Most recent update:8/4/2004; 6:26:05 AM

 Tuesday, July 06, 2004

pridie nonas julias

  • ludi Apollinares (day 1) -- games instituted in 212 B.C. after consulting the Sybilline books during a particularly bad stretch in the Punic Wars; four years later they became an annual festival in honour of Apollo
  • late fifth century B.C.? -- in the wake of the aborted attack on Rome by Coriolanus, the senate dedicated a Temple of Fortuna Muliebris (and there were associated rites thereafter)

7:58:31 AM    Click here to send an email to the editor of this weblog.

BLOGWATCH: @ Languagehat

Languagehat discovers the online Suda project ...
7:45:15 AM    Click here to send an email to the editor of this weblog.


Thomas Dewender, Thomas Welt (edd.), Imagination - Fiktion - Kreation. Das kulturschaffende Vermogen der Phantasie.

Luigi Castagna, Eckard Lefevre, Plinius der Jungere und seine Zeit.

Paul T. Alessi, Golden Verses: Poetry of the Augustan Age.

6:34:13 AM    Click here to send an email to the editor of this weblog.

PERFORMANCE: Euripides ... sort of

We haven't posted many reviews of performances here (they tend to get listed en masse in Explorator), but I can't resist this blend of ClassCon and CanCon in a performance reviewed in the Globe and Mail:

How do you know you've reached the epicentre of Vancouver's East End counterculture? When you're in a tent off Commercial Drive watching an all-ages troupe of clowns enact its absurdist version of Euripides' Orestes. Agamemnon and his children's ensemble of maimed soldiers return from war with a caged Cassandra decked out in a blonde beehive bouffant and thick posterior padding. As soon as the bootylicious Princess of Troy begins reciting Allen Ginsberg's Howl, the entire audience breaks into a spontaneous chorus of finger snapping.

The Leaky Heaven Circus is back, having eschewed its traditional (if wholly unconventional) Christmas show for a bit midsummer madness under a rental big top in Britannia Field.

Loosely based on the ancient Greek legend, Ziggurat! provides a little something for everyone to chew on -- including Mosey, the company's famous basset hound, who delightfully barges his way through the crowd and gets his own credit as a fury.

But if the trickster myth is "the story of intelligence arising from appetite" (according to cultural theorist Lewis Hyde and one of Leaky Heaven's primary inspirations), these subversive clowns seduce their audience with a vat of cold spaghetti. Manon Beaudoin, as the darkly duplicitous Queen Clytemnestra, begins the feast by pelting the crowd with wet noodles and popcorn. More zaniness ensues when she chases Va-Va-Boom Cassandra through the stands and nails Agamemnon's stuffed talking tongue to the floor.

Amid the chaos, there are several sparkling moments of true grotesque beauty. One of the most memorable has James Long as the slain Princess Iphigenia in drag, returning from the dead with a marching band of masked gargoyles on all fours. [more]


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CHATTER: Greek Chic

The Toronto Star alerts us to the 'Greek Chic' phenomenon this morning, inter alia:

The fascination with Greece is playing itself out on many stages. The epicentre of this Greek zeitgeist is, as could be expected, Athens, where young women are wearing the country's flag as sexy halter tops and muscular men are patriotically having the blue and white emblem tattooed on their broad shoulders.

The flag, as sex symbol, was first worn by Greek heartthrob pop singer Sakis Rouvas, emblazoned on an abbreviated white T-shirt. His single "Shake It" took third place in a European song contest in May and the flag-as-fashion trend became an overnight sensation, used to decorate everything from underwear to bath towels.

But the reverberations of the Greek chic trend extend far from the country's borders. In anticipation of the summer Olympics, fashion designers in Milan, Paris and New York took inspiration from the old-fashioned frocks of ancient Greece. They have been draping models in one-shoulder jersey goddess dresses. Shoe designers, from the arch-supporting Birkenstocks to ultra-stylish Fendi, are promoting the mighty Aphrodite look with sandals that strap up past the Achilles heel right to the knee.

And for women who want just a touch of the Diane Kruger look in Troy, they can share the Hellenistic moment with accessories including gold chandelier and disc earrings and gold cuffs.

The Greek chic impact has been so overwhelming that recent red-carpet events have been compared to glamorous Grecian toga parties. We've seen Jennifer Lopez in Michael Kors, Angelina Jolie in Marc Bouwer, Jennifer Garner in Valentino and Liv Tyler in Marc Jacobs, each designer offering their own version of the famous draped Greek gown.

While sport has the power to prompt a trend, there is nothing like a summer blockbuster to blow it wide open. That's right, Jennifer Aniston's (she's Greek) buff boy toy Brad Pitt is turning the MTV generation on to ancient history in his film Troy.

Brad Inwood, chair of the department of classics at the University of Toronto, says "the classics have benefited from this constant exposure, with Gladiator and now with Troy. It captures people's attention and brings us new students."

The moment will be given added life in the forthcoming epic Alexander the Great, starring Colin Farrell.

Whether it's in a university classroom, on a plush red carpet or a velvet green soccer field ... Greece is the word.

6:22:20 AM    Click here to send an email to the editor of this weblog.

AWOTV: On TV Today

Nothing of interest ...
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Click for Athens, Greece Forecast

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