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Beowulf
Event
Beowulf
Venue
Unicorn Theatre
Age
7+
Date
1 October - 5 November 2017
Price
From £8
Frame
Thursday 19 October 2017

What do you imagine a hero looks like? Wearing a cape, or perhaps a snazzy spacesuit? Not at the Unicorn Theatre. Smoke fills the stage and the lights go up on a mysterious and forbidding creature… Beowulf is clad in denim and studs, and her ensemble is set off with a long braid studded with silver spikes. This is not our title character as we might traditionally expect, and she sets the scene for a very unexpected Beowulf indeed!

This new production of the Old English tale takes the form of a musically infused monologue, with some lines close to the original text and others fresh and futuristic. As the sole speaker, Beowulf delivers the story in the context of looking back at his time as King, and weighing up the choices he made. Concerning the brutal tale of the slaying of Grendel, the performance uses rock music to make the action as threatening and deadly as it would have been to its original, old-timey audiences. Giant speakers menace over Beowulf as she tells her tale, with sparse staging brilliantly representing the landscape which the story is set in forward-thinking style.  The monster’s electric guitar skills and mesmerising silver mask enchant with drama and deadliness, and when tension reaches breaking point, fire and smoke deliver visual excitement.

Trying to make Old English poetry resonate with kids is no mean feat, but the Unicorn Theatre deftly pulls it off with the help of the original score of menacing modern music. Beowulf’s story is delivered with electricity, humour and a shrewd look at just what it means to be a hero.

Beowulf is on at Unicorn Theatre until 5th November. For more information or to book tickets, please visit the website.

Love,
Curious Mum