FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
3 PENNY ACRE Joins Creative Team for
World Premiere February 3–20, 2011
NORTHWEST ARKANSAS—November 10, 2010—TheatreSquared and Fayetteville-based folk trio 3 Penny Acre announced today an artistic collaboration on the upcoming World Premiere of Sundown Town, a new play with music by Arkansas playwright Kevin D. Cohea. The play features more than a dozen bluegrass, folk, and Americana favorites woven throughout the storyline. These songs will be performed live at each of fifteen performances by a talented cast of actor/singers and 3 Penny Acre, whose Ozark-inspired music has drawn widespread acclaim. In Sundown Town, set in 1918, a young African American drifter arrives seeking work in a rural North Arkansas town, but a law prohibiting “strangers” after dark threatens to tear the tight-knit community apart. The play’s World Premiere will take place February 3-20, 2010 at Walton Arts Center’s Nadine Baum Studios (505 W. Spring St.) in Fayetteville. Tickets range from $22-24 ($10/under 30) and are now on sale at the Box Office at (479) 571- 2728 and at theatre2.org.
“The synergy of story, place, and powerful music is incredibly moving in Sundown Town,” said Bryan Hembree of 3 Penny Acre. “Whether you’ve lived in Arkansas all your life or have just recently come to call it home, this story and these songs will deeply resonate. The songs evoke the spirit of the Ozarks. We’re thrilled to be a part of this project.”
3 Penny Acre, formed in 2006, is a musical collaboration between songwriters Bayard Blain, Bernice Hembree, and Bryan Hembree. The band has received local and national acclaim, including winning the 2008 Walnut Valley Festival NewSongs competition in the spiritual category, has garnered invitations as official showcase artist at the 2009 and 2010 International Folk Alliance Conference, and most recently was voted “Best Band” and “Album of the Year” at the 2010 Northwest Arkansas Music Awards. Their follow-up sophomore album, Highway 71, features ten songs documenting the people, places, and stories of middle America. More information about the band is available at 3pennyacre.com.
Sundown Town, by Arkansas playwright Kevin D. Cohea, is the story of a small town in Arkansas that, during the summer of 1918, is forced to confront racial prejudice in its midst. Hymns, bluegrass and gospel songs woven throughout the play incorporate the rich musical traditions of rural populations of all backgrounds, regardless of race or creed. Commissioned by TheatreSquared and developed over two years at the Arkansas New Play Fest, Sundown Town features TheatreSquared’s largest cast of local and national talent to date, and is an uncommon theatrical fable of prejudice and redemption, persecution and hope.
TheatreSquared is Northwest Arkansas’s regional theatre, dedicated to creating exceptional works on stage and innovative educational programs. For further information, call 479.445.6333 or visit theatre2.org.
Support for Sundown Town is provided, in part, by the Arkansas Arts Council, an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Promotional support for Sundown Town is provided by the Fayetteville Advertising and Promotion Commission. Major media partners include NWA Media, KUAF, and Mailco USA.
The music of Sundown Town is made possible by underwriting support from Malcolm and Ellen Hayward.
Media Release: “3 Penny Acre Joins Creative Team for Sundown Town”