An Iliad

Tuesday, August 20 th, 2019 at 00:08 am 

I must admit, I think this is one of the best theatrical events I’ve ever attended; it’s really wonderful. The Iliad, obviously, and The Odyssey is some ancient literature that we all had to study in high school and college. In 2005, Lisa Peterson, who is the author, decided that she was upset about the issues regarding Iraq and Afghanistan, and decided that she wanted to go back and look at ancient literature to see what they said about war and sort of re-discovered Homer’s The Iliad. So she and Denis O’Hare collaborated because she understood that as a playwright, she really needed to deal with the actor.  This is truly a tour-de-force. Stephen Spinella alternates with Denis O’Hare, but I did see Denis O’Hare when I went, and he is fantastic. He is on stage by himself for 100 minutes and he is absolutely mesmerizing, and what he does just breaks your heart. All classical students should see this, but it’s just an extraordinary performance and extraordinary piece of theatre. It’s truly heartbreaking, and I think in my particular case it was enhanced by the fact that I’d seen The Wrath of the Titans the night before, which covers basically the same period of history and how the people saw the gods in that particular time. But this is truly theatre at its best. Five stars.