That guy who wrote the stage play. Man of La Mancha. You know; the 1960’s Broadway production that ran for 2,329 performances and won five Tony Awards? (Cue Broadway music; enter deluded Spanish man with a quest, Don Quixote.) “’Tis I, Don Quixote, the Man of La Mancha…”
This guy was the playwright for other performances too, like the comedy play adaption of One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Both shows continue to be produced nationally and internationally with an estimated 300 productions a year.
The guy’s name is Dale Wasserman. He decided to be an Arizona resident "because it's the one State which refuses to adopt Daylight Saving Time." This guy had chutzpa. Perhaps it was due to the difficulties of his early life. He was orphaned before 10 years of age and preferred to pursue survival the next number of years as a hobo riding the railways.
Known to be reclusive in his later years, Wasserman did not usually attend awards ceremonies, although there was one ceremony he just couldn’t skip. “When the University of Wisconsin offered an Honorary Doctorate, I did appear in cap and gown to address the audience in the football stadium at Madison, because a scant quarter-mile from where I was being Doctored, I had hopped my first freight at the age of 12. Irony should not be wasted."
Dale’s memoir gives clear-cut, personal experience description of a Hobo as “…a wanderer who works. A lumberjack. Woodchopper. Construction stiff, barley bucker, short order cook, merchant mariner…You name it and there was hoboes who could do it.” Dialogue such as this as well as music reminiscing Dale’s Wasserman’s Hobo years will be presented in Burning in the Night: A Hobo’s Song at Mesa Arts Center February 6-8. Be sure to enjoy the trip back in time.
When: Friday, February 6 - Sunday, February 8, 2015
Performing Live Series
Where: Nesbitt/Elliott Playhouse
Start time: 3:00PM & 7:00PM
Special Mesa Arts Foundation Fundraiser to benefit Outreach Programs like Spoken Word will be held Feb 6, 2015 | 7:00PM. Tickets for the opening night fundraiser on Feb. 6 are $75, and purchase includes a post-show dessert reception with the cast and special guests Martha Wasserman and Richard Warren.
By LaDawn Lingard