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The University of Michigan broadcasting service presents Orestes by Europe at ease. Translation by William Aerosmith the original music composed by Don Gallus and conducted by Henri and Dolly this production marks the first radio performance of this new version of Orestes published by the University of Chicago Press. From Mr. Errol Smith's introduction to the tragedy we now hear comments about the author and his play The reader is the director of this production. Jerry sounds like a tragic intone melodramatic an incident in technique by sudden wrenching turns savage tender grotesque and even comic combining sheer theatrical virtuosity with puzzling structural violence and a swamping bitterness of spirit the arrestees of your repartees has long been an unpopular and neglected play almost an unread one. What we get in the arrestees is tragedy utterly without affirmation. An image of heroic action seen as botched disfigured and sick carried along by the machinery and slogans of heroic action in a steady crescendo of
biting irony and the rage of exposure. It is neither a satire on heroic tragedy however nor a mere melodramatic perversion but a kind of negative tragedy of total turbulence deriving its real power from the exposure of the aching disparity between the ideal and the real dooming all possibility of order and admitting dignity only as the agonizing absence by which the degree of depravity is to be judged in its material. The arrestees is almost entirely free invention and imaginative rendering of the events which follow the murder of quite a mistress by her children dramatically. The unifying motif of the play is the gradual exposure of the real criminal depravity of arrestees and his accomplices and exposure made possible by a typical and deliberate piece of Europe a dn an Akron izing everywhere in the situations in the characters the bitterness is unrelieved the quality of nightmare pervasive. Thus with the single exception of her Miami Amir Paul whose compassion is typically exploited by the brutal electorate there is not a good
character in the play with great vividness the final tableau crowns the nightmare the impasse is complete in any natural world. The whole cumulative experience of the play points unmistakeably to disaster. But then suddenly incredibly Apollo appears Holt's the violence and methodically hands out their known mythical futures to all the characters in no other extent Greek play as a part of a play stand in more glaring contrast to the whole than it does here. In no other player the futures of the characters made to clash so violently with their portrayal and development in the play. While it is certainly true that Apollo's arrangements show a degree of stupidity rare even in Iraq today in God and operates to a reign the God who announces them this hardly seems enough. What we have here I think is a transparent tour de force and apparent resolution which in fact resolves nothing. The illusion of a deus ex Mark and intervening to stop the terrible momentum of the play by means of a solution so inadequate and so unreal.
By contrast with the created reality of the play that it is doomed into insignificance. The resolution that is is so designed as to be merely an apparent resolution. If the experience of the play is a real one what remains after Apollo leaves is not the taste of the happy ending but the image of total disaster. The burning palace the dead girl the screaming mob and the degenerate heirs dying in the arson of their own hatred. Here the violence of contrast is without parallel. Almost as though your repartees had deliberately inverted the Deus Ex market to show precisely that no solution was possible. Not even a god could hold the momentum of these forces in their sweep toward inevitable disaster. They arrestees can be accurately dated to the year 400 A B C that is just a year or so before your repartees old embittered and disillusioned with Athens withdrew involuntary exile to Mastodon where he died a few years later. The political climate of the play itself graphically represents the state
of affairs in Athens and presumptuous or not I am tempted to see in the play. Europe it is prophetic image of the final destruction of Athens and Hellas or that Hell us to which a civilized man could still give his full commitment. It is a simple and a common symbolism. The great old house cursed by a long history of fratricidal blood and war brought down in destruction by its degenerate heirs. The final tableau is the direct prophecy of disaster. Complete awful and inevitable. While Apollo intervenes only as an impossible wish. A futile hope for a simple change of scene from a vision that cannot be Brook door seen for long because it is the direct vision of despair the hopeless future. Those were the words of Aerosmith taken from his published introduction to the play and now the University of Michigan broadcasting service presents all arrestees by your repartee. The play opens before the palace of Agamemnon in our
house six days after the murder of quite a nice truck. The other door huddled under blankets on a pallet lies arrestees asleep. Electra and embittered an exhausted woman rises from the bedside to speak the prologue. Living. Before. Heaven however terrible. All might not have to been. I think born or so they say the son of Zeus himself. And less by birth and luck as few men. Have.
A tandem. I do not mock his will. And yet that same Tantalus now rides and trembles in terror of a rock that overhangs his hand even as a man he said is on an equal at the table of the gods. It could not hold his tongue. Being sick with pride or so the legend goes. I do not know. The son of Tantalus was. Father of Atreus. For whom the weaving thinks wove the threads of war a war with his own brother. Why should I linger on the horrors of my. House. Atreus feasted him on his murdered son. By Passover in the interests of the Koran the succeeding years. By a ropey however. A truce became the father of two sons. And famous Agamemnon. What he had was. The wife of Mina lay a tenant.
Whom the gods in heaven themselves despise Memnon married quite a nice try in a marriage that became the scandal of helis. By her he had three daughters. Myself and my two systems. Herself in this and if the denial. And one sound. Systems. All of us his children by that one wife. I cannot call her mother. Who snared her husband in the meshes of a net and murdered him. I leave that to the world to guess her motives. It is no topic what a virgin like myself. And why repeat the old charges against Apollo. The world knows all too well how he pushed Orestes on to murder the mother who gave him birth. That act of matricide of the twins it seems. Something less than approval in men's eyes. But persuaded by the god. He killed. And I did all the woman could to help him. My apologies our friend shared the crime with us.
After the room. Orestes collapse to be. Wasted by region. And world gone to madness by his mother's love. I dare not bring the name of those humanities who pursue him hounding him with terror. Six thousand. Six days since we sent her body to the. North. Who has not tasted. Who. Lives his. Or. Lies there in the play. The fever Lutes. Who turns you sit in cries then suddenly madly boats from the bed like an untamed Colt walking the bridle. And now the people of all of us have passed a decree declaring us Metra sides and outlaws beating anyone. Speak to us or give us shelter. But. This day.
The size of. This the city of August assemble. To vote whether we should live or die. And if we done. In the manner of our death. Or the soul of. One single hope. Our uncle has just come back from Troy. His fleet fills the harbor of writing and I'm just off shore. After all those years out of Troy. Helen Howard. Who now styles herself the song was so terrified that she might be seen by the fathers of those who died of Troy. At her own ahead last night under cover of darkness. She is here now and sort of. Weeping over her sister's death in the ruins of our house. She has I might add some consolation. Her daughter her Mayan.
People you say you were Troy brought from Sparta and intrusted to my mother's care. So she at least has some comfort that. She can't afford to forget. Me. I stand here now with the hope of seeing many layers on his wing. Unless he unless he rescues us when we must. Nothing is so weak as a fallen house. Oh dear electoral Clytemnestra daughter but you poor girl still not
married and how are you dear. And how is poor old Rest is how you most suffer. I've come to believe it to know your own mother how horrible. But the idea I know you were not the real culprit was Apollo for my part I can see no reason on earth for shunning you not at all. And yet poor Clytemnestra my only sister and to think I sailed for Troy on that tragic voyage without even seeing her some god must have driven me mad. But I am the only one left to mourn for her. I tell you Helen what you can see for yourself. There lies the wreck of Agamemnon song while I sit here at my sleepless post beside his corpse for a little breath a corpse is what he is. I do not complain on his account. But you you and your husband with your reek of triumph your smug
success. You come to us in our own misery. When did he collapse the day he spilled his mother's blood one day and two deaths a mother and her son. Yes he killed himself when he killed her. I want to ask nice. Could you do me a favor. I have a moment free. He is sleeping now and does not need my care. Would you go for me to my sister's grave. What do you want me to go to my mother's grave. Why do pour libations on her grave and leave this little clipping of my hair. She was your sister you should go yourself. I'm afraid ashamed to show my face in this repentance comes a little late. Where was your shame when you ran away from home and left your husband spoken with more truth and kindness to your own. Then why are you ashamed. The fathers of those who died fighting at Troy to the frightened man of a mike you are by would here on August city's growers say you know I could not bear the sight of my mother's grave. But it wouldn't do to
send a servant there then send her my Any sin to marry the girl on an errand in public. It is her duty she owes it to my mother for bringing her up. Quite to my idea and excellent suggestion. I've called her out. I might. Come out soon. Yes mother I am here. What is your wish. Now do exactly what I say. Take this libation and these clippings of hair and go to try to Mistress grave. STAND THERE AND POOR this mixture of honey milk and water and over the grave. And as you pour repeat these words Your loving sister Helen prevented by fear of the archives from coming to your grave in person sends you these gifts then implore her to be gracious to us all. To my husband and me. And these poor children whom Apollo has destroyed. I promised her besides that I will labor to perform like a good sister. All the DO is in rights of the gods below.
Now go Dia. Hurry there. Make your offering and then come back as quickly as you can. By his unique beauty corrupting everything it touches. We talk. In the glory of the good. Did you see how she kicked the nearest tips of her. Toes stingy with her love to. Say hello. Gods how can you hope low then this woman this monster who has ruined my brother and me and all helpless. But here they come again. Those loving friends who keep their watch with me and more. But if they wake him from his sleep if I must see my brother going mad once more I shall cry my eyes out with grief. Softly friends. Why.
I was dead or somehow not a wisp of. Kindness is well meant but if you wake him now I shall. Barely touch the ground. Back from the bed back we go to music friends keep it down as soft as gentle breath may go down the stem of you hear it's soft so your lower still. Now tip toe to me softly so. Tell me why you call now that he sleeps at last when he will he doth he breathe deep. His breath comes. Gods help him to live so much as. He sleeps all day and soft of gold and
he said oh the God that day Apollo on his throne commanded my mother's death. Look at the bed his body do you know. No. He sleeps. With the. Gods. Mother of mercy bless it now and Peace to you when the anguish the lovely gift of city. Rise. Rise from your abuse and soar to Agamemnon's house where all is ruined. In the name of God. Peace do peace. No more morning will rob him of his peace. His gracious peace of the where. Where will it end the.
Day. What is left but. He refuses. And death must come. Yes and I must die with him. Apollo killed us both. Vengeance for our mother when I father's ghost cried out against our mother. Love. Love just crime unjust right times wrong on this single act. Motherhood gave me the. Clue was. You who slew your husband. Who killed your children too. By your death. We died. Giving. You are dust and ashes. My life. Giving goes did to this son that. It's dark with with a knife. I open this. Young Mattie. Crying my eyes saw her.
Loss alone in the endless night you can see if your brother has died why Will morning he lie so still no I do not like you. Oh sweet wizard sleeve savior of the sake of loveliness that came to me in my worst need of you. Oh Goddess leave goddess of getting to whom the unhappy make they'll pray. Skill wise. But what happened. Who put me here. I somehow can't remember how happy it made me to see you fall asleep at last. Should I raise your head. Yes please. Help me up. You know wipe away this crust of froth around my mouth and I just service this week and I do it gladly.
Nursing my brother with his sister's love. Sit here beside me. No brush this matted hair from my eyes so I can see that poor hate when you look at your hair so snarled and dirty and those tangle cur. Let me lie back down. That's better. After these attacks of fever my arms and legs seem somehow to limp and lie down and don't move. Sick men must stay in bed. Frustrating I nobody can help prop me up again. You now turn me around. What a nuisance I am in my helplessness. Would you like to try walking a step or two the change may do you good with all my heart right now even the suggestion of hell however foes would be welcome. Listen Orestes I have something to say but you must listen now while your mind is clear and the few words leave you free if your news is good news by all means tell me. If not I have troubles enough listen then Uncle man NASA is here in August.
His feet lie that anchor ignobly out is it true then this darkness has a dawn. Our own goal here the same men for whom our father did so much here in person. And the proof is Helen he has brought her home from Troy. I would envy him more if he'd left her there. If Helen is here he has brought his trouble home. For to Derry us what has he fathered. Helen and mother Clytemnestra and both disgraced him in the eyes of Hellas so take care that you act differently. You can't I mean chastity of heart as well as well. Was the. Coming of a. Good. Was. The way.
You. Would like your resume your holding me down to me and. Not. Say. Hello. To you baby but unless you go this. Was the only do you. Were out of the way. Can the power keep coming. Honored. What was I saying. And while my pending so what am I doing here on the head. But wait I remember now a great
story on the waves crashing. But not for this column. This piece. Why are you crying. Why do you hide your face. Oh my poor sister how wrong is it that what I have to suffer this sickness this madness that it should hurt you and cause you shame. Please please don't cry. Not on my account. Let me bear the shame. I didn't know you consented to the murder but I killed not you. No I accuse Apollo the god is the guilty one it was he who drove me to this dreadful cry. He and his were egging me encouraging me all words no action. I think now I guess my dead father at the time if I should kill him he would have begged me gone down on his knees before me and pleaded implored me not to take my mother's life. What had we to gain by murdering her. Death
could never bring him back to life and oh yeah by killing her I would have dozens of others I suffer I know it seems so. Oh yes dear I know but lift your head do not cry. And sometimes when you see me morbid and depressed. Comfort me and call me and I in turn when you despair will comfort you with a love for the love of his or her we have the only way that each can help the other. Now go inside bathing eat and give those tired eyes the needed sleep. If you should leave me now. If you fall ill yourself from nursing me and I am dead. You are all my health your home my home. I could never leave you. Live would die. I do have a tie with you arrestees who you are my hope to is I
am yours. What am I without you. A woman brotherless fatherless friendless. Alone and helpless. But since you think it best do I go inside. Would you go back to bed and rest. Above all else try to stay calm and master your terror if you can remember no getting out of bed. It was sickness maybe real or something in your mind. But in either case brooding on it will not make you well. God uses of 10 runners on the wing. And there's a small row whose rights are to him in the dock. You minute is who's doing shit the totes demanding blood. Hinges of Murdo we implore you to lease this boy
Agamemnon son from madness of murder the blood that well's him on. PC. It is really high here jihad I cry. My eyes out it came on. Drove from Apollo's thrown the gods come on to kill pricking. The air with the Word of God not. To mention the shrine of to. Whom these names will live the word. Zeus. What Murphy. What mercy for this boy on whom the fiend just said the spirit of vengeance for his mother's blood. Savage spirit driving on his house in gusts Don gust of grief. Done the badness of blood madness born of murder. We mourn for this moment. We agreed on this house. It will not state.
God that his wife. And happiness goes down and blood. And whatnot are praised in this line of bone of tenderness and royal magnificence to the beloved of. KING. And did with Heaven's help. To. Access. This life.
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Classical drama
Orestes, part 1
Producing Organization
University of Michigan
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program presents part one of Orestes by Euripides.
Series Description
This series presents full-length productions of Greek and Roman plays of antiquity in modern English translation with original music especially composed for this series. Each play is introduced by William Arrowsmith, University of Texas.
Broadcast Date
Media type
Composer: Gillis, Don, 1912-1978
Producing Organization: University of Michigan
Speaker: Arrowsmith, William, 1924-1992
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 61-58-5 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:28:22
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Chicago: “Classical drama; Orestes, part 1,” 1961-11-30, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed September 30, 2023,
MLA: “Classical drama; Orestes, part 1.” 1961-11-30. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. September 30, 2023. <>.
APA: Classical drama; Orestes, part 1. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from