Los Angeles Theater Review: PERSIANS (SITI Company at The Getty Villa)

Post image for Los Angeles Theater Review: PERSIANS (SITI Company at The Getty Villa)

by Jason Rohrer on September 3, 2014

in Theater-Los Angeles


To see the oldest extant Greek tragedy performed sort-of as it was 2500 years ago, but excluding masks and including Anne Bogart’s affection for fabric and yoga positions, you may now attend Aeschylus’s Persians in a lovely amphitheater up in the Malibu hills. Essentially an after-the-fact ode to the Greek fighting spirit, delivered by a routed enemy, the play has little of what we would call drama today. SITI Co. ensemble. © 2014 Craig SchwartzThis production fully honors this element. Extremely fit actors assume sun salute and locust pose; they declaim horror at Xerxes’ ignoble defeat by Greece. Some of these actors, particularly Will Bond, are technically precise and spiritually moving. Some are not; Akiko Aizawa has been with Bogart since 1997, and her English is still unintelligible. Gold lamé adorns the set and costumes. Many slow, rhythmic movements are mirrored. Much of the play is sung in chorus, with occasionally interesting vocal compositions by Victor Zupanc.  Twice or three times in ninety minutes, arresting images are allowed to loiter unto dissipation. There is less of permanence in this production than of stasis. Perhaps its primary historical draw is the chance to experience what theater was like in Brooklyn in 1994.

photo by Craig Schwartz

SITI Company
The Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman Theater at the Getty Villa
17985 Pacific Coast Highway in Pacific Palisades
Thursday – Saturday at 8
scheduled to end on September 27, 2014
for tickets, call (310) 440-7300 or visit www.getty.edu

Leave a Comment