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FREE Performance of Electra at West Conn on Tuesday

DANBURY, CONN. — The internationally acclaimed Leonidas and Eftychia Loizides Theatre Group will stage a performance of the classical Greek play "Electra" by Sophocles on Tuesday, September 24, 2013, at Western Connecticut State University.

The performance will be at 7 p.m. in Ives Concert Hall in White Hall on the university's Midtown campus, 181 White Street in Danbury. Admission will be free and the public is invited. The presentation has been made possible by a grant from the foundation of Brookfield industrialist and philanthropist Constantine "Deno" Macricostas and his wife Marie.

Celebrated actress Eftychia Loizides will star in and direct this production. Renowned for her acting performances in Greek dramas on stage and television, she also has garnered critical praise abroad for her leading roles in previous touring productions by Leonidas Loizides of "Oresteia" by Aeschylus and "Iphigenia in Tauris" by Euripides.

In her notes about the current production, Loizides provided some context for her performance.

"Sophocles' play 'Electra' (410 B.C.) tells the story of a young woman anxiously awaiting the return of her brother whose sole purpose in life is to avenge their father's death by murdering his killers: their mother, Clytemnestra, and her new husband, Aegisthus.

"The ancient Greek drama was born at a time of transition from a more collective energy (the family, the tribe) to a more personal one, courtesy of the benefits afforded by democracy: namely freedom of speech and the right to deviate in opinion from the consensus. The result was a realization that these previously deemed privileges constituted basic human rights that one was entitled to and, should these be breached, one ought to fight for them.

"Today, 2,500 years later, we see that, sadly, human rights are still in regression, even in the civilizations of the West. When we speak of human rights, we are referring to our basic liberties — the way one deserves to be treated. Electra is not a single person; she represents a collective force. She is the global person who is 'electrified' by injustice and fights to right wrongs; she could be a child, a mother, a father, a teacher.

"Sophocles wrote his play at a time of great upheaval," Loizides wrote. "Today, too, is a time of immense upheaval and it is in times like these that man begins to question everything: who he is, where he comes from, his purpose of existence. Even if he does not have the answers to these plaguing questions, the mere fact that he refuses to take anything for granted is compliant with the spirit of the ancient Greek drama."

The performance marks the fourth consecutive year that Western has hosted the Loizides Theatre Group sponsored by the Macricostas Foundation. The group's previous WCSU performances have included Aeschylus' "Oresteia" in 2010, Euripides' "Iphigenia in Tauris" in 2011, and "Helen of Troy" in 2012.

For more information, call (203) 837-8734.

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