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The Iphigenia Quartet

The Iphigenia Quartet

Chris Thorpe, Caroline Bird, Lulu Raczka, Suhayla El Bushra

Oberon Books

Agamemnon must sacrifice his daughter, Clytemnestra must try to stop him, Iphigenia must accept her fate, the Chorus must watch.

Ships lie dormant in harbors, and thousands of troops sit on the shore, growing restless and unruly. Helen is gone, and pursuit of her has been stalled by windless seas. To raise the winds to send his fleet to Troy, Agamemnon is commanded by the gods to sacrifice his daughter, Iphigenia. But his deceit of his wife, Clytemnestra and the killing of his child, will end up tearing him and everything around him to pieces.

Euripides’ story of a father moved to murder his daughter, Iphigenia at Aulis, is one that has been reinvented and retold anew throughout history. The Iphigenia Quartet sees four of the UK’s most exciting and radical playwrights - Caroline Bird, Suhayla El Bushra, Lulu Raczka, and Chris Thorpe – create explosive responses to this classical tragedy. Each play is a reimagining this story of familial catastrophe from the differing perspectives of the key characters in the play: Agamemnon, Clytemnestra, Iphigenia and the Chorus.


Chris Thorpe was a founder member of Unlimited Theatre and still works and tours with the company. He is also an Artistic Associate of live art/theatre company Third Angel. He has worked with, among others, Forest Fringe, Slung Low, Chris Goode, RashDash, Belarus Free Theatre and Portuguese experimental company mala voadora - his fourth piece for the company, Your Best Guess opened at Lisbon's Almada festival in 2015. He also plays guitar in Lucy Ellinson's political noise project #TORYCORE and works with the National Student Drama Festival. Currently, Chris is touring Confirmation and Unlimited's Am I Dead Yet? He is writing a new version of Beowulf for the Unicorn Theatre, and has written a new piece, Victory Condition, for the Royal Court which will be produced there in 2017. He recently wrote Chorus for The Iphegenia Quartet at The Gate Theatre. He is also working on The Mysteries for the Royal Exchange with Sam Pritchard, who directed There Has Possibly Been An Incident. His piece for director Rachel Bagshaw, The Shape of the Pain, is currently in development.


Caroline Bird has been shortlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize twice & has also won an Eric Gregory Award (2002), the Foyle Young Poet of the Year award two years running (1999, 2000), was a winner of the Poetry London Competition in 2007, and the Peterloo Poetry Competition in 2004, 2003 and 2002. Caroline was on the shortlist for Shell Woman Of The Future Awards 2011. Caroline’s poems have been published in several anthologies, including Oxford Poetry 2008, and are published regularly in PN Review, Poetry Review and The North. A member of the Royal Court Young Writers Programme, Caroline is also a playwright. In 2011, Caroline’s contribution was included in Bush Theatre's project Sixty-Six Books.


Lulu Raczka is an award-winning young playwright and Company Director of Barrel Organ Theatre, who she worked with on her play NOTHING. In the past she has been a contributor to Exeunt Theatre Magazine. Lulu is currently under commission to the Gate Theatre, and working on a second project with Barrel Organ.


Suhayla El Bushra is a Brighton based screenwriter and playwright. Previous plays include Pigeons at The Royal Court, Cuckoo at The Unicorn, The Kilburn Passion at The Tricycle and Fingertips for Clean Break at Latitude. Her adaptation of Nikolai Erdman’s The Suicide will be staged at the National Theatre in spring 2016. She is currently writer in residence at the NT Studio and is under commission from Out Of Joint. Suhayla was a core writer on TV soap Hollyoaks and has various film and TV projects in development.

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