HEARTPOUNDERS: Halloween Tales of Horror…Odds Bodkin returns to Zoom on Oct. 29th.

HEARTPOUNDERS: Halloween Tales of Horror…Odds Bodkin returns to Zoom on Oct. 29th!

A 90-minute live storytelling event!

Friday, Oct. 29th at 7 pm EST

When the wind roars, the whip cracks and the horse gallops into the storm, you know you’re hearing Master Storyteller Odds Bodkin tell The Storm Breeder, the legend of an undead man doomed to flee thunderstorms across New England. The 12-string guitar score rivets you to the storyteller’s hands, while his face, close up on Zoom, transforms from character to character.

He’s called “a consummate storyteller” by The New York Times and this HEARTPOUNDERS performance is one of the reasons why. Experience vocal effects so realistic, the sounds evoke cinema in viewers’ minds, even as a host of characters come to life. And it all breathes with music, building tension and emotion as each tale powers toward its shocking end.

Drawn from supernatural traditions around the world, these tales come complete with introductory lore. A full 90-minute evening of imagination entertainment. Heartpounders with Odds Bodkin.

Grab some friends, get your ticket and save the date!

Tickets: $25 per screen

(buys your login and password)

Includes a post-show Q&A!

CLASSICAL SONGS EXPLODE INSIDE AN ADVENTURE ON MAY 23RD

Classical songs explode inside an adventure this coming Sunday, May 23rd at 3 pm EST when Odds Bodkin joins musicians live onstage in Philadelphia to perform the broadcast premiere of DANIKA THE ROSE. Get your livestream tickets here and tune in for this groundbreaking new performance work. As Sopranos Jazimina MacNeil and Sarah Shafer sing Dvorak’s beloved Moravian Duets in Czech, pianist Jonathan Ware wraps them both in music while Odds tells his original story in English and Brett Ashley Robinson plays the girl Danika. It’s a vivid, exciting and hauntingly artful display of virtuosity on many fronts. Don’t miss it!

Akin to Peter and the Wolf, only for adults, DANIKA THE ROSE tells the tale of a girl haunted by her beauty and the two men who violently compete for her affections, all set in a duchy along the Danube long ago. Hunting dogs, telepathic deer, storms of mayflies, deep fried eagles and talking dream birds add to the otherworldly nature of this adult fairy tale.

Tickets begin at $15. The live audience is sold out, but you can watch it from the comfort of home!

This concert is sponsored by the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society and takes place on the stage of the American Philosophical Society next to Independence Hall.

Danika the Rose

Sunday, May 23rd at 3 pm EST

Live on the Web

 

 

Odds Bodkin’s DANIKA THE ROSE Livestreams May 23rd! Two Great Singers, A Renowned Pianist, An Up And Coming Actor and A Versatile Storyteller Together on Stage

A Total Cast of Five

Joined by sopranos Jazimina MacNeil and Sarah Shafer, with Brett Ashley Robinson playing Danika and Jonathan Ware playing Dvorak on the piano, author Odds Bodkin performs his newest spoken-word story with music, live onstage in Philadelphia.

A blend of classical singing and live storytelling

Similar to Peter and the Wolf, the show features narrations deepened by what inspired the story itself: Dvorak’s Moravian Duets. These twenty-three songs, gloriously sung by MacNeil and Shafer, tell a tale of love and war mixed with jealousy, pride and privilege. Maximilian is the Duke; Danika is the stunningly beautiful peasant girl from the village who becomes his obsession; and Dano is the gamekeeper she loves. Elements of magical realism—ghost birds who speak and stags that fight like an army—add a supernatural magic to this new stage work.

Enjoy the broadcast debut Sunday, May 23rd at 3 pm EST. Six cameras will video livestream the performance! Get your tickets today!

Presented by the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society.

DANIKA THE ROSE

May 23, 2021 at 3 pm EST on LIveStream

Starring Jazimina MacNeil, Sarah Shafer, Brett Ashely Robinson and Odds Bodkin. Music by Jonathan Ware.

DANIKA THE ROSE Classical Music Adult Fairy Tale Streams Live from Philly May 23rd

How did Danika the Rose, a new work soon to be live-streamed from the American Philosophical Society stage in Philadelphia, arrive on the American classical music scene?

It’s a story worth telling.

I’m Odds Bodkin, and I wrote Danika the Rose. Soon I’ll be performing it onstage with four other people for the Chamber Music Society of Philadelphia. It’s an adult fairy tale, interwoven with songs by Dvorak. Yes, I wrote it, but I didn’t do it alone. In the next few blog posts I’ll tell that curious story.

It begins back in the fall of 2018. I was visiting the Thoreau School in Concord, MA with my guitars and harp, warming up before the flood of schoolkids arrived for their performance, when a young woman stepped into the empty auditorium and walked up to the stage.

“Mr. Bodkin,” she said, “I have a proposition for you.”

Well, I thought, that’s quite the opening statement. “And you are?” She was quite pretty, late twenties, early thirties.

“Jazimina MacNeil. I’m a classical singer.”

Taking note of the name, I stopped playing my harp to listen.

“I’ve been a fan of yours for years,” she went on, “and I have a project I hope to interest you in.”

Obviously she’d learned I was performing here on this day. Well, you’ve got initiative and nerve, I thought, harping once again. “Go on, please.”

“A soprano friend and I sing Dvorak’s Moravian Duets together, but they’re little-known works.” I’d always loved Antonin Dvorak’s symphonies, especially From the New World, but wasn’t aware of any duets. “And so to bring them to a wider audience,” she went on, “I thought using them in a story might help.”

Ah, I thought, so that is why you are here, Jazimina.

“And I’d like you to write it,” she finished.

“You’re talking about a commissioned work.”

“Yes, I am. An adult fairy tale. One that uses all twenty-three duets. They’re all sung in Czech.”

“Any English translations?” I asked, assuming this would be for American audiences.

“Yes, but we’re not going to use them.”

A spoken-word fairy tale with obscure 19th Century art songs sung in Czech? Now there’s an easy sell to Americans, I thought.  But then again, I like fairy tales, psychic whirligigs that they are, and writing one would be fun, especially if I were going to be paid for it. Peter and the Wolf came to mind.

I gave her my email address and told her to send me a proposal. She left before I could speak with her again.

Little did I know what a work of art we would create.

——————————————————————

Philadelphia Chamber Music Society presents

Danika the Rose

 

With Jazimina MacNeil, Sarah Shafer, Jonathan Ware, Brett Ashley Robinson

and Odds Bodkin

 

Sunday, May 23, 2021 at 3 pm EST

 

For Livestream tickets visit Philadelphia Chamber Music Society

 

Tonight at 5 pm…Live on ZOOM…Odds Bodkin’s Fairy Tales for Smart Girls!

“a consummate storyteller”–The New York Times

Join Odds Bodkin tonight for four amazing and fun fairy tales about smart girls. Tomorrow is International Women’s Day, and Bodkin has created this special show–including a new story from Italy–for the event. You can sing along with two of the tales, so get your voice ready.

The show comes to you via ZOOM at 5 pm EST. Grab your ticket and log in for a full-screen storytelling performance with characters, sound effects and live music on 12-string guitars and Celtic harp.

And if you have a question for Odds after the show, he’ll stay online to chat.

 

SHE’S CLEVER, THAT ONE: Fairy Tales for Smart Girls

Sunday, March 7, 2021 at 5 pm EST on ZOOM

Tickets: $25 per screen

 

Where Did the Fairies Hide Their Souls? Find Out Sunday Night…

Wherever the evil fairies souls are, they aren’t in their bodies, and since no one in the village knows where they are hidden, no one can do away with them. Instead, the fairies are free to lean out the windows of their giant stone house and yell at people.

Worst of all, children disappear in the village and no one knows where they are, either.

Unknown to her, Prezzemolina has been promised to the fairies since before she was born. Now that she has come of age, they want her.

Her only protection is that she is pure of heart.

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Join Odds Bodkin as he tells this rare and wondrous Italian fairy tale, self-accompanied on 12-string guitar.

In celebration of International Women’s Day, March 8, 2021.

 

SHE’S CLEVER, THAT ONE: Fairy Tales for Smart Girls

Live on ZOOM on Sunday, March 7 at 5 pm EST.

Grab your ticket and sit back with your family to enjoy Prezzemolina and three other fairy tales for and about smart girls. All Odds’ stories are told with character voices and live acoustic music.

 

Tickets: $25 per screen

Humor from SHE’S CLEVER, THAT ONE: FAIRY TALES FOR SMART GIRLS on Zoom March 7

In a world where all women are expected to spin to make clothes, Kelsa finds it so boring she outright refuses to learn to do it. This exasperates her mother to no end, and they argue about it every morning by their open door.

And so when the Queen shows up looking for an industrious young woman to wed the Prince, and half-overhears the two women arguing about spinning, she pokes her nose into the kitchen and asks what the woman’s lovely daughter has done. Shocked, Kelsa’s mother lies, and tells the Queen it’s just that her daughter won’t quit spinning, she loves it so.

The royal carriage rolls quickly to the castle and the Queen leads Kelsa into a dungeon where, from floor to ceiling, bales of unspun flax surround a lonely spinning wheel. “Here we are! Paradise! Now, if in three days you can spin all this into linen thread, then you may marry my son!” says the Queen cheerfully. “But, if you fail, well, we’ll just have to chop off your head.” She smiles sweetly. “Bye bye!”

How Kelsa survives all this and ends up the Princess without spinning a single inch of thread is the substance of this hilarious Grimm’s fairy tale.

See and hear Odds Bodkin tell it live on Zoom this coming Sunday, March 7 at 5 pm EST. Join the crowd that’s gathering. Got a question for the artist? There’s a live Q&A afterwards!

Music on two 12-string guitars and Celtic harp.

SHE’S CLEVER, THAT ONE: Fairy Tales for Smart Girls

Odds Bodkin live on Zoom

Sunday, March 7, 2021 at 5 pm EST

Tickets: $25

Tonight 5:00-6:30 pm, Odds Bodkin is on Full-Screen Zoom to Tell BEOWULF

Scored throughout with haunting and beautiful music on 12-string guitar, here is Odds Bodkin’s renowned storyteller’s version of Beowulf, a thousand year old Viking tale of darkness and light.

The monsters lurk in the fens, staring down the cliffs at the humans, tiny creatures who sing in their feasting hall to push back the night. The first monster, Grendel, who towers to the height of many men, hates the singing. With his enchanted fur to protect him and his wolf fangs to tear apart flesh, he attacks and takes back thirty slain men to eat in his cave.

The Danes are terrorized. Every night, Grendel comes. They try iron, bronze, silver, even gold sword blades and spear points, but nothing can penetrate Grendel’s hide.

For twelve years, the monster feasts, until in a far off land, a great warrior–one who has a reason to be grateful to the Danes–decides to go on a mission of mercy to kill the beast.


First discovered in 1563 in a dusty library when it was already five hundred years old, Beowulf is the oldest known work in the English language, a classic in every sense. Odds Bodkin brings it to life tonight on full-screen Zoom.

BEOWULF: THE ONLY ONE

Sunday Feb. 28 at 5:00 pm EST on Zoom

Not recommended for children

Tickets: $25

 

Sponsored by Grendel’s Den in Cambridge, MA

Huddle Around the Zoom Fire Sunday Night for Beowulf

With 12-string guitar and Celtic harp, character voices and sound effects, master storyteller Odds Bodkin will perform his classic tale, BEOWULF: THE ONLY ONE, for adults this Sunday night at 5 pm EST. The tale contains mayhem and violence and is not recommended for children.

Shorn of its heraldic side stories, Bodkin’s version of Beowulf cleaves closely to the original thousand-year-old story of a thane who rescues an aged king from monsters that attack his hall. Filled with striking scenes and plenty of humor, the story translates vividly over Zoom.

 

Tickets are $25

 

BEOWULF: THE ONLY ONE

ODDS BODKIN

MARCH 28, 2021 AT 5 PM EST ON ZOOM

 

This performance is sponsored by Grendel’s Den.

 

If You Have a Daughter, Buy This Ticket

SHE’S CLEVER, THAT ONE: Fairy Tales for Smart Girls is a live performance featuring master storyteller Odds Bodkin telling four great stories for daughters everywhere. Each tale is filled with live music and intriguing characters. No matter where you live, you can tune in via ZOOM on Sunday, March 7, 2021 at 5 pm EST.

In celebration of International Women’s Day, March 8, 2021.

“a consummate storyteller” — The New York Times

“a modern-day Orpheus” — Billboard

Tickets: $25

 

Deep Inside Act II of Beowulf, A Bizarre Scene

He’s already killed Grendel, a towering, sword-proof beast, but now Beowulf has sunk to the bottom of a reeking mere to hunt and kill Grendel’s mother. If Beowulf rids Denmark of these demons, King Hrothgar will declare him his son. In Beowulf’s world, that’s the promise of full half of Hrothgar’s fabulous wealth, enough for Beowulf to become a king himself back home. Hrothgar is the richest man along the Baltic.

Denmark and Sweden/Geatland

 

As he approaches her underwater cave, Grendel’s Mother curses Beowulf. She has dragged her son’s carcass here along with the bloody, hairy arm Beowulf tore off Grendel in the mead hall, which she has stolen back before retreating to her home. She is huge, with fangs and claws, yet she stands like a woman at the water’s edge. With Grendel gone, she is now the last of their kind. Through the ripples she sees soft colored lights beyond the submerged entrance. The man, the killer of her son, has arrived at the mere’s bottom.

Into the water she slides, kicking through the blackness toward what she sees is a helmet with glowing gems on its crown.

Holding his sword out, the man cannot see her. Stealthily, she swims to behind him and violently clamps her fangs onto the helmet, thinking to crush it, along with the soft human skull inside.

Up until this moment, Beowulf has been reliving boyhood memories. How Hrothgar once paid the blood price for Beowulf’s father, and the Wylfings had stopped pursuing him. It had been wonderful to stand on the ship’s deck heading home to Geatland with his father, who was a free man at last. Yes, Beowulf has come here for glory, but also to show gratitude to King Hrothgar of the Danes for that act of mercy so long ago.

Feeling sudden pressure inside the helmet, Beowulf slides out of it and slashes the sword, Hrunting, at the she-beast behind him, but the blade is too slow in the water. With a bubbling scream she shoots back into her cave, ready for the fight.

She is three times his size.

However, Grendel’s Mother does not know that this man is Beowulf, a fearless thane of the Geats who has come from the north, a warrior with the grip of thirty men. He doesn’t know it yet, but after she stabs him in the chest, he will kill her with a weapon crafted by long-dead giants.

————————

 

In the actual telling of this scene from BEOWULF: THE ONLY ONE, haunting, scintillant music on 12-string guitar builds the creepiness, while Grendel’s Mother hisses loudly to herself, and Beowulf’s voice speaks his inner monologue, “Fate often saves an undoomed man if his courage holds.”

Come see and hear the entire tale via ZOOM on Sunday, Feb. 28th at 5 pm EST.

BEOWULF: THE ONLY ONE

AN ODDS BODKIN ZOOM STORYTELLING

SUNDAY, FEB. 28, 2021 AT 5 PM EST

TICKETS: $25

 

Hear a sample from the tale:

SPONSORED BY GRENDEL’S DEN.

 

 

 

 

 

TWO ODDS BODKIN ZOOM CONCERTS COMING UP: BEOWULF and TALES FOR GIRLS

Over the next three weeks, Master Storyteller and Musician Odds Bodkin will be live on ZOOM for two very different shows–BEOWULF, a brooding adult show, and SHE’S CLEVER, THAT ONE: FAIRY TALES FOR SMART GIRLS, a funny, rollicking concert for the whole family.

BEOWULF: THE ONLY ONE, his storyteller’s version of the oldest known work in English literature, goes live Sunday Feb. 28th at 5 pm EST. A riveting, feature-length tale with music to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Grendel’s Den in Cambridge MA, this is among his best-loved tellings and is a favorite on Harvard  Square. Tickets are $25.

 

 

Then, on Sunday March 7th at 5 pm EST, it’s SHE’S CLEVER, THAT ONE: FAIRY TALES FOR SMART GIRLS in celebration of International Women’s Day. Odds uses 12-string guitars and Celtic harp to animate four of his classic fairy tales for kids, each featuring a brave and clever girl hero. Tickets are $25.

Some fans say they prefer his ZOOM shows because of the close-ups on his face and instruments. Judge for yourself from the comfort of your home.

Your ticket purchases your Zoom invitation with a password for the show.