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Oedipus Script - Oedipus Scene 1

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					                                     Oedipus Scene 1

The chorus stand in a semi-circle. They bow and kneel. They all speak together.

Chorus: This is the story of King Oedipus of Thebes.
Oedipus enters left and the chorus point to him.

Chorus: Help us King Oedipus, we are dying.

The chorus makes freeze frames of people dying of thirst and illness.
Oedipus: I am Oedipus. Priests, tell me why you are here.

Some of the chorus speak as the priests. The others make freeze frames for the words:
Chorus: This city is dying, look. (they point to the freeze frames)
          The crops and trees are dying, look. (point)
         The cattle and sheep are sick, look. (point)
          Children are born dead, look.
          It is the gods who hate us.
          You saved our city once before from war – save us now!
All the chorus kneel

Oedipus: I have sent my brother-in-law, Creon, to the Oracle. She will tell him what we   can
do to save the city.

Chorus points right to where Creon is entering
Chorus: Here he is, just arriving now.

Creon enters and comes to the middle of the stage, faces the audience and shouts:

Creon: This is the advice from the oracle!
      Pay back blood with blood!
      The gods are angry about the murder of your old King Laius!
      Oedipus must find the killer!

Chorus stands and approaches Oedipus as they chant:

Chorus: Oedipus, find the killer,
       Oedipus, find that man.
       Oedipus, shed blood for blood!

All freeze in dramatic pose.
                                       Oedipus Scene 2
The chorus stand on two sides of the stage in two lines. Creon and Oedipus stand in the middle
facing each other.
Oedipus: How did Laius die?

Creon: He went on a journey.

Chorus: And never returned.

Oedipus: Did nobody see?

Left chorus: His men were all killed.

Right chorus: All except one.

Creon: He said it was thieves who killed them.

Left chorus: He ran away and did not stay to help us find them.

Right chorus: We had no leader. Our king was dead.
Left chorus: Then you came, Oedipus.
Oedipus: Now you have me! I will fight for you! I will find the man who killed your King
           And he will live in agony! I curse him.
Left Chorus: There is a prophet who can help you. He is blind, but he can see the truth.
Right Chorus: Here he comes.
Tiresius enters and the chorus help him to come forward.
Tiresius: Yes I see the truth, and it is terrible. I will not tell you the secrets about your past.
Oedipus: What! You know and you won’t tell?
Tiresius: I am trying to save you from pain. Can’t you tell?
The two of them act silently as if they are having an argument.
Chorus: Look how he refuses even though Oedipus begs.
         Look how Oedipus shouts, look how angry he is.
         Now he accuses Tiresius of the murder of the king.
         That’s it! Now the prophet’s angry. Now he tells the secret.
Tiresius: I cannot stand for that! Now I will tell! It is YOU! Oedipus you are the murderer!
Oedipus: Say that again?! How dare you start a rumour like that?
Chorus: All the people are listening. All the people are looking. They are looking at
        Oedipus. Are they looking at a murderer?
Oedipus: No! take him away. He is no use.
Oedipus exits.
Tiresius: I will go when I have said what I came to say.
          People of this city, Oedipus saved your city. He married your Queen. He gave
          you princes. He is a great man. But he killed your king. And worse is to come.
           He does not know it, but the King was his father. He has married his mother. He
          Is both father and brother to his sons. You will see that I am right.
                                     Oedipus Scene 3
Half the chorus come on one side, the other half come on the other side, whispering and
gossiping.
Left chorus: What’s that? What’s that? Did we hear right? He’s married his mother?
               His sons are his brothers?
Right chorus: What’s that? What’s that? Did the prophet say he’s slept with his mother?
                He’s killed his father?
All chorus: How did this happen? Let’s look at the past. Let’s hear from his wife, Jocasta.
Left chorus point as Jocasta enters:
Left chorus: His wife, Jocasta
Right chorus: Jocasta, HIS MOTHER.
All Chorus: Let’s hear from Oedipus
Right chorus point right as Oedipus enters
All chorus: Oedipus is rushing about accusing people. Queen Jocasta,
Left chorus: His wife
Right chorus: HIS MOTHER!
All chorus: is trying to calm him down.
Jocasta: Shhh. Don’t make such a scene in public. Everyone is looking. Why are you
         angry?
Oedipus: They say I killed King Laius!
Jocasta: That is not true. This is how I know. Years ago a prophet told Laius and I that
         would be killed by his own son. So Laius took our baby boy, pinned his ankles
         together so he couldn’t escape and made a shepherd leave him on the mountain to
         die. We know Laius was killed at a place where three roads meet, by thieves. It
          is nothing to do with you.
Oedipus turns away.
Chorus: Look at him turning away. He knows something.
Jocasta: What’s wrong?
Oedipus: Did you say three roads?
Jocasta: Yes
Oedipus: When?
Jocasta: Just before you came to help us.
Chorus: Now he sees!
Oedipus: What did he look like?
Jocasta: A little like you.
Chorus: Now he knows!
Oedipus: Jocasta! It was me! Let me tell you about another prophecy. They told me I
           kill my father and marry my mother. So I left my home in Corinth so it
            would not happen. As I ran away, I came to the three roads. A man and his
           soldiers were travelling and forced me off the road. I was so angry, I killed them
           all except one. I killed King Laius!
Chorus: He has seen part of the truth! But he does not know it all!
                                  Oedipus – Scene 4
The chorus point to the messenger who is entering from the right
Chorus: The messenger brings shocking news for Oedipus from his old home town.
Messenger: Polybus, the man you call your father, is dead.
Oedipus: Jocasta, my father Polybus is dead! He died of old age, I did not kill him. The
prophecy was wrong.
Chorus: Still he does not see! He thinks that Polybus is his father. Now comes the shock.
Messenger: You have not escaped the prophecy! Polybus was not your father. I know that
because I gave you to him when you were a baby. Your ankles were pinned together.
Oedipus (looking at his ankles): Yes! These scars on my ankles. Did you find me?
Messenger: No, it was another shepherd who was supposed to leave you to die. He knows who
your real father is.
Chorus: That man is on his way. When he comes all will be revealed. (they point to Jocasta)
Look at Jocasta, she knows everything and she’s trying to stop it being told.
Jocasta: Don’t pay attention to the old shepherd when he comes. What can an old man know?
Oedipus: I must find out who my real parents are! I cannot prevent the prophecy from
           happening if I don’t know who they are!
Chorus: It’s too late, it’s too late for that.
Jocasta: You’re doomed!(she runs off)
Chorus: Here comes the shepherd. It will not be long before Oedipus must look at the Truth.
Oedipus: I have an important question for you.
Chorus: Do not ask, you do not want to know.
Oedipus: Did you give this man a little baby boy with his ankles pinned together?
Shepherd: Many years ago I did.
Messenger: (Pointing to Oedipus) This is the baby boy!
Shepherd: No!
Chorus: The old man holds the secret. Don’t ask him Oedipus. You don’t want to see the truth.
Oedipus: Where did you get the baby?
Shepherd: I can’t remember now.
Oedipus: You can and you will say!
Shepherd: Ask your wife.
Oedipus: Did Jocasta give you the baby?
Chorus: Now he begins to see…
Shepherd: Yes she was afraid of the prophecies. They said he would kill his father and marry his
mother!
Oedipus: No!
Chorus: He sees! He sees! He can look no more! (they gather to tell the rest of story)
Chorus: It is nearly done! Look at what happens next. Jocasta rushes away to her bedroom
sobbing. She is thinking of the children she had with her own son. Oedipus bursts into her room,
angry and out of control. But he comes too late. He sees her hanging by the neck, spinning,
swinging, back and forth. He cannot bear to look upon the truth. He takes his mother’s brooches
with their long pointed pins. He lifts them high, looks into the points and digs them down into
the sockets of his eyes, so that the blood gushes out.
Oedipus: The agony! I cannot look upon what I have done! My life is over. I am cursed. I will
leave the city and my children, and stumble on, a broken man.
Chorus: Look on Oedipus. Pity him, you gods. We cannot understand your cruelty, but we see
his pain.
                                            The End

				
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