Speyer at the Theater: Fifth Grade heads to the Broadway show Hadestown!

Using our amazing city and all it has to offer as an extension of the classroom, Speyer fifth graders went to the theater last week, taking in a performance of the hit Broadway show Hadestown in connection to their unit of study on ancient Greece.

Speyer fifth graders are currently learning about ancient Greece and are reading a retelling of the Iliad, Black Ships Before Troy. Through this reading, students have been analyzing whether humans have control over their fate through the choices they make or if they are simply pawns of a game the gods have full control over. The fifth graders held debates in small groups about this topic and had deep discussions regarding the relationships between humans and gods, and how much religion and honor play a role in the story.  

In their discussions, the student also analyzed how women lack voice or visibility in the Iliad but are major players in influencing the Trojan War and the fates of the male characters. To further study this theme, we will be reading two specific Greek tragedies, Iphigenia and Hecuba.  These two tragedies illustrate the suffering and the vengeance of these tragic women before and after the Trojan War. 

The fifth grade is gearing up for two performances of Greek tragedies they have been studying and in preparation, they had the wonderful opportunity to see Hadestown, which tells a modern rendition of Orpheus and Eurydice, to compare how Greek plays were performed in ancient times. After the trip to the theater, the students continued their debate of the question of fate versus free will and further examined the relationship not only between humans and gods, but also between men and women in Greek mythology in this love story.