Penelope, or How the Odyssey Was Really Written

York Theatre Company presents the mainstage premiere of Penelope, or How the Odyssey Was Really Written, a new musical comedy that places Odysseus's wife at the center of an age-old tale. Check back for information on Penelope, or How the Odyssey Was Really Written tickets on New York Theatre Guide.

Penelope, or How the Odyssey Was Really Written is a musical set primarily on the Greek island of Ithaca, in the home of the island's king and queen, Odysseus and Penelope. As Homer's original Odyssey goes, Odysseus fought in the Trojan War. He's been away from home for 20 years, 10 of which he spent in the war until its end and the other 10 spent...well, Penelope doesn't know where, or when he'll get back. And to the many suitors that have arrived on Penelope's doorstep, it's a matter of if he'll get back, and they all hope the answer is no so Penelope will marry one of them and they'll be the next Ithacan king.

But, as in the original Odyssey, Penelope doesn't want to remarry, so she stalls them. (The suitors form an a cappella group in the meantime, to pass the time somehow besides eating and drinking all day.) But rather than knitting, she does so by writing letters to herself, pretending they're from Odysseus sharing his grand adventures and whereabouts and what's taking him so long. Little do modern readers know, as the Penelope musical posits, that her letters actually became the Odyssey we know today. No one really knows who Homer actually was, after all.

Penelope, or How the Odyssey Was Really Written features multiple York Theatre Company veterans on its creative team: director/choreographer Emily Maltby previously helmed York’s Lolita, My Love, and librettist/lyricist Peter Kellogg worked on York’s Desperate Measures. They've teamed up with two-time Richard Rodgers Award-winning composer Stephen Weiner, whose works include The Rivals and The Honeymooners.

Go Greek at this reimagining of a classic story. Penelope, or How the Odyssey Was Really Written tickets will be available soon.

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Peter Kellogg
Emily Maltby
Songs by:
Music by Stephen Weiner, lyrics by Peter Kellogg
Emily Maltby
Penelope, or How the Odyssey Was Really Written Performance Dates & Times
Previews from: 
March 22, 2022
April 24, 2022
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York Theatre Company

Saint Peter's Church, 619 Lexington Avenue (entrance on 54th Street), New York, NY 10022
Nearest subway station:
Lexington Avenue - 53rd Street Station