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Houvardas' Last Play, Mourning Becomes Electra

mainThe Greek National Theatre is presenting Eugene O’Neill’s Mourning Becomes Electra, every Wednesday until May 19 in the theater’s Main Stage, but all the shows are sold out.
O’Neill’s story is a retelling of the Oresteia by Aeschylus. After the American Civil War, General Ezra Mannon returns to his New England home. But the house of Mannon, with its dark history and unhealthy psychology, hides many open wounds.
The pathological love of Ezra’s wife Christine for her son Orin, her difficult relationship with her daughter Lavinia and the arrival of an outsider mean that there will be no end to the cycle of hatred, revenge and destructive love that has already blighted the family in the past – until everyone has been brought to account.
The expansive material of the trilogy has been adapted and condensed into a single play by the Artistic Director of the Greek National Theatre, Yannis Houvardas, who, together with a cast of major actors, brings one of the most important works of the 20th-Century to the Main Stage.
Houvardas, who has been in his position for six years, said O’Neill’s work is relevant to modern Greece because of its adaption from Aeschylus. “This is an obvious reason why we chose it. But the most important reason is that the play, in its core, deals with the family. The destruction of the Mannon Family and the tense relationships among its members, in my opinion, explain many of the tortures that we have lived as a nation, and which we continue to endure.”
Houvardas’ contract with the National Theatre finishes in May, but a successor has not yet been announced.

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