Actor-historian Kurt Sutton to portray Mark Twain

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July 1, 2013 | Share |
Sing-alongs are on the bill during “An Evening with Mark Twain,” with a playlist that includes “Down in the Valley” and “Old-Time Religion.”

Sing-alongs are on the bill during “An Evening with Mark Twain,” with a playlist that includes “Down in the Valley” and “Old-Time Religion.”

Actor and historian Kurt Sutton will present “An Evening with Mark Twain” at 3 p.m. Sunday, July 28, at the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at Western Carolina University.
Sutton employs wit and satire in his performance as an elderly Samuel Clemens, the intellectual icon who created Mark Twain as a means of telling stories.

Kurt Sutton as Samuel Clemens, also known as Mark Twain, will bring storytelling and music to the Bardo Arts Center at Western Carolina University on July 28.

Kurt Sutton as Samuel Clemens, also known as Mark Twain, will bring storytelling and music to the Bardo Arts Center at Western Carolina University on July 28.

Sutton notes the subtle distinction in portraying Clemens rather than Twain: “I interpret Sam Clemens’ version of Mark Twain. What people often don’t realize is that Samuel Clemens wasn’t Mark Twain, and Mark Twain wasn’t Sam Clemens.”

The performance is set in Clemens’ parlor and includes storytelling and music, as Clemens was a musician. Sutton will perform popular songs of the time on guitar, banjo and harmonica.

Born in Germany, Sutton immigrated to the United States in 1950. He studied history at the University of Georgia, where he developed an appreciation of Clemens. For the last seven years, Sutton has been touring across the United States with his two-act, interactive show.

The event is sponsored by the WCU Friends of the Arts organization and presented by the College of Fine and Performing Arts.

Tickets are $5 for all ages and will be available for purchase July 1 from the Bardo Arts Center box office, by calling 828-227-2479 or by going online to bardoartscenter.wcu.edu.


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