What is democracy? What does it mean for a country to be truly free?

2 Aug

Calamity Jane reviews Welcome to Thebes by Moira Buffini for OoA

Welcome to Thebes is a phenomenal play and relevant portrayal of the struggle between rich and poor, oppressed and oppressor. It exemplifies the role of theatre in political commentary.


Abandoned with no infrastructure, poorly educated people, no trained police and no health provision in the aftermath of war, democracy is traded for survival. The Athenian model of democracy becomes a bargaining tool to secure economic aid before Thebes is left destitute and without the tools to decipher its new freedom. The self righteous indignation of the fleeing Athenians is embodied by their ignorant and grotesque leader, Theseus, sensationally played by David Harewood.

Ten days before independence from its former Athenian rulers, the search for a new future in which the people of Thebes determine their own destiny begins. In this incredibly poignant and relevant play, Moira Buffini explores the perplexities of an emerging democracy not assumed but bestowed upon a people by their former imperial masters. Set against a backdrop of a crumbling empire, Thebes, a war ravaged State scrabbles with its own conscience and bloody history as it steps into a new dawn of political rule.

Date: until 12th September 2010
Time: various
Venue: National Theatre, Olivier Theatre,   South Bank, London, SE1 9PX
Info: 020 7452 3000 | National Theatre

****Special Summer Offer****

Call 020 7452 3000 quoting ‘Summer £20 offer’ or book online at the National Theatre and enter promotion code 2916, then select date and tickets.
Valid with top price tickets, 26 July-26 August. Subject to availability.


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