Hadestown, The New Musical
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Arts Entertainment

Hadestown: A Folk Opera

An exciting new musical from songstress Anais Mitchell.

Hadestown: A Folk Opera

Anais Mitchell is a prolific American songwriter whose six albums while well-received in critical circles have yet to reach a large mainstream audience. The inventive folk sound Mitchell has cultivated over the last 15 years is captivating and thought-provoking, but one stand out in her oeuvre is the fantastically imaginative Hadestown (2010). Particularly prescient, this sweeping concept album retells the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice and is not only a complete work of art in its own right, but has been adapted to the stage as a folk opera. Mitchell takes the myth characters and transports them to the Great Depression bringing new meaning and nuance to the age-old tale. While the whole soundtrack is beautiful and thoughtfully written, one song in particular is unsettlingly prophetic: "Why We Build the Wall", a call-and-response piece between Hades and his workers as they build a wall around "Hadestown". Fear is a tool Hades uses to instill hatred of the other in this terrifyingly familiar narrative written well before, but seemingly anticipatory of, the age of Trump.


Why do we build the wall, my children, my children?

Why do we build the wall?


Why do we build the wall?

We build the wall to keep us free

That's why we build the wall

We build the wall to keep us free

Mitchell is an incredible musical talent and this story has the potential to be incredibly successful at this specific moment that it didn't at its inception. The musical has been revived in London and is coming to Broadway in 2019. Be sure to check out this exciting tale before it blows up next year. Find the album here and learn more about the project here.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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