Song of the Day: Judy Collins, “A Medley Of Four Original Songs From ‘Marat/Sade'”

On this day in 1793, French writer and revolutionary Jean-Paul Marat was murdered in his bathtub by Charlotte Corday, a member of the opposing party. The incident was chronicled in a 1963 play by Peter Weiss, The Persecution and Assassination of Jean-Paul Marat as Performed by the Inmates of the Asylum of Charenton Under the Direction of the Marquis de Sade, generally shortened to Marat/Sade. It’s really a play within a play, set within the famous Charenton Asylum on July 13, 1808, fifteen years after the assassination took place. There was music associated with the play, and Judy Collins performed a medley of four of the songs ("Homage To Marat," "Marat We’re Poor," "People’s Reaction," and "Poor Old Marat") on her 1966 album, In My Life. I never actually saw the play, but I had a copy of the script (including the music) among my books when I was in high school, and it left a huge impression on me.

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