Published : Wednesday, March 6, 2019 | 1:54 PM
A Noise Within (ANW) presents Argonautika, an epic theatrical journey full of human emotion by Tony® Award-winning director and playwright Mary Zimmerman. ANW Producing Artistic Director Julia Rodriguez-Elliott will direct Zimmerman’s work for the first time. Argonautika, which made its world premiere in 2006 at Chicago’s Lookingglass Theatre that Zimmerman is a member of, runs from March 20 through May 5. Previews begin March 20 and press opening night is March 23.
Argonautika is a fresh retelling of the classic Greek myth, The Voyage of Jason and the Argonauts. Jason and his quest for the Golden Fleece has been reframed for our time. Audiences will join the fantastic voyage and encounter Athena, Hera, Hercules, sirens, centaurs, and more—familiar mythological figures imbued with unexpected character and depth. This contemporary piece of theatre encompasses humor, love, and the unimaginable as Zimmerman reveals the humanity in the most monstrous of creatures in an unforgettable adventure for the ages.
“I am a longtime fan of Zimmerman’s work,” said ANW Producing Artistic Director Julia Rodriguez-Elliott. “Zimmerman is an expert at taking these ancient tales and making them accessible to a modern audience. In Argonautika, she brings humor and philosophical perspective to the plight of humanity. I love voyages and the possibilities they present, so that is always an attraction, and this voyage is filled with adventures, tight scrapes, giants, harpies, and gods flying. As a director, I find all this thrilling and terrifying.”
The story of Jason and his Argonauts will soar to new heights in ANW’s production of Argonautika featuring aerial silks, rope-swinging, heroic battles, humor, and song all within a 324-seat space.
“A Noise Within excels in creating epic experiences in an intimate setting. Our thrust stage will make the audience feel like they are part of the action (and there is lots of it!),” explained Rodriguez-Elliott.
She continued, “Zimmerman has provided me with a very strong roadmap, but she also leaves it open to each director in finding their own way of theatricalizing the series of events that make up Jason’s journey. There will be a uniquely ANW approach to the story that will surprise audiences. We have an exciting design team working on this production and a terrific cast bringing the story to life.”
The poetic stage design conceived by Scenic Designer Frederica Nascimento will be elaborated by elements such as an immense ocean, a ship, black cloud, hard lines of rope, expansive fabric, and great heights from which actors will leap, climb, and jump – which all creates a wonderful playground for the play.
The costumes of Argonautika will breathe life into the story and represent the development of the characters as they progress on their journey. Costume Designer Jenny Foldenauer and Costume Associate Dayna L. Lucas were interested in going beyond the traditional Greek aesthetic and focused their attention on the earthiness of the tale with dip-dyed fabrics, feathers, gold, and flowers for the gods and a distressed, gritty look for the Argonauts.
“Argonautika is an adult fairytale for all ages. Anyone who enjoys a great adventure will be taken on a glorious ride this spring,” concluded Rodriguez-Elliott.
Tickets for Argonautika start at $25 and are available at anoisewithin.org, by phone at (626) 356-3121, and at the box office located at 3352 East Foothill Blvd. in Pasadena.
Wednesday, March 20 at 7:30 p.m. (Preview and Symposium)
Thursday, March 21 at 7:30 p.m. (Preview and Pay What You Can)
Friday, March 22 at 8 p.m. (Preview)
Saturday, March 23 at 8 p.m. (Opening)
Sunday, March 24 at 2 p.m.
Sunday, March 31 at 2 p.m.
Sunday, March 31 at 7 p.m. (Sunday Rush)
Saturday, April 6 at 2 p.m.
Saturday, April 6 at 8 p.m.
Thursday, April 11 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, April 12 at 8 p.m. (Post-Show Conversation)
Sunday, April 21 at 2 p.m. (Post-Show Conversation)
Sunday, April 21 at 7 p.m. (Sunday Rush)
Saturday, April 27 at 2 p.m.
Saturday, April 27 at 8 p.m.
Thursday, May 2 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, May 3 at 8 p.m. (Post-Show Conversation)
Saturday, May 4 at 2 p.m.
Saturday, May 4 at 8 p.m.
Sunday, May 5 at 2 p.m.
Symposium and Post-Show Conversations
This run of Argonautika includes a symposium with University of California Irvine Associate Professor of Classics, Dr. Zina Giannopoulou, at 6:45 p.m. on March 20, 2019 and post-show conversations on April 12, April 21 (after the 2 p.m. performance), and May 3, 2019.
ANW’s 2018-2019 Season – Let Me In
“All of our 2018-19 offerings feature characters who are outliers – people who have blazed their own trail but nevertheless struggle for acknowledgement and acceptance,” said Geoff Elliott. “Let Me In isn’t about a physical space, it’s about the deeply human passion to be understood for who we are.”
Mary Zimmerman’s fresh retelling of the classic Greek myth, The Voyage of Jason and the Argonauts, in Argonautika (directed by Julia Rodriguez-Elliott; March 20 – May 5, 2019) will run in rotating repertory with William Shakespeare’s story of love and betrayal, Othello (directed by Jessica Kubzansky; now through April 28, 2019), and Tennessee Williams’ haunting memory play, The Glass Menagerie (directed by Geoff Elliott; now through April 26, 2019). Following the spring 2019 repertory season, the popular and acclaimed ANW production of Noises Off (directed by Julia Rodriguez-Elliott & Geoff Elliott; May 21 – June 9, 2019) returns. KCET is a media sponsor for A Noise Within’s 2018-19 Season. A Noise Within’s repertory theatre season is presented by the S. Mark Taper Foundation.
Julia Rodriguez-Elliott said, “Whether they’re in self-exile (The Glass Menagerie), or shunned (Othello), or led astray by hedonistic desires (A Picture of Dorian Gray), or thrust there by the fickle cruelty of fate (Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead) or the gods (Argonautika), all of these characters on the margins of society are fascinating and deeply resonant with anyone who has ever felt left out.”
About A Noise Within
A Noise Within has been called “an oasis for those who love classic stories” by the Los Angeles Times, and is a leading regional producer based in Pasadena, Calif. ANW’s award-winning resident company practices a rotating repertory model at their state-of-the-art, 283-seat performance space. This venue, established in 2011, has allowed ANW to expand its audience, surpassing its previous box office, subscription, and attendance records year after year.
In addition to producing world-class performances of classic theatre, the organization runs robust education programs committed to inspiring diverse audiences of all ages. Helmed by Producing Artistic Directors Geoff Elliott and Julia Rodriguez-Elliott, who hold MFAs from San Francisco’s renowned American Conservatory Theatre (A.C.T.), A Noise Within truly delivers Classic Theatre, Modern Magic. http://www.anoisewithin.org