What is more important – following the laws of the state or one’s principles? And who decides on what is right and wrong – a common book of laws or one’s moral compass?
Even Oedipus’s children cannot escape the repercussions of familial guilt. The brothers Polynices and Eteocles are dead, killing each other in battle for the throne of Thebes. Now the two sisters Antigone and Ismene are left behind. The war is over and Creon, their uncle, assumes power. Creon blames Polynices for the military conflict and declares him a traitor who brought ruin to his home city. He issues a decree forbidding the burial of Polynices’ corpse – effectively barring him from entering the realm of the dead. While Ismene complies with Creon’s law, Antigone defies it: she buries Polynices under penalty of death. Justice for her dead brother is more sacred to her than the law of the living. Antigone takes responsibility for her actions – and thus seals her fate. Is this an example of true freedom of action?
In this tragedy Sophocles explores the conflict between the law of the state and human rights, between the political and the private sphere. The relentlessness of the mourning sisters casts the statesman Creon into a dilemma.
Alice Buddeberg’s production featuring one of the most extraordinary female characters in theatre is her third at the DNT after Shakespeare’s »Twelfth Night« and the stage adaptation of Kleist’s novella »The Earthquake in Chili«. She has directed plays at numerous theatres in Germany including the Deutsches Schauspielhaus Hamburg, Schauspiel Frankfurt, Theaterhaus Jena and the Theater Bonn, where she served as in-house director from 2013 to 2016.