A Musical Odyssey: “Epic: The Musical”

Most people are at least semi-familiar with Greek mythology. Many remember Disney’s “Hercules” or briefly hearing about Oedipus while learning about Sigmund Freud’s theories. Yet, in recent years, Greek mythos have been making a bit of a comeback.

Disney’s new “Percy Jackson and the Olympians” on Disney+ release almost two decades after the book’s original release, the popularity of the folk/bluegrass/jazz-inspired musical “Hadestown” on Broadway, and Madeline Miller’s beautiful novels “The Song of Achilles” and “Circe” have all contributed to this revival of stories of antiquity.

The newest of these contributions has been running rampant all over TikTok recently, which is “Epic: The Musical.”

Now, those who remember “Ratatouille: The Musical” taking TikTok by storm in 2020 may feel some trepidation toward a musical on TikTok, but they need not fear. This musical is a sincere love letter to the art of musical theater in addition to Greek mythology.

Created by Jorge Rivera-Herrans (often referred to as Jay), “Epic: The Musical” is a retelling of Homer’s “Odyssey” using an incredible number of various music styles and genres to create a narrative within the music itself as well as create interest and tension.

For the uninitiated, Homer’s “Odyssey” follows the character Odysseus, the king of Ithaca, as he makes the treacherous journey back to his family and home after winning the Trojan War. On this journey, he encounters various monsters, gods, and goddesses, represented in different manners through the music style/genre.

An incredibly unique and interesting aspect of the musical that has garnered much attention is the creator’s consistency in sharing snippets and behind-the-scenes information with viewers on TikTok. With enough dedication, it is absolutely possible to find the first TikToks Rivera-Herrans posted for this musical, showing the early stages of writing.

He also ensures that a great deal of the process is documented on TikTok, as well. There are numerous videos in which he demonstrates the writing process for certain lyrics, discusses artistic choices, and explains that almost everything in both the lyrics and the music is intentional.

Another unique quality of “Epic: The Musical” is the manner in which it is released. Rather than releasing the entire musical at once, the songs are released in mini albums referred to as “sagas” themed on the part of the story the songs cover.

At the moment, there are three sagas out on music streaming platforms, the latest being “The Ocean Saga.” However, there is already another batch of songs on the way as “The Circe Saga” was recently announced to be released on February 14.

Those who love Greek mythology and/or those who appreciate creative storytelling should listen to and learn about this new musical.

Leave a Reply