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UW Classics Alumnus Performs Original Musical Odyssey in All 50 US States

Chicago-based Class of ’98 graduate Joe Goodkin has put his BA in classics from the UW to use in a both novel and traditional way, composing and performing two one-man bardic folk opera retellings of Homer’s Odyssey and Iliad (The Blues of Achilles).

Over two decades, he has done nearly 500 combined performances of these original song cycles as a guest of such institutions as Harvard, Stanford, Oxford (UK), Cambridge (UK), UC–Berkeley, and many, many more (including, of course, his alma mater itself).

In 2023, Joe achieved the milestone of performing his Odyssey in all 50 U.S. states with a performance at Oklahoma State University.

He work has been recognized by awards from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers, as well as supported by grants from the Society for Classical Studies.

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