Classical World New Zealand demonstrates the modern world’s ongoing dialogue with ancient Greece, Rome and Egypt and highlights New Zealand’s contribution to this conversation.
The culture of the classical world remains a rich vein of creativity tapped by countless living artists. Their art in turn helps us to connect to the ancient world.
About the project
Our project, based at Massey University, focuses on the distinctive contributions of New Zealand-based:
- theatre directors
You can find interviews with artists inspired by the classical world and working in a variety of media. There is also audio-visual material with examples of creative receptions of ancient Greek, Roman and Egyptian art, literature and culture.
We are open to suggestions for more practitioners to take part in the project.
Literary receptions of the classical world including poetry, novels and essays.
John Davidson is a poet and Professor Emeritus of Classics at Victoria University of Wellington. He explains how his retirement in 2010 triggered a new burst of creativity.
J L (Jessica) Pawley is an Aucklander and Massey graduate. Discover what inspired her popular young adult trilogy 'Generation Icarus' – a work in progress when she did this interview.
Penelope Haines is a writer with a passion for historical fiction. Hear how her novel 'Princess of Sparta' reimagines the ancient story of Clytemnestra.
Filmic receptions of the classical world, including documentaries, television, and cinema.
Theatre and performance
Performance reception, including new productions of classical drama, dramatic readings and dance.
Michael Hurst is an actor, director and playwright, best known for his TV roles in 'Hercules' and 'Xena Warrior Princess'. Find out why he has an abiding passion for Greek theatre.
Kelly Harris is a Massey-trained actor and director who co-founded the Skin Theatre Company in 2013. Find out how she adapted Euripides' Greek tragedy 'Medea' for a modern audience.
In 1980, Derek Gordon became the country’s first full-time professional storyteller. He explains why the stories of ancient Greece and Rome have been such a rich inspiration in his career.
Writer and theatre scholar Angie Farrow explains how she's explored powerful universal stories through Greek theatre.
Rand Hazou is a Palestinian-New Zealand theatre practitioner and a Senior Lecturer at Massey. With colleague Derek Gordon, he staged a Greek tragedy in an Auckland prison.
Sacha Copland is the artistic director of Java Dance Theatre. Discover how she adapted a classic Greek play into a modern performance for all the senses.
Declan Patrick is an academic and theatre practitioner who works across live performance and video. Find out how he introduced his students to a Greek tragedy for our times.
Jennifer Lawn and Mary Paul discuss the popular Tragedy course offered at the university from 2005 to 2018.
Receptions of the classical world in visual culture in all art media.
Find resources about the classical world or in classical reception studies – the inquiry into how and why the texts, images and material cultures of Ancient Greece and Rome have been received, adapted, refigured, used and abused in later times and often other places.
The American Comparative Literature Association
The principal learned society in the United States for scholars whose work involves several literatures and cultures as well as the premises of cross-cultural literary study itself.
Antipodean Odyssey – explorations in children's culture and classical antiquity
Providing information about many exciting projects and a platform for researchers, educators, students and creators who are inspired by classical material to share their work, findings, and experiences.
Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama
Investigating the performance of ancient texts in any medium and any period – from Greek tragedy to Roman epic, from stage to screen, from antiquity to the present day.
The Australasian Society for Classical Studies (ASCS)
Aiming at the advancement of the study of ancient Greece and Rome and related fields.
The Australian Classical Reception Studies Network
A regional focal point for scholars working in classical reception.
The Centre for the Reception of Greece and Rome
This Centre’s focus is on the political, philosophical and literary bridges between the contemporary world and Mediterranean antiquity.
The Classical Reception Studies Network (CRSN)
Facilitating the exchange of information and encouraging collaboration in classical reception studies by bringing together departments and individuals from across the world.
An interdisciplinary and international research network working on how classical antiquity has been represented and visualised in the post-antique and modern worlds.
Practitioners' Voices in Classical Reception Studies (PVCRS)
An open access e-journal acting as a forum for creative practitioners to discuss the relationship between their work and the classical texts, themes and contexts on which they draw.
The Reception Study Society
Bringing together theorists, scholars, and teachers from many areas, this association promotes a much needed cross-dialogue among all areas of reception studies.
New Zealand Association of Classical Teachers
The New Zealand Association of Classical Teachers supports the work of teachers of classical studies and Latin in New Zealand schools.
To get involved with our project or find out more please contact us. You can also follow us on Twitter.