Theater of War Productions stages ancient Greek tragedy for journalists at WNYC

WNYC's Greene Space held a special event Thursday, as Theater of War Productions put on a reading of the ancient Greek play Philoctetes.

Written by the legendary playwright Sophocles, Philoctetes describes the attempt by Neoptolemus and Odysseus to bring the disabled Philoctetes, the master archer, back to Troy from the island of Lemnos.

"It's a story of a wounded warrior, who has been alone on an island for nine years, and he is recruited to come and fight for his country against the Trojans," said Peter Marks, former Chief Theater Critic for the Washington Post.

For years, Theater of War productions has organized these powerful performances to connect and bring healing to military veterans. But Thursday's performance was catered specifically to journalists. 

"Greek tragedy is kitchen sink realism for people who have lived the extremities of life," said Bryan Doerries, Theater of War's Artistic Direction.

Actors Jesse Eisenberg, Bill Camp, and Kathryn Erbe were part of the cast. 

"The plays, without exception, every time I've done these, has provoked a very modern response from a modern audience," Eisenberg said. 

The play was then followed by a panel discussion, where the journalists could open up and talk about their experiences, the stress, the burnout, and the challenges they face.

The event was sponsored by FOX and News Corp.