July 08, 2019

A Journey of Healing and Forgiveness is Explored in this Year's Outdoor Theater Production at the Getty Villa

Media Contact(s):

Desiree Zenowich
(310) 440-7304
Getty Communications



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The Heal
Written & Directed by Aaron Posner
Music by Cliff Eberhardt
A re-imagining of Philoctetes by Sophocles
Co-Produced by The Getty Museum and Round House Theatre

Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays
September 5-28, 2019, 8:00 p.m.
At the Getty Villa



LOS ANGELES - A bold new version of Sophocles’ Philoctetes – a timeless tale of hurting and healing – The Heal blends classical and modern ideas and issues in a play about the universality of human suffering that is still relevant today. The fourteenth annual outdoor theater production in the Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman Theater at the Getty Villa, The Heal is co-produced by Maryland’s Round House Theatre, and written and directed by Aaron Posner, with music by Cliff Eberhardt.

        “Sophocles’ Philoctetes has been one of my favorite plays ever since I first read it in high school. It is an amazingly rich piece of work that can be read many ways, and can talk to many parts of the human experience,” says director/adaptor Aaron Posner. “My version of the play in The Heal is, I hope, both historical and contemporary. It lives in a timeless, theatrical present that is grounded in myth, but is exploring current conflicts.”

        Posner adds, “I’m thrilled to be bringing this epic story—full of music and movement and grand passions—to the spectacular outdoor space of the Getty Villa. It is an astounding place to do a re-imagined Greek play.”

        In The Heal, the wounded Philoctetes has suffered alone on a desert island for years, stranded there by Odysseus. But now Odysseus needs Philoctetes’s magic weapons to win the Trojan War and enlists Achilles’s daughter Nia to help make peace. Director/adaptor Aaron Posner creates an irreverent, spiritual, musical exploration about the wounds we carry, the ones we cause, and the redeeming power of human connection.

          “We are delighted to have acclaimed director and playwright Aaron Posner and Round House Theatre, one of the nation’s leading regional theaters, at the Getty Villa to perform this adaptation of one of Sophocles’ most universal dramas – and one that deserves to be better known,” says Timothy Potts, director of the J. Paul Getty Museum. “In ancient Greece, theater was a fundamental component of religious, social and political life, and as our program at the Villa demonstrates, these works still engage and delight modern audiences some 2,500 years later.”

          Performances of The Heal will be held Thursdays through Saturdays, September 5—28, 2019 at 8:00 p.m., with previews on August 29-31, 2019, at 8:00 p.m. This year, newly designed seats with comfortable back support will be available at every performance. Tickets for Thursday night performances are $40.00 ($36.00 for students and seniors), Friday night performances are $42, and Saturday night performances are $48. Student and senior discounts are available for Thursday night performances only. Ticket prices for the previews are $25. Tickets are available at (310) 440-7300 or

About Aaron Posner
          Aaron Posner is a director, playwright, teacher and consultant. He is very pleased to be at the Getty for the first time. His plays and adaptations include Stupid Fucking Bird, Life Sucks and No Sisters (all re-imaginings of Chekhov plays); JQA (about John Quincy Adams); District Merchants (inspired by The Merchant of Venice); Who Am I This Time? & Other Conundrums of Love (from Kurt Vonnegut stories); The Chosen and My Name Is Asher Lev (both adapted from Chaim Potok novels); Sometimes a Great Notion (from Ken Kesey’s novel), and many more. He has directed nearly 200 productions at major regional theaters across the country. His many theatre awards include six Helen Hayes Awards (DC), two Barrymore Awards (Philadelphia), an Outer Circle Critics Award (NYC), a Bay Area Theatre Award, a Joseph Jefferson Award (Chicago), an Eliot Norton Award (Boston), and many more. He currently lives outside of Washington D.C. with his wonderful wife, actress Erin Weaver, and his amazing daughter, Maisie.

About Round House Theatre
          Round House Theatre is one of the leading professional theaters in the Washington, DC area, producing a season of new plays, modern classics, and musicals for more than 40,000 patrons each year at their theater in Bethesda. Round House has been nominated for more than 181 Helen Hayes Awards and has won over 32, including four Outstanding Resident Play Awards and the Charles MacArthur Award for Original New Play in 2016. Round House’s lifelong learning and education programs serve over 4,000 students each year at its Education Center in Silver Spring and in schools throughout Montgomery County. Cornerstone programs include the year-round Teen Performance Company (which culminates in the student-produced Sarah Metzger Memorial Play), summer camp for students in grades K¬–12, and a full slate of classes for adults and youth.
          In March 2018, the company launched the Full Circle Campaign to establish Round House as one of the leading regional theaters in the country through four inspiring goals: launch innovative artistic initiatives, advance theater to future generations, create a dynamic and flexible theater, and ensure our financial sustainability.
          Among these new artistic initiatives are Equal Play, a groundbreaking program to commission 30 new plays from women playwrights and playwrights of color, including ten plays for the Teen Performance Company; Fair Play, which provides competitive artist salaries to build loyalty with the best local talent; and Round House’s new Resident Artist program, which deepens the relationship with key artists through two-year residencies that guarantees each artist work on four productions, while engaging them year-round rather than on a per show basis, providing much needed job security.
          One of Round House Theatre’s deepest held values is to ensure our work is accessible to patrons of all ages, cultural backgrounds, economic groups, and physical ability. Through the Free Play program, Round House provides teenagers and college students with free tickets—to any play, any time—and removes financial obstacles while nurturing an interest in live, professional theatre. And in May 2019, the company launched On the House, a community ticket access program that provides complimentary group tickets to nonprofit organizations interested in sharing the enjoyment of live theater with their constituents.



The J. Paul Getty Trust is an international cultural and philanthropic institution devoted to the visual arts that includes the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute, the Getty Conservation Institute, and the Getty Foundation. The J. Paul Getty Trust and Getty programs serve a varied audience from two locations: the Getty Center in Los Angeles and the Getty Villa in Pacific Palisades.

The J. Paul Getty Museum collects Greek and Roman antiquities, European paintings, drawings, manuscripts, sculpture and decorative arts to 1900, as well as photographs from around the world to the present day. The Museum’s mission is to display and interpret its collections, and present important loan exhibitions and publications for the enjoyment and education of visitors locally and internationally. This is supported by an active program of research, conservation, and public programs that seek to deepen our knowledge of and connection to works of art.

Visiting the Getty Villa
The Getty Villa is open Wednesday through Monday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is closed Tuesdays, Thanksgiving, December 25 (Christmas Day), and January 1. Admission to the Getty Villa is always free, but a ticket is required for admission. Tickets can be ordered in advance, or on the day of your visit, at or at (310) 440-7300. Parking rates vary. Groups of 15 or more must make reservations by phone. For more information, call (310) 440-7300 (English or Spanish); (310) 440-7305 (TTY line for the deaf or hearing impaired). The Getty Villa is at 17985 Pacific Coast Highway, Pacific Palisades, California. Same-day parking at both Museum locations (Getty Center and Getty Villa) is available for $15 through the Getty’s Pay Once, Park Twice program.

Additional information is available at
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