I’m writing this entry from a fifteen-seat passenger van. Attached to the van, is a 12′ trailer. Inside of that trailer, is an oversized coffin. I’m joined in this pallbearer of a van by seven other wayward souls as we crawl down, down a farm-y highway somewhere between Indiana and Ohio. We’re on tour with my new project, American Murder Song. It’s week two of our six week journey.
This touring production is by far the most ambitious of my traveling works to date—it includes not only coffins, but live musicians, portable sets, costumes, and more. The intense travel schedule is tiring, but everyone seems to be enjoying themselves, and we’re managing thus far to deliver on our goal: create a theatrical historical wake that feels like a party… a nightly event this Halloween season for all of you likeminded wayward souls who have supported my creative endeavors over the years.
We’ve had some snags—a broken tuning peg on an upright bass, and a venue housed beneath a live wrestling show where every time someone was body-slammed, the ceiling above our set rumbled and shook—but these unplanned obstacles have only added to the adventure (plus: as a performer, having to compete with the sounds of grown men in unitards grunting and fighting does keep one on one’s crooked toes).
I’m having a blast, and the audience seems to be as well. Nightly, folks have shown up dressed in early 19th century mourning garb and costumes of the era. They’ve sang with us, drank with us, and allowed me to dust off my live theater chops and perform for them nightly, singing songs of murder and untimely death.
We’re having so much fun, that we’re extending our tour. The American Wake Tour is now visiting Sacramento, Portland, Seattle, Boise, and Salt Lake City. Grab yer tickets and blackest of black mourning garb, and join us for a wake: http://americanmurdersong.com/gettickets.