Myths Reimagined: Troy Trilogy, Dionysos & more
A BBC Radio full-cast dramatisation collection
by Andrew Rissik
Narrated by ; Michael Sheen; Chiwetel Ejiofor; Diana Rigg; Lindsay Duncan; Roger Allam; Toby Stephens; David Harewood; Paul Scofield
Pub Date 18 Nov 2021 | Archive Date 19 Nov 2021
Penguin Random House UK Audio, BBC Digital Audio
A collection of acclaimed radio retellings of Greek and Roman myths
Andrew Rissik's powerful, uncompromising reimagining's of classic tales from Roman and Greek history were hailed as masterpieces when they first aired on BBC radio. Told in contemporary speech, they revitalised the ancient myths, making them fresh, relevant and accessible to a modern-day audience. This collection brings them together on audio for the first time, with stellar casts including Michael Sheen, Paul Scofield, Lindsay Duncan, David Harewood, Eleanor Bron, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Diana Rigg, Roger Allam, Toby Stephens, Anton Lesser and Robert Hardy.
The Troy Trilogy - Praised by one critic as 'the greatest radio drama [anyone] could ever hear', this three-play sequence tells the tragic, timeless tale of the events leading up to and following the fall of Troy. In King Priam and His Sons, a child is born to Priam and his wife Hekabe, but the gods foretell disaster if he is allowed to live... The Death of Achilles resumes the story in the final year of the war, as Achilles quarrels with his supreme commander, Agamemnon. And in Helen at Ephesus, Troy has fallen, and as Agamemnon returns to face the judgement of his wronged wife Klytemnestra, Menelaos and Helen must begin the long spiritual journey towards forgiveness and self-knowledge.
Dionysos - Based on Euripides' The Bacchae, this dark, provocative drama is the first of three plays examining the conflict between religion and state. Charismatic cult leader Dionysos arrives in Thebes preaching a gospel of wine and ecstasy. Threatened by his popularity, King Pentheus orders his arrest...
The Art of Love - The second of the three-play cycle sees Roman poet Ovid sent into exile when his subversive ideas about love and freedom challenge the authority of the ageing Emperor Augustus.
Resurrection - In the final play of the trilogy, the Roman governor of Judea, Pontius Pilate, clashes with troublesome, itinerant preacher Yeshua Ben Youssef.
Cast and credits
Written by Andrew Rissik
Directed by Jeremy Mortimer
The Troy Trilogy
Toby Stephens, James Hayes, Oliver Cotton, Ian Hogg, Emma Fielding, Cassandra Sperry, Deborah Findlay, Michael Maloney, Geraldine Somerville, Paul Scofield, Lindsay Duncan, James Laurenson, Geoffrey Whitehead, Abigail Docherty, Jean-Marc Perret, Michael Sheen, Saeed Jaffrey, David Harewood, Julian Glover, Eleanor Bron
Music by Nick Russell Pavier and David Chilton.
Singer: Mia Soteriou.
First broadcast BBC Radio 3: 28 November 1998 (King Priam and His Sons), 29 November 1998 (The Death of Achilles, Helen at Ephesus)
Chiwetel Ejiofor, Toby Stephens, Paul Scofield, Diana Rigg, Roger Allam, Pip Donaghy, Bruce Purchase, Jeffery Kissoon, Trevor Martin, Anna Carteret, Mali Harries, Yolanda Vazquez & Mia Soteriou
Music by Mia Soteriou.
First broadcast BBC Radio 3, 20 April 2003
The Art of Love/Resurrection
Stephen Dillane, Juliet Aubrey, Penny Downie, Robert Hardy, Peter Eyre, Ian McNeice, James Laurenson, Ioan Meredith, Damian Lynch, Anton Lesser, David Calder, Julia Ford, Sam Dastor, Raad Rawi, John Rowe, Mia Soteriou, Chris Moran, James Hayes, Jon Glover and Danny Sapani
Music by Mia Soteriou.
Musicians: Mia Soteriou, Steve Bentley Kline, Merlin Shepherd, William Lyons
First broadcast BBC Radio 3, 11 April 2004
©2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd
|EDITION||Other Format, Unabridged|
|DURATION||8 Hours, 15 Minutes|
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 6 members
The first trilogy of plays in this collection centres around the myths of the Iliad and the Trojan war, and I loved the way it fleshed out the characters involved (Helen, Paris, Eonone (Paris’s first wife)), making them complex and their motivations more understandable and sympathetic. As Helen says, “Men do not go to war over women. They go to war for reasons of their own.” These plays were what I wish the BBC adaptation (“Troy”) had been. Incredible actors. Beautifully written and produced.
I could listen to stories on myths all day long and this adaptation of some well written myths was fab. Amazingly written and acted. The performances were seriously amazing and it made for very easy and enjoyable listening. Including the Troy Trilogy, Dionysus, love and resurrection, these audio stories are an immersive experience and a great delve into myths reimagined. If you’re a fan of myths, this is a must listen. Entertaining, well executed and really enjoyable. My Greek and Trojan history is rather lacking so I have to admit, I was occasionally easy lost within the story and confused the characters and struggled to follow some of the stories but that was more of a fault with me and my lack of prior knowledge that wasn’t fragmented or bitty in regards to these myths. The stories included in here definitely helped to bring together some of the things I previously knew but I definitely need to listen to this again! It’s something that would benefit from a re listen too as it’s in depth and intricate enough to keep you listening again and again. I got to know more of these stories as it went along and got a feel for the characters throughout the performances. It was a really well done reimagining of some of the greatest myths and stories out there.
I personally found this to be absolutely flawless. Incredible performances from some of the best actors and actresses you could ever wish to listen to. Sadly some are no longer with us, but their memory will live on in these breath-taking performances. I did not think anything would ever come close to the BBC's Lord of the Rings dramatizations, but listening to these classic tales takes things to a whole new level. My personal favourite has to be Dionysos. Listening to Chiwetel Ejiofor, Toby Stephens, Paul Scofield, Diana Rigg, and Roger Allam literally gave me goosebumps. Unbelievable performances from some of the stage and screen greats. There is always something magical and spellbinding about the audio versions of classic tales. They seem more alive, and these dramas are passionate and emotionally charged, full of life. Thank you, Penguin Random House UK Audio, BBC Digital Audio, for the opportunity to listen to them.