From 6th Aug, 2021
For this performance of ‘Ithaca’, part of the online Edinburgh Fringe, Phoebe Angeni presented us with a tour de force of Greek, gothic lords and gods. Her great inspiration climbed out of the poetic book Odyssey by the epic poet Homer. She told us of her biggest love of this book and the amount of languages she has read it in.
In a black low cut dress she formulated the world of this Odyssey into her own magical transcendent voyage through the rages of all kinds of hell. She began her conversations with the gods as rain and storm came from the bleak and darkly red sky. Hello she cried as if into a howling wind. The voice that came in return was the voice of her father a god that sounded like something of pure evil.
She threw herself into the voyage as much as the voyage was thrown into her. She met herself in the mirror though many time she could not recognise what was going on. This wasn’t a wonder because each voice had a different command and intention for her future; as a sentient being. She was told in one voice that she was a fat waste of space and in a Texan accent she was told that her right to live where she was was over and that she must return home to the ancient Ithaca.
She stood fast and developed well despite being in so many states of confusion. The play mirrored Homer’s in its epic and extremely well done capacity for being at the cradle of the often cruel playing hands of the gods, she even had the bow made for them. Her words would flow as moods took her. We saw her growing beauty rise in front of us even as she despaired with a deep feeling that she didn’t want to go to Ithaca and that it was in fact not her home.
She felt this very strongly though could not for the life of her figure out why? Her trances and developments were a strong hold to see performed with total abandon and immersion. Written in the very strong holds of the gods she was played about like a rag doll with the courage to be open and swim in mysterious languish forthcoming as a goddess herself.
She spoke with Athena and enacted a carefully profound rant with Dionysus whom she revelled upon. The powers of the play were so sharp, and worked to be on the very shoulders of the worlds themselves. It was meaningful to such an extent in every aspect. It was an experience of an experience with delays, distortions, desperate soul seeking and finding. With our star Phoebe; being tossed around even unto the land of the dead.
As she journeyed just as in the Odyssey it thankfully started to become clear that what she felt that she couldn’t remember was in fact because of journeys she wanted to forget. And with her great will beside her, her memories were like confessions into the plays astounding depth of insight and pure talent. Phoebe’s play was hers entirely, written, directed, filmed, edited and all the rest by her own hands, and we were just along for the ride in a most vivid and gracious storyline that held a brilliant grip on us.