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The Greek Play

One of the highlights of the Classics calendar at King’s is the annual Greek Play.

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Although classical drama has been performed at the university since the late nineteenth century, the Greek Play in its current form was inaugurated in 1953. King’s remains the only university in the country to perform a piece of Greek drama wholly or partially in the original language each and every academic year.

The play is overseen by national-touring theatre company Actors of Dionysus, ‘the UK’s leading interpreters of ancient Greek drama’ who have been performing Greek tragedy, comedy and new writing inspired by myth, since 1993.

2024 marks the 71st anniversary of the KCL Greek play. This year's production is Lysistrata in the Wings, a hilarious adaptation of Aristophanes' infamous comedy.

General Enquiries & Ticketing Information

Contact our team today with any Greek Play-related queries or questions/issues regarding tickets:



GP 2024 Extended Deadline

Greek Play 2024: Lysistrata in the Wings

A script unsuitable for Victorian sensibilities. A growing gender revolution. A student theatre group. What could go wrong? Near the end of the 19th century, a group of students gather to put on their 6th annual Greek Play – a performance of an original ancient text. However, expectations are disrupted when they discover that not only are they to stage the seemingly unstageable Lysistrata, but that female students from the Ladies Dept will participate for the first time....and nothing quite goes according to plan. Using a mixture of new material and original text from Aristophanes, Lysistrata in the Wings explores the reinterpretation of ancient theatre and how it takes on new meanings for each generation. Produced in collaboration with classical specialists, Actors of Dionysus, renowned for 'making magic from myth' Lysistrata in the Wings promises to be an event not to be missed. 19th June: 2:30pm and 7:00pm: Guest Speaker: Peter Swallow (Durham University) 20th June: 7:00pm: Guest Speaker: Nick Lowe (Royal Holloway) 21st June: 2:30pm and 7:00pm: Guest Speaker: Naomi Scott (Bristol University) Greenwood Theatre, London, SE1 3RA Evening performances will be preceded by pre-show events featuring leading scholars - free to ticket holders for the subsequent performance. Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic refreshments will be available before the performance. For group bookings please email


History of the Greek Play

The spectacular success of the inaugural 1953 performance of Hippolytus ensured the Greek Play became a King’s College London tradition. For the rest of the 1950s, tragedies dominated the stage - subsequent performances included Medea (1955), Electra (1956), and Ajax (1958). The start of a new decade also saw the first performance of a comedy – Menander’s Dyscolus. Since then, both genres have enjoyed relatively equal footing.

The creation of the University of London Festival of Greek Drama in 1987 signified another important change. The Greek Play’s involvement in this “annual season of live performances” led to wider exposure, something that we particularly aim for every year. Our tours to various universities in the US and Canada can be seen as a further step in this direction.

The success of the King’s Greek Play has often been attributed to its remarkable juxtaposition of the traditional elements of an ancient play with refreshing and often challenging new concepts. Whatever a particular director’s interpretation of the time-honoured texts, by coming to our play every spring, you will be guaranteed a unique and exciting experience. See our Greek Play Archive below for details of previous performances, organised by decade, dating all the way back from 1953's Hippolytus to 2023s Iphigeneia.

Greek Play Events

Greek Play Events

The King's Greek Play has been an annual tradition since 1953 and it is the only production in the…

Performances in the 2020s

Greek play • 2020s

Within the current decade, one of the highlights of the Classics calendar at King's. Applications…

Performances in the 2010s

Greek play • 2010s

The performances of the 2010s include a variety of exciting plays, including the sixty-fifth annual…

Performances in the 2000s

Greek play • 2000s

In the early 2000s the Greek play moved from the New Theatre, its home since 1972.

Performances in the 1990s

Greek play • 1990s

On the 40th anniversary of the Greek Play, in 1993, a reunion was held for those who had taken part…

Performances in the 1980s

Greek play • 1980s

The Greek Play reached new heights during the 1980s, with three productions going on tour to the USA…

Performances in the 1970s

Greek play • 1970s

Early in the 1970s, the Greek Play settled in the New Theatre in the Strand Campus, which would be…

Performances in the 1960s

Greek play • 1960s

The 1960s saw the first performance of a comedy, Menander's newly-discovered Dyskolos. Music was…

Performances in the 1950s

Greek play • 1950s

The first ever King's Greek Play was performed in 1953. Since then there has been a production every…

Get Involved

The Greek Play is looking for new recruits for its crew, including volunteers to join our fabulous behind the scenes production team.

We are seeking applications for the following roles:

*Student Director*
The Student Director will be the creative lead of the production, mentored by AoD. To apply, please send an email stating your degree programme, year of study and a short paragraph (150 words max) outlining your vision for Lysistrata.

*Student Dramaturg*
The Student Dramaturg will support the development of the Greek Play, particularly co-ordinating the writer's room. To apply, please send an email stating your degree programme, year of study and a short paragraph (150 words max) outlining what you would bring to the role.

Contact Us: Email to register your interest or ask any questions you might have.

Iphigeneia 2023 9

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