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Weathering the Storm: "The Lion" Roars Into Milwaukee

Bonnie North
Benjamin Scheuer performs in Lake Effect's Studio.

Singer/songwriter Benjamin Scheuer has had a lot happen to him in his 33 years. His father died suddenly when Scheuer was 13, his family drifted apart, Scheuer learned the guitar, and then he was diagnosed with stage 4 Hodgkin’s lymphoma at 28.

After surviving the cancer, Scheuer went on to craft a one man show about all of it, called The Lion. The show began as a few songs sung in a coffee house and then became the theatrical event that went on to win all kinds of awards in New York and London, and led to him getting to tour with with Mary Chapin Carpenter as well.

The Lion is intensely personal. Scheuer says the more specific he got, the more universal the show became.

"Everybody has that thing about themselves they're scared to share... but the darnedest thing about that is if you do write it down or you tell somebody about it, chances are one of two things will happen: the first thing is they'll say 'oh, ok' and it won't be that important to them... but more likely the thing that will happen is you'll tell them the thing about yourself you're most scared to tell them, and they'll say 'hey, me too'...," Scheuer says.

Scheuer is now in Milwaukee to perform The Lion at the Milwaukee Rep through early November. The three songs he performed for us from The Lion are Cookie Tin Banjo, Weather the Storm and Golden Castle Town.

Bonnie North
Bonnie joined WUWM in March 2006 as the Arts Producer of the locally produced weekday magazine program Lake Effect.