Hadestown – National Theatre, London – 5 Jan 2019

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Not really a gig review since Hadestown is a musical, but I’ve loved this music since I first heard the original album back in 2011. I’m also a big fan of writer Anais Mitchell and I’m made up for her to see her amazing folk opera grow organically from small venues in Vermont to massive mainstream production soon to open on Broadway.

Hadestown is Anais’s take on the Orpheus and Eurydice Greek myth, but set in depression, dust bowl America. What started out as music only performance has evolved into an elaborate stage show with dancers, amazing set and world class performers. I had read good reviews and couldn’t let the chance to see it pass me by, and I’m so glad I didn’t because it was superb, and Karen thought so too!

Though folky Americana is the style that underpins the musical, the arrangements are varied and take us through jazz and blues, always original, with great playing unforgettable melodies and poetic, moving lyrics. I, and most of the audience, knew all of the story but obviously some did not judging by the audible gasps of shock and devastated reactions from people (including Karen) at the tragic ending (no spoilers!). Absolutely wonderful. Bravo Anais!

10/11 – Attended by George & Karen

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