Bloodthirsty Greek mythology story gets a rare outing

The story of Medea has rarely been seen in modern times. It is a bloodthirsty, scary tale from Ancient Greece which started as a myth, perhaps to scare children at night, or maybe because people back then needed something to believe in order to explain the inexplicable. Medea was a sorceress and she was in love with a man named Jason.

Having given birth to two kids, family live was not as it should be. Jason now loves the daughter of King Creon, Creusa, which hails from Corinth. But Creusa is also loved by Prince Orontes from Argos. Madea learned of the infidelity and becoming furious, she kills everyone involved, including the children, leaving Jason to sob alone.

This myth was quickly turned into a very popular play by Euripides, a Greek performer, around 500 BC. In the 17th century, Marc-Antoine Charpentier, a French composer, turned it into an opera. But since then, it has faded away, and this story has not been told many times. As part of an effort to bring back forgotten pieces, the English National Opera now looks at Medea among others to show old plays again.

David McVicar has been given the honour to be the director behind this particular selection. He is behind many popular opera pieces, and the type of fury offered by Medea would be in his talent range. Still, it is no guarantee that Medea will be a success.

The first interval involves nothing but dancing and fairly forgettable performances, but the second act picks up with the drama. After the initial dancers are sent backstage, McVicar introduced the masterpiece to viewers by mastering every part of the show. While the first part may be slow and forgettable, the rest of the performance is well worth the wait.