Charles Manson: Summer of Hate – The Musical

“Charles Manson: Summer of Hate – The Musical”, the brainchild of Stefan Pucher, Christopher Uhe and Susanne Meister, is a stage show about Manson’s failed attempts to start a musical career. Described as a “musical trip between L.A. and Death Valley”, the show opened in Hamburg at the Thalia Theatre earlier this Autumn.

The music of the piece comes from Manson’s records ‘The Summer of Hate’, ‘LIE – The Love and Terror Cult’ and ‘The Family Jams’ as well as their other musical peripherals. The albums were created with members of the Manson ‘Family’, the self-given moniker of Manson’s quasi-commune, who in it’s height had roughly 30 members including runaways, drug casualties and deluded idealists.

Charles Manson was a friend of Beach Boys’ drummer Dennis Wilson and an associate of award-winning songwriter and musician Neil Young. Young explained in his autobiography ‘Waging Heavy Peace’ ’how he attempted to get Manson a record deal seeing promise in the singer, “I told Mo Ostin at Reprise about him, and recommended that Reprise check him out… Shortly afterward, the Sharon Tate-La Bianca murders happened, and Charlie Manson’s name was known around the world”.

As well as featuring the music and monologues of the convicted felon, the musical also contains video footage of him and his followers, recordings of him talking and photographs of his drug fuelled explicates in the 1960’s.

Society’s strange fascination with the macabre continues and Manson seems to be once again in vogue now that he has been granted the license to marry 26-year-old Afton Elaine Burton whilst incarcerated at California State Prison, Corcoran.

Photo Credits: EPA

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