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June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me to premier at Edinburgh Fringe 2024

June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me Edinburgh Fringe 2024. Photo credit: Jess Hardwick

Charlene Boyd, one of Scotland’s leading actors shares the story of one of country music’s most iconic voices: June Carter Cash. Directed by the multi-award-winning Cora Bissett, June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me opens at the Dissection Room Summerhall as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe ahead of a tour of Scottish cultural venues and festivals in August and September 2024.



National Theatre of Scotland and Grid Iron Theatre Company present

 

June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me

 

Written and performed by Charlene Boyd, directed by Cora Bissett 

 

Music performed by Harry Ward, Ray Aggs and Amy Duncan

 

Set and Costume Design - Shona Reppe, MD, Composer and Sound Designer – Pippa Murphy, Lighting Designer – Elle Taylor, Movement Director – Laura Fisher

 

Premiering at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe at Summerhall from 6 to 24 August with preview performances from 2 to 4 August 2024, and touring across Scotland from 28 August to 22 September 2024.


Part of the 2024 Made in Scotland Showcase


June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me, Charlene Boyd. Photo credit: Jeremiah Reynolds

 

June Carter Cash was a country singer, songwriter and dancer. She played guitar, banjo, harmonica and autoharp, winning five Grammy awards across her career. She came from a family of country singers and was the second wife of Johnny Cash. Their relationship was celebrated in the Oscar-winning 2005 film, Walk the Line. A new documentary about “June”, received its TV premiere on Paramount+ in 2024. This is the first stage play to premiere about June’s life and music in the UK.

 

More than a simple biography of June’s life and music, this play with songs, sees Charlene explore her own relationship with her musical heroine and their shared experience as performers and working mothers. A powerful, personal journey of discovery stretching across the Atlantic, from the Appalachian Mountains to the Glasgow high-rise flats, their tale is one of empowerment, endurance and perseverance.


June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me, Charlene Boyd. Photo credit: Jeremiah Reynolds

Charlene Boyd travelled to Nashville and across the Appalachian Mountains to research this play. She visited places that held special significance in June’s life and interviewed friends and family of June Carter Cash, alongside contemporary American country singer-songwriters.

 

The show will feature live music and will be staged in a cabaret style setting, inspired by Nashville’s legendary Bluebird Café. Charlene Boyd gets to grips with a life less ordinary in this raw yet uplifting piece of intimate gig theatre.

 

Charlene Boyd, writer and performer said:

“I’ve sang in a band as June Carter Cash for over a decade but knew nothing about her really. I thought she was the pretty backing singer who sang along with Johnny Cash, then married him. It wasn’t until I started to dig that I realised how incredible June was in her own right, as an artist, woman and mother. I am proud that my first play shines a light on working class women artists and their struggle to be given their rightful place.”


Charlene Boyd

Charlene Boyd is a Scottish actor and writer, born and raised in Glasgow. June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me marks her debut as a playwright. As an actor she most recently undertook the UK tour of 2:22 A Ghost Story and appeared in The Macbeths at the Citizens Theatre, for which she was nominated for Best Actress at the CATS Awards in 2019. Charlene has previously worked with National Theatre of Scotland on the productions Men Should Weep, Empty and The Miracle Man. Her television work includes Mayflies, The Trial of Christine Keeler, Crime S2, River City and Scots Squad. She also performs, as June, with Jericho Hill, in a Johnny Cash tribute band.

 

Cora Bissett. Photo credit: Stephanie Gibson

Cora Bissett is a Scottish theatre director, playwright, actor and songwriter. Previous work with National Theatre of Scotland includes the hit political musical Glasgow Girls, Rites, Adam, Interference and Orphans. Other theatre work includes Emma Donohue’s Room, which toured to London, across Scotland, Dublin and Toronto, the hit rock-music production Janis Joplin: Full Tilt and autobiographical gig theatre production What Girls Are Made Of, which won a Fringe First and Herald Angel award. From 2014 until 2022, Bissett was an Associate Director with the National Theatre of Scotland.

 

Founded in 1995, Grid Iron is a multi-award-winning Edinburgh-based new writing theatre company who specialise in site-specific and location theatre, although they have also created work for conventional stages.  Grid Iron have previously collaborated with National Theatre of Scotland on Roam, a site-responsive production staged in Edinburgh Airport. 


Grid Iron have worked previously with Charlene Boyd on Barflies, Letters Home and The Devil’s Larder and with Cora Bissett on Clearance, The Bloody Chamber, Fierce and Yarn.


The Cash family has connections to Scotland. Johnny Cash claimed his ancestors were from the Kingdom of Fife and was very proud of his Scottish ancestry. Cash visited Fife on more than one occasion, recording a television special there, Christmas in Scotland, in 1981. June’s daughter Carlene Carter made a special appearance at Celtic Connections in February 2024.

 

Both National Theatre of Scotland and Grid Iron have a longstanding relationship with the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. National Theatre of Scotland has presented 18 shows at the Fringe since 2006, with previous shows including Black Watch, Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour and Adam. Grid Iron have appeared at the Festival Fringe 15 times since 1997 with offerings such as Decky Does a Bronco, Doppler, Barflies and The Devil’s Larder.

 

In 2024, National Theatre of Scotland is producing a programme of three shows at the Edinburgh Festivals. Alongside June Carter Cash, The Woman, Her Music and Me, Gary McNair’s Dear Billy is showing at the Assembly Rooms and David Ireland’s The Fifth Step premieres at the Royal Lyceum Theatre as part of the Edinburgh International Festival.

 

The National Theatre of Scotland’s popular Theatre for a Fiver scheme will be available for 14 to 16 year-olds and those on Universal Credit. 


📸 photos credited individually


 





 

June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me venues and dates

June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me, Charlene Boyd. Photo credit: Jess Hardwick

Edinburgh Festival Fringe venue and dates:


Dissection Room, Summerhall

02 to 24 August, 4:00pm

Performance time: Doors and bar open at 4:00pm, performance begins at 4:20pm


⏰ Running Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes (approx.)

⚠️ Age recommendation: 16+

 


June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me will also be touring Scotland from 28 August to 22 September 2024:

 

●     Barn, Banchory (Wed 28 Aug)

●     Òran Mór, Glasgow (Fri 30 Aug - Sun 1 Sep)

●     British Legion, Dunfermline - Outwith Festival (Tue 3 Sep)

●     Cochran Hall, Kirkcudbright - Kirkcudbright Fringe (Thu 5 Sep)

●     Millenium Centre, Stranraer in association with Dumfries & Galloway Arts Festival (Sat 7 Sep)

●     Brodick Hall, Arran in association with Arran Theatre and Arts Trust (Wed 11 Sep)

●     The Rockfield Centre, Oban (Fri 13 & Sat 14 Sep)

●     Ullapool Village Hall in association with the Ceilidh Place (Tue 17 & Wed 18 Sep)

●     Forres Town Hall, Forres - Findhorn Bay Festival (Sat 21 & Sun 22 Sep)

 

The National Theatre of Scotland’s popular Theatre for a Fiver scheme will be available for 14 to 16 year-olds and those on Universal Credit. 


 

June Carter Cash: The Woman, Her Music and Me to premier at Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2024 ahead of Scottish tour. Charlene Boyd, Cora Bissett, National Theatre of Scotland.




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Lisa in the theatre. Scottish theatre reviewer. UK theatre blog. Glasgow Theatre. Edinburgh Theatre. Scotland theatre.

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