Available Online l The Actors’ Repertoire, Fifth-Century Comedy and Early Tragic Revivals by Sebastiana Nervegna

The Center For Hellenic Studies is pleased to announce the online publication of spring fellow Sebastiana Nervegna’s paper, “The Actors’ Repertoire, Fifth-Century Comedy and Early Tragic Revivals,” which was presented at the 2015 Fellows Research Symposium. See the abstract below. To read the full article, visit the Center for Hellenic Studies Research Bulletin.


This contribution deals with the theatrical afterlife of Euripides’ Telephus, Aeschylus’ Edonians and Libation Bearers. The sources for their ancient reception share two features: (i) Classical dramatists recall the visual aspects of these plays, thus suggesting familiarity with their performance, decades after they premiered; and (ii) these tragedies can be consistently identified in the theatre-related records from the fourth century onwards. This pattern is probably not a coincidence. It suggests that these plays were reperformed around the Mediterranean after the fifth century because they were already successfully restaged in late fifth-century Attica.

Sebastiana Nervegna (PhD University of Toronto) was educated in Italy and in Canada. She comes to the CHS after holding two fellowships at the Centre for Classical and Near Eastern Studies of Australia. She is the author of Menander in Antiquity: The Contexts of Reception (Cambridge, 2013) and of several contributions on the history, iconography, and reception of ancient theatre. At the CHS she will be working on a monograph on the theatrical reception of Classical Greek tragedy during the Hellenistic Period, Reperforming Classics: The Tragic Repertoire of Ancient Actors (currently under contract with Cambridge University Press).

 Image credit: South Italian Apulian red-figure bell-krater, c. 380-370 BCE, by the Schiller Painter. Martin von Wagner Museum, Würzburg.