[THEATRE ~ International]
The Adina Treasury Tunnels: the Long Room at Treasury 1860, Sat 16 Feb.
Surely one of Adelaide’s oldest built environments, the Treasury Tunnels seemed an appropriate venue for one of the world’s oldest stories – Homer’s Odyssey. Like many tales from Greek mythology the Odyssey is laced with references to gods directly interfering in the lives of men and is something of an acquired taste for those raised in cultures where God keeps a healthy distance between divine lives and the human!
Loucas Loizou has entered many shows in recent Fringe Festivals and is to be commended for bringing Greek culture to modern audiences. Loizou’s mini-musical of this epic begins well enough. After setting the scene for us in both Greek and English, the first song, sung in Greek, acknowledges the power of the sea and is quite enthralling. It was intriguing to hear the distinctive vocal style of Greek folk music sung with classical guitar accompaniment. But that sadly was the only Greek song in the show.
Several other original songs mark major events in Odysseus’ long journey home. The songs are pleasant enough. Loizou has quite a tuneful voice with a good range and mournful tone befitting Odysseus’ fate.
Songs and spoken narrative in turn bring the stories of the Trojan horse, the Lotus-Eaters, the Cyclops, and the Song of the Sirens to life as the story unfolds.
I enjoyed revisiting this ancient epic and Loizou does a good job of making a complex tale accessible. At least one other song in Greek would add a layer of mystique and authenticity that waned as the show progressed. And for me the final two songs, imported from other cultures and contexts far removed from ancient Greece, was a jarring and disappointing end.
Homer’s Odyssey – A Mini Musical with Lucas Loizou continues at Upstairs Function Room at The British Hotel Port Adelaide from 6pm on Fri 21 Feb.
Book at FringeTIX on 1300 621 255 or adelaidefringe.com.au. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.