Posts tagged ‘gilgamesh’

Gilgamesh

Thanks to clever segues and the actors’ spot-on timing, this complex production never overwhelms. Not a minute is wasted. [4 stars] – Winnipeg Free Press

This year, we decided to depart from Greek mythology and try something a little different. We settled on The Epic of Gilgamesh as the perfect way to challenge ourselves further.

The Epic of Gilgamesh is the oldest written story in recorded history, originally carved on honest-to-goodness clay tablets. (Which made the adaptation process difficult – the tablets are so old that there are quite literally holes in the story.) It’s an ancient Mesopotamian legend about Gilgamesh, the semi-divine King of Uruk. After Gilgamesh spurns the advances of Ishtar, the goddess of love, she takes revenge by striking ill his companion Enkidu, the newly-civilized wild man of the woods. Gilgamesh watches in horror as Enkidu grows weaker and weaker, and then dies. Having never experienced the death of a loved one, Gilgamesh is horrified, and vows that this will never happen to him. He sets out to find Utnapishtim the Immortal and learn the secret of eternal life.

In rehearsals, we continued to develop our own distinctive style, and brought back techniques we’ve used in the past. We kept the convention of using masks for the non-human characters. We brought back the shadow puppet screen and created a new host of shadow puppets, but with the addition of panels of coloured cellophane to lend them more character and versatility. The major stylistic difference was in the writing; we abandoned story theatre (where characters narrate their own actions and private thoughts) in favour of a single narrator, Utnapishtim.

Gilgamesh was our most mature, dramatic script yet. We took a risk by moving even further away from straight comedy, which comes easier to us, and it paid off. We won Best of Fest for the second time in three years, and we’ve received more recognition for this show than any other so far.

Two pictures below the fold.

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“Gilgamesh” wins Best of Fest!

Exciting news! Since “Gilgamesh” was one of the top two ticket-sellers at our venue this year, we have won the coveted Best of Fest honour for the second time in three years, and have been granted an EXTRA SHOW. This will take place on the last day of the festival: Sunday, July 25 at 2:30 PM. The venue is the Playhouse Studio, 180 Market Ave. (entrance off Main St.)

Many thanks to all those who have already come out to support the show, friends and strangers alike. The praise we’ve received for it is very flattering indeed. We’re very glad you enjoyed it.

Announcing “Gilgamesh”!

The story ends with the carvings on this wall, but it begins, as so many stories do, with a king. – “Gilgamesh”

This summer, the Players will be premiering their third show, entitled Gilgamesh, at the 2010 Winnipeg Fringe Festival.

Gilgamesh is adapted from The Epic of Gilgamesh, an ancient Mesopotamian legend. It tells the tale of Gilgamesh, the semi-divine King of Uruk, a city-state in ancient Sumeria. The gods created Gilgamesh to restore order to Uruk, but eventually the King becomes a tyrant, and the gods decide to create Enkidu the wild man, hoping he can beat some sense into Gilgamesh. Naturally, the two become best friends shortly thereafter. But when Enkidu dies as a result of one of their ambitious quests, Gilgamesh loses it and embarks on an epic journey to find the secret of immortality.

The 2010 Winnipeg Fringe Festival runs July 14-25. Tickets are $9 for adults, $7 for students, seniors and temple harlots. Recommended for general audience, but kids under 10 not admitted (subject matter, comedic sexual content). Show times are as follows:

Thursday, July 15 – 9:45 PM

Friday, July 16 – 12:15 PM

Saturday, July 17 – 10:30 PM

Tuesday, July 20 – 3:15 PM

Wednesday, July 21 – 1:45 PM

Friday, July 23 – 12:15 PM

Saturday, July 24 – 7:15 PM