Birds: A Festival Inspired by Aristophanes

A Citywide Celebration

Stretching from Brooklyn's waterfront to the Upper West Side of Manhattan, the Onassis Cultural Center New York's spring festival spans New York City in search of birds, both allegorical and real. The festival's centerpiece is an adaptation of Aristophanes’ classic comedy, The Birds, first performed in Athens in 414 BC. 

Following its sold-out world premiere at the Ancient Theater of Epidaurus and in Athens, this vibrant re-staging of Aristophanes’ ancient comedy travels to New York City for its American debut.

Director Nikos Karathanos’ retelling is both true to Aristophanes’ original and creatively adapted to reflect on contemporary concerns. The production at St. Ann’s Warehouse is the foundation of a broader festival of events at prominent cultural venues in New York City that will explore and celebrate themes emanating from The Birds

Below is a quick snapshot of festival venues with links to corresponding events:

St. Ann's Warehouse - May 2-13 
New adaptation of Aristophanes' The Birds, contemporary art exhibition, artist talk, and The Birds director talk

American Museum of Natural History - April 22
Piano concerts, family programs, and a philosophical bird walk

Brooklyn Museum - April 25, May 19, May 23, May 24-July 8, June 16
Political satire discussion, exhibition opening lecture, David Levine: Some of the People, All of the Time, Birdheart animated theater, and family day

New York Public Library - May 1
LIVE from the NYPL with Rachel Kushner and Paul Schrader: Prison Complex

Brooklyn Bridge Park - May 5
Bird walks with American Museum of Natural History ornithologist Paul Sweet

Stella Adler Studio of Acting - May 7 (Not open to the public)
The Birds cast members visit Riker's Island inmates and perform songs from the play

New-York Historical Society - May 12
Meet the Fledglings family program

Metrograph - May 18-20
Four films, three days, many birds

SCROLL DOWN TO NEXT SECTIONS for a full schedule of events, participants, and multimedia. 

Birds: A Festival Inspired by Aristophanes is produced by the Onassis Cultural Center New York. 

Spring 2018 Booklet of Events

Letter from the Onassis Foundation President

A Note from the Curator

Festival Curator: Violaine Huisman

Associate Curator of Visual Arts: Mari Spirito

Curatorial Assistant: Tamar MacKay

Festival Schedule

April 22-July 8, 2018


pm, Wednesday, April 25 Wed, April 25

Brooklyn Museum Panel Discussion: Aristophanes and Political Satire

7-8:30pm , Brooklyn Museum

Panel discussion featuring Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Bruce Norris, acclaimed actor Denis O’Hare, and others.

  • Talk
  • Discussion