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MP3 Marcus Hummon - Francis of Guernica

Original cast recording most recently performed by the Tennessee Rep. Theatre. Features the singing of Broadway Star Mike Eldred.

8 MP3 Songs
EASY LISTENING: Musicals/Broadway, FOLK: like Joni

Francis of Guernica is a play that works on three levels-it is first a lecture by Professor Brighton Mather about Art in the Twentieth Century; second, it is Mather''s recollection of meeting Pablo Picasso in early 1937; and last, it is a story that Mather tells Picasso which inspires him as he paints his masterpiece, "Guernica." It is this story itself, which comprises roughly two thirds of the piece, which is told entirely in rock-opera.

The story concerns a young, American idealist, Francis, who leaves home to join the International Brigade in their doomed effort to stem the tide of Franco''s Fascist forces. He is shell-shocked in battle and is saved by his love interest, ReneƩ, a young Jewish freedom fighter. He awakes from his coma-like state to the belief that he is St. Francis of Assisi. Fearing Francis will be sent back to the front, where he will surely die, ReneƩ decides to take him to the safely of her home town, Guernica, where she is sure the war will not find him, and where she knows a priest who can perhaps heal Francis.

Although Francis''s life ends tragically, Picasso finds in the story, the inspiration to complete his massive canvas, and once again electrify the art world.

Marcus Hummon, has been one of Nashville''s most consistently successful and innovative songwriters, and was named "Nashville''s Top Songwriter" by the Nashville Scene''s Readers Poll three years in a row. He has penned, or co-penned, hits for Sara Evans ("Born to Fly"), the Dixie Chicks ("Ready to Run" and "Cowboy, Take Me Away"), Tim McGraw ("One of These Days"), Wynonna ("Only Love"), and most recently, Rascal Flatts ("Bless the Broken Road"), along with many others, garnering Grammy, CMA, and Tony nominations.

Along the way, he has also recorded and released five albums of his own. The first, the critically acclaimed All in Good Time, on Columbia Records, two sterling independent label releases, The Sound of One Fan Clapping and Looking for the Child, and his latest EP, Revolution on Velvet Armadillo Records, and Supernatural released on the London Rock Label, Track Records, in the UK, and Western Beat in the US. Marcus''s diverse career has also included a published book of poetry, entitled "Gospel Haiku," and the lyrics for the PBS children''s cartoon series, "Book of Virtues."

Venturing into theatre, Marcus has received Metro and Tennessee Arts Grants for three of his musicals: American Duet, co-written with Bill Feehely, Artistic Director of Actors Bridge, Francis of Guernica, performed by Tennessee Repertory Theatre, and Warrior, a work based on the life of Jim Thorpe, the great Native American Athlete, which premiered at the new Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville. Warrior also garnered Marcus the award for creative achievement given by the Native American Association of Tennessee. His latest produced work, The Piper, debuted at the Hartt School in Hartford, CT in April, 2004, and his new musical, Atlanta, will be produced by Actors Bridge in January, 2005. In New York, American Duet received a stage reading at the New 42nd Street Studios in January, 2004, and is slated to open off Broadway in September, 2005. His opera, Poor Players, is scheduled to be performed by the Nashville Opera in November, 2005. His musicals have not only played to sell out crowds, but have also generated great reviews and multiple "Tennie" (Tennessean Theatre Critic) awards. In his review of American Duet, The Tennessean''s theatre critic, Kevin Nance, wrote:

"...Hummon offers a visionary alternative. His score for American Duet-a pulsing, yearning, soaring amalgam of Afropop and country styles-masterfully delineates and then subtly blends the two genres so that, by the end, the differences between them all but disappear and a new thing, a third thing, has taken their place. The result is no self-conscious hybrid; it has its own kind of integrity, perfect and whole."

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