PLAYS FROM MYTHOLOGY
Epic Tales from World Folklore
* Written by L.E. McCullough, Ph.D.
* ISBN: 1-57525-110-8
* Retail List Price: $17.00 (check online retailers for other prices)
12 ORIGINAL PLAYS based on classic world myths including "Dreamtime Down Under", "Fionn in Search of His Youth", "The Flight of Icarus", "Freya's Golden Necklace", "Gilgamesh and the Rose of Immortality", "King Midas and the Golden Touch", "The Monkey King", "How Quetzalcoatl Found the Sun", "The Throne of Osiris", "Tshai the Brickmaker", "When a River Cries: The Myth of Oba and Oshun" and "Why Bears No Longer Talk".
1. Dreamtime Down Under. Central to Aboriginal mythology is the “Dream Time”, an ancient time when the ancestors travelled across Australia shaping the landscape, structuring society and depositing the spirits of unborn children in animals, trees and people. Join Jim Borala the Song Man and his didjeridoo as he introduces a trio of tales featuring Naarait the Cockatoo, Lakemaker, Murgah Muggui the Witch, Koala, Kangaroo, Gur-Gur, Wombat and Kookaburra.
2. Fionn in Search of His Youth. This ancient Irish myth features super-hero Fionn mac Cumhaill (Finn McCool) and the Fianna, a band of warrior adventurers with special powers who battle other warriors and creatures from the spirit world. One winter’s night Fionn and the Fianna step into an old woman’s cottage and get a lesson in what bravery and power really mean.
3. The Flight of Icarus. This action-filled tale from ancient Greek mythology depicts the curse of King Minos, Theseus’ slaying of the ferocious Minotaur, the doomed flight of Daedalus and Icarus and figures from other Greek myths — Poseidon, Atlas, Hermes, Prometheus, Ares and Artemis.
4. Freya’s Golden Necklace. In many Norse myths, the gods have distinctly human personality traits and occasionally resort to disguise and subterfuge to achieve their ends. Here the trickster Loki creates all sorts of mischief for Thor, Freya and Thrym and his giants, with the action paced by a running quasi-operatic vocal commentary by onstage Valkyries!
5. Gilgamesh and the Rose of Immortality. This ancient Sumerian tale presents the first mythic hero celebrated in world literature — Gilgamesh, King of Uruk, who leaves his kingdom to search for immortality and must face Scorpion Men, a 300-mile tunnel of darkness and a flood created to destroy the human race but for one man and his family.
6. King Midas and the Golden Touch. This rhyming play unfolds the popular and tragic Roman myth of a king destroyed by insatiable greed; included are appearances by the gods Bacchus and Silenus and Four Muses: Terpsichore, Calliope, Thalia and Polyhymnia.
7. The Monkey King. The Buddhist Jataka Tales tell of the Buddha’s numerous lives as a different animal. Here Buddha is a Monkey King who sacrifices his life to protect his tribe of monkeys from the humans destroying the forest; his brave, unselfish example inspires the boy king of Benares, Brahmadatta, to rule more wisely. This play features the hit song The Monkey King by singer/songwriter Penny Nichols.
8. How Quetzalcoatl Found the Sun. This play from ancient Mexico tells the story of the half god-half serpent Quetzalcoatl, a benevolent god who taught humans about agriculture, industry and the arts while fighting his evil sibling gods, the Tezcatlipocas, who constantly try to destroy the world — even today!
9. The Throne of Osiris. When Osiris, Lord of the Egyptian Underworld is treacherously murdered, his brother Seth and son Horus vie to succeed him as Pharaoh. Ra — god of the sun and the supreme deity of Egypt — calls a council of the gods, and Isis, Shu, Thoth, Geb and Hathor gather to decide the new Pharaoh, while working to solve the mystery of who killed Osiris.
10. Tshai the Brickmaker. This tale from ancient China tells the tragic story of Tshai the Brickmaker, a vain, greedy man who refuses to make proper sacrifice to the gods. As punishment, he is ordered by Supreme God Jade and Supreme Goddess Wang Mu to sacrifice his own daughter, the beautiful Ma-Ku. Conniving as ever, Tshai tries to outwit the gods ... with disastrous consequences.
11. When a River Cries: The Myth of Oba and Oshun. This West African myth describes the origins of two rivers in Nigeria — the result of a feud between the goddesses Oba and Oshun, both married to the thunder god Shango. Poor Oba ... she believed Oshun’s joke about the recipe for “ear soup” ... now Oba will never hear the end of it!
12. Why Bears No Longer Talk. While hiking in California’s Shasta National Forest, Mark and Melanie meet guide John Bright Cloud, who relates this Native American tale about the Sky Spirit’s Daughter, the Bear she married, and how their children became the first people and ancestors of all Native American tribes.