Wall Street Odyssey: A Live Rock Opera – which premieres as a one-night performance at the Backstage Studio Productions (BSP) Lounge on Wall Street in Uptown Kingston this Thursday, August 23 – began its life as a 56-page graphic novel by Seattle artist Tom Swanson. It was later colored in and lent music by Sean Bigler and Bonne Lyke‑s, formerly of Seattle and now based in the Catskills and known by their band name, Epigene.
Twenty-five songs were recorded for the two-hour rock opera in 2010, and early last year Bigler and Lykes began creating music videos for their baby, with the idea that they could be shown onstage as a part of a performance piece. Twenty videos later, Epigene has created what will be shown for the first time locally this Thursday: a mix of narration, costumes and videos (some live, some animated) projected on a giant screen synched to live music.
The hero of the work – named Yossarian in reference to the lead character in Joseph Heller’s Catch-22 – is an overworked investment banker who suffers an existential crisis, turns to drugs and becomes homeless on the streets and later gets reborn through a move to the country. At show’s end he returns to Wall Street as a shaman and prophet, teaching a societal return to nature and escape from creeping government tyranny. Think Tommy meets Silent Running, all in an ambitious post-modern aesthetic.
A Wall Street Odyssey: A Live Rock Opera will be presented by its creators, Epigene, as a one-night performance at the BSP Lounge at 323 Wall Street in Uptown Kingston this Thursday, August 23 starting at 9 p.m. Donations of $5 per person are requested. For further information call (845) 481-5158 or visit either www.bsplounge.com or www.epigenemusic.com.