Queens of Syria

4th August 2016

News, Student news, Alumni news

Reading Classics at Wadham provided inspiration for award-winning filmmaker and foreign correspondent Charlotte Eagar (Classics, 1988) to co-found the Syria Trojan Women Project, currently touring the UK as Queens of Syria.

  • Charlotte Eagar with her husband (left) William Stirling and Wadham's Edmund Herzig, Professorial Fellow in Iranian Studies

The cast and crew of this critically acclaimed production stopped off for a visit to Wadham College prior to their sell-out performances at the North Wall theatre in Oxford.

On stage the cast of Syrian women courageously explore parallels between Euripides’ ancient Greek tragedy The Trojan Women and the catastrophe of today’s civil war in Syria.

Their first-hand experience of a country in turmoil mirrors the Trojan women they portray, displaced and enslaved by war.

It was Charlotte’s work with refugees as a foreign correspondent which prompted her to combine her love of Classics with help for Syrian women, co-founding the Syria Trojan Women Project with her husband William Stirling. The project began by creating drama therapy workshops in Jordan, in autumn 2013, with a group of Syrian women, all of whom were refugees living in Amman. These women and the Syrian creative team put on a theatrical production of Euripides’ anti-war tragedy, The Trojan Women in Amman’s National Theatre. The first performances were a great success and were widely covered in international media.  In partnership with the UK Charity Developing Artists, Refuge Productions and the Young Vic theatre, Queens of Syria was booked to tour UK theatres this summer.

The original play and Syrian refugee cast performed at CERN, in Geneva, Switzerland, in October 2014, then, when visa issues made a US tour impossible, they virtually toured the US with two live-link events at Georgetown University, Washington DC, and at Columbia University, New York, in September 2014.”

Euripides’ play The Trojan Women, written in 415BC, is set at the fall of Troy. It is about the fate of the defeated and exiled.

  • Visiting the Chapel

    Queens of Syria cast visit the Chapel

  • Queens of Syria cast enjoy lunch in Wadham's Hall

    Queens of Syria cast enjoy lunch in Wadham's Hall

  • With Deputy Director of Development, Marco Zhang

Click on the video below to watch a short film about the Queens of Syria tour

Play Queens of Syria