OMA recently inaugurated its stage set design at the Greek Theatre in Syracuse with the performance of Aeschylus’s Prometheus Unbound (directed by Claudio Longhi). Three temporary architectural devices were presented to reinterpret the theatre’s spaces dating back to the 5th century BCE. OMA’s interventions will be utilised in this summer’s cycle of plays staged by the Istituto Nazionale del Dramma Antico.
The first intervention, the Ring, is a suspended walkway that completes the semi-circle of the terraced seating, encompassing the stage and the backstage, and giving actors an alternative way of entering the scene.
The Machine is a fully adaptable backdrop for the plays: a sloping circular platform, seven metres high, mirroring the amphitheatre. The backdrop can rotate, symbolizing the passage of 13 centuries during Prometheus’s torture; split down the middle, it can also be opened, allowing the entrance of the actors, and symbolizing dramatic events like the Prometheus being swallowed in the bowels of the earth.
The Raft, a circular stage for the actors and dancers, reimagines the orchestra space as a modern thymele, the altar that in ancient times was dedicated to Dionysian rites.