Ancient theatrical scenography is reimagined in Syracuse Greek Theatre, Italy
OMA have recently completed their scenography project, creating a new stage for the Syracuse Greek Theatre in Italy. A temporary structure, it will accommodate the three plays the company performs each summer.
The stage, with scaffolding made from aluminium with multi-layer marine plywood, works to reinterpret the idea of space through its integration of the three ancient architectural devices used in theatres in 5th century BCE. The Ring is the first; a suspended walkway that encompasses the stage and backstage, it gives actors an alternative and impressive way of entering the scene.
The Machine works as a 7m-high backdrop for the performance. It is a sloping circular platform imitating the appearance of the ampitheatre. It has multiple functions: rotation, which is used in Prometheus to represent the passage of time, and it can open to permit the entrance of actors, which provides dramatic on-stage immediacy. Finally, the Raft , a circular stage designed to accommodate performers, reinterpreting the orchestra space as a contemporary idea of Greek thymele.
Led by seven partners - Rem Koolhaas, Ellen van Loon, Reinier de Graaf, Shohei Shigematsu, Iyad Alsaka, David Gianotten and Managing Partner Victor van der Chijs, OMA - operate their international practice from offices in Rotterdam, New York, Beijing, Hong Kong, and will soon be expanding into Doha. AMO are their counterpart research studio and advisory service, and have accompanied OMA in their practice of urbanism and cultural analysis.