A FAMILY FAVORITE FOR LONG TRIPS: Odds Bodkin’s THE ODYSSEY

A FAMILY FAVORITE FOR LONG TRIPS

Odysseus crouches with his men inside the Trojan Horse and listens. It is dawn, and Helios the sun has crested Troy’s walls. Peering out through the sunlit cracks, Odysseus’s lookout sees the gates of the city open. The Greek army has deserted the battlefield. All that remains is this gigantic horse built of wood.

So begins The Odyssey: An Epic Telling, a 4-hour masterpiece of storytelling by Odds Bodkin. With strains of 12-string guitar and the cries of seabirds, he’ll draw you into this feature film for the mind’s eye.

Even if they’re hungry, your kids won’t want to get out of the car until each episode concludes. There are 42 episodes in all. By the end, your kids will have effortlessly learned Homer’s great story, made human and vivid in this storyteller’s unique way.

The Odyssey: An Epic Telling is a download at Odds Bodkin’s shop. Free listening samples.

$49.95

SUPER-FAN CHARLOTTE PEZZO PLANS A CROSS-COUNTRY ROAD TRIP WITH HER MASTER DRIVE

SUPER-FAN CHARLOTTE PEZZO PLANS A CROSS-COUNTRY ROAD TRIP WITH HER MASTER DRIVE

A True Story

At Odds Bodkin HQ we received an order for a Master Drive, but then, very quickly, a follow-up email from the customer wondering why she couldn’t download her purchase. We wrote back explaining what a Master Drive was (a heavily loaded flash drive of Odds Bodkin’s collected works) and offered her a refund, but she wrote back:

Thank you so much for your prompt reply. I want all of his works so I will wait for the flash drive. DO NOT CHANGE ANYTHING!

I need it by May 15 at the VERY latest for a long road trip. I will pay more for expedited shipping to ensure it arrives on time if it is necessary. Please advise!!

Thank you and please relay the message about how excited we are to have his entertainment on our road trip. The Odyssey and Proto made our last road trip so much more enjoyable.

It will be so nice to have his whole collection. Thanks again and I look forward to hearing from you!!

Smiles,

Charlotte Pezzo

 

As you can imagine, when Odds saw this email he was delighted, and so he wrote to Charlotte personally to ask whether he could share her letter to let others know about the Master Drive. Charlotte wrote back.

 

Dear Mr. Bodkin,

I was so pleased to receive this email and find out that they did indeed share my excitement with you.

Yes- it is completely fine to quote me and to use my name. After sending the email, I wished I had written more. My daughter and I still listen to Little Proto 8 years later ( she’s 18 and I am 61!). We are both thrilled to have more works to surprise and inspire us cross-country.

I have tried listening to other books on tape and find my mind wandering after 5 minutes. On the other hand, I am mesmerized by every word and sound on your tapes. I think seeing you perform in person helped fuel our admiration.

Anyway, I now have a year old granddaughter that I can’t wait to share your stories with too.

Thanks again from a lifelong fan!! 🙂

Smiles,

Charlotte Pezzo

 

So if you’ve got a long road trip coming this summer—no matter what your age–grab yourself a Master Drive!

Over 2 gigs of road-worthy storytelling.

Odds Bodkin’s Complete Works: Audios, Epic E-Book, Video and Pure Music

Odds Bodkin’s Complete Works: Audios, Epic E-Book, Video and Pure Music

They all come on the MASTER DRIVE, a small electronic gem loaded with magic. An epic poem e-book as long as Homer’s Odyssey, adults only. Symphonic and acoustic musical compositions. A video of The Iliad: Book I. And, of course, this master storyteller’s complete audio collection of spoken-word family tales with music for ages 4 to forever.

A $269 value for $175.

Explore it here at Odds Bodkin’s Shop.

THANK YOU, DAVID MILLSTONE

Thank you, David Millstone.

“I’m writing to New England storytellers with a request,” David Millstone, a fifth grade teacher in Norwich, Vermont wrote many years ago. “Can any of you tell an episode from The Odyssey? The Sirens. The Cyclops. Calypso. Any episode will do.” I’m paraphrasing, but that was his basic request. I immediately wrote back (paper letter) and told him I could tell the whole thing.

I didn’t know the story at all.

To my delight, he wrote back and said I was hired. He was building an interdisciplinary unit around Homer’s great myth, and instead of asking his students to read a version, since Homer was a spoken-word artist, he’d like to introduce his students to the tale in this more authentic way.

My knowledge of The Odyssey was limited to a movie I’d seen as a kid starring Kirk Douglas, Ulysses. And having read Joyce’s take on the tale by the same name. I had three months to prepare. I got to work.

I’ll be telling THE ODYSSEY: BELLY OF THE BEAST, the early episodes of what ended up a 4-hour epic, for an adult audience at Grendel’s Den in Cambridge, MA this coming Sunday night beginning at 5:30. Introduction with music on Celtic harp, then into the tale itself with a 12-string guitar accompaniment.

The 12-string not a lyre, but it does have more strings.

A few tickets remain.

With all of the sounds he was able to make, the unique voices of each person, and intricate guitar playing…it was unbelievable.

Martha Taylor, Chair of Classics at Loyola University Maryland, passed this note on to me after an Odyssey performance last September. It was written by a college freshman.

“I didn’t know what to expect and I was completely blown away by the whole thing. The way he told the stories was so captivating! With all of the sounds he was able to make, the unique voices of each person, and intricate guitar playing…it was unbelievable. With all of the sensory details he provided it really was as if I was there, during ancient times, transported to 700 B.C. in the “Belly of the Beast” so to speak.

I absolutely loved his Polyphemus voice, the old man/priest in Apollo’s temple who gave Odysseus the brandy, the men who accompanied him during the travels, the people in the lotus flower scene within the ivy of the sickly-sweet perfumed island–everything! The way he created such a vivid scene made imagining a transcendent and effortless gift.”

I’ll be at Grendel’s Den on Harvard Square, February 11th at 5:30 p.m., to tell this tale again, with Celtic harp and 12-string guitar.

Catch some adult storytelling this February. THE ODYSSEY: BELLY OF THE BEAST at Grendel’s Den.

Tickets at tables are $15.

“Mythology Brain”–An Embarrassing Public Condition

I must suffer from “mythology brain” I’ve decided. This is an as yet undiagnosed condition, but could soon appear in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (the renowned and ever-changing DSM). Symptoms include a Jungian fascination with myths, love of creating music and a sub-condition I’ve dubbed “dramatosis.”

Dramatosis presents itself not as hearing voices in your head that aren’t yours (a much more serious condition), but rather creating voices that aren’t yours for the benefit of listeners. “Mythology brain” is a strenuous form of public madness and I don’t recommend it to anybody.

Still, if you’d like to see what it looks like up close, I’ll be back at Grendel’s Den on Harvard Square this coming February 11th to once again demonstrate the malady. Voices will include Odysseus of Ithaca, father, reluctant warrior, expert liar and all around great guy; enthusiastic drug takers called Lotus Eaters; sundry Ithacan crewmen; sheep and goats; and last but not least, Polyphemus the Cyclops, a giant cannibalistic shepherd who loves his animals but eats humans as they scream in horror. The huge, half-witted basso voice of Polyphemus is especially fun to make because despite the veneer of civility I try to maintain in my quotidian life, he feels the way I feel whenever I’m hungry and grumpy.

All kidding aside, the show is at 5:30 p.m. and seating begins at 5:00.

And there’s music throughout, of course. Celtic harp and 12-string guitar.

THE ODYSSEY: BELLY OF THE BEAST/An Adult Storytelling.

Tickets are $15 ($10 for solo chairs) and you can get them here.

 

 

THE ODYSSEY: Belly of the Beast this Friday at Lawrence Academy in Groton, MA. The public is welcome.

Lawrence Academy in Groton, MA presents The Odyssey: Belly of the Beast, Odds Bodkin’s telling of Homer’s classic this Friday, January 12th at 6:30 p.m. With his 12-string guitar and panoply of characters and sounds, Odds will take the stage to offer this evening of entertainment and education for students and faculty. Generously, Lawrence Academy is also inviting the public to attend, free of charge.

AN ODDS BODKIN CLASSICS MONTH IN GROTON, MASSACHUSETTS

The stars have aligned for Homer’s tales this coming January 2018 in Groton, Massachusetts. Two fine independent schools, Lawrence Academy and Groton School, have invited Odds Bodkin to perform his Homeric classics two weeks apart.

First, on January 12th at 6 p.m., Lawrence Academy hosts The Odyssey: Belly of the Beast, Odds’ 75-minute storytelling powerhouse tale, as a performance for students and open to the public. Haunting 12-string guitar music, grafted adroitly onto Bodkin’s characters, plus narrative and uncanny vocal effects, all combine to take listeners through the beginning of Odysseus’s wild journey. Longing for his wife and son after ten years of war, he’s homeward bound from Troy at last, but the Fates intervene. The tale includes the Fall of Troy, Death on the Beach, the Great Storm, Isle of the Lotus Eaters and lastly, the deadly Cave of the Cyclops.

But Homer’s other great work, The Iliad, goes back in time to before Troy falls. And so Groton School has invited Odds to perform The Iliad: Book I, his hour-long psychodrama with music that explores everything from insulted goddesses to furious men at loggerheads on the battlefield. The show is at 8 p.m. on January 26th, 2017. Characters for Zeus, Hera, Aphrodite, Athena, Achilles, Agamemnon and a host of others bring the tale to life, along with Olympian themes performed on 12-string guitar.

Two of the greatest tales of Western literature, performed in modern storytelling style along with background lore, are coming to Groton, MA.

If you can’t be in New England next month, you can still experience them as an audio and a video, here at Odds Bodkin’s Shop.