Imagine turning the story of Pandora’s Box into a video game or creating an original Lost Labor of Heracles! In our Classics problem, teams write and perform original theatrical performances based on a work from classical literature, artwork, music, culture, or history. Subjects range from bringing the past to life to revisiting and rewriting history, all while OMers learn about world history. Solutions often reflect upon the majesty and sophistication of humanity’s most impactful and enduring creations.
2023-24 Classics Problem
Classics... Opening Night Antics
There is a saying in the theatre that no matter what happens during a performance, the show must go on. The same is true in OM! For this problem, teams will portray the Opening Night of a play based on a classic story. The Opening Night performance will not go as planned and will include a set malfunction, unexpected sound effects, and a theater critic. Despite the Opening Night Antics, the show is a success!
Past Classics Problems
OMers know there is more than one way to get past any type of barrier–and, in this problem, they will prove it! Ancient Greek Poet Homer created The Iliad, which tells the story of Achilles and the Trojan War. Now, OM teams will put their spin on the popular concept of the “Trojan Horse” by creating one of their own. It will be used to get past a wall in a performance that also includes a character from The Iliad, an original Greek Chorus, and an unusual statue.
Historical figures get an encore as OMers re-tell their stories in musical form. In this problem, teams will create a biographical musical about a selected historic figure. There will be three songs: an opening number, an emotional number whose music conveys an emotion, and one determined by the team. The performance will also include a lighting special effect, movement of scenery, and a membership sign that will appear as a marquee for the team’s musical.
Sponsored by ARM & HAMMER™
Storybooks come alive when a special bean grows into a magic “beanstalk” that takes a youngster into a storybook land. There, a creative host will guide them around as they meet different storybook characters and encounter objects from selected stories that exist together in this mystical land. Teams will use ARM & HAMMER™ Baking Soda to create works of art relating to the stories. A set piece or prop that grows or appears to grow and an original Life Lesson learned by the youngster in storybook land will be part of the performance.
You will be introduced to one of the greatest detectives the world has ever known as they follow clues to uncover the truth behind some of history’s real-world mysteries. The detective will investigate different types of information, including a clue that is a “red herring” i.e. a distraction, and do intellectual battle with a supervillain who wants the detective to fail. Sounds will ring out and settings will creatively change to set the scene and highlight the action. The team will also be challenged to use the smallest space possible to store its solution.
Imagine how inspiring Leonardo DaVinci’s (LDV) workshop must have been. Teams will portray his workplace in an original, creative performance that includes LDV, a patron, and a naysayer. The team will recreate a DaVinci painting, make a three-dimensional representation of one of his works, and recreate another LDV work in any form the team wishes. There will also be an original “debunked” creation that LDV “invented” but discarded because it was mocked. Ironically, the item will be shown as something commonly used in modern times.
There are often two sides to the same story. In this problem, characters don’t always agree as they recount the classic story where they appeared. The team will select a classic from a list and present different characters in a humorous documentary-style performance where details are added, denied, exaggerated, and disputed. There will be interviews, behind-the-scenes “clips,” and voice-overs that take the audience through the story and help present the events as they “really” took place. Whose side will you be on?
The future and the past collide in this problem about important works of art – both existing and yet-to-be-created. Teams will create and present an original performance about time travelers looking to discover the inspiration for great works of art, little did they know – it was OMER every time! The travelers go back in time — twice into our past and once into our future. They will see OMER inspire two classical artists and a team-created artist from our future. The performance will include how the three works of art positively impact the world, a visual and audible effect that indicates when time travel is occurring, two re-creations of the classic works of art selected from a list, and a team-created work of art.