My starting point is a theatrical cast on tour in the provinces ; it’s a long lasting journey across Greece an dits turbulent history between 1939 and 1952. Then, little by little, other isses come joining this idea, particularly a transposition of relationships between the characters and the Atrides myth.
A structure was given – father mother, sons, daughters, lovers… power… murders… – acting as well in the myth as in the reality of the story. I did not intend to make a history treaty, and the myth of the Atrides gave me the opportunity to depict the characters in a certain focus that allowed me to shed a new light on this historical period.
On the other hand, I had shown before in my film « Days of 36 » the accession to power of an owned dictatorship. I consider « The Travelling Players » as a direct extension of it, where, strating with an owned dictatorship, I get to 1952, that is to me the end of the civil war and the triumph of conservatism, and the dictatorship of Marshal Papagos, whom most of the Greek had to consider as a liberator.
The play performed from town to town by the cast, «Golfo the sheperdess » , works at several leevels : first, it’s a way for them to earn a living ; it is also the expression of a certain idea of the theatrical art, and it’s finally a texte, just as the myth of the Atrides. But this text is constantly violated, never finished, always broken by the interruptions of the historic scene.
Interview extracts from « Synchronos Kinimatographos » n°1
Theo Angelopoulos began to study law in Athens but broke up his studies to go to the Sorbonne University Paris in order to study literature. When he had finished his studies he wanted to attend the School of Cinema in Paris but decided instead to go back to Greece. There he worked as a journalist and critic for the newspaper « Demokratiki Allaghi » until it was prohibited by the military after the Coup. He decided to make his first movie « Anaparastasi » (1970). Internationally successful was his trilogy about the history of Greece from 1930 to 1970 consisting of « Meres tou ’36 » (1972), « O Thiasos » (1975) and « Oi Kynigoi » (1977). After the end of the dictatorship in Greece Angelopoulos went to Italy where he worked with the RAI channels.
Title in Original Version : Le Voyage Des Comédiens