Home » Reviews » Drama » Ur – Medëa, Summerhall (Upper Church) – Review
Photo credit: Michael O’Reilly
Photo credit: Michael O’Reilly

Ur – Medëa, Summerhall (Upper Church) – Review

Pros: Visually stunning.

Cons: The knowledge of Medea as a character might help to enjoy the storyline.

Pros: Visually stunning. Cons: The knowledge of Medea as a character might help to enjoy the storyline. Product of the ancient Greek literary tradition, the character of Medea has become known in popular culture for her exceptional revenge against the infidelity of her husband Jason, for which she killed his new lover, as well as her own children born from the wedlock. As a part of the Rose Bruford College residency at Summerhall, an international ensemble of 16 artists from the MA Actor/Performer Training programme, travelled to Georgia to rediscover the origins of this myth and translate it into…

Summary

Rating

Excellent

Born from the collaboration of 16 international artists, the myth of Medea is revisited in contemporary and conceptual terms with mesmerising results.

User Rating: 3.63 ( 3 votes)

Product of the ancient Greek literary tradition, the character of Medea has become known in popular culture for her exceptional revenge against the infidelity of her husband Jason, for which she killed his new lover, as well as her own children born from the wedlock.

As a part of the Rose Bruford College residency at Summerhall, an international ensemble of 16 artists from the MA Actor/Performer Training programme, travelled to Georgia to rediscover the origins of this myth and translate it into a new piece of work presented at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Merging traditional and contemporary text, live music and physical elements, Ur – Medëa takes the classic tale as a starting point and develops it to explore the consequences of international conflicts, injustice and ethnic discrimination.

Belonging to an extended family and confined to a ghostly home, the several women present on stage are reminiscent of a feline colony, with clear hierarchies and a symbiotic, yet competing, habitat. Despite grooming each other and exchanging affection, there is a perceivable hostility underlying amongst them.

The isolation of each individual is juxtaposed to the women’s yearning for approval, which urges them to fall in the arms of distant and unappreciative men. Unafraid to lose their dignity, they try to pursue their personal happiness at all costs.

The only female character who seems to stand her ground is Kara, whose black lipstick immediately suggests a bolder ego and the unwillingness to entertain Jason’s self-indulgence.

Standing in the background, another female character in a white tunic sings acapella a simple melody, repeated like a lament. Two more women dressed in black observe from a distance, occasionally getting closer to the action or joining the chant.

The outcome is an impressionistic composition, for which the large stage of the Upper Church offers the perfect backdrop in visually stunning tableaux vivants.

Devised by: Rose Bruford College MA Actor/Performer Training programme.
Producer: Rose Bruford College
Booking Information: This show has now completed its run

About Marianna Meloni

Marianna Meloni
Marianna, being Italian, has an opinion on just about everything and believes that anything deserves an honest review. Her dream has always been to become an arts critic and, after collecting a few degrees, she realised that it was easier to start writing in a foreign language than finding a job in her home country. In the UK, she tried the route of grown-up employment but soon understood that the arts and live events are highly addictive.