The original folk hero, Woody Guthrie, transformed the ballad into a vehicle for social protest and helped pave the way for Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and a host of other folk and rock songwriters who have been moved by conscience to share experiences and take a stand.
And now a new stage show called Woody Sez will use Woody’s words, and over twenty-five of his songs to transport the audience through the fascinating, beautiful, and sometimes tragic life of Woody Guthrie.
The tumultuous, touching and joyful tale of “America’s greatest folk poet,” is told in his own words, and features somgs including ‘Bound for Glory’, ‘Pastures of Plenty’, ‘The Ballad of Tom Joad’, ‘This Land is Your Land’, and more of Woody Guthrie’s indelible protest songs, is brought to vivid life by the award-winning original London cast: David M. Lutken, Ruth Clarke-Irons, Eleanor Brunsdon and William Wolfe Hogan, along with director Dean Elliott.
David said: “I had done several folk musicals in theaters in the US and became friends with Mr. Guthrie’s former manager, Harold Leventhal, who encouraged me to write a biographical show about Woody. I have known Woody’s sister, Mary Jo, and his daughter, Nora, for many years and I had heard his music all my life, having grown up in north Texas.
The show is a celebration of one of the giants of American music. A joyful, uplifting narrative about a man’s difficult life during hard times, Woody Sez is a tale of struggle, activism, patriotism and commitment.
“In some respects, working on this show has been quite easy - my musical collaborators and I all grew up with this kind of music,” David continued. “Of course, it is quite difficult as I have given myself a lot of lines to remember!, but performing these songs is always a great pleasure.”
Introduced at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2007, the cast of Woody Sez has performed across the globe, and are very much looking forward to coming back to Scotland.
David said: “We have played all around the world, but we began in Scotland at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2007. We are very much looking forward to coming back. Audiences, I believe, can expect to hear a good deal of great music - some of which I hope they may already know - and to take away something of the spirit of one of the world’s great musical voices.
Woody Sez is on at Eden Court Theatre, Inverness on April 19 and 20.
For tickets, visit: website