(1980) 30 minutes, with Susan Fanshel
videotape rentals by the Museum of Modern Art, New York City (212)708-9530

A study of concert-artist Richard Dyer-Bennet at work on Homer's Odyssey - that is, developing a strategy for performing, in English, and in 1978, with harp in hand, this monumental 24 hour poem, which, in Homer's time and Homer's life, only existed in oral form - a long song, performed in public as entertainment and as tribal history.

"Sing in me muse, and through me tell the story of that man skilled in all ways of contending..." The great concert artist and folksinger, Richard Dyer-Bennet, is off again with the crackling, lilting lines of Homer's Odyssey. He has set himself an ingenious challenge: to record the ancient poem in all its epic length and beauty - in the spoken form in which the world first heard the tale, three millennia ago. Such a simple idea, it seems, top bring lyric imagination back from the pages of a book and to let it flow full strength from ear to soul. THE ODYSSEY TAPES is a stunning video portrait of this recording artist at work on the Robert Fitzgerald translation, perhaps the most poetic, and singing, in the world.


From Library Journal, Paul Wiener
"Rarely have I seen a visual essay of such beauty. The editing, the camera work and the calm intelligent passion of Dyer-Bennet himself will anchor the performer, project, translator and poem securely in the shifting seas of literary greatness for generations."