A Greek Odyssey

The cast of The Iliad, the Odyssey And All of Greek Mythology in 99 Minutes or Less’ rehearses. Supplied photo.

A local theatre group is hoping to take audience members on a quick yet entertaining trip through Greek mythology at a coming fundraiser.

Odyssey Productions is holding a Greek Festival fundraiser at the Wildlife Federation Hall on July 29.

The event will include a meal, a silent auction, 50/50 draw, photo booth and a performance of ‘The Iliad, the Odyssey And All of Greek Mythology in 99 Minutes or Less’, a play by Jay Hopkins and John Hunter.

The fundraiser will be similar to the Medieval Feast the group held a few years ago, and will bring back the popular stocks, where people can pay to have their friends or loved ones locked up. It was one of the best fundraisers from the medieval feast.

Like that event, the Greek Festival will be vital to keep the amateur theatre troupe running.

“We have some really good sponsors. We have people who support us, but … it’s expensive to put on a show,” said Kim Morrall of Odyssey Productions.

“You’ve got to do what you can to make sure you can continue to put on shows/”

The group brainstormed various fundraising ideas, but ultimately decided the best way to raise money was through a performance.

“We ended up deciding this is a better choice because were more about theatre and putting on plays,” Morrall said.

“This (play) is something the director has been wanting to do for awhile, so we figured it was a good opportunity to put it on.”

The play itself is exactly what it sounds like – a race through Greek Mythology in less than 100 minutes.

It’s similar to a Shakespeare-themed play the group performed at the medieval feast.

“In this version, it’s the Iliad, the Odyssey and all the other myths, touching each one, sometimes for just one second,” Morrall said.

“It goes really quickly through them, but does them in a really humorous way. Each actor plays several different roles. It’s really funny, but for our actors, it’s very complicated.”

The play’s quirky humour includes an American Idol-like segment, as well as some audience participation.

The group has been working for a few months to put the performance together.

“You need a good three months to get prepared to do a play, especially if people are working,” Morrall said.

“Especially something like this, because the timing is essential, and it’s really quite a bit of work.”

What’s also a lot of work are the props. A full three pages in the script are dedicated to the props, and extra hands have to be called in to make sure the prop-wrangling goes smoothly the night of the show.

The whole team, in fact, has been working hard. As a community theatre group, that’s vital, Morrall said.

“It’s not just about the acting. The sense of community theatre is getting people out and having people help you out. It’s really a community-supported and community-based event. It’s really nice to see, because it’s a lot of work.

“It’s really neat to see everybody chip in and play their roles. It’s been good that way.”

Tickets for the fundraiser are available at Canadian Tire.