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Orpheus Descending

 


地獄のオルフェウスを観に行ってきました。演劇時間が長かったため18時30分開演だったのでしょうが、仕事帰りに立ち寄るのはギリギリでした(汗)大竹しのぶさんの舞台は初めてでしたが、セリフがすっとこちらに入ってくるのでダントツの存在感でした。

(Wikipedia)
Orpheus Descending is a play by Tennessee Williams. It was first presented on Broadway in 1957 where it enjoyed a brief run (68 performances) with only modest success.[1] It was revived on Broadway in 1989, directed by Peter Hall and starring Vanessa Redgrave and Kevin Anderson. This production ran for 13 previews and 97 performances.[2]
(中略)
When Orpheus Descending appeared in 1957, Williams wrote, "[o]n the surface it was and still is the tale of a wild-spirited boy who wanders into a conventional community of the South and creates the commotion of a fox in a chicken coop. But beneath that now familiar surface it is a play about unanswered questions that haunt the hearts of people and the difference between continuing to ask them...and the acceptance of prescribed answers that are not answers at all."


映画化されたときのタイトルはThe Fugitive Kindと教養臭を消しています。日本語タイトルはもっとすごくて蛇皮の服を着た男となっています。確かに劇中何度も蛇皮のジャケットに触れていますが。。。



劇での印象的なセリフの一つである、these little birds don’t have no legs at all so they have to live their whole lives on the wing. And they sleep on the wind.と足のない鳥について語っている場所です。

引用元サイト
Valentine ‘Snakeskin’ Xavier: It’s a kind that don’t belong no place at all. There’s a kind of bird that don’t have any legs so it can’t alight on nothing. So it has to spend its whole life on its wings in the air. I seen one, once. It died and fell to earth. And its body was light blue colored. And it was just as tiny as your little finger. And it was so light in the palm of your hand that it didn’t weigh more than a feather. And its wings spread out that wide. And you could see right through them. That’s why the hawks don’t catch them. . .because they don’t see ’em. They don’t see ’em way up in that high blue sky near the sun.
Lady Torrance: What about in gray weather?
Valentine ‘Snakeskin’ Xavier: They fly so high, in gray weather, the hawks, they’d get dizzy. See, these little birds don’t have no legs at all so they have to live their whole lives on the wing. And they sleep on the wind. That’s what they do, they just. . . they just spread their wings out and go to sleep on the wind. And they only alight on this earth but one time. . .it’s when they die.

オルフェウスと聞いてピンとこなかったのですが、死んだ奥さんを冥府に迎えに行って、忠告に背いて振り向いてしまったという、例の有名な話のやつです。ルミナスのように説明をしてくれるとありがたいのですが、竪琴の名手で終わっているものが多いです。

(ウィズダム)
Orpheus
〘ギ神〙オルペウス, オルフェウス〘動植物や岩までも魅了する竪琴(たてごと)の名手〙.


(ルミナス)
Eurydice
〔ギ神〕 エウリュディケ《夫のオルフェウス (Orpheus) が黄泉(よみ)の国 (Hades) から救い出そうとしたが, 約束に背いて夫が出口で振り返ったのでまたやみの中へ消えた》.


英英辞書ではロングマンがとても丁寧に説明してくれています。

(ロングマン)
Orpheus and Eurydice
in ancient Greek stories, a husband and wife who love each other very much. When Eurydice died, Orpheus was so upset that he followed her down into Hades (=the place under the ground where the spirits of dead people live) and sang to the king and queen there. They allowed Eurydice to leave so long as Orpheus did not look back to see if she was following him. He did look back, however, and so she had to return to Hades. Many stories, plays, and pieces of music have been based on this story.






ギリシア神話のエピソードで多大な影響を与えているものですが、古代ローマの詩人オウィディウス『変身物語』にあるオルフェウスとエウリュディケが大元のようです。日本だとなぜかローマは端折られやすいんですよね。。。

英訳版をサイトで読むことができますが、1000語にみたない短いものです。有名なところを抜粋してみました。

Bk X:1-85 Orpheus and Eurydice

Words checked = [916]
Words in Oxford 3000™ = [86%]

The bloodless spirits wept as he spoke, accompanying his words with the music. Tantalus did not reach for the ever-retreating water: Ixion’s wheel was stilled: the vultures did not pluck at Tityus’s liver: the Belides, the daughters of Danaüs, left their water jars: and you, Sisyphus, perched there, on your rock. Then they say, for the first time, the faces of the Furies were wet with tears, won over by his song: the king of the deep, and his royal bride, could not bear to refuse his prayer, and called for Eurydice.

She was among the recent ghosts, and walked haltingly from her wound. The poet of Rhodope received her, and, at the same time, accepted this condition, that he must not turn his eyes behind him, until he emerged from the vale of Avernus, or the gift would be null and void.

They took the upward path, through the still silence, steep and dark, shadowy with dense fog, drawing near to the threshold of the upper world. Afraid she was no longer there, and eager to see her, the lover turned his eyes. In an instant she dropped back, and he, unhappy man, stretching out his arms to hold her and be held, clutched at nothing but the receding air. Dying a second time, now, there was no complaint to her husband (what, then, could she complain of, except that she had been loved?). She spoke a last ‘farewell’ that, now, scarcely reached his ears, and turned again towards that same place.

テネシーウィリアムズの劇は別にこの神話を辿っているわけではありませんが、オルフェウスの死を読んでみると味わい深くはなります。

Bk XI:1-66 The death of Orpheus

Words checked = [679]
Words in Oxford 3000™ = [84%]

The birds, lamenting, cried for you, Orpheus; the crowd of wild creatures; the hard flints; the trees that often gathered to your song, shedding their leaves, mourned you with bared crowns. They say the rivers, also, were swollen with their own tears, and the naiads and dryads, with dishevelled hair, put on sombre clothes. The poet’s limbs were strewn in different places: the head and the lyre you, Hebrus, received, and (a miracle!) floating in midstream, the lyre lamented mournfully; mournfully the lifeless tongue murmured; mournfully the banks echoed in reply. And now, carried onward to the sea, they left their native river-mouth and reached the shores of Lesbos, at Methymna. Here, as the head lay exposed on the alien sand, its moist hair dripping brine, a fierce snake attacked it. But at last Phoebus came, and prevented it, as it was about to bite, and turned the serpent’s gaping jaws to stone, and froze the mouth, wide open, as it was.
The ghost of Orpheus sank under the earth, and recognised all those places it had seen before; and, searching the fields of the Blessed, he found his wife again and held her eagerly in his arms. There they walk together side by side; now she goes in front, and he follows her; now he leads, and looks back as he can do, in safety now, at his Eurydice.’
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