By Freddy Carnes Artistic Associate, Theatre Action Project My kids and I, at Pecan Springs Elementary and Winn Elementary, were discussing how we could show the final scene of The Odyssey where Odysseus strings the bow and all the suitors are killed with bow and arrow before he can reunite with his wife Penelope. I had made the bow with a PVC pipe that was curved like a piece of a hula hoop. I had spray painted it gold and it had worked for the stringing of the bow scene. But we were trying to find a way to show the arrows flying. Of course all of the boys wanted real arrows. I explained the safety problems and we kept brainstorming. I told them that we could probably make a cardboard arrow, but it couldn’t be aimed and shot at a real person on stage(even cardboard hurts!).
The best part of this project called The Golden Apple isn’t just to teach children a classic story such as The Odyssey. Actually it is three classic stories about the Trojan War: The Golden Apple the beauty contest between the goddesses that started the Trojan War, Iphigenia to show how a fathers’ sacrifice of his daughter could lead to his death and the death of his wife, and finally The Odyssey, the story of a husband and fathers journey home to his family. The real value of doing TAP After School theater classes is to bring to life such a deep and moving story that speaks to the children of tragedy and loss as well as family and hope.