If I told you I paid nearly £50 for a man to sit in a chair and tell me about Greek myths for three hours, you’d probably think I was crazy. Well, what about if I told you it was one of the best shows I’ve ever been too? Here’s my review of Stephen Fry’s second instalment of the Mythos series ‘Man’ performed at The Lowry, Salford.
SENSATIONAL STEPHEN FRY’s MYTHOS
I’ve always admired Stephen Fry. I don’t know whether it’s the Kings Lynn connection (my mum went to the same school as he did), but he’s always been a big name in our family. Over the years, I’ve especially fallen in love with his way of words. He can make even the most boring topic seem exciting and the most awful sound beautiful. He’s always been one of my favourite ‘celebrities’ for that reason, and I’ve always wanted to see him live. Unfortunately, as he hasn’t done a tour for 40 years, I thought my chances were very slim. Until, he announced he was touring the country with the show ‘Mythos’.
Stephen Fry has never been shy when it comes to his love for Greek mythology. And while it’s always been something I’ve been slightly fascinated by, I’ve never gone out of my way to learn about it. That was until Fry released his first book on the topic, ‘Mythos‘. I bought it for my holiday read, because I knew whatever Fry writes about would interest me. And as soon as I picked it up, I was captivated by Fry’s way of telling these incredible myths.
With a love for his writing style, I couldn’t wait to get tickets for his tour and witness these wonderful words come to life. There were three instalments, Gods, Heroes and Men which talk about Greek myths from beginning to end. I was lucky enough to attend Heroes.
As we entered the theatre at The Lowry in Salford, the stage had only a large brown chair in the centre. As the time came when Stephen entered the stage, the crowd absolutely roared for him. And the second he spoke, the whole place went silent and from there, engrossed in everything he had to say.
As he sat in the leather chair, he told the stories of the heroes in Greek mythology – including the most well known, Hercules. Every person in the audience listened and was engaged in the great stories he was telling. He is so entertaining – one of my favourite things was the way he was using different dialects to make these greek mythology characters have persona and passion. The only thing that accompanied Stephen Fry and his voice was great use of lighting and a change of digital design that was the backdrop to these amazing stories.
And while I write this, it really hits home how good Fry is at story telling. Because essentially, that’s all he did for two and a half hours. I know he has said he has a photographic memory before, but wow that is impressive. Of course there were times when he stumbled or said something that wasn’t right, but that added to the charm of the show – and made it funny. There were also little games where the audience could participate, and these games involved Fry going off on tangents about his own views on the myths.
OVERALL THOUGHTS ON MYTHOS
I never thought someone sat in a chair talking to a massive theatre could be such a personal experience – it was like he was only talking to me the whole time. It was serious, funny, entertaining, emotional and thought-provoking all at the same moment. I had only small knowledge prior to coming to the show, and I left with so much, and all of it was clear to understand from start to end.
And of course, I’m so glad I got to see Stephen Fry perform in person! So it was an amazing show and a tick off my bucket list.