'The Lost Echo' is based on the mythological stories in Ovid's Metamorphoses. It is 'a kaleidoscope of music, text, dance, and image using the music of Cole Porter, John Dowland and Franz Schubert.'
The twelve stories told are those of :
1. Phaethon: A boy whose search for his father leads him to incineration.
2. Callisto: A virgin girl who is seduced by a god, changed into a bear and transformed into a star.
3. Actaeon: A boy who is transformed into a stag as punishment for voyeurism and is eventually ripped apart by his own dogs.
4. Mestra: A girl whose father eats himself to death.
5. Myrrha: A girl whose incestuous lust for her father leads her to misery and transformation into a tree
6. Arachne: A girl whose pride, arrogance and insight leads her to be changed into a spider
7. Salmacis: A woman whose obsession for a younger man leads them both to be transformed into water.
8. Philomela: A girl who enacts devastating revenge on her rapist by feeding him his own child.
9. Semele: A girl who sleeps with a god and is obliterated by the gods.
10. Pentheus: A boy whose inner torment results in him being ripped into pieces by his own mother.
11. Narcissus and Echo :A boy who falls in love with his own reflection and a girl who vanishes into her own voice.
12. Orpheus and Euridice: A man who loses the woman he loves - twice.
First produced by the Sydney Theatre Company. Part one: 4-30 September 2006; part two: 5-30 September 2006. Season directed by Barrie Kosky.
'This is the first book-length study of Australian theatre productions by internationally-renowned director, Barrie Kosky.
'Now a prolific opera director in Europe, Barrie Kosky on the Contemporary Australian Stage accounts for the formative years of Kosky's career in Australia. This book provides in-depth engagements with select productions including The Dybbuk which Kosky directed with Gilgul theatre company in 1991, as well as King Lear (1998), The Lost Echo (2006), and Women of Troy (2008).
'Using affect theory as a prism through which these works are analysed, the book accounts for the director's particular engagement with - and radical departure from - classical tragedy in contemporary performance: what the book defines as Kosky's 'post-tragedies'. Theatre studies scholars and students, particularly those with interests in affect, contemporary performance, 'director's theatre', and tragedy, will benefit from Barrie Kosky on the Contemporary Australian Stage's vivid engagement with Kosky's work: a director who has become a singular figure in opera and theatre of international critical acclaim.' (Publication summary)
'The Lost Echo, Barrie Dosky and Tom Wright's 2006 adaptation of Ovid's Metamorphoses for the Sydney Theatre Company, gave audiences and epic theatrical experience. It was epic in length, with its eight hours comprising four Acts of two hours; it was epic in scale using the twelve members of the Sydney Theatre Company's recently formed Actors Company, guest artist Paul Capsis, and a chorus of twenty-four second-year NIDA students.' (p. 102)
Elizabeth Hale provides a brief summary of each Act as an introduction to the suite of criticisms that follow.