Want a little bit of shock and awe this theater season? Head to the Guthrie Theater for the pre-Broadway performances of the brand new musical The Scottsboro Boys about the infamous 1930s case involving a group of African American teenagers unjustly accused of raping two white women who were all sentenced to death, and the Jewish lawyer who defended them, all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Guthrie’s show runs from August 6 – September 25, with previews July 31 – August 5 . TC Jewfolk is giving away a pair of FREE tickets to the Scottsboro Boys show of your choice, plus a hot discount. Read on!
This musical (somewhat a departure from the Guthrie’s usual fare) is the newest hit by Tony-award winning songwriting team and MOTs John Kander and Fred Ebb (of Chicago and Cabaret fame). It was directed and choreographed by Five-time Tony award winner and MOT Susan Stroman (The Producers). If you’re lucky, you’ll see Kander in the audience watching the show (and audience reactions) for tweaks before it heads to Broadway in October 2010.
The show got rave reviews in its initial Off-Broadway run at New York’s Vineyard Theatre. Huffington Post called it “An astounding production . . . that will leave you shattered.” The New York Post said it was “A Masterwork! A Triumph! Four Stars!” And AP described it as “Pitch perfect! A staggeringly inventive piece of musical theatre!”
That said, Scottsboro Boys – which deals with an incredibly difficult story of injustice, corruption, and racism in our not-too-distant past – is a lot to swallow as a musical. The show is done as a minstrel show, with an all-black cast except for the white master of ceremonies. Yes, that means that the New York Jewish defense attorney Samuel Leibowitz is played by an African American, Forrest McClendon. Journalist Lucy Komisar called that portrayal an “unsettling caricature.”
In real life, Samuel Leibowitz arrived in New York City with his parents from Romania at the age of four. His family lived in a tenement on the Lower East Side. Leibowitz was a Democrat, but it was the Communist Party that picked him to take the Scottsboro Boys’ case. Despite the urging of his wife and friends, he took on the defense of the Scottsboro boys for four years without pay or reimbursement for most of his expenses. Death threats were made against him, and five National Guardsmen were hired to protect him during the trial. Years later, Leibowitz became one of New York’s State Supreme Court Justices.
I Want the Free Tickets!
TC Jewfolk is psyched to be able to give away a PAIR OF FREE TICKETS to one of our lucky readers to a Scottsboro Boys performance of their choice at the Guthrie Theater. How can you win the pair of free tickets? Before Thursday, August 5th at midnight answer this question in the comments below:
We Think Scottsboro Boys defense attorney Samuel Leibowitz was pretty jaw-droppingly cool. Name a Jew today who you think is inspirational and tell us why. We’ll pick the winner randomly with the help of “The Hat.”
How Can I Score a Discount to the Show?
If you don’t win a free pair of tickets to the show, buy your own tickets, but use our discount. TC Jewfolk readers (and their friends, and cousins) save $10 on these select performances of The Scottsboro Boys at the Guthrie Theater:
Tuesday, August 24 at 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, August 25 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, August 28 at 1 p.m. (with Post-play discussion)
Sunday, August 29 at 1 p.m. (with Post-play discussion)
Call the Guthrie Box Office at 612.377.2224 and quote “A95” to receive this offer. Not valid online, with other offers or on previously purchased tickets. Handling fees may apply.
Click here to learn more about the shockingly true story of the “Scottsboro” boys on PBS and the watershed U.S. Supreme Court cases (Powell v. Alabama and Norris v. Alabama) that resulted from their trials and appeals.
Read the Star Tribune’s preview for Scottsboro Boys at the Guthrie Theater.