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Award-winning gig theatre show STYX tours to two London venues

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FOLLOWING its success at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, STYX is touring to two London venues – the Playground Theatre, where it runs from September 2 to September 14, and Streatham Space Project, where it runs from September 15 to September 19, 2019.

Bringing light to the experience of living and dying with Alzheimer’s, STYX is a theatre-concert telling the true story of a grandmother and grandson, piecing together the memories that connect them across time.

Weaving together riotous songs, intimate storytelling and a journey through the neuroscience of memory, the show reveals the extraordinary power music has to reignite fading memories.

During this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe, STYX was shortlisted for the Total Theatre Awards 2019 in the category of “Show by an Emerging Artist/Company” and nominated “Best Musical Production” by Broadway World. Earlier this year, the production won the Weekly Award at Fringe World Australia in the “Music and Musicals” category.

A three-year musical journey breathing new life into the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, the production began in London as a multi-disciplinary song cycle which was followed by a tour of Australia with a supergroup of artists from Australian bands Jebediah, The Love Junkies, Axe Girl and The Tommyhawks.

During this time, writer Max Barton’s grandmother Flora was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Through recording their conversations as a means of preserving his memories of her, he discovered that in the early days of his grandparents’ relationship they had started a music club called The Orpheus Club, forming an uncanny connection between her and his music inspired by the same myth.

This strange serendipity inspired him to track down the club and the people who had frequented it, which came to be the first of many weird and wonderful coincidences between them. The resulting show celebrates the extraordinary power music has to reignite memories and transcend generations.

Max Barton said: “We’re so proud to have shared this deeply personal and heartfelt story with a rich variety of people in Perth and Edinburgh – the strength of some of the connections we have had with individual audience members has been overwhelming. It’s thrilling that we’re now able to bring the show back to my grandparents’ home city, the streets on which the Orpheus Club was born.”

Produced by Jack Hudson, STYX has text, music and lyrics by Max Barton and sound and lighting designs by Jethro Cooke.

The cast/musicians include Max Barton (vocals and guitar), Addison Axe (vocals and guitar), Jethro Cooke (guitar), Amy Tweed (tenor sax), Elloise Wals (drums), Thea Woodward (alto sax) and Ness Thornton (bass guitar).

STYX is suitable for ages 12+.

For tickets for the Playground Theatre call 020 8960 0110 or visit theplaygroundtheatre.london/ and for Streatham Space Project call 03330 124 963 or visit www.streathamspaceproject.co.uk/.