Pittsburgh in the Round – Review: Quantum Theater’s An Odyssey

By August 31, 2021 Uncategorized

With thanks to Stephen King, “Everything old is new again.” And you can’t get much older than The Odyssey, the classical epic which historians date to the seventh or eighth century BCE Greece.

The story is full of possibilities — the journey of discovery for the protagonist and the reader. Its spinoffs are myriad, including that notorious novel that covers 24 hours in the life of the very un-Odysseus-like Leopold Bloom in 20th-century Dublin. 

Playwright Jay Ball has written the latest version for Quantum Theatre. An Odyssey focuses on its hero’s inner journey. A voyage that strips the mighty Odysseus of his godlike stature and shows us his flaws – cruelty, trickery, betrayal, and foolishness. 

This macho hero of The Iliad is seen through the lenses of women, including his long-suffering wife, Penelope. And the young princess Nausicaa who finds the shipwrecked, disheveled Odysseus on her island. 

The young is Ball’s guide to the adventures and misadventures of Odysseus after he and his crew sail triumphantly home from Troy only to lose their way. Now alone, the Greek warrior seeks her help to return at last to Ithaca by impressing her with his version of events.

George Hoover, Pittsburgh in the Round

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