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Suffet Your Folk Presentation (27) RE: Your Folk Presentation 20 Oct 10


For the past eight years Anne Price and I have been doing an educational workshop we call Woody Rediscovered, and which we describe as "a musical exploration of Woody Guthrie's less known songs." During that time we found out what works best and what doesn't work at all.

It is important to understand that Woody Rediscovered is not simply a concert. In addition to singing, Anne and I show and discuss photographs, song books, periodicals, records, and other source material. We also distribute a handout which summarizes what we call the three periods of Woody's musical life. And above all, we actively engage the audience in our discussion by encouraging questions and comments, and by asking a few questions of our own. Very often there are members of the audience who actually knew Woody and have much to contribute. From time to time we have even called upon a particular member of the audience to perform a less known Woody Guthrie song that he or she knew.

So what works best?

Sitting, not standing. We prefer our chairs to be at floor level rather than upon a stage.

A house concert style presentation. This provides the most intimacy and informality.

A meeting room style coffee house (church basement, community center, legion hall, etc), provided the chairs can be pulled close and moved into a circle.

A classroom with moveable furniture, so we can push the tables or desks away and pull the chairs into a circle.

An audience of between 15 and 50.

Two sets, each about 40 to 45 minutes long with a 15 minute break in-between.

What doesn't work at all?

A large auditorium with a high stage and fixed theater style seating.

Otherwise, Anne and I are able to work with the sponsor to adapt Woody Rediscovered to fit the needs of its particular audience.

Please click here for more information about Woody Rediscovered. And please feel free to e-mail me if you would like to discuss booking us.


--- Steve Suffet

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