‘The Oresteia’ comes to Zoom via Virtual Repertory Theatre Collective

The classic Greek tragedy revisioned to reflect the turmoil and cloak-and-dagger of present-day DC.

Virtual Repertory Theatre Collective is continuing to bring classics to Zoom theater with their production of Aeschylus’ tragic trilogy The Oresteia. The production will have two live virtual performances, on November 6 and 7, 2021.

In the shadow of one of the most contentious elections in modern history, America is still in search of answers. How do we stand up for what we think is right — and what consequences do we face for taking a stand? And as we try to regain some sense of normalcy the actions of January 6 still reverberate through the country. Virtual Repertory Theatre Collective brings these questions to light through the words of one of history’s first playwrights.

The cast of ‘The Oresteia’ (from top left): Mitch Macdonald, Kari Kitts, Rachel Rhodes, Lindsay Pearson, and Jason Dollar. Screen capture courtesy of VRTC.

“History definitely repeats itself or at least reflects itself,” says Kari Kitts, artistic director and co-director. “The turmoil, the jockeying, and the cloak-and-dagger nature continues whether in the fantasy world with gods and goddesses or present-day DC. I love that we’ve brought the contemporary images of both the settings of our nation’s capital and in our costumes. For my characters, I’ve taken stylistic influence from AOC while others in the company have been influenced by Marjorie Taylor Greene and Hillary, and some characters reference various protestors. I think we’ve created something very recognizable and been able to relate a Greek tragedy to an audience in a meaningful way.”

“It cannot be overstated just how applicable the messages of this piece remain for us today,” adds Mitch Macdonald, co-director and a founding member. “The pursuit of justice, the justification for political violence, and the unprecedented weight that votes have on people’s lives… Aeschylus certainly did not write this play as a prediction, but history has a way of reusing plot points.”

Just a year removed from the turmoil of the 2020 campaign, the power of votes has been shown to be stronger than ever. To properly echo this sentiment, this production will also feature audience interaction — the ultimate fate of one of the characters will be left to the viewers’ discretion. Audiences will actually determine the conclusion of the play in real time. Will you choose to condemn or support their actions?

The Oresteia produced by Virtual Repertory Theatre Collective performs Saturday, November 6, 2021, at 8:30 pm EST/ 5:30 pm PST and Sunday, November 7 at 4:00 pm EST/ 1:00 pm PST. Tickets ($5) are on sale online.

The Oresteia
Produced by Virtual Repertory Theatre Collective
Directed by Kari Kitts and Mitch Macdonald
Featuring Kari Kitts, Mitch Macdonald, Jason Dollar, Lindsay Pearson, and Rachel Rhodes.

The Virtual Repertory Theatre Collective was founded on December 29, 2020. We’re a fully virtual, bicoastal theater company. We exist to provide a safe place for performers to work, to empower actors with creative input, and to use the new technology tools to deliver art to the people. We are interested in challenging the status quo for what it means to be a theater, how actors choose their work, and what theater in the 21st century looks like.


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