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There and back again 

Nobody’s Home: A Modern Odyssey, the latest play from former Cuesta student Dorie Kinnear’s theater company Grafted Cede, has embarked on a strange and wonderful journey. The production, a modern retelling of the classic Odyssey, was devised at Cuesta College but premiered at London’s Blue Elephant Theatre. Nobody’s Home was loved by audiences in the U.K., where Kinnear currently lives and works, and the play went on earn four- to five-star reviews at the Brighton Fringe Festival.

In keeping with its themes of homecoming, the successful play now returns to its birthplace, Cuesta College, on Nov. 9 and 10, where it will be performed for the first time. With the help of Cuesta theater instructor bree valle, Kinnear explained, they “set up two performances as a way of sharing the work I have done away from home with my community.”

Nobody’s Home explores “post-war trauma and the soldier’s journey home.” The show arrives just a day shy of a similar but unrelated adaptation of Antigone (premiering at Cal Poly on Nov. 11), in which the Greek tragedy is inter-spliced with excerpts from letters to lost soldiers.

“It’s an interesting coincidence, but it makes a lot of sense that we look back to these classics to see what we can gain from them,” said Nobody’s Home actor/deviser Will Pinchin.

Plus, Veterans Day is approaching.

Pinchin and Kinnear’s play is on a modern odyssey of its own, having come to California thanks to a grant from Santa Cruz’s West End Studio Theatre to perform the show and conduct workshops with veterans. The West Coast mini-tour will be followed immediately by a stopover on the East Coast, before the show travels back to the U.K., where Grafted Cede hopes to take it to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2011.

Tickets will be available at the door of Cuesta College’s Cultural and Performing Arts Center. General admission is $10; students pay just $5. The performance starts at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 9 and 10. As a fundraiser for Cuesta’s theater department, it runs at half the going rate. And Ulysses will only be home for two days (Nov. 9 and 10), so don’t blink, or you’ll miss out.

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