music theatre/opera

Escape from Troy

Devised and directed by Banuta Rubess.

With music by Nic Gotham.


Created via improvisations with the actors, with texts from Euripides, Seneca, Ingrida Vīksna, and the oral history of Latvian refugees in World War II.


As Latvia became a battle-ground at the end of World War Ii, civilians were urged to evacuate. However, where to?  Many families decided to escape the war by climbing into boats and fleeing to Sweden, risking their lives.  This production weds the story of the Latvian boat people with the story of the Trojan Women - while Troy burns, and the Greek ships wait to take them away as slaves,  the women search for a way out.. a way to escape...


Performed on a beach by actors, two choirs and a military marching band,  in the former military sector of Liepāja for the international festival SEAS in 2004.  Produced by the New Theatre Institute in collaboration with Sweden's Intercult. Filmed and broadcast on Latvian TV.

Photogallery - Escape from Troy



… It could have been just a performance, but it turned into a special event, which you just happened to witness. Escape from Troy (a New Theatre Institute project, director Baņuta Rubess) for me becomes a kind of joyous (though the show is tragic) surprise: it turns out there is another way to look at life! B.Rubess pulls everything into her show that comes her way, her Troy as an artefact is such an open system, that the tiniest detail finds its niche there [..] It had never occurred to me that B.Rubess is a romantic. Because only a romantic can make a production with the belief that art can change the world.
Edīte Tišheizere, for Diena August 24, 2004