The Rape of the Sabine Women is a reinterpretation of the Roman myth, updated and set in the idealistic 1960’s. Filmed on location in Athens and Hydra, Greece, and in Berlin, Germany, the 80 minute video was directed by Eve Sussman with an original score by Jonathan Bepler, choreography by Claudie De Serpa Soares, and costumes by Karen Young.

The Rape Of The Sabine Women was conceived as allegory based loosely on the ancient myth that follows Romulus’ founding of Rome. Re-envisioning the myth as a 1960’s period piece with the Romans cast as G-men, the Sabines as butchers’ daughters, and the heyday of Rome allegorically implied in an affluent international style summer house, this version is a riff on the original story of abduction and intervention, in which Romulus devises a plan to ensure the future of the empire. While the Roman myth traces the birth of a society, this telling suggests the destruction of a utopia. The intervention of the women is fraught, and the chaos that ensues transforms the designed perfection into nothingness.

The Rape… is a video-musical conceived in an operatic five act structure that opens in Berlin’s Pergamon Museum, moves to the S-Bahn and Tempelhof Airport, Athens’ Agora meat market, a classic modern 60’s dream house overlooking the Aegean, and finally, Athens’ Herodion Theatre. Forgoing the compromise of the original, the Rufus Corporation’s re-imagining pits mid-twentieth century ideals against the eternal themes of power, longing, and desire. A modern process piece created in improvisation-a product of 180 hours of video footage and 6000 photographs-the video with 7.1 sound installation features compositions by Jonathan Bepler, recorded live on site , incorporating a bouzouki ensemble, a Pergamon coughing choir, and a chorus of 800 voices.

Eve Sussman and Rufus Corporation: The Rape of the Sabine Women

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Gomorrah (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Gomorrah (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

Girls at The Pool (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Girls at The Pool (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

Marilisa on the Floor (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Marilisa on the Floor (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

Helen and Tony in the Kitchen (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Helen and Tony in the Kitchen (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

Marilisa Reflected (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Marilisa Reflected (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

The Living Room (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

The Living Room (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

Helen & Tony, and Cook in the Kitchen (Production Still from The Rape of Sabine Women)

Helen & Tony, and Cook in the Kitchen (Production Still from The Rape of Sabine Women), 2005

Jeff's Kennedy Moment (Production Still from The Rape of The Sabine Women)

Jeff's Kennedy Moment (Production Still from The Rape of The Sabine Women), 2005

Katerina's Nephew Takes the Hat (Production Still from The Rape of Sabine Women)

Katerina's Nephew Takes the Hat (Production Still from The Rape of Sabine Women), 2005

Hitchcock Beachball (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Hitchcock Beachball (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

Wives of the Patricians (Production Still from The The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Wives of the Patricians (Production Still from The The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

Katerina's Reluctance (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Katerina's Reluctance (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

The Intervention at Herodion (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

The Intervention at Herodion (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005

Romulus at the Pergamon (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women)

Romulus at the Pergamon (Production Still from The Rape of the Sabine Women), 2005


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