REVIEW: Troy is just another epic musical

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Homer’s story is presented in essential points, from the abduction of Helen to the persuasion of Achilles to lead the Greek army, to the famous trick of Odysseus that causes the final defeat of Troy. There is an interesting parallel between brother pairs and the relationship between sons and fathers, especially exploited in the character of Priam.

At the same time, the creators strive for a current tone with reflections on war and peace. The conclusion culminates in an appellate campaign against all wars with the appeal “Keep your words, that the motherland demands, we will not let our sons be married”, but this cannot be ignored in the context of the current moods of society associated with the war in Ukraine.

Six authors took part in the musical form of Troja, David Deyl, Zdeněk Hrubý, Bohouš Josef, Reinhard Mey, Michal Penk and Marcus Tran, who is also the author of the arrangements. Despite this, the music is hopelessly monotonous, mostly drowning in sweet-sore vocals undercut by lyrical piano, strings or a few repeated chords.

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There can be no question of inspiration from Greek or oriental colors, the viewer has the feeling that he is hearing one and the same song over and over again in not very imaginative variations. And Václav Kopta’s lyrics mainly try to satisfy the singers with the highest possible frequency of the vowel “á”, so that the listeners are showered with a constant stream of words such as stand, fear, know, give up, alone, have, continue, wished and the like.

In terms of visuals, however, the viewer will find his way, the scenography works with the projection of touches of the sea, mountains, fires and battles, with lighting effects and colorful costumes. Only the company of soldiers seems a bit ridiculous and stereotypical, they mostly brandish swords and shout inarticulately.

However, the response to the premiere was stormy, and tours from all over the country will surely come to Troy. The fact that the creators did not use the potential of the material for a more imaginative result will probably not bother them that much. They will enjoy the excellent singing performances of Josef Vojtek, Pavlína Ďuriačová, Marian Vojtek, Alžběta Bartošová, Josef Vágner, Oldřich Kříž and others, who are the real asset of the musical.

Troy, the musical
Script, direction and lighting concept by Libor Vaculík, lyrics by Václav Kopta, scenography by Petr Hloušek, costumes by Roman Šolc, choreography by Anet Antošová. Premiere on February 1 at the Broadway Theatre, Prague
Rating: 55%

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The article is in Czech

Tags: REVIEW Troy epic musical

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