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"GO GRANNY D" - A One-Woman Theatrical Production with Music Appearing Friday Mar 13 2015 at 8pm

$10 in advance

$12 at the door

The Power of 
Grannies !!!!

"Granny D" was a colorful character and  outspoken political activist who garnered national attention in her 90's for her work in speaking out about political reform.

White Horse Black Mountain is honored  to present the one-woman show, GO GRANNY D in which veteran stage actress Barbara Bates Smith brings this feisty character to life.   It's a thought-provoking show filled with laughter and inspiration.    Musical accompaniment adds to the show and is provided by Jeff Sebens.

In her own beguiling way Barbara—in engaging collaboration with musician Jeff Sebens—leads us through this reformer’s journey in a performance that laces homespun wisdom and biting social commentary with gentle and sometimes outrageous humor.
—William Johnson Everett, Author, Red Clay, Blood River

The Story

At age 90, in 2000, Doris (“Granny D”) Haddock completed a walk across the U.S. — from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C. — to bring attention to the issue of election reform. Bill Moyers identified her as a true national heroine. John McCain said, “She represents all that is good in America.”    Touting “You’re never too old to raise a little hell,” the 90-year-old Doris "Granny D" Haddock in 2000 blazed a 3200-mile trail across America for campaign finance reform, precipitating the passage of the McCain-Feingold Act.   She continued her bipartisan reform efforts in countrywide voter registration drives, issuing her final challenge in 2010 at age 100.

Ethel Doris Rollins was born in Laconia, New Hampshire. She attended Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts, for three years before marrying James Haddock. Emerson students were not allowed to marry at that time, so she was expelled. She was awarded an honorary degree in 2000 instead.

 In 1960, Granny D began her political activism when she and her husband successfully campaigned against planned hydrogen bomb nuclear testing in Alaska, saving an Inuit fishing village at Point Hope. Granny D and her husband retired to Dublin, New Hampshire, in 1972 and there Granny D served on the Planning Board and was active in the community.

After the first efforts of Senators John McCain and Russ Feingold to regulate campaign finances through eliminating soft money failed in 1995, Granny D became increasingly interested in campaign finance reform and spearheaded a petition movement.

On January 1, 1999, at the age of 88, Granny D left the Rose Bowl Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California, in an attempt to walk across the United States to raise awareness of and attract support for campaign finance reform.   Granny D walked roughly ten miles each day for 14 months, making many speeches along the way. The trek attracted a great deal of attention in the mass media.

When Granny D arrived in Washington, D.C., she was 90 years old (having begun the journey at 88 and having two birthdays en route), had traveled more than 3200 miles, and was greeted in the capital by a crowd of 2200 people. Several dozen members of Congress walked the final miles with her during the final day's walk from Arlington National Cemetery to the Capitol on the National Mall.

Haddock celebrated her 100th birthday on January 24, 2010,  and died six weeks later on March 9, 2010, at her son's home in Dublin, New Hampshire, following a bout with respiratory illness.

More about Granny D

The One-Woman Theatrical Production

Currently touring nationwide,, off-Broadway actress Barbara Bates Smith and musician Jeff Sebens highlight the story of this crusader whose steel determination took the world by surprise and elevated her to national fame.
 Smith summons the granny with the straw hat proclaiming across the U.S. "Corporations are not people! Democracy is!"

Together Smith and Sebens provide a wonderfully entertaining evening which reminds us all that one person CAN make a difference.

Comments About The Show
An entertaining, thought-provoking and inspirational show, also as a community linking experience ...synergetic. Thank you for such a heart-felt and spirited portrayal of Granny D
 —Dawn Warneking, Corvallis sponsor
 You are awesome. It was an inspirational play, with that Can Do spirit—a call to action for people young and old­. 
—Sylvia Shih, Monterey Peace and Justice Center

I really enjoyed the show. You had me on the edge of my seat wondering if she'd make it! And I loved Jeff's music, especially "Lift Every Voice." I hope it gets more people to interact with their democracy!
—Charlie Flynn-McIver, Artistic Director, NC Stage Company, Asheville, NC

Such a delightful reminder of Granny D's wonderful work in getting big money out of politics. Her message is SO needed.
—Rose Lewis, League of Women Voters, Corvallis show

The Actress

A Southeastern Theatre Conference ‘Best Actress’ award winner,  Barbara Bates Smith   has enjoyed featured roles in regional productions of "Wit," "August: Osage County," "Hamlet," "Doubt," "Three Tall Women," "Driving Miss Daisy," "Sister Mary Ignatius....," and Beckett's "Happy Days." At Florida’s Asolo Theatre, she was in the world premiere of Horton Foote's "Talking Pictures." 

She's received universal praise for her Off-Broadway adaptation and performance of “Ivy Rowe” from Lee Smith’s Fair and Tender Ladies, has toured for twenty-five years with the works of noted southern author Lee Smith  and has recently added the stories of Ron Rash to the Smith-Sebens repertoire.   Her original monologues are “The C-Word: Her Own Cancer Story” and “Confessions of a Clergy Wife.”  are moving and though provoking.

Barbara and Playmakers' Theater director Mark Hunter conceived and co-directed "Jazz, Jam, No Jive," an original play by and about Tampa's African-American teenagers, with music by Nat Adderley. Programs based on literary lives and works--”Making Literature Come Alive”--highlighted the years she headed Taproot Theater, an educational ensemble in Polk County, Florida. 

Currently she is actively involved with Asheville's Haywood Street Congregation, a homeless ministry, where she serves as greeter and leader of her most diverse and dynamic Story Circle ever!    Barbara and her husband, Russell, live in the Crabtree Mountain area of Haywood County NC, where on occasional breaks from learning lines, she enjoys playing piano, guitar, autoharp, and dulcimer- carrying a harmonica in her purse.

More information is on her website: 

The Music

For a decade, Jeff Sebens has accompanied her shows with a variety of hammered dulcimer, lap dulcimer, guitar, and banjo music.   Jeff builds and plays instruments, teaches workshops, and performs on both hammered and lap dulcimers at concerts and festivals from his musical base in Cana, Virginia.

He also tours with Barbara, providing musical accompaniment for all her shows.