Saturday, September 15, 2012

"Once Upon a Tree" Will Be Performed Friday, Sept. 21, At the Boiler Room

The central metaphor of this musical stage show is a Magic Fruit Tree. The performance at the Boiler Room, located in the Factory, in Franklin, Tennessee, will take place at 8:00 p.m., Friday, September 21, 2012. I saw this show performed as a Stage Reading in May, at the Looby Theater in Nashville, and it received a standing ovation from a packed house. Since then Janet McMahan and her co-author, Robby Coles, have revised and expanded it, and it promises to be even more wonderful.
It's loaded with songs that have beautiful lyrics -- some of them exceedingly funny -- in great musical settings. David Huntsinger collaborated with Janet McMahan in the writing and arrangement of the music. I can only repeat the praise I gave to the whole show back in May, and then I won't be doing it justice: Janet McMahan and her collaborators -- Robby Coles, David Huntsinger, and others -- have concocted a masterpiece in this funny, poignant work, which is so musically and aesthetically pleasing with its message of the strengthening power of trials overcome and the redemptive power of love. The story line has a little girl, Lucy, attacked by a number of villainous characters from her storybook, and continues through her turbulent interactions with them to a happy ending. The witch from "Snow White," the Big Bad Wolf from "Little Red Riding Hood," Captain Hook from "Peter Pan," and several other fairy-tale villains all learn the redemptive power of love, portrayed in the show's beautiful final song, "Listen to Love." Along the way, rollicking humor is interspersed with poignant depictions of modern dilemmas. Cinderella battles bunions, in a song that is so funny I almost fell off my seat laughing, and Snow White considers dyeing her hair, or perhaps donning a wig, after losing her Prince to a Blonde. "To Be or Not To Be A Blonde" is the vehicle for these lamentations. "The Tower Song," which accompanies little Lucy's time spent jailed in the Tower, and "Planning A Plot, Plotting A Plan," with Captain Hook and The Big Bad Wolf in nefarious cahoots, rounded out the list of songs that were included in the May Stage Reading of this not-to-be-missed sojourn in a very different version of fairyland.
Hope to see as many of you as possible there, in the Franklin,Tennessee, Boiler Room next Friday night.

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