Ellen Snortland takes a comic journey through progressive politics, sex, drugs and Norwegian Americans in her show Now That She's Gone. Here's what Snorland has to say about her show and why you should come and see it.
1) It’s funny without being stupid. No American sit-com laugh tracks here! And while Prairie Home Companion creator and male humorist Garrison Keillor has made English-speaking crowds all over the world laugh with his tales of Lake Woebegone, Minnesota, I have my tales of sex, drugs and lutefisk in South Dakota - a virtually unexplored part of the United States. Mr. Keillor, due to commercial constraints, has to stay away from the “dark” side of Lutherans and Norwegian-Americans. Not so for me. I eagerly shares LSD trips and pre-marital sexual encounters with anyone who can stand it.
2) You’ll find out what is really going on in America. Wacky right-wing American “crazy” politics, such as the antics of The Tea Party, often receives a lot of international news, but I like to share the progressive side of American politics on stage. Theater goers will watch me become enmeshed with pro-choice American feminism, and the legacy of Eleanor and Franklin D. Roosevelt, forever hacking away at the nasty rumor that American feminists have no sense of humor. While of course that’s true for some feminists, we’ve also heard that Scottish National Party members wouldn’t know a joke if a finnan haddie smacked them upside their wee little heads!
3) Because we’re really nice people? OK, that’s the Norwegian-American Lutheran side speaking. People sometimes forget that I have written - and am indeed performing - a memoir piece. My husband, Ken Gruberman, a six time Grammy award-winning music “guy” from Hollywood, likewise, has created a seamless and beautiful sound design that sweeps you along from comedy to pathos, within seconds.
4) You’ll leave the show with a new appreciation for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The United Nations’ UDHR is woven throughout “Now That She’s Gone.” As a human rights activist, I have been SHOCKED at how people bandy about the term ‘human rights’, but don’t know the Universal Declaration of Human Rights even exists. Not only will you hear the abridged version - phew - during the show, you’ll walk away with a handy-dandy pocket sized copy to give your loved ones.
5) You’ll be able to see a 2 1/2 minute version of all the music from South Pacific! Hey, why pay those astounding West End and New York City Broadway ticket prices when you can see me perform my road- tested “American Broadway Musical for the Attention Span-Challenged” interpretation in less time than it takes to order a cup of tea? We’re just sayin’.
Now That She's Gone runs at the Assembly Hall from 5-28 August at 17.30.