The Fire of Olympus or, on Sticking It to the Man is a revisionist opera that utilizes Greek mythology and timely themes of politics to elicit a contemporary edge. Composed and directed by Tim Benjamin and performed by skilled members of the Radius Opera, the story is an impassioned tale of revenge and confronting oppression.
Zeus (a brooding Robert Glyndwr Garland, who sings incredibly well in baritone) is the almighty leader of Olympus, restricting individual freedom and regulating the distribution of goods and wealth. Pandora (Charlotte Hoather) and Hephaestus (Michael Vincent Jones) are a part of Zeus’s inner circle. Pandora is a personal assistant to Zeus, and Hephaestus is a police chief who caters to the man’s demands. Zeus has all the power he could ask for, but with power comes resistance.
“Zeus’s reign of terror is threatened by social activists who are demanding change.”
Zeus’s reign of terror is threatened by social activists who are demanding change. Amongst the activists is the strong-willed Prometheus (Sophie Dicks), an amateur intrigant. With the help of his brother, Epimetheus (Elspeth Marrow), Prometheus is determined to dismantle Zeus and trigger societal change. For whatever reason, the siblings steal “the Fire of Zeus” from his chambers.
It is universally known that most operas are typically sung in another language, such as Italian. But, in the case of The Fire of Olympus, the songs are in English. While the plot is not by any means complex, bear in mind that every word, every feeling, and every interaction is sung in a recitative or aria style. The small yet talented cast of singers delivers top-notch vocal performances through and through.
"…a pioneering piece that was written and executed with palpable passion..."