Sunday, February 24, 2013

This "Nobody" is Somebody


This afternoon I was fortunate enough to see a one-man show of the Odyssey, which just might be my all-time favorite book. It was performed by the same actor, Charlie Bethel, who did Beowulf here a few years back. I loved that show, so when I heard he was going to do the Odyssey, I jumped at the chance to see it: it sounded like the perfect storm of actor and subject.

There's not any costuming to speak of, and although there's plenty of set, it's not clearly representational. (This is the "after" version of the stage, which started out much neater, before all the monsters and shipwrecks and the big fight scene.)

Mostly the show is the man and the words. And what words they are!  He delivers an accessible, modern version of Homer's adventurous tale, complete with all the humor, surprise, action, pathos and impact of the original.

Among my takeaways:

Never taunt anyone whose father is a god.

Yearning for home is a lot less painful when you're shacked up with a goddess.

A spouse who is your equal is worth waiting for.

Don't let the fear of making a mess get in the way of a good story.

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