Bedwetters at Cambridge University are warning theatre-goers about “abstract” violence and “bloodless” suicide in an ancient Greek myth.
They have also been told to watch out for a kidnapping scene in Eurydice, as it shows a “forceful disregard of personal autonomy”.
The ADC Theatre – where John Cleese trod the boards as a student – is putting on the performance.
It focuses on Eurydice, the lover of Orpheus, who is abducted and taken to the underworld.
Orpheus descends into the underworld to claim her back.
In the tale, he is told to walk in front of her and not look at her until both of them had reached the daylight.
But he turns too early before she’s reached the surface, causing her to disappear back into the underworld.
The famous theatre is staging a version of the myth, brought to the page by Roman writer Virgil more than 2,000 years ago, this month.
And it gives the following content warnings: “Depictions and major themes of death and dying (bloodless, non-violent and abstract).
“Depictions of suicide (bloodless, non-violent and abstract: the stage direction reads ‘he dips himself into the river of forgetting’).
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“Depiction of kidnapping (forceful disregard of personal autonomy). Brief depiction of sexual assault. Flashing images.”
In a description of the work, by acclaimed writer Sarah Ruhl, the ADC says: “Tricked into parting from her lover Orpheus, Eurydice finds herself in the underworld, stripped of her memory and surrounded by unfamiliar characters.
“As she reignites her relationship with her dead father, Orpheus desperately tries to rescue her. But does she even want to be rescued?
“This surreal, dreamlike adaptation by Sarah Ruhl of the classic myth of Orpheus and Eurydice explores longing, separation, love, death, and how we learn to remember and to forget.”
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