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Woody Sez: The Life & Music of Woody Guthrie

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Worth your Do Re Me!

Boston Metro

UNFORGETTABLE. Will grab you from the get go and never let go.

Slow Muse

A FINE MUSICAL PORTRAIT of the groundbreaking folk singer.

Boston Globe

Woody Guthrie is a musical hero of legendary proportion who transformed folk music into a vehicle for social protest and evoked the restless spirit of the Dust Bowl generation.  Woody Sez brings the giant to life in a joyous, toe-tapping, and heartfelt theatrical portrait that uses Woody’s words and songs to transport the audience through his fascinating, beautiful, and sometimes tragic life. Featuring many classic Woody tunes including “This Land is Your Land” and “Bound for Glory,” Woody Sez captures the heart and spirit of Woody Guthrie and the stories of America.

In Woody’s spirit, the A.R.T. is hosting post-show hootenannies after select performances led by cast members and other local artists. You are invited to bring your instruments and join in a free-form musical celebration.

Notable dates

Recommended for ages 10+

Discussions

There were post-show discussions with the cast after the 2:00 PM performances:

Wednesday, May 16
Saturday, May 19
Wednesday, May 23
Saturday, May 26

In Woody’s spirit, the A.R.T. hosted post-show hootenannies after select performances led by cast members and other local artists. Everyone was invited to bring their own instruments and join in a free-form musical celebration.

Friday, May 11 after the 7:30 performance – Brendan Hogan
Wednesday, May 16 after the 7:30 perforamnce – Alastair Moock
Wednesday, May 23 after the 7:30 performance – Marylou Ferrante

Also after each Thursday night performance.

Press

Credits

Creative team

Words and Music by

Woody Guthrie 

Devised by

David M. Lutken* with Nick Corley and 

Other

Darcie Deaville*, Helen J. Russell*, and Andy Teirstein* 

Scenic Design

Luke Hegel-Cantarella

Scenic Design

Luke Hegel-Cantarella

Luke originally designed Woody Sez for the Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma. New York credits include work at The Atlantic Theatre Company, Lucille Lortel and the 2004 Whitney Biennial. Internationally, he designed Blue Shade at the Rozentheatre, Amsterdam and Redwood Curtain for the American University-Cairo. Regional theatres include Yale Rep., Pittsburgh Public Theatre, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Adirondack Theatre Festival and the Prince Music Theatre. Designs for Opera: La Clemenza di Tito at Wolftrap, Cosi fan Tutte at Curtis Opera Theater and La Traviata at Opera at Peabody. He was art director for a season of the hit FX show "Damages" and was a set designer on the films Julie & Julia, State of Play and The Accidental Husband. Luke is head of the set design program at the University of California-Irvine and a Yale School of Drama graduate.

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Costume Design

Jeffrey Meek

Costume Design

Jeffrey Meek

For 12 years, Jeffrey has been the Resident Costume Designer for Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma. Jeffrey has worked with The Point Theatre, Jewel Box Theatre, Carpenter Square, The Eastman School of Music, Colossal Studios, Reduxion Theatre Company and for nine seasons served as Principal Costumer for The Ohio Light Opera. Jeffrey has designed A Christmas Carol, The MusicalAnnieand Disney’s High School Musical for Casa Mañana Theatre. For the past six years he has designed "A Very Merry Pops" for the OKC Philharmonic. Jeffrey served as costumer for Tulsa Opera and designed for Wichita productions ofSwing!I Do, I Do and the world premiere of Are We There Yet? with Stage One. Most recently he has branched into the world of film, designing wardrobe most recently for Pearl Carter Scott with Media 13 and Fingerprints. Jeffrey is a proud graduate of Oklahoma City University.

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Lighting Design

Matt Frey

Lighting Design

Matt Frey

Recent work includes Lonely, I’m Not, Second Stage; The Winter’s Tale, Yale Rep; The Ugly One, Soho Rep; Close Up Space, Manhattan Theatre Club; 7 Homeless Mammoths Wander New England, Two River Theatre; This, Center Theatre Group, Playwrights Horizons; Middletown, Steppenwolf Theatre Company; Go Back to Where You Are, Playwrights Horizons; Freefall, Corn Exchange, Dublin. Upcoming projects include Feng Yi Ting directed by Atom Egoyan, Spoleto Festival, Lincoln Center Festival; Dog Days directed by Robert Woodruff (Peak Performances). Other companies he has collaborated with include Brooklyn Academy of Music, Naked Angels, The New Group, Manhattan Class Company, New York Theatre Workshop, and Paper Mill Playhouse, as well as many other theaters, regional and abroad.

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Stage Manager

Katie Ailinger

Stage Manager

Katie Ailinger

A.R.T.: Trans Scripts, Part I: The WomenThe Plough and the Stars, In the Body of the World, Nice Fish, The Tempest, The Lily’s Revenge, The Donkey Show, Woody Sez, Futurity: A Musical By The Lisps, Ajax. Off-Broadway: Nice Fish, St. Ann’s Warehouse; Nixon’s Nixon, Fresh Play Festival, MCC Theater; Trial by Water, I Land, Ma-Yi Theatre. Boston area: Choice, The Second Girl, Cry of the Reed, Streamers, Huntington Theatre Company; Other Desert Cities, RED, The Divine Sister, The Great American Trailer Park Musical, SpeakEasy Stage Company; God’s Ear, Pericles, Henry VIII, Actors’ Shakespeare Project. Additional credits include Center Theatre Group, Theatre @ Boston Court, Milwaukee Rep, Trinity Rep, and WGBH’s annual concert A Christmas Celtic Sojourn. BFA: University of Southern California (Stage Management). Proud member of Actors’ Equity Association.

 

 

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Music Director

David M. Lutken

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Music Director

David M. Lutken

Broadway: Inherit the Wind (’07 revival), Ring of FireThe Civil WarThe Will Rogers Follies. NY City Opera: Paul Bunyan. Off Broadway: Southern Comfort,Stars in Your Eyes, The Portable Pioneer and Prairie ShowWoody Guthrie’s American SongWinter Man. Regional Theatre: Man of La ManchaElmer GantryFinian’s RainbowBig RiverPump Boys and DinettesThe Love List,Death in EnglandOn Golden PondThe Man Who Came to DinnerFire On The MountainStand By Your ManIn the Deep Heart’s Core. Originally from Dallas, Texas, Mr. Lutken studied in London at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Arts and, as a boy, at the Royal School of Church Music. He has performed in Europe and the United Kingdom, at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and in his adopted home state of Louisiana, is the principal banjoist for the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra.

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Director

Nick Corley

Director

Nick Corley

Nick recently made his West End directing debut with Woody Sez, which he also co-wrote. (Evening Standard Award "Best Musical" nomination). He has directed many world premieres including Woody Sez for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe/European Festival tour; the off-Broadway/NY productions of Tall Grass;Flight (Callaway Award nomination); About Face (NYMF Best Direction nomination); Fables In SlangTim and ScroogeThe OvercoatTallboy Walkin’. His regional premieres include The Civil War (co-directed with Gregory Boyd), Houston’s Alley Theatre; A Young Lady of Fashion (also co-author), Fulton Opera House; Eliot Ness…in Cleveland (also a co-author), Denver Theatre Centre. As former artistic director of Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma he directedSweeney Todd (starring Jeff McCarthy and Emily Skinner), The Music ManThe Who’s TommySteel Magnolias. Other directing credits include The Bomb-itty of Errors (four Kevin Kline nominations), Adirondack Theater Festival and St. Louis Rep.; Mother Russia, Carnegie Hall; The Little Foxes, Fulton Opera House; The Robber BridegroomDroodMan of La ManchaBat BoyA Little Night Music,Lucky Stiff, The Commons Group in Vermont. Workshop presentations includeThe Ghost Brothers of Darkland Country by Stephen King and John Mellencamp. He has directed over 100 workshops and readings, many of them for NYU’s Graduate Musical Theater Writing Program. His appearances as a performer include Broadway (Mary PoppinsA Christmas CarolShe Loves Me), off-Broadway, regional theatre (Amphigorey at the A.R.T.), film (Kissing Jessica Stein), recordings, and television.

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Company

David M. Lutken

Broadway: Inherit the Wind (’07 revival), Ring of FireThe Civil WarThe Will Rogers Follies. NY City Opera: Paul Bunyan. Off Broadway: Southern Comfort,Stars in Your Eyes, The Portable Pioneer and Prairie ShowWoody Guthrie’s American SongWinter Man. Regional Theatre: Man of La ManchaElmer GantryFinian’s RainbowBig RiverPump Boys and DinettesThe Love List,Death in EnglandOn Golden PondThe Man Who Came to DinnerFire On The MountainStand By Your ManIn the Deep Heart’s Core. Originally from Dallas, Texas, Mr. Lutken studied in London at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Arts and, as a boy, at the Royal School of Church Music. He has performed in Europe and the United Kingdom, at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and in his adopted home state of Louisiana, is the principal banjoist for the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra.

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Company

Darcie Deaville

Born in Toronto, Darcie continually moved around North America, diving into one culture after another. At the age of 16, Darcie struck out on her own as a street musician. Now living in Austin, Texas, Darcie has played on over 200 recordings, combining her signature style with the likes of Ani di Franco, Slaid Cleaves, Eliza Gilkyson, Mary Gauthier and Tom Paxton. Currently a band member in The Austin Lounge Lizards, Darcie also has five of her own CDs, the latest being Livin’ on the Lucky Side. She’s toured Canada, the USA, Mexico, Germany, Austria, England, Scotland, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, and the Czech Republic. Darcie’s theatre work includes the 2001 debut of her musical,Tornado in Slo MoOil City SymphonyWoody Guthrie’s American SongBack Bog Beast BaitCotton-patch Gospel and Always, Patsy Cline. She is proud to have originated her role in Woody Sez.

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Company

Helen J. Russell

Helen’s affiliation with Woody Guthrie and David Lutken began in 1994 withWoody Guthrie’s American Song at the Pope Theatre in Florida. She sang on the Pope-produced cast album and was a member of the cast of Woody Guthrie’s American Song for its European debut at Vienna’s English Theatre. Along with David and Darcie, she toured the Austrian secondary school system, performing the Guthrie inspired show for children, This Land is Your Land. The V.E.T. sponsored tour visited 49 cities in Austria, Italy and the Czech Republic, bringing Woody to thousands of high school English students. She joined the cast of Woody Sez for its 2007 debut in Edinburgh and for subsequent trips throughout the UK, Europe and its American debut in Oklahoma. At home in New York City, her debut album Holly Days was released in November 2008.

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Company

Andy Teirstein

In addition to performing, Andy writes music inspired by the rich and diverse folk roots of modern culture. His new opera, A Blessing on the Moon, premiered at New York's (Le) Poisson Rouge and in Vancouver’s Chutzpah! Festival in February. His compositions have been described by The New York Times as “magical,” and “superbly crafted.” A student of Leonard Bernstein and Henry Brant, Teirstein composes for the concert hall, film, theater, and dance. As an actor, he appeared in the film Sophie’s Choice and was an original cast member of the Broadway musical Barnum. His CD, Open Crossings, features the Cassatt Quartet, The Kiev Philharmonic Orchestra, and David Lutken narrating “The Shooting of Dan McGrew.” He has composed film scores for BBC and PBS, and created the award-winning musicals Winter Man and Skels. Andy studied with Stephen Sondheim and Arthur Laurents at NYU, and received his Ph.D from The CUNY Graduate Center. He has extended his musical education in the pubs of Ireland and performing as a musical clown with a Mexican circus. He is currently an Associate Arts Professor at NYU.

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Alternates & Understudies

Mimi Bessette

David Finch

Chris de Camillis

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Alternates & Understudies

Mimi Bessette

Mimi just finished playing the role of Emma Parker in the new Broadway musical Bonnie & Clyde. Other credits include: Broadway: A Christmas Story(workshop with Beau Bridges), The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (Dawn). Off-Broadway: Little Shop of Horrors (Audrey), Smoke on the Mountain (Denise) and Good Ol’ Girls. National Tours: ParadeBig RiverThe Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (Angel), Keep on the Sunny Side (Maybelle Carter). Regional: Always…Patsy Cline (Patsy), Hank Williams Lost Highway (Mama Lilly and The Waitress), Woody Guthrie’s American Song (YoungWoman), Cowgirls(Lee), Pump Boys and Dinettes (Prudie), The Sound of Music (Maria), Nunsense(Sister Amnesia). Mimi sang with Bruce Springsteen as part of Woody Guthrie’s Induction into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. She is the producer and singer on her album Lullabies of Broadway — nominated for Best Children’s Album: New York Music Awards.

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Alternates & Understudies

David Finch

A.R.T.: Prometheus BoundCabaret. An actor/musician specializing on strings and horns, Finch has played beside artists as diverse as Alan Cumming, Amanda Palmer, Tony Bennett, Justin Bond, and Dee Snider. He was a cast member of the Tony Award-winning Broadway revival of Cabaret at the infamous Studio 54 (directed by Sam Mendes) and toured with the show in the United States, Canada, and Japan. In 2011 he made his West End debut with Woody Sez. Other productions of Woody include the Edinburgh Fringe, Glasgow Celtic Connection Festival and the U.S. premiere at the Lyric Theatre in Oklahoma City. Off-Broadway credits include Fame on 42nd Street and the New York premiere of Tennessee Williams’ 60-year-old play, Spring Storm. He also spent several years touring Europe, the US and Canada with Fame the Musicaland regionally has performed in Hank Williams’ Lost HighwayGrapes of Wrath,1940s Radio HourFiddler on the RoofBuddy: The Buddy Holly Story andCotton Patch Gospel. Finch is proud to have been an Associate Producer at Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS in NYC from 2004–2006. Check out his newly released CD — the fiddle made me do it. He makes his home in Brooklyn, NY.

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Alternates & Understudies

Chris de Camillis

A.R.T: thirty productions in fifteen years at A.R.T. as Artistic Coordinator/​​Resident Stage Manager. Broadway: Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Misery, It’s Only a Play, The Glass Menagerie. Off-Broadway: Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven; The Hard Problem, Pride’s Crossing, Lincoln Center; Much Ado About Nothing, NYSF/​Delacorte; The Total Bent, Public Theater; Parable of the Sower, Public Theater Under the Radar Festival; Oliver Twist, TFNA. For Esch, Tommy, Jeremy, and Jan.

Actors’ Equity Association member

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Assistant Lighting Designer

Seth Riser