Antigone in the Amazon

  • Show
  • Theatre

Milo Rau

Belgium - Brazil / Created in 2023

Some scenes may be upsetting to the viewer.

The transposition in the Amazon rainforest of the tragedy of Antigone. A powerful political charge led by Brazilian and European actors alongside activists from the Landless Workers’ Movement (MST).

Antigone in the Amazon, Milo Rau © Armin Smailovic


There are monstrous things, but nothing is more monstrous than humankind.” On a screen, the chorus begins its tragic song. A song that doubles as a fierce diatribe against the protagonists standing on stage. Filmed passages and live sequences respond to each other in a most eloquent dialogue. We’re at once in the heart of mythical Thebes and in the Pará Province in Brazil, where the Amazon rainforest is disintegrating, plundered and irremediably destroyed by industrial conglomerates. It’s on this land that has been bled and dried that Milo Rau gathered Brazilian and European actors, musicians, indigenous activists, and members of the Landless Workers’ Movement (MST). And it is through their lived experience and their knowledge, added to our Greco-Roman culture, that the Swiss director, artistic director of NTGent and upcoming director of the Wiener Festwochen, ends his “Trilogy of Antiquity” (after Orestes in Mosul and The New Gospel) and revisits the tragedy of Antigone. An Antigone played by Amazon indigenous activist Kay Sara, standing alongside a Greek chorus made up of the survivors of the worst massacre the military police committed against the MST movement in 1996. An allegory for political struggle and fierce resistance against the implacable greed of a modern, devastating world.

Interview with Milo Rau


With Frederico Araujo, Pablo Casella, Sara De Bosschere, Arne De Tremerie
and in video Gracinha Donato, Ailton Krenak, Célia Maracajá, Kay Sara, the choir of activists of the Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra (MST)
Conception and direction Milo Rau
Dramaturgy Giacomo Bisordi
Co-dramaturgy Martha Kiss Perrone
Dramaturgical collaboration Kaatje De Geest, Douglas Estevam
Scenography Anton Lukas
Costumes Gabriela Cherubini, Jo De Visscher, Anton Lukas
Lighting Dennis Diels
Music Pablo Casella, Elia Rediger
Video Moritz von Dungern, Fernando Nogari, Joris Vertenten
Assistant director Katelijne Laevens
Translation Carolina Bufolin
Technical director Oliver Houttekiet
Stage manager Marijn Vlaeminck
Technical director Brecht Beuselinck, Dimitri Devos, Stavros Otis Tarlizos Production Klaas Lievens, Gabi Conçalves (Brazil)
Assistant team Carolina Bufolin, Zacharoula Kasaraki, Lotte Mellaerts


Production NTGent
Coproduction International Institute of Political Murder (IIPM), Le Festival d'Avignon, Manchester International Festival, La Villette (Paris), Romaeuropa Festival, Le Tandem Scène nationale d'Arras-Douai, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm (Frankfurt), Équinoxe Scène nationale de Châteauroux, Wiener Festwochen (Vienna)
In collaboration with the Landless Workers Movement (MST)
With the support of Coincidencia Cultural Exchange Switzerland and South America, Goethe Institut São Paulo, Tax Shelter of the Federal Government of Belgium and for the 77th edition of the Festival d'Avignon: Fondation Ammodo
In partnership with l'Humanité
In collaboration with International Institute of Political Murder (IIPM), Mouvement des travailleurs sans terre (MST)
Acknowledgments Eva-Maria Bertschy, Carmen Hornbostel

Practical infos