Poster for American Shakespeare Center’s “Antigone”

Hartwick Presents American Shakespeare Center’s “Antigone”

September 14, 2018

The Hartwick College Department of Theatre Arts will present the annual appearance of The American Shakespeare Center (ASC) On Tour. This year’s production, Shakespeare’s Antigone, will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 3 in Slade Theater, Yager Hall, on the College campus. Tickets are free for Hartwick students, $5 for Hartwick faculty, staff, and students from other schools, and $10 for general admission.

In the aftermath of her brothers’ bloody war, Antigone is left torn. Her brother, Eteocles, will be honored, but her other brother, Polyneices, will be shamed and denied funeral rites. In this ancient tale, Antigone stands for morality in spite of punishment as one of the earliest heroines in drama. Sophocles’s drama from 441 BC holds startling relevance today, examining divinity, obedience, and law – and how love overcomes them all.

The show is directed by ASC Director Doreen Bechtol.

Antigone reaches across 2,500 years to speak to us today with surprising relevancy,” said Bechtol. “When I think of the law enacted to deny Antigone her ancestral right to care for her brother’s body, I think of laws that separate families at our nation’s borders and the utter grief and suffering caused by being denied access to loved ones. When I imagine Antigone’s brother’s spirit unable to come to rest as it passes into the afterlife, I imagine the countless refugees around the world whose displaced bones will never rest in their native land with their closest of kin. And when I hear Antigone say to those who sentence her to death, ‘I am disposed to love by nature, not to hate,’ I am reminded that even when faced with tragedy, a young woman has the strength to choose love.”

With an extensive focus in stage physicality, Bechtol brings a unique style to this production, infusing dance, movement, tableau, and hip-hop; blending Shakespeare’s stagecraft with modern sensibility. ASC uses Shakespeare’s staging conditions: universal lighting, minimal sets, character doubling, cross-gender casting, and live music. Shakespeare’s performance company couldn’t turn the lights out on the audience; actors and audience shared the same light. The Hand of Time Tour shares light with the audience throughout the performance for a unique brand of audience contact rarely seen in theatre today.

The ASC is an established, professional theatre company based in Staunton, VA. Founded as Shenandoah Shakespeare Express in 1988, the ASC grew to international prominence and is now the home of the world’s only re-creation of Shakespeare’s indoor theatre. ASC on Tour has performed in 46 U.S. states, one U.S. territory, and five other countries.

This will be the ASC’s only area performance of Antigone. To reserve tickets or for more information, call (607) 431-4227 or email

For more information about the American Shakespeare Center and its company productions, visit its website.