Eve Sussman


It was January in Brooklyn, and we needed a place to rehearse a fight choreography for the The Rape of the Sabine Women. I wanted to approximate the marble dust of the soccer field we had practiced on in Hydra three months earlier. I thought a clay tennis court could work as a substitute. At least people would pick up color when they fell, an idea that we had become attached to from working on the white ground in Greece. I figured that finding New York City courts that would let us do this would be a challenge. Fortunately, the director of the Prospect Park Tennis Center, Paul Campbell, is an artist, and he loved the idea (as long as we weren't interrupting anyone's doubles game). We invited as many friends as we could talk into letting their kids skip school. We brought along bags of cornstarch and talcum powder and a couple of smoke machines for effect. The women wore paper dresses. We worked with live music for the first time. Out of these rehearsals came ideas used in filming when we returned to Athens and Hydra later that year.