunism, contempt for the people, personal and political violence: humanity in all its complexity grapples with its afflictions. The harsh and lucid relevance of Shakespeare’s works is clear, and everything in these texts, from the decline of the elites to the very rejection of democracy, reflects our times and their turbulence.
Independent and uncompromising, Sibyllines is a driving force in the cultural milieu; the company’s commitment to new work allows a unique voice to emerge. In a world marked by a loss of reference points and an overabundance of information, the works of Sibyllines investigate notions of power, domination and subjugation, while relentlessly questioning our relationship to the body, sexuality and intimacy. Few theatre companies have given as much prominence to women artists: over the years, Brigitte Haentjens has staged the words of Sarah Kane, Louise Dupré, Sylvia Plath, Sophie Calle, Patti Smith and other female writers.
Through the determination that is central to Haentjens’ work, the company strives to break down boundaries both ideological and artistic while taking a consistently lucid and inquisitive approach to the creative act.
The National Creation Fund’s investment of $150,000 makes it possible for the creative team to dedicate additional time to develop and refine the script, including a dramaturgical workshop. This will be followed by extensive work on staging, with a creation workshop with the cast and a technical residency with the creative team. In the final development phase, the creators will explore the integration of live music and a choir.
The project Rome is co-produced by Sibyllines, Usine C and NAC French Theatre.
Developed with assistance from the National Arts Centre's National Creation Fund.
Sibyllines is funded by the Canada Council for the Arts, the Conseil des arts et lettres du Québec and the Conseil des arts de Montréal.