Mimi Bessette Joins Cast of ART's WOODY SEZ


The American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) has just announced that Broadway actress Mimi Bessette is joining the cast of Woody Sez, a musical tapestry of the American folk hero's life and songs, devised by David M. Lutken with Nick Corley, performed by David M. Lutken, Darcie Deaville, Helen Jean Russell, and Andy Teirstein, directed by Nick Corley. Performances run through this weekend at the Loeb Drama Center, 64 Brattle Street, Cambridge.

Mimi Bessette has just finished playing the role of Emma Parker in the new Broadway musical Bonnie & Clyde. Her other Broadway credits include The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (Dawn), and Broadway: A Christmas Story (a workshop with Beau Bridges). Off-Broadway she was seen in Little Shop of Horrors (Audrey), Smoke on the Mountain (Denise) and Good Ol' Girls. She performed in the national tours of Parade, Big River, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (Angel), Keep on the Sunny Side (Maybelle Carter), and her regional credits include 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.

Woody Sez brings Guthrie to life in a joyous, toe-tapping, and moving theatrical portrait that uses Woody's words and songs, performed by the company of four actor/singers who play over twenty instruments, transporting the audience through Guthrie's fascinating, beautiful, and sometimes tragic life. With more than twenty-five classic Woody tunes including This Land is Your Land, Pastures of Plenty and Bound for Glory, Woody Sez captures the heart and spirit of Woody Guthrie and the stories of America.

Woody Sez has been receiving audience and critical praise since it took up residence at the A.R.T. this month, drawing large crowds both for its performances and the post-show hootenannies, as well as the first live outdoor simulcast of the show that was presented on the Harvard campus. This is the last opportunity to catch this effervescent and exhilarating show.

The American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) is one of the country's most celebrated theaters and the winner of numerous awards, including the Tony Award, the Pulitzer Prize and Elliot Norton and I.R.N.E. Awards. In May of 2003 it was named one of the top three regional theaters in the country by Time magazine. The A.R.T. was founded by Robert Brustein in 1980, who served as Artistic Director until 2002, when he was succeeded by RoBert Woodruff. In 2008, Diane Paulus became the A.R.T.'s Artistic Director. During its 31-year history, the A.R.T. has welcomed many major American and international theater artists, presenting a diverse repertoire that includes premieres of American plays, bold reinterpretations of classical texts and provocative new music Theater Productions. The A.R.T. has performed throughout the U.S. and worldwide in 21 cities in 16 countries on four continents. Since becoming Artistic Director, Diane Paulus has programmed innovative work that has enhanced the A.R.T.'s core mission to expand the boundaries of theater. Productions such as Sleep No More, The Donkey Show, Gatz, Porgy and Bess, Prometheus Bound, and Death and the Powers: The Robots' Opera have immersed audiences in original theatrical experiences. The A.R.T.'s club theater, OBERON, which Paulus calls a "Second Stage for the 21st century," has become an incubator for local artists and has also attracted national attention for its groundbreaking model for programming. Through all of its work, the A.R.T. is committed to building a community of artists, technicians, educators, staff and audience, all of who are integral to the A.R.T.'s mission.

The A.R.T.'s 2011-12 Season will conclude with the annual EMERGING AMERICA FESTIVAL, co-produced with the Huntington Theatre Company and the ICA, from June 21-24 in Boston and Cambridge. For more information visit http://www.emergingamericafestival.org.

The Loeb Drama Center, located at 64 Brattle Street, Harvard Square, Cambridge, is accessible to persons with special needs and to those requiring wheelchair seating or first-floor restrooms. Deaf and hard-of-hearing patrons can also reach the theater by calling the toll-free N.E. Telephone Relay Center at 1-800-439-2370.

For further information call 617-547-8300 or visit americanrepertorytheater.org

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