Darryl Way plots Underworld rock opera

Darryl Way
Darryl Way

Darryl Way has revealed that his next project will be a rock opera titled Underworld.

The founding member of Curved Air is working on the concept album which was in part inspired by his last record Myths, Legends And Tales, which was released in 2016.

Way says: “Having touched on Greek mythology in my last album, I became fascinated with the idea of writing a major work based on one of these myths.

“Originally I was going to set Shelley’s epic poem Prometheus Unbound to music, but on further investigation it became clear that it was a little too ‘epic’ and too big a mouthful to bite off, so I abandoned the idea.

“Then the thought struck me of updating or re-imagining the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice and setting it in a period and environment that I was totally familiar with – the world of rock music and the 1970s.”

Way says he felt uncomfortable with the idea of writing a musical but a rock opera would be more fitting as it concentrated on “song and drama” as opposed to “song and dance.”

He continues: “And with the addition of a narrator, it could be both a concept album as well as a theatrical production. So in my Underworld, Orpheus is now a rock megastar and Persephone, the queen of the underworld, a drug dealer and nightclub owner.

“The venomous snake that fatally bites Eurydice on her wedding day is replaced by an equally fatal drug addiction. Glibly it could be described as a tale of sex drugs and rock and roll, but in essence it is a dark and powerful tale of love, betrayal and revenge.

Way adds: “The piece starts off with songs of love and longing but as the plot develops, the music darkens as we descend further and further into the murky realms, of the Underworld.

Way will play violin and keyboards on the album and he’ll be joined by guitarist Richard Mead and drummer Pete Skinner.

Singers Graham Foote, Sarah Vaughan, Bryan Walters, James Goodman, Nicola Avino, Rachel de Cock, Cassie McIvor, Naomi Harvey and Juliet Hopkins will guest, while the tale will be narrated by Rob Wheeler and John Guilor.

Further details will be revealed in due course.

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