The retelling of The Odyssey and The Trial, performed on 11th June, made for “a superb and thought-provoking evening of theatre” said Vice Principal Jenny Hodson.
The Odyssey performed by the lower school drama students starts with a group of excited sailors looking forward to an adventure – exploring the mysterious, the magical, the magnificent land of Hong Kong. But as with the Odyssey the greedy sailors don’t heed the warning of the Gods and learn their lesson of excess by being turned into fish to live forever more in the harbor that they polluted. Ms Hodson said: “The performance finished with actors considering what it is to be a modern day hero. The whole unity of the piece was excellent, it was a clever retelling of an old story with a modern message. At the beginning the actors conveyed the busyness and dynamism of HK by standing on each other to create a skyline and talking over each other, superb!”
Ms Hodson went on to talk about The Trial – the story of a man arrested and prosecuted for crimes revealed neither to him or the audience. This Kafka short story was updated by the cast to be set in Hong Kong and so became more relevant for the audience. “The story was really thought provoking as it deals with the issue of voice and what happens when you don’t have freedom of speech.”
The ensemble cast played the protagonist, Joseph K, each wearing a black hat as a representation prop. The audience laughed throughout at the actors’ sense of comic timing and observation of Hong Kong behavior, Ms Hodson said, “The actors were very assured and confidently delivered their lines very, very well. It was a very intelligent piece of theatre.”