Work o' The Weavers
Work o’ the Weavers’ very first performance was for an audience of one: none other than Weavers founding member Pete Seeger himself, who scribbled notes in the margins of the narrative to assure accuracy of fact and chronology. In 2003, the new quartet debuted their affectionate homáge at Hudson Valley’s venerable Walkabout Clearwater Coffeehouse (with Fred Hellerman in the front row – he later joined them onstage for Goodnight Irene). Not only is 2013 their 10th year of celebrating The Weavers and their inestimable legacy, but it’s also coincidentally the 65th Anniversary of The Weavers’ very first public performance in 1948. Faithful to the Weavers’ original arrangements, Work o’ the Weavers (David Bernz, James Durst, Mark Murphy & Martha Sandefer) recalls their timeless music and interweaves an edifying narrative to unfold their timely story. Their participatory multi-media program follows the original group’s evolution from the earlier folk revival of the 1930s, through the Almanac Singers to the founding of the Weavers late in ’48; then touches on the blacklist and HUAC testimony, and their triumphant 1955 Carnegie Hall reunion concert which provided a beacon of dignity and hope in the face of the blacklist, and resurrected their music and careers. Featured are not only the beloved familiar songs, but also a few newer — some original, some from friends, some written by former Weavers themselves — that the Weavers might be singing today. It was at Pete’s behest that Work o’ the Weavers not just look back nostalgically, but rather be forward-
looking – forward-singing! The result is a program that’s rousing, refreshing and relevant.