Like many teenagers, the central character in Chip Rodgers' new work is awkward, insecure and doesn't get along with her mom. Part of it's understandable: Clytemnestra and her new hubby did murder Elektra's dad, after all, a tender fact that now puts a pall on most of their family get-togethers.
But when Rodgers went back to the original Greek, he found a woman trapped in her own language. "Her tragedy is that she's self-conscious and self-aware," the director notes, "in a way we don't see again, after the ancient Greeks, until this last century."
With the help of composer Gavin Price and guest artist Julian Hester, Rodgers places these people in a contemporary frame as he asks why these characters—and our families—are they way they are. Mahamantra Das stars in a fully staged workshop work prior to its New York production. —Byron Woods