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‘Ajax’ set to debut

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‘Ajax’ set to debut

Courtesy of the LMC Drama Department.

Courtesy of the LMC Drama Department.

Courtesy of the LMC Drama Department.

Courtesy of the LMC Drama Department.

Hillary Hetrick, @hillarymhetrick

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The Los Medanos Drama Department is getting ready for their production of Ajax, which is set to debut from Dec. 5 to Dec. 8 in the California Theatre. Their rendition of Ajax is based on Socrates’ play bearing the same name and similar theme.

The main noted difference is in the era in which it’s placed. While Ajax was originally a play written in the 5th century, the current production being performed by LMC’s Drama Department puts a modern twist on the classic play.

“It’s a play about a soldier [Ajax] who is highly decorated, who feels like he’s been betrayed by his own commanders, so he decides he is going to kill them,” said director Nick Garcia.

However, things take a turn when a goddess places a spell on the soldier and he disgraces himself amongst his enemies.

The play examines what it means to pay respect to the dead and if one’s actions in life impacts that. It also examines Post Traumatic Stress disorder and how it affects veterans of war.

“[Directors have] been taking it to active army bases with soldiers who have been deployed and using it as a talk-back thing afterwards for soldiers to talk about what they see in the field,” said Garcia. “I’m excited about the dialogue that will hopefully come from it.”

The commentary on PTSD the play provides is one the key reasons Garcia decided to put a modern spin on the classic.

“We’re just setting this war in a more modern era so that the people that are watching it see themselves in the play and not see big historical figures that don’t necessarily relate to them,” said Garcia.

Deavareay Williams, who plays Ajax, will be pulling from both new and old experiences for his role.

“This is my first time doing a Greek play, so it’s really exciting,” Williams said. “I’ve always wanted to do one, so It’s nice to do one about pretty much what it’s like to be a veteran.”

For the role Williams has pulled heavily from his own experiences as a veteran.

“It makes it look really good on stage but it really sucks emotionally to take it out and put it back in the box at the end of the day,” said Williams, “But at the end of the day it makes for a good performance.”

Ajax will be showing at the California Theatre, located in Old Town Pittsburg at

351 Railroad Avenue, Pittsburg, CA 94565. Tickets can be purchased at the box office, up to one hour before the showings. Tickets are $15 for general admission, $12 for students or military and $10 for high school students. Call the box office for more information at (925)427-1611.

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‘Ajax’ set to debut