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Parents strongly cautioned: MVNU to perform Antigone

MVNU Theatre has attached a PG-13 rating to their upcoming spring play.

The Greek tragedy Antigone, written by Jean Anouilh and adapted by Lewis Galantiere, will open in Thorne Performance Hall Thursday, February 18.

According to an MVNU press release, the rating is due to “subject matter and some violent content.”

Drama Professor and Director Ryan Long explained plays don’t actually have ratings, and this can lead to awkward situations.

“Some of our audience members are very sensitive about the content they expose themselves to,” Long said.

She hopes the rating will make audience members aware ahead of time and avoid unpleasant surprises.

The department chose a PG-13 rating after deliberate discussion, finally deciding themes of suicide, death and Antigone’s incestual parentage may be inappropriate for young children, though many students are exposed to similar themes and works in high school.

Long says the department chose Antigone because MVNU’s seasons have lacked classical works, and it is important to provide students with well-rounded performance experiences.

Long also recognizes many fans may expect family friendly productions from MVNU theatre, but says it is important for the program to include more mature content and prepare students for careers in theatre.

There were questions in the fall about language in Rainmaker that some audience members found offensive. Long explained it is against copyright contract to alter any dialogue in a show without the publisher’s written permission, and it is important as a Christian institution to uphold that contract.

As part of their dedication to accurately interpreting Antigone, MVNU theatre has partnered with Greek and classics professor Dr. Kevin Hawthorne to explore the meaning behind certain terms and customs in their original cultural context.

A press release says the Glantiere’s 1946 adaptation MVNU theatre will perform is “an eclectic mash-up of modern and classical” with “striking and provocative” contemporary parallels. According to the MVNU Theatre website, this also means loud sounds and strobe lights.

The show focuses on questions about honor, power, respect, duty and God’s laws versus man’s laws about “resistance in the face of … immoral politics.”

Performances are February 18 through the 20 at 7:30 p.m. in Thorne. Tickets are $5 and are available online at, by phone at 740-397-9000 extension 1620 or at the box office one hour before show time.

For more information go to and follow MVNU Theatre on Facebook and Twitter.

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