The play Metamorphoses is an adaptation of the epic poem of the same name, a collection myths by the ancient Roman poet Ovid (don't worry, I didn't really know who or what that was before seeing the show either). A cast of ten actors play multiple roles as they tell these nine or ten different little stories. Little in length, but each one epic in scope. Familiar stories include King Midas - everything he touches turns to gold, including, devastatingly, his beloved daughter. We also hear another familiar story that never goes old, that of Orpheus, who followed his love Eurydice into the Underworld (see also Hadestown). Then there are the stories that I've never heard - the disturbing tale of a young woman in love with her father; a beautiful love story of a happy couple torn apart by the sea, then reunited as birds; a story of gods come to earth and taken in by a poor elderly couple as strangers.
The play is ingeniously constructed, with one story flowing to the next, narration being passed off from one character (god or human) to another. Each is succinct, and the storytelling is different for each (one is charmingly told by a man to his therapist). It's like a collection of short plays, but also works as a cohesive commentary on the nature of being human and the ever changing lives we live.
|the pool (photo by Dan Norman)|
|Lisa Tejero and Sango Tajima emote while sitting|
in a pool of water (photo by Dan Norman)
The gorgeous, moving, epic (yet only 90 minutes long) Metamorphoses continues on the Guthrie thrust stage through May 19.