A Fringe Festival event revisits the glory days of Haight-Ashbury in California during the '60s.
"Down to Monterey," a 1960s-themed theatrical song-cycle show written and performed by Lee Domann, will be presented three times at the Wilmington Fringe Festival 2012 from Thursday through Saturday.
Domann, a professional songwriter/storyteller for 30 years, has had songs recorded by such artists as Kathy Mattea and Riders in the Sky.
He said "Down to Monterey" is a personal and social history of the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco, Calif. during 1966-67. It is partly autobiographical and draws upon his own experience of hitchhiking with a hometown friend to Haight-Ashbury, after dropping out of the University of Kansas.
"But it's also mythical," said Domann, 63, of South Carolina. "My aim is to resurrect and re-awaken the memories, feelings and commitment of those of us who were part of that era. Most of all, I like to think of it as an appeal and invitation to those of us who remain, to reclaim our identity and to respond accordingly in the present day — a primer for those who never knew… a reminder for those who've forgotten."
Domann says he agrees with author/mythologist, Michael Meade, who believes genuine societal change most naturally occurs when older people give up the fears associated with aging and become elders instead. He says, "There's a line in the show that says exactly that: 'A rising remnant still looks to you, and you know more than you think you do.'"
Veteran rock musician Barry Tashian is a fan of the play. Tashian knows about the '60s and its music; he was the founder and guitarist for The Remains, the opening band for The Beatles on their 1966 United States tour. He later played with Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris.
"Lee is a wonderful troubadour," Tashian said. "He awakened my senses and brought back memories I had not visited in decades. He takes us back to those phenomenal years with a great mix of songs, guitar, stories and character-acting."
Domann believes in his musical.
"It's timely and I hope I can still be performing it for as long as I can sing. It's my credo, my statement of belief," Domann said.
He added, "By the way, everything in this presentation is true — some of it is even factual."
IF YOU GO
WHAT 'Down to Montery' 2012 Wilmington Fringe Festival event
WHEN8:45 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27; 7:15 p.m. Friday, Sept. 28; 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29
WHERE 4 West 5th St., Wilmington
INFO fringewilmingtonde.com or 757-3898