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Beppie Blankert/Louis Andriessen

May 9–11, 2003

Odyssey is a dance-music work based on the Homer’s Odysseia (c. 8th century) and on James Joyce’s Ulysses (1922), created as a collaboration between choreographer Beppie Blankert and composer Louis Andriessen. This challenging site-specific work is performed at water’s edge as dusk falls, and tells the love stories during Odysseus’s ten-year journey home to Ithaka, from the women’s point of view. Penelope, the wife of Odysseus, tells her story with the words of Molly Bloom (Joyce’s personification of Penelope) while she is waiting for him to come home. Originally staged in 1996 in the Netherlands, the MCA produces a re-creation that opens in Chicago then tours to Los Angeles (UCLA) and New York City (World Financial Center), plus the Oerol festival on the Dutch island of Terschelling. For this new MCA production, Odyssey has an international cast: the dancers and actors are Dutch, while the music is performed live by four sopranos from Chicago.