Frederick Glaysher, Epic Poet, Rhapsode, Producer, playing the Poet of the Moon. Jeff Thomakos, Director, Michigan Michael Chekhov Christian Plonka, Stage Manager Dennis Kleinsmith, Actor, playing Don Quixote, Tolstoy, etc. Mike Sandusky, Actor, playing Robert Hayden, Borges, Job, etc. Breon Canady, Actor, playing Sogolon, Mimbardda, etc.
Apollo’s Troupe blends the ancient Greek rhapsode’s performance of Homer with the modern style of reading by Charles Dickens and Edgar Allan Poe into a new experimental epic form of dramatic storytelling for a contemporary audience.
Synopsis: Apollo calls all the poets of the nations, ancient and modern, East and West, to assemble on the moon to consult on the meaning of modern life. The Parliament of Poets sends the main character, the Poet of the Moon, on a Journey to the seven continents to learn from all of the spiritual and wisdom traditions of humankind. On Earth and on the moon, the poets teach a new global, universal vision of life.
Thirty years in the making, set partly on the moon, at the Apollo 11 landing site, the Sea of Tranquility, and around the world, including Don Quixote, Rocinante, Black Elk, Chief Seattle, Du Fu, Merlin, Queen Mab, Druid, Sappho, Jane Austen, Virgil, Demodokus, Squire, Robert Hayden, Fairy Queen, Rumi, Tagore, Vyasa, Tolstoy, Blake, Job, Borges, Sogolon, Mbeku, etc.
The two hour theatre script version of The Parliament of Poets: An Epic Poem presents a selection of ten of the forty major characters, mostly poets from major civilizations and religions.
July 20, 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing on the moon. Much of The Parliament of Poets takes place at the Apollo 11 landing site. Evoking Homer’s “catalogue of ships,” one canto honors the many rocket ships and astronauts of the space age, including the Apollo missions.
“Like a story around a campfire.” —The Audience
“Certainly wowed the crowd with the performance and the words themselves.” —Albany Poets News, New York
“A masterpiece that will stand the test of time.” —Poetry Cornwall, No. 36, England, UK
“A great epic poem of startling originality and universal significance, in every way partaking of the nature of world literature.” —Hans Ruprecht, Carleton University, Canada, author on Goethe, Borges, etc.
“A profound spiritual message for humanity.” —Alan Jacobs, Poet Writer Author, London, UK
In Performance, on Stage, The Parliament of Poets: An Epic Poem, by Frederick Glaysher.
Like a story “around a campfire.” —From the Audience.
“Certainly wowed the crowd at the library with the performance [boldface added] and the words themselves.” —Thom Francis, Albany Poets News, New York.
Thirty years in the making, in late 2012, I finished and published The Parliament of Poets: An Epic Poem. Now after several public readings and as many reviews, my Kickstarter Project is to take it to humanity, in Performance, on Stage, at a Michigan theatre, in 2014. At approximately thirty minutes per chapter, I would read the first three chapters or “Books” of the epic, what has traditionally been called “in medias res,” in the midst of things, a flash-back device, with the action already in mid-stream on the moon.
In ancient Greece, the rhapsodes, reciters of epic poetry, an oral art, traveled throughout the Greek world, from city to city, reciting the tales of Homer and other epic poets. Nearly thirty-five years ago I had a theatre class in the interpretation of poetry that set me to dreaming of writing an epic poem and then traveling worldwide to recite it. Now I am ready, epic in hand, to commence that journey!
I believe that the imagination is at the core of all human endeavor, and that an imaginative vision of a New Global, Universal Vision of Life on this Planet can help inspire people to make it a reality. Together, from the moon, we can see it.
I need your help and support to bring the vision we all long for to the attention of humanity. I am painfully aware that I cannot do it alone. I could study and write alone for decades, needed to, but now I must turn to others to aid me in reaching an audience. I don’t have the financial resources to do it alone. I need $9,625 to take my epic poem to humankind! Please help, if you can…
Please share this Kickstarter Project with friends and family, blogs and elsewhere, the media, whatever you can do, and help get the word out about The Parliament of Poets: An Epic Poem, *in Performance, on Stage*.
I’m very grateful for your help. See you at the Performance! Journey to the moon!
A photo of what I can only think of as the Rhapsode Amphora that I took on a visit in February, 2012, to the New York Metropolitan Museum.
A personal indiscretion… if a fifty-foot tsunami hits New York, forget everything but save this amphora… The artistry of the rhapsode is so exquisite that none of the pictures I have ever seen or taken do it justice, including what the MET has available on the Internet at the link below.
Rhapsode. “A rhapsode (Greek: ῥαψῳδός, rhapsōdos) or, in modern usage, rhapsodist, refers to a classical Greek professional performer of epic poetry in the fifth and fourth centuries BC.”
Terracotta amphora (jar). Attributed to the Berlin Painter.
Period: Late Archaic Date: ca. 490 B.C. Culture: Greek, Attic ; Gallery 157, New York Metropolitan Museum.
“This work is a masterpiece of Greek vase-painting because it brings together many features of Athenian culture in an artistic expression of the highest quality. The shape itself is central to the effect. Through the symmetry, scale, and luminously glossy glaze on the obverse, it offers a carefully composed three-dimensional surface that endows the subject with volume. The identity of the singer is given by his instrument, the kithara, which was a type of lyre used in public performances, including recitations of epic poetry. The figure on the reverse is identified by his garb and wand. While the situation is probably a competition, the subject is the music itself. It transports the performer, determines his pose, and causes the cloth below the instrument to sway gently.” https://www.metmuseum.org/Collections/search-the-collections/130015398?rpp=20&pg=1&ft=56.171.38&pos=1
On the reverse, the Berlin Painter has rendered an image of the critic or judge. The picture of the critic on the MET website should not be considered as representing the same quality of artistry expended by the Berlin Painter as that on the rhapsode. The contrary is the case, including the background glazing of the vase around the critic. The rendering is indisputably of inferior quality, of *secondary* stature and importance to the Berlin Painter. In person, before this matchless vase, there can be no mistaking the difference that the judgment of the artist himself makes, and suggests, about the relationship between poetry and criticism.
I believe the Berlin Painter does imply that the ability to recognize something new and the integrity to speak words worthy of it, to bring it to the attention of the polis, if you will, the people, resides with the critic. That is the role of the critic that the Berlin Painter 2,500 years ago wrought on this exquisite amphora. That is what poetry and criticism have lost in the United States of America, if not the entire West. The proper relationship of the poet to the critic and reader has too often been replaced by all manner of dehumanizing theory, decadence, politicization, nihilism, and other corrupt conceptions of the role of the critic, losing his or her civilizing raison d’être, building civilization, rather than tearing it down, all of which have had a devastating impact on the polis.
ANN ARBOR—On September 22, 29, and October 6, the theatre company, Apollo’s Troupe, will stage the theater adaptation of the poem, The Parliament of Poets, written by Michigan poet Frederick Glaysher and published in 2012 by Earthrise Press. Continue reading →
Apollo's Troupe blends theatre with the ancient Greek rhapsode's performance of Homer and the modern style of reading by Charles Dickens and Edgar Allan Poe into a new experimental epic form of dramatic storytelling for a contemporary audience. Continue reading →