Since time immemorial, the higher classes have sent those from the lower rungs of society to distant locales to wage wars for land, gold and glory. It has always been thus. For those at the top, war is a no-brainer. It is the gift that keeps on giving. War begets unity, power and profit. It still does.
For those that do the fighting – the people on the front lines, the people that will actually participate in the bloodletting as well as fall victim to it, war is not so advantageous. While a lucky few might not die in the process, many return to their respective homes and families, shattered, damaged and haunted.
The Up Theater Company’s latest play, Epic Poetry, deftly delves into the carnage and its aftermath with a thought-provoking opus that is informed by the classic tale of The Odyssey. Set in a Post-Disneyfied, mythic New York City, Epic Poetry tells the story of a young girl, Lief, and her brave but foolhardy quest to find her long gone, veteran father, Otis. What follows is a treacherous trek through the desolate metropolis with a brief sojourn in the netherworld for a Faustian bargain with Pluto, lord of the underworld. Lief believes against all odds that her father is among the living and she will literally go to hell or high water to make her family whole again.
Epic Poetry is a multi-sensory experience. You don’t watch the play; you kind of slowly, almost quicksand like, get drawn into it. The immensely talented cast is, in essence, one unified entity. Moving, singing and chanting in unison and further immersing you in the outstanding and ambitious production. Epic Poetry in motion indeed!
Written by James Bosley and directed by Gregory Wolfe, Epic Poetry is must-see theater. Smart, sophisticated and subversive; the play is about war, loss and the crucial importance of home and family. While war is an inexorable aspect of the human condition, thankfully so is hope. As long as human beings have hope in the midst of trials and tribulations of mythic proportions, we will always have Epic Poetry…
Get tickets: EPIC POETRY by James Bosley.
Related: Broad Channel – The Review