Zion Theatre Company Performs Prometheus Unbound at the Echo Theatre

Greek Mythology takes on new life in Zion Theatre Company’s production of national award winning playwright Mahonri Stewart’s play Prometheus Unbound. The play will be performing July 17, 18, 19, 20, 22, 25, 26, and 27 at 7:30 pm, with 2:30 pm Saturday matinees at the Echo Theatre. The Echo is located at 145 North University Avenue, Provo, UT 84601.

In line with Zion Theatre Company’s “focus on theatrical work that makes human beings better socially, intellectually, and spiritually,” Prometheus Unbound takes the ancient Greek myth of the titan Prometheus and endows it with new spiritual meaning. Casey William Walker, who plays the title character, says the play has “a modern parallel to Christianity, my character in particular.”

In a production blog the cast and crew have set up for the show at http://prometheusunbound2013.wordpress.com/, Walker explains the correlation between his character Prometheus and Christian belief, “The Titan Prometheus in early days of Greek mythology was seen as a trickster to the Gods because he was the creator of mankind and stole fire from the Gods and gave it to man. Subsequently Zeus bound him in chains for 1000 years and was caused inexplicable torture and pain when an eagle would devour his liver every day after it grew back from the day previous. But later his story evolved into one of heroism because he was seen as mankind’s advocate, whereas the other Gods seemed selfish and looked upon man with little regard. This makes an easy parallel to Christianity…”

Of course, trying to tie Greek mythology to a more modern religion like Christianity has its parallels, as well as its divergences, as most Greek gods are hardly the saintly deities one would expect to worship. Mariah Proctor, who plays the Greek goddess Artemis, has enjoyed the opportunities that playing such grand, but flawed figures has provided, “It’s sort of fun to explore the ways in which we are the same and the ways in which we are different. The gods and goddesses of ancient Greek and Roman mythology are anthropomorphic-possessing of the jealousies and the tempers and the shortcomings of mankind only with the strength and power to react to disappointment in much more powerful and affecting ways than we do in our daily lives.”

And lest people think the play is all religion and sanctimony, playwright Mahonri Stewart is quick to dispel that idea, “This play is essentially an adventure story. Sure, the spiritual and moral meaning of Prometheus is at the heart, but the play’s story centers around a group of heroes that have been called onto a hero’s journey to save Prometheus. They encounter monsters, have to fight their way through trouble, they have inner conflicts among the group, they have to use their wits and their arrows to get to their end objective. It’s meant to be an exciting adventure and when I attended one of the rehearsals, I was pleased to see that the fight scenes were intense and thrilling. This is a superb cast, a superb design team, with a superb director in Sarah-lucy Hill who has brought added layers and sophistication to the story.”

Tickets for the play are $12 for general admission and $9 for students and seniors. Reservations can be made, or tickets for the play can be purchased in advance, at www.ziontheatrecompany.com.