Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.

  • Let us welcome you to the final day of dramatic battle between great tragedians.

  • It is a spring day here in Ancient Greece.

  • Nearly 17,000 patrons are filing into the Theatre of Dionysus

  • to watch top playwrights,

  • including favorites Aeschylus and Sophocles duke it out

  • to see whose hero may be deemed most tragic,

  • whose story most awful.

  • Well Seacrestopolis,

  • in last week's battle of the choruses,

  • all 50 members of each playwright's chorus traveled back and forth across the stage,

  • singing the strophe and antistrophe, telling misbegotten tales of woe.

  • Today's first chorus is entering through the parados,

  • taking their positions in the orchestra at the bottom of the stage.

  • Mario Lopedokia, this is nothing we haven't seen before.

  • All 50 members speaking from the depths of their souls.

  • Wait, what is this?

  • I've not seen this before, Seacrestopolis.

  • There is one actor stepping out of choral formation,

  • assuming an independent role in this play.

  • Can you make out who it is?

  • That looks like Thespis.

  • It seems he's changing his mask,

  • and taking on the role of another character.

  • Incredible. Surely, Thespis will go down in history as the very first actor.

  • He has changed the face of theater forever.

  • And that was just the warm-up act.

  • On to the main attraction.

  • Aeschylus will have the stage first.

  • Let's see what he does.

  • We expect great things.

  • Last competition, Sophocles beat him by a smidge,

  • but Aeschylus is still considered the Father of Tragedy.

  • Now, Aeschylus frequently competes at this festival, the city Dionysia.

  • Though his plays are violent,

  • the bloodshed is never seen by the audience,

  • which allows the dramatic tension to take center stage.

  • Let's see what he does today to try to win his title back.

  • Here comes Aeschylus's chorus,

  • but they seem to be missing quite a few people.

  • What is going on here?

  • Not only are they down a few people.

  • There are two actors taking center stage.

  • This is absolutely unheard of.

  • He has build on Thespis's idea and added a second actor to the mix.

  • Aeschylus is relying on the two individuals to tell the story.

  • The dialogue possible in tragedy now has taken precedence over the chorus.

  • No wonder he drastically shrunk its size.

  • This applause is well deserved.

  • The crowd has hushed.

  • Sophocles's actors and chorus

  • are taking the stage for the play, "Oedipus Rex."

  • As usual, the chorus is set up in the orchestra.

  • And what's this?

  • Sophocles has added a third actor.

  • Will this one-upmanship never end?

  • Three actors,

  • and they are changing their masks to take on several different roles

  • as they weave the tale of Oedipus,

  • a nice fellow who kills his father and marries his mother.

  • Kills his father and marries his mother.

  • That sounds pretty tragic to me.

  • It is most tragic, Mario Lopedokia.

  • Call me crazy, but I'm willing to bet that future generations

  • will hold this play up as the perfect example of tragedy.

  • Excuse me, Seacrestopolis.

  • Oedipus has left the stage after realizing Jocasta was his wife and also his mother.

  • Where has he gone?

  • I can't even imagine.

  • Wait. The messenger has stepped on stage

  • and is telling us of the great king's actions.

  • He says that Oedipus, upon finding his mother, wife, whatever, Jocasta,

  • dead of her own hand in their incestuous bedroom,

  • took the broaches from her dress and stabbed his eyes repeatedly.

  • You can't blame the guy, can you?

  • Bedded his mother, killed his father, is father and brother to his children.

  • I might do the same.

  • My friend, I do believe we've seen it all.

  • Indeed, we have.

  • There is nothing more tragic than Oedipus.

  • And sure enough, the judges who have been chosen by lot from all over Greece

  • are ready to announce the winner.

  • Oh, folks! This is one for the history books.

  • Dark horse playwright, Philocles, has taken first prize.

  • What an upset. What a tragedy.

  • What a night, folks.

  • We have witnessed the laying of the foundation of modern theater

  • and some great innovations:

  • the shrinking of the chorus,

  • the addition of three actors,

  • and such catharsis.

  • Doesn't a great tragedy just make you feel renewed and cleansed?

  • It sure does, but now we are out of time.

  • I'm Seacrestopolis,

  • and I'm Mario Lopedokia.

  • Peace, love and catharsis.

Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.

Subtitles and vocabulary

Operation of videos Adjust the video here to display the subtitles

B1 TED-Ed chorus oedipus stage tragedy tragic

【TED-Ed】The battle of the Greek tragedies - Melanie Sirof

  • 1048 89
    稲葉白兎 posted on 2015/06/17
Video vocabulary