The House of Atreus act -1
CAST OF CHARACTERS:
AGAMEMNON - King of Argos
KLYTEMNESTRA - Queen of Argos
ELEKTRA - Daughter
ORESTES - Son
AGISTHOS - Usurper of the Throne
ATHENA - Goddess of Wisdom
ELDERS - Citizens of Argos
KASSANDRA - Trojian Seer
Our Drama begins on the Final Night of the
Trojian War. The Greek Army led by Agamemnon, King of Argos, and
the crafty Odysseus, have taken Troy by Stealth, Cunning and
Power, after ten long years of warfare. The Greeks are more than
successful. Troy is utterly destroyed and all her inhabitants are
either killed or taken as slaves. As a Sign of Victory a Fire
Beacon is set
ablaze on Mount Ida. It is then sent on from peak to peak until itīs final destination on Mount Arachneion, where it is seen by the Watchman, who has been commanded by Queen Klytemnestra (Agamemnonīs wife), to search and to inform her immediately of the first sign of Victory and of course the imminent return of her husband. This BLAZE OF VICTORY, has a very different meaning for the Queen than it has for either her daughter Elektra, or for the Elders of the town.
After great hardship and loss, Agamemnon returns to his home, with his captive prize Kassandra, daughter of Priam, the slain King of Troy. Kassandra, is a Priestess of the God Apollo, who has bestowed upon her the Gift of Prophecy. However, it is her Doom that no one ever believes her prophecies. This appalling ban was placed on her by the God, as punishment for refusing his advances. Meanwhile Klytemnestra, has been perverting all the Rituals for a proper homecoming, thus risking the enmity of the Elders of the city, who are becoming increasingly disillusioned over the outcome of the Trojian Campaign. The Queen converts Agamemnonīs Victorious arrival
into a very dangerous situation, when she manipulates him into incurring the Wrath of the Gods by persuading him to walk into his Palace over a carpet of finely woven crimson tapestries. Klytemnestra, for all her powers of persuasion with her husband, cannot get Agamemnonīs new mistress Kassandra to enter the House. The young Trojian Seer only enters after prophesying Agamemnonīs death as well as her own. In turn she also astound the Elders with her visions of all the past tragedies enacted in the House.
Shortly after his homecoming Agamemnon is murdered in his silver bath by Klytemnestra and her lover Agisthos, who has taken up residence in Agamemnonīs House and bed during the Kingīs absence. Kassandra, is also murdered over the dead body of her new Master. There are several reasons for the murder of Agamemnon. His wifeīs motive was revenge; pure, simple and sweet. While the Fleet of warships was becalmed at the Port of Aulis, Agamemnon sacrified his daughter Iphigenia, to the Goddess Artemis, to appease her anger (over the shooting of her favorite stag by a crew member), and to receive favorable winds for the voyage to Troy. Klytemnestra, nursed her grief, hatred and anger over this sad event for ten years, (the length of the war in Troy). She devised the plan to kill her husband and took Agisthos into her bed and her confidence. Agisthos, had his own reasons for wanting the King dead. This usurper possessed an ancestral hatred. Thyestes, who was the father of Agisthos, stole the wife of his brother Atreus (Agamemnonīs father). In retaliation Atreus banished Thyestes from the Kingdom. After a fashion Atreus, feigning friendship and forgiveness, allowed Thyestes to return. As a "peace offering" he prepared a banquet for him. The food at this feast was most unusual. Atreus murdered thirteen of Thyestes sons, cooked their flesh and served it to his brother! When Thyestes realized what manner of food he had eaten, he vomited it all back up and sent the banquet table crashing to the ground. Atreus was the King at this time so Thyestes was powerless to avenge this crime. Later Agamemnon, as Atreusī son must bear the full burden of his fathers crime. It is an ancient concept. "The sins of the father shall be visited upon the son", hence Agisthos motive for his part in the murder of Agamemnon, more revenge!
The propensity for Evil in the House actually began even earlier with Tantalos, the Founder of the Race. Tantalos, invited the Gods to a banquet at his home, and then for some unexplained reason, he killed, and served his own son to them! This heinous act made the Gods place a curse upon Tantalos and all his offspring, thus the CURSE OF THE HOUSE OF ATREUS!!! This curse, this daimon, makes them sin in spite of themselves. They commit sin after sin, after sin and drown in a rain of Endless Bloodshed!!!
"ACT I", ends with the murders of Agamemnon and Kassandra, and a tyranny imposed on the City by Klytemnestra and Agisthos, who has proclaimed himself the new King. Elektra (loyal daughter of Agamemnon, as well as despiser of Klytemnestra), and the Elders bemoan their fate and pray for the return of Agamemnonīs son Orestes, who they hope will bring Vengeance and Deliverance to them.
"ACT II", chronicles Orestes eventual return and the Judgement he brings, as well as the Judgement he receives! The Epic conclusion of this "Barbaric-Romantic-Opera", is in production now and will be in your hands ever Faithful, Eternal Metal Listener....shortly!!! Through Fire and Water, Wrath, Storm, Pain, Tears and Love, we will meet again...
DAVID DEFEIS (July 1999)