Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington

From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Deacon Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302

GU theater department to present ‘Lysistrata,’ part of campus ‘Greek Week’ events

the Inland Register

(From the March 18, 2010 edition of the Inland Register)

In May of 2009, a women’s organization in Kenya called for a one-week, national “sex strike” by the nation’s women to force the men in power to put aside their “petty squabbles for the country’s greater interest.”

That’s a remarkable story, but the ancient Greeks thought of it first.

For one weekend only, March 25-28, Gonzaga University’s Theater Arts Department presents Aristophanes’ classic comedy Lysistrata – which shows women using the same weapon to stop a disastrous civil war 2,400 years ago.

The most popular of all ancient Greek comedies, Lysistrata has inspired three film versions, two operas, and numerous television and stage productions.

The play tells the story of an Athenian woman named Lysistrata (whose name means “the undoer of armies”) who inspires the women of Greece to seize control of the Acropolis and lock themselves and all their feminine charms away from their bellicose husbands until they make peace.

Aristophanes’s bawdy, funny, and very modern insights into the foolishness of war and the struggles between the sexes come to wild, R-rated life in GU’s modern-dress production. Lysistrata plays March 25, 26, 27 at 7:30 p.m. and March 27, 28 at 2 p.m. at the Harry and Colleen Magnuson Theatre. Tickets can be purchased by calling (509) 313-6553 or online at Web site:

Please note: Lysistrata is definitely not recommended for children.

The production is directed by Jesuit Father Kevin Connell, principal of Gonzaga Prep, who has directed other GU productions such as Curse of the Starving Class and Don Juan, along with readers theater productions of Take Me Out and The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, and this summer’s outdoor production of The Taming Of the Shrew for The Way Off Broadway Theater Co. Father Connell’s previous experience with ancient Greek theater includes performances as Jason in Medea and Prometheus in Prometheus Bound for the Classical Greek Theater of Oregon on the campus of Reed College in Portland.

Lysistrata is part Gonzaga’s “Greek Week,” a series of lectures and activities revolving around ancient Greek theater, politics, culture, and life presented from scholars from around the Northwest. “Greek Week” will include such activities as a “marathon” oral reading of Homer’s Odyssey, a student Olympics, and talk-backs with scholars and company members after each performance of Lysistrata. Greek Week is supported in part by a grant from Humanities Washington.

For more information, check out Greek Week’s website at

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