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Learn more about Ad Infinitum's new show Beautiful Evil Things

Told through the eyes of Medusa as she watches the battle of Troy, Ad Infinitum takes a look at the alternative stories of the most notorious women in Greek mythology in a new show co-created and performed by long-term collaborator Deborah Pugh.

What if there was another take on the Trojan War you’d never heard? Enter Medusa: she was there. A bodiless head on the goddess Athena’s shield, the snake-haired Medusa watches over the battle, focusing on queens and prophets whose stories have been cast in the worst possible light. In forgotten and alternative stories about them, Iphigenia wasn’t the first child of Clytemnestra to be murdered by Agamemnon, Cassandra’s abilities were learned rather than god-given, Amazonian Queen Penthesilea wasn’t killed by Achilles, and Medusa was a protector of the ancient world.

Beautiful Evil Things asks why the versions of the stories we know about these women are the most damning ones. Casting Medusa as an archivist setting the record straight, history is retold with full nuance and colour as seen through a female gaze, and through the most powerful gaze in mythology. Told with the same high-energy physical storytelling as Ad Infinitum’s award-winning one-man Odyssey, their one-woman race through mythology is a fierce, funny take on female stories throughout history that have been forgotten, distorted or erased.

Co-creator and performer Deborah Pugh said, 'The making of Beautiful Evil Things has been a great opportunity to scrutinise some well-worn classics and thoroughly interrogate their familiar telling and translations. When the much hated Medusa, monstrous social outcast, throws her infamous gaze across the events of the Trojan War she sees things a little differently. She has little time for gods and heroes, having fallen foul of them both. Instead, she's drawn to the excluded, the ignored and the demonised, unearthing and reframing the tales of some truly phenomenal ancient wonder women; each as flawed, fearless and front-footed as their male counterparts, each stood strong and centre in their own story.'

Ad Infinitum is an international ensemble based in Bristol, developing new and original theatre. Founded in 2007, Ad Infinitum is led by Co-Artistic Directors, Nir Paldi and George Mann. They create shape-shifting socio-political theatre to provoke, move and inspire through innovative storytelling and bold experimental styles. Ad Infinitum’s theatre draws upon the power of the body, engages audiences with urgent issues, and ignites passionate debate. Previous shows include Extraordinary Wall [of Silence], No Kids, Translunar Paradise, Odyssey, If You Fall, Bucket List, Light, and Ballad of the Burning Star. Ad Infinitum is Associate Artist at Bristol Old Vic and The North Wall. They are Associate Artist Alumni at the Bush Theatre (2011-2013), The Lowry (2011-2017) and Redbridge Drama Centre (2009-2017). Their work has won awards at the Edinburgh Fringe (including Spirit of the Fringe and multiple Stage Awards), across the UK (including the Argus Angel Award), and many awards internationally.

Beautiful Evil Things will be at Corn Exchange Newbury on Tuesday 4 and Wednesday 5 June at 7.30pm. The performance on Tuesday 4 June will be a BSL-integrated and captioned performance and is accessible to deaf, D/deaf, hard of hearing and hearing audiences. The integrated BSL interpreter is Kyra Pollitt. A BSL interpreter will also be in the Front of House area before and after the performance to welcome and support BSL users. Tickets £18.25 (£16.25 concs, £11 schools). Age guide: 12+. Find out more or to book click here or call the Box Office on 01635 522733.

Watch the trailer