Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Metamorphoses comes from Broadway to Centenary College; opens Fri, Sept 26

Based on Ovid's transformation myths, Metamorphoses, by Mary Zimmerman, subtly mixes the ancient stories of pathos and tragedy with contemporary language, humor, and thought, all enacted in and around a large pool of water in the center of the stage.

The themes of love, the inevitability of change, and the human ability to adapt to change are timeless, as is amply demonstrated by the sometimes eerie closeness of a vignette to the original lines from Ovid, which still manage to resonate with modern viewers, says Library Journal.

The college's most fluent players anchor the cast: Lorna Dopson, Nate Wasson, Destin Bass. Professor Don Hooper designed the pool.

Directed by Emily Heugatter
Fri, Sept 26, 8 pm
Sat, Sept 27, 8 pm
Sun, Sept 28, 2 pm
Thur, Oct 2, 8 pm
Fri, Oct 3, 8 pm
Sat, Oct 4, 8 pm

Adults $15.00, Sen/Mil/Child $10.00
Box Office opens Fri, Sept 19, and will be open daily between the hours of 12 and 4 pm. Call 318-869-5242 for info.
Poster Nate Wasson.


Amy said...

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Amy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

This is a great show! There is never a dull moment, and from it's mist on the dark water beginning to it's fire on the water ending, it creates another world to lose oneself in. Every night has ended with a standing ovation.
Check out the review as well:


September 28, 2008

Theater Review: ‘Metamorphoses’ finds its dreams

By Alexandyr Kent

Marjorie Lyons Playhouse’s new production of “Metamorphoses” places Ovid’s myths into a dreamlike realm of loss, suffering, playfulness and hope. Many retellings are achingly beautiful in both performance and scenery. At its best, the show casts a melancholic silence over the audience.

Playwright Mary Zimmerman has distilled the essence of the myths into a series of imaginative retellings. They are sometimes narrated, other times performed, and even once danced to the tune of Right Said Fred’s “I’m Too Sexy.” (Actor Arron Holman’s catwalk groove as Narcissus is one funny exhibition of self-love.)

The stage is anchored by a trapezoidal pool, which again and again, as performers step in and out of it dripping wet, serves as a source of transformation. The costumes and voices are both classical and contemporary, giving the myths their timeless appeal.

Director Emily Heugatter-Mathias draws out performances that are mysterious and emotionally resonant. Her performers shift between characters from story to story, and do so with fits of humor, ennui, carnality, and even primal hunger. Double doors open by themselves, performers slither into the pool from beneath a waterfall, and water splashes over the first three rows. The combined effect can be intoxicating.

Scott Gibbs and Lorna Dopson share many wonderful moments together. The opener looks at Midas, who arrives on stage in a tailored suit and tells us his mind is made for business. With cocky tilts of the head and smug assertions in his voice, Gibbs draws out Midas’s heartless love of wealth. When granted his Midas touch, he plucks a giant golden shell from the pool and stares at it with an adoration that can’t be good.

Of course it isn’t, and the curse is powerfully illustrated. Dopson, playing an adoring daughter, runs from offstage and jumps into his arms, her legs wrapping around his back. In an instant, her glee is frozen, and he is heartbroken. He lays her rigid body gently down into the pool, gently disentangles himself, and stares at her mournfully. Be careful what you wish for, indeed.

The rhythm of the scene is well paced, and just one example of how this show boils down myths into simply staged but profoundly relatable retellings.

There are many strong performances here, and Chelsea David (Alcyone and more) and Jacob Bates (Eros and more) also deserve special praise for deft character work.

What’s most memorable about this show is how it sustains a mood of uncertainty.

The stone- and wood-work set, designed by Don Hooper, has modern, hard lines yet appears anchored in ancient time. The costumes, designed by Heugatter-Mathias and Marissa Brown, often drape classically over bodies that appear ever-young.

As hard as we look at “Metamorphoses,” we can’t define the when of these myths, but we can see the who. They are us -- humans who, century after century, tell the same stories, make the same mistakes, experience the same heartache, and become none the wiser by the knowing.