Acting Myth

  • Zachary Dunbar
  • Stephe Harrop


This chapter begins by examining how a shared mythic canon was re-negotiated by Athenian artists of the fifth century BCE. Revisions of known narratives were central to tragic playwriting, and the tragic actor was required to perform the role of skilled theatrical storyteller, making long narrative speeches vivid and engaging. Tragedy’s formal borrowings from epic, and the genre’s narrative playfulness, provide the stimulus for this chapter’s practical provocations, which are informed by contemporary storytelling theatre (especially the work of Emma Rice and Kneehigh Theatre) and performance storytelling. Such practices are located in relation to wider notions of the contemporary theatre-maker as potential author of their own responses to tragedy.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zachary Dunbar
    • 1
  • Stephe Harrop
    • 2
  1. 1.Victorian College of the ArtsUniversity of MelbourneMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.Liverpool Hope UniversityLiverpoolUK

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