Metamorphoses

Ossining High School have delivered a solid and enjoyable, if somewhat flawed, production of Mary Zimmerman’s Metamorphoses.

A recommendable show and a good way to enjoy Zimmerman’s classic script.

The piece is, for the most part, very well directed and choreographed. Jessica Beattie clearly understands the strengths of her students, obvious both in their casting and in the use of their natural talents such as singing. The cast themselves show a great deal of determination, working well as an ensemble. Hunter Storm-Ridgeway’s Orpheus was one of many notable performances, alongside the well-tempered and heartfelt performance by Daniela Rodrigues as Myrrha.

Myrrha’s story is one of the darker and more mature myths featured in Zimmerman’s adaptation, and this one in particular was dealt with fairly well by the cast as a whole. However, their age and immaturity stood out from time-to-time. Several members of the cast seemed to still have problems being romantically involved with other characters, be it a kiss or a hug. As several of the myths hinge on rather deep and complex romances, it meant that the series of myths being told became rather hit and miss with their success, depending entirely on which actors happened to be involved.

The paddling pool used as the centrepiece of the show looked a bit lame, although full credit must go to the actors who committed to absolutely drenching themselves in it. However, this did provide problems throughout the show. Several actors almost took a tumble slipping on the sopping wet floor and this is something that must be fixed in future performances if their safety is to be taken seriously.

Lines were stumbled here and there, and it’s clear that not everything is quite in place with this production yet. I’d be interested to see the same cast perform this show in five years time, when they’ve had a chance to grow some more and understand in more detail some of the issues that they’re dealing with. For now, it’s still a recommendable show and a good way to enjoy Zimmerman’s classic script.

Reviews by James Beagon

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The Blurb

'Myths are public dreams, dreams are private myths.' This fantastical piece juxtaposes Ovid’s classics with contemporary themes, fluidly carrying the audience through human experiences that transcend trope and archetype and speak to genuine hopes and desires. Traditional characters are given a new twist in this fun yet poignant investigation of emotion and thought – Zeus shares the stage with scientists, Phaeton chats with his therapist and Midas becomes an even shadier stockbroker of avarice. Presented by a cast of fourteen young Yanks, this spectacle will leave you laughing, crying and wishing that classical antiquity had never ended!

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