About the Podcast

Odyssey & Chill: This three-episode podcast covers Homer’s epic The Odyssey. Whether you’re a student, professor, a literature or poetry fan, or even if you’re just curious about the piece, this podcast is for you. Listen to Sara and Darby on-the-go, as they take you through the plot of the poem and speak with classicists who’ve made their life’s work around it. It’s going to be epic! In each each episode, they summarize a few books and then discusses it with a fancy person.

Episode 1 – The Telemachy (Telemachus’ adventures)

In this episode, we summarize books 1-4 and then discuss the Odyssey with fancy-person Dr. Andromache Karanika, Associate Professor of Classics at UC Irvine. Join us for highlights & insights!

Episode 2 – The Adventures

In this episode, we summarize books 5-12 and then discuss the Odyssey with fancy-person Annie Loui, Director of Counter-Balance Theatre and Professor of Acting at UC Irvine. Join us for highlights & insights!

Episode 3 – The Homecoming

In this episode, we summarize books 13-24 and then discuss the Odyssey with fancy-person Dr. Alex Purves, Professor of Classics at UCLA. Join us for highlights & insights!

The Origins of Odyssey & Chill

Back in 2017, Darby Vickers joined the Graduate InterConnect Program at UC Irvine (a program through which UCI graduate students mentor incoming international graduate students). One of Darby’s mentees was an incoming Directing MFA student from Canada named Sara Rodriguez. One of the early conversations Sara and Darby had was about the Odyssey. Sara read the Odyssey growing up and Darby wrote her MA thesis on the epic (for her MA in Classics). They bonded over that shared interest. With their busy lives, they fell out of touch for a few years until Sara contacted Darby in Summer 2019. Her MFA final show– their equivalent of a dissertation– is a production of The Penelopiad, which is Margaret Atwood’s feminist retelling of the Odyssey (told from Penelope’s perspective). Sara remembered Darby’s passion for the Odyssey and wanted some insight on the poem. Additionally, as she was designing the show, she realized that The Penelopiad was impactful primarily for those who knew the Odyssey well enough to understand Atwood’s clever and poignant retelling. Since lots of people haven’t read (or don’t remember) the Odyssey, she wanted to make a resource for her audiences that would give them enough information to enjoy the show. She tentatively proposed a podcast summarizing the Odyssey for her audience. Little did Sara know, Darby is a podcast enthusiast. Darby helped Sara find funding for the project and she invited Darby to partner with her on it. They recorded the podcast, Odyssey and Chill, in Fall 2019. It includes a playful summary of the Odyssey and interviews with three professors: Associate Professor Andromache Karanika (Classics, UCI), Professor Annie Loui (Acting, UCI), and Professor Alex Purves (Classics, UCLA). The podcast debuted December 5, 2019.