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The Four Disgracers was conceived by Ixion Artistic Director jeff croff. “As we looked at scripts and thought of ways to launch, it struck me that maybe the inspiration for our name could also inspire our first production,” observes Croff. “ The name of our troupe was inspired by a trip tothe Detroit Institute of Art, where I encountered Friederich Goltzius's engraving set named TheFour Disgracers. The engravings featured four figures from Greek mythology: Icarus, Phaeton,Ixion and Tantalus. After reading Goltzius’s Latin interpretation of the Ixion myth, I had a name forthe new troupe. So I thought why not take the inspiration provided by art and see if it could inspire new art?” Croff then recruited four local playwrights to develop short plays, each derived from a different Greek myth. After months of writing and rewriting, The Four Disgracers took shape with “Distance from the Son”; “Tantalizing Menu”; “Empty” and “Icarus Flying”.
“Distance from the Son” by O.G. Ueberoth transforms Phaeton into Pate, a manchild struggling to find himself and deal with his daddy issues. Helios has become a cantankerous old soldier, who is helping out with conflicts as well as his usual duties.
“Tantalizing Menu” by Sarah Hauck takes us front and center with a family dinner filled withbackbiting, acrimony and new menu items. Tantalus becomes a nervous and edgy host hopingthat everyone appreciates his time in the kitchen.
“Empty” by Brad Rutledge transforms the tet a tet between Zeus and Ixion into a meeting of amafia don with his lieutenant. Tough guys talk and get a little nervous as truths come out.
“Icarus Flying” by A. S. Freeman offers a fresh take on the myth. We enter a totalitarianworld and learn Icarus’s mom’s perspective.
The Four Disgracers is slated to open May 15, 2014.