News By Tag
News By Place
"Visionary Man" at the Hudson Mainstage Theatre
World premiere musical is based on true story of visionary artist J.B. Murray
“I’ve always seen such beauty in his story,” says playwright Mary Padgelek. “It is a story of mystery. A story of hope. Most of all, it is a story of one person following his call with persistence, courage and faith. From my first introduction to the strange art of J.B. Murray in 1993, I believed his passion and vision made his story ‘sing and dance.’ The mystery and power of his story need more than mere words. I could imagine a string of songs led by ecstatic dancing to a finale of choral explosion.”
Born in Mitchell, Georgia in 1908, John Bunion Murray spent much of his life as a farm worker where he raised eleven children with his wife Cleo Kitchens. A deeply religious man, he could neither read nor write and exhibited no artistic aspirations until he experienced a transformative spiritual vision as he watered his potatoes one evening. Believing that God had charged him with an evangelical mission, Murray became a scribe in the service of the Lord, creating and proliferating a vast body of drawings and paintings he referred to as “the message of the Holy Spirit direct from God.” Thesecryptic works feature a visually dense writing system indecipherable to most viewers — the artist himself was only able to translate the texts by peering through a bottle of “holy water.”
Visionary Manopens on July 26 and continues on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m through Aug. 31. There will be two preview performances, on Thursday, July 24 and Friday, July 25, both at 8 p.m. General admission is $28. Student price (with valid ID) and previews are $15. The Hudson Mainstage is located at 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90038. For information and to purchase tickets, call(323) 960-7787.