Sophocles' Oedipus, presented by Los Angeles’ Tony-winning Deaf West Theatre and Getty Museum as a bilingual, outdoor production, officially opens September 7 at Getty Villa's Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman Theater. Performed in American Sign Language (ASL) and spoken English, previews began September 1 for the limited run through October 1.
Russell Harvard (To Kill a Mockingbird) stars as the titular King Oedipus, joined by fellow Broadway veterans Alexandria Wailes (For Colored Girls), Amelia Hensley (Spring Awakening), and Matthew Jaeger (Children of a Lesser God). Ashlea Hayes (Switched at Birth), Gregor Lopes (Fidelio), Andrew Morrill (The Music Man), On Shiu (The Female Gaze), Akia Takara (All About Araya), and Jon Wolfe Nelson (The L Word) round out the cast.
The psychological murder mystery-meets-political thriller follows King Oedipus as he faces the complexities of legacy, destiny, culture, and language, reimagining the Greek tragedy by centering American Sign Language and using new technology.
Jenny Koons directs, leading a creative team comprised of set designer Tanya Orellana, costume designer Jojo Siu, lighting designer Jared A. Sayeg, projection designer Yee Eun Nam, and music and sound designer Peter Bayne. Andrew Morrill and Alexandria Wailes serve as ASL choreographers. Producing for Deaf West Theatre are DJ Kurs and Laura Hill.
“Bridging the gap between the Deaf and hearing communities is central to Deaf West’s mission,” said DJ Kurs, artistic director of Deaf West Theatre, in an earlier statement. “We are excited to bring new life to this classic story. We are thrilled at the opportunity to build upon the early precepts of the art form of theater, such as staging and body language.”
Look at photos of Deaf West's Broadway revival of Spring Awakening: