Theatre is a form of art created to express the ideals or feelings of various groups of people. Widely held beliefs state that it began as a ritual, and through the performers' repetition of a certain event in front of an audience, the ritual became a performance and theatre was born. In ancient Greece, the theatre was an outlet for religion because it worshipped Dionysus, the god of wine, crops, and reproduction. As theatre developed, undefined rules came into practice, and the process through which a playwright produced a play as well as the distinguishing traits characteristic of a successful play became in-depth and understood by all involved parties.
It is the pinnacle of Greek theatre and Sophocles, a budding young playwright, has written a new play entitled Antigone. To successfully produce his play Sophocles must follow specific guidelines set up by the state by first making an appeal to the Archon, a high official who chooses three contestants to participate in the Dionysiac Festival. Sophocles must present Antigone as part of a group of three tragedies and one satyr play, and if deemed acceptable by the Archon, the Archon in turn will provide him with a chorus of fifteen men, a lead actor, and a Choregus. The Choregus will be a Greek citizen randomly chosen by the Archon to be the financial backer who undertakes the expense of providing Sophocles with the necessary materials to produce his play. If the Choregus refuses to perform his duties, another person will be chosen by the Archon, and this person will be given the right to acquire the property and social wealth of the prior Choregus. Once Sophocles is provided with these three elements from the Archon, he along with the lead actor will select two more males to perform in his play. Upon completion of this task, Sophocles will contact his three actors and Choregus in order to set up a series of practices and begin designing masks for each character.