Shodyssey

Pelham Grosvenor-Stevenson and Cal Moffat
Drake's Drummers
Lions Den, Plymouth Hoe (part of the Waterfront Festival)

Hercules is in trouble for a bit of casual familial slaughter. His penance: a ‘to do’ list which goes somewhat wrong as 1000 Aegean cows prove to be not quite immortal after all and just how difficult can slaying a bird be?

Meanwhile Achilles is decomposing, Helen the spaniel of Troy is kidnapped and Paris, who really hasn’t ever been to France, has the makings of a fruit salad and the core of a golden apple. Icarus’s Imporium of Illicit Items is flogging a not quite dead horse as the last of a swarm of Pegasi while strategy and desperation is rife in the yurt of war.

There’s carnage, chaos and a huge amount of humour as five Drake's Drummers populate Greece, Troy and a doorless wooden horse.

Sounds confusing? It doesn’t matter.

With a passing nod to Homer’s great works and much artistic license, Pelham Grosvenor-Stevenson and Cal Moffat have devised a very funny 60-minute romp through mythology with much stomping about and clattering of swords.

Played on Plymouth’s own Minack (ish—the Lion’s Den, the former men-only nude sunbathing area on the very edge of Plymouth Hoe affording a fab backdrop of sea, boats and breakwater... and a fleeting appearance by the Brittany Ferry), Shodyssey is an all-round delight from a home-grown, enthusiastic young theatre company.

Grosvenor-Stevenson is the master of comic timing channelling his inner Monty Python as Helen / Hercules / Achilles / Icarus while Moffat as Paris / Odysseus / Ioulus exudes dry wit and charm (and fruit).

Laconic Anastasios Challas is a statuesque Hector / Agamemnon / Terimachus / Aphrodite / Ajax; Roxanne Boulbin is edgy, petulant and resigned by turns as Cassandra / Hera / Hades / Perseus while Chelsea Vincent, with just a jaunty swivel of a crown, delivers throwaway lines with aplomb as Menelaus / Priam / Athena / Patroclus.

Shodyssey is first up in the inaugural Waterside Festival’s programme of events with poetry readings, storytelling, workshops and drama still to come.

Well worth a look. Find timings and tickets at www.waterfronttheatre.co.uk.

Reviewer: Karen Bussell