Prophecy by Jessy Ardern
Venue #31: Strathcona Baptist Church
An interview with Corben Kushneryk (director) & Jessy Ardern (playwright).
Describe your show in one sentence.
J: Prophecy is a new retelling of the Trojan War by those whose voices have gone unheard: the women of Troy.
Okay, now that we’re intrigued… what’s the longer description of your show?
C: Cassandra has been blessed with the ability to see the future. Her curse is that no one will ever believe her. In a story that slides between the mythic past and the looming future, this princess of Troy foretells the events of a war that will overcome her homeland and destroy her family. Cassandra will struggle to speak the truth to a world that will not listen. She will warn us of the inevitable horrors of the past…or perhaps of the future. If only she could get it straight in her own head…
Last year’s Impossible Mongoose Fringe hit, The Fall of the House of Atreus, was based in Greek mythology as well. What is it about Greek mythology that you find to be the perfect starting point to create work from?
J: Myth is filled with all of the things that we enjoy on the surface: great plots, bold characters and epic battles. At the same time, myths are told and retold because they have something important to say. In our play, we are dealing with the Trojan War and we are using this classic story to explore a still relevant issue. Cassandra belongs to a long history of people who try to save their world by telling the truth, only to find that no one will listen.
The review of Prophecy at the Winnipeg Fringe specifically mentioned the props you use in this show, which appears to be a number of household objects. What does using these types of props add to the show?
C: Myth tells us that Cassandra died a merciless death, but Prophecy (in a peculiar turn) finds her still walking the earth. She breaks into buildings and rummages through custodial closets in order to recreate visions of her homeland with only these resources at hand. By using such objects, she encourages us to look at both trash and the seemingly pragmatic in a whole new light. What good is storytelling without a little imagination?
Anything else you want audiences to know about the show?
J: Like The Fall of the House of Atreus, you don’t need to be a mythology buff to enjoy the show. This production is for those with an intimate knowledge of the mythology, but also for those who only have a faint recollection of the Trojan Horse legend.
C: We are so excited to bring this show home to Edmonton after such a warm reception in Winnipeg. If you love powerful stories about and by women, we hope you will join us for this heart-stopping (and slightly scary) show.
The 36th Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival is August 17 – 27. Get your tickets at tickets.fringetheatre.ca .