Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama

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Founder(s) Edith Hall and Oliver Taplin
Established 1996 (1996)
Focus performances of Greek and Roman drama and epic, translation of Greek and Roman drama, performance reception
Director Fiona Macintosh[1]
Faculty Classics, University of Oxford
Slogan Research, Preserve, Create
Location Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, Oxford

The Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama (APGRD) is a research project based at the University of Oxford, England, founded in 1996 by Edith Hall and Oliver Taplin.[1]


The APGRD's focus is the study of performances of ancient drama and epic worldwide, ranging from the original performances in antiquity to the present day.[1] It also runs a number of programmes promoting new writing and performance, including the 2005–2011 Onassis Programme, which commissioned, developed and produced professional work from artists from around the world, including Seamus Heaney and Derek Walcott.[2]

The APGRD was praised by Oxford University for its engagement with authors, directors and other theatre practitioners, and was selected as one of the university's Impacts showcase projects for helping to "sustain the distinctive and dynamic nature of the UK theatre".[3] The project’s publications have been described as playing "a pivotal role in establishing the parameters and methodologies of the study of the reception of Classical drama in performance".[4]

Archival collections[edit]

The APGRD maintains and preserves a number of archival collections.[5] The centrepiece is the APGRD's own research archive, a collection of material relating to modern performances of ancient drama. The APGRD also holds a number of other collections, including:

  • The Leyhausen-Spiess Collection - the collected papers of German director and academic Wilhelm Leyhausen,[6][7] founder of the Delphic Institute.[8]
  • The David Raeburn Collection - a collection of papers and records (including promptbooks) belonging to classicist and translator David Raeburn,[9][10] who also produced the Bradfield School Greek play.[11]
  • The Abd'Elkader Farrah collection - designs and artwork for several of the Greek and Shakespearian productions of the Algerian theatre designer Abd'Elkader Farrah (also known as Abdel Farrah).[12][13][14][15]

In addition, the APGRD's performance database has records covering more than 10,000 modern productions of ancient drama and epic.[16]

Selected publications[edit]

A number of books have been published under the auspices of the APGRD. These include:[17]

  • "The Pronomos Vase and its Contexts", edited by Oliver Taplin and Rosie Wyles (OUP, 2010)
  • "Ancient Drama in Music for the Modern Stage", edited by Peter Brown and Suzana Ograjenšek (OUP, 2010)
  • "The Ancient Dancer in the Modern World: Responses to Greek and Roman Dance", edited by Fiona Macintosh (OUP, 2010)
  • "Theorising Performance: Greek Tragedy, Cultural History and Critical Practice", edited by Edith Hall and Stephe Harrop (Duckworth, 2010)
  • "Oedipus Tyrannus", by Fiona Macintosh (Cambridge University Press, 2009)
  • "New Directions in Ancient Pantomime", edited by Edith Hall and Rosie Wyles (OUP, 2008)
  • "Pots and Plays: Interactions between Tragedy and Greek Vase-painting of the Fourth Century BC", by Oliver Taplin (Getty Publications, 2007)
  • "Aristophanes in Performance, 421 BC to AD 2007: Peace, Birds, and Frogs", edited by Edith Hall and Amanda Wrigley (Oxford: Legenda, forthcoming in 2007)
  • "Agamemnon in Performance: 458 BC to AD 2004", edited by Fiona Macintosh, Pantelis Michelakis, Edith Hall, and Oliver Taplin (OUP, 2005)
  • "Greek Tragedy and the British Theatre, 1660-1914", by Edith Hall and Fiona Macinotsh (OUP, 2005)
  • "Dionysus Since 69: Greek Tragedy at the Dawn of the Third Millennium", edited by Edith Hall, Fiona Macintosh, and Amanda Wrigley (OUP, 2004)
  • "Medea in Performance, 1500-2000", edited by Edith Hall, Fiona Macintosh, and Oliver Taplin (Legenda, Oxford, 2000)


  1. ^ a b c "APGRD website - About us - History". 
  2. ^ "The Onassis Programme, Past Productions". 
  3. ^ "Oxford Impacts: Influencing Contemporary Theatre Practice". Oxford University. 
  4. ^ Hallie Rebecca Marshall, Bryn Mawr Classical Review, 11 September 2006.
  5. ^ "APGRD - Research collections". 
  6. ^ "Chronologie Leyhausen, Wilhelm" (PDF). 
  7. ^ "Monumental texts in ruins: Greek tragedy in Greece and Michael Mamarinos's modern stagings". New Voices in Classical Reception Studies, Issue 3 (2008). 
  8. ^ "Choric‐speaking in Greek tragedies performed by students". The Speech Teacher. Volume 11, Issue 4 (1962). 
  9. ^ "Faculty page for David Raeburn at New College, Oxford". 
  10. ^ "Change is in the air - Nicholas Lezard is excited by David Raeburn's new verse translation of Ovid's Metamorphoses". London: The Guardian. 14 February 2004. Retrieved 29 November 2011. 
  11. ^ "The Old Bradfieldian, Spring 2011, p.16" (PDF). 
  12. ^ "Message of Sympathy from Khalida Toumi to the children of Abdelkader Farrah". Embassy of Algeria. 
  13. ^ Hands, Terry (2009), "Farrah, Abd'Elkader (1926–2005)", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford: Oxford University Press, doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/96897 
  14. ^ Hands, Terry (5 January 2006). "Abdel Farrah - Visionary theatre designer for the RSC for three decades". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 5 December 2011. 
  15. ^ "Abdel Farrah (Obituary)". The Stage. 9 January 2006. Retrieved 5 December 2011. 
  16. ^ "APGRD website - Research collections - Database". 
  17. ^ "APGRD website - Publications". 

Further references[edit]

  • Martina Treu, Aristofane Sottosopra, a review of the APGRD's 'Aristophanes in Performance' conference, Quaderni di Storia 61 (2005), pp. 283–30.
  • Chorus of Approval, Oxford Today: The University Magazine 17.1 (2004), p. 5.
  • Detlev Baur, Antikes Theater heute: Kongress in Oxford zur Bühnengeschichte des Agamemnon, a review of the APGRD's Agamemnon conference, Landshuter Zeitung, 20 September 2001.

External links[edit]