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IN INCUBATION UNDER THE SUPPORT AND GUIDANCE OF

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IN 1977, NASA LAUNCHED A PAIR OF UNMANNED VOYAGER SPACECRAFT ON A SCIENTIFIC "GRAND TOUR" OF THE SOLAR SYSTEM. EACH CRAFT WAS OUTFITTED WITH A "GOLDEN RECORD" OF MUSIC, GREETINGS, AND IMAGES OF LIFE ON EARTH TO CARRY BEYOND THE PLANETS INTO INTERSTELLAR SPACE.
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THIS IS THE STORY OF TWO VOYAGERS WHO MADE A RECORD AND TOOK IT ON TOUR.
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SAGUARO CITY MUSIC THEATRE is proud to partner with songwriter Cameron Hood (Ryanhood) in the development of his new work, Voyagers: A Space Rock Opera. Highly researched and richly allegorical, Voyagers is a sung-through musical about a pair of starry-eyed musicians who wrestle with ambition and belonging as they seek to earn a gold record by embarking on a grand tour inspired by NASA’s twin Voyager space probes.

Inhabiting a theatrical space between Pink Floyd's The Wall, Broadway's Hadestown, American Idiot, and Once: The Musical, Voyagers uses rock music storytelling, dramatic acting, and immersive visuals to explore the aches, dreams, and fears of two ambitious musicians. Their story is told symbolically through the actual mind-bending history, science, and sounds of NASA’s Voyager program.

Launched in 1977, the twin Voyager space probes are the farthest things humans have ever launched from Earth. They visited and studied all four outer planets—Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune—in a flight path officially called “The Grand Tour.” And they both carry a phonograph record nicknamed, “The Golden Record,” as a time capsule of life on Earth in case they are ever discovered a million years from now by another civilization somewhere out in the Milky Way.

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CAMERON HOOD is an award-winning songwriter, performer, and librettist from Tucson, AZ, who is passionate about exploring the arts’ ability to transform trauma. As one-half of the indie-folk duo Ryanhood, Hood has released 7 albums of original music, performed over 1000 shows in 3 countries and 47 US states, and been named, along with Ryan David Green, “Best Group/Duo” in the 2014 International Acoustic Music Awards. In 2017, Hood co-created a modern ballet about gangster John Dillinger with Ashley Bowman of Artifact Dance Project, called Surrounding Dillinger, which the Arizona Daily Star called, “Simply astounding.” In 2019, Hood spoke and performed with Green in a TEDx Talk called, “How Bad Things Can Make Us Good People.”

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THE FOLLOWING ARE SELECTIONS FROM VOYAGERS, WITH MUSICAL DEMOS AND ACCOMPANYING LIBRETTO

"THE BALLAD OF ONE AND TWO"

TWO

One, two, one, two . . .

ONE

“There is the sister of my soul”

I remember thinking from the first two moments

“She is like me in a way I know

We could be gold”

I caught her eye at the JPL

Where there were rumors

Of a Mariner 11 and 12

But I told her that I planned to go

Beyond the belt

And she should go

 

The words she said to me

Have always stayed with me

Words she said to me before we broke

 

TWO

One, two, one, two . . .

 

ONE

We fell in love and we left the ground

Burning through the stages at the speed of sound

Like we were Ganymede and Io

And Europa bound

Feeling bold

I’ve always been afraid to stay for too long

Afraid of missing out when the moment comes

But I don’t want to get too far ahead 

With this song

So here we go

"SELFLESS"

TWO

Oooooooh, oooooooh

Oooooooh, oooooooh

 

When you’re young

There are a billion things to be

A Viking or a Pioneer

A scientist, an engineer 

When you’re young

There are a billion things to be

A singing star, a great explorer

Who you are is so straightforward 

And like the sun

You know you’ll come up shining

 

But all too soon

There are a billion things to be

Be yourself but also selfless

Always humble but never helpless

All too soon

There are a billion things to be

Grateful, blessed, and never sad

Make best when things go bad

And like the moon

You choose the silver linings

 

What if what you want

Has gotten lost along the years?

Like a distant song

That you’ve forgotten how to hear

What if it’s not wrong to hope

Tthat someone will appear

To help you find it?


ONE

What does it take to find your place

To feel like you belong in all this space?

Is there a way to win the race

And not lose your soul?

 

Words she said to me

Have always stayed with me

Words she said to me before we broke

 

Words she said to me

Have always stayed with me

Words she said to me before we broke

 

Words she said to me

Have always stayed with me

Words she said to me before we broke

 

Words she said to me

Words she said to me before we broke

"ECLIPTIC BLUES"

ARCHIVAL AUDIO (TIMOTHY FERRIS)

“The galaxy, like most of the universe, is mostly empty space. The odds that you’re going to run into a planet or a star are very low. So, for the Voyager probe to be found, and for non-human intelligences to listen to the music someday, would probably require that they detect the presence of the probe, snare it, bring it in, and have a look. If they do that, they’ll find that everything on the space probe has a clear scientific purpose . . . except for the record.

 

The record has no function except to tell you, the alien, something about where it came from, who put it together, and about these odd things that we like — these musical passages that mean something to us.”

ONE

Beneath the sky

Far from town

The evening lights

Are coming out

We’re almost there

Just a little more—

 

TWO

Can you tell me what

What we’re looking for?

 

ONE

My father was

The local star

If not for us

He would’ve topped the charts

But he never did

And now he’s dead

I come out here

Look overhead

 

And I think that I was born

For something more than ordinary

I’ve been writing something

I’ve been hiding something

Quite exciting

Something gold

 

Now turn your head

To the side

And trace between

The brightest lights

On a line

The planets run

Chasing time

Around the sun

I close my eyes

And fly beyond

I don’t know why I’m telling you this—

 

TWO

Please, go on!

 

ONE

Well, I think that I was born

For something more than ordinary

I’ve been writing something

I’ve been hiding something

Quite exciting

Something gold

 

I think that everyone I know

Just goes in circles bending low

And I can’t see a thing

To keep me home

 

TWO

We could change our lives

People do it all the time

If you wanna change your life

Then change your eyes

 

ONE AND TWO

We could change our lives

People do it all the time

 

TWO

If you wanna change your life

Then change your eyes

"THE SAME THREE STREETS"

ONE

Oh, hallelujah, there is so much to see

A couple hundred-billion stars in our own galaxy

And more unknown than known 

Swimming under this sea

But I drive the same three streets

I drive the same three streets, every week

 

TWO

Oh, hallelujah, there is so much to see

In the waves and all the wonder

Of a humble heartbeat

And more unknown than known

Dreaming deep within me

But, yeah, I drive the same three streets

 

ONE

Why drive the same three streets, every week?

 

When it’s so wide

It’s so wide open!

So wide open!

 

ONE AND TWO

So wide open!

For you and me

 

ONE

Oh hallelujah, there is so little time

Let’s make a record of it all

And I could sing at your side

We’ll find a way to leave

The weight of life behind

Instead of driving ‘round the same three streets

Crying ‘bout the same three streets, every week

 

TWO

Oh, hallelujah

Dream of leaving the ground

But my family needs me

And I can’t let them down

 

ONE

I’ve seen gravity pull everybody

Back to this town

Unless you let it be the thing

That pushing you out, there

 

ONE AND TWO
Beyond the belt

Among the cloud…

Where it’s so wide open!

So wide open! 

So wide open!

So wide open!

So wide open!

So wide open!

So wide open!

For you and me

"THE THREE-BODY PROBLEM"

ARCHIVAL AUDIO (GARY FLANDRO)

“This is actually the result of thousands of numerical calculations and trajectories looking for a possible outer planet mission. Astronomers have known, if you just fly past a planet you will gain or lose energy depending on which way you pass. We sometimes call that ‘gravity assist.’ It adds a tremendous boost of energy. And I wanna go past Jupiter — I get a tremendous slingshot effect — we get to Saturn and you gain a huge boost and you can get, then, to Uranus really quickly. And then on to Neptune. And then we’re on the way out of the solar system. And that’s when you go interstellar, at that point. 

“And I could see something really remarkable here: all of the tracks of the outer planets crossed. The planets were all on the same side of the Sun. And you could probably get one spacecraft that could hit all of those planets. But the real problem here is that that only recurs every one-hundred and seventy-five years. So if you miss this one you’ve lost it, because last time this opportunity ever came was when Thomas Jefferson was president and he muffed it! We knew it would work, no problem. Just getting the money to do it was the hard part.”

"THE GRAND TOUR"

ONE

When in the course of ecliptic events

Once in a century, once in two

The planets align in a spiral design 

And the freedom you dreamed of comes into view

ONE AND TWO

When in the course of your family history

You can succeed where others have tried

And you get to be a part of the dream

Of makers of music, all worlds and times

 

ONE

It’s time to go

It’s time to go

 

ONE AND TWO

It’s time to go

 

So we’ve got a dish

And we’ve got all the instruments

Sagan and Stone want us out on the road

We’re making the record, we’re taking it with us

We’re taking the pictures

And sending them home 

It’s time to go

It’s time to go

It’s time to go

It’s time to go

It’s time to go

It’s time to go

It’s time to go!

 

ONE

When in the face of your great assurance

What makes you so nervous

You don’t quite know

She kisses the air, she says—

 

TWO

I’ll meet you there

I’ll pack a couple things

And see you at the show


ARCHIVAL AUDIO (HUGH HARRIS)

". . . Four, three, two, one. We have ignition and we have liftoff. We have liftoff of the Titan-Centaur carrying the first of two Voyager spacecraft to extend man’s senses farther into the solar system than ever before."

"CAPE CANAVERAL DAY"

ARCHIVAL AUDIO (HUGH HARRIS)

“This is Voyager launch control, approximately 3 minutes remain in that built-in hold. Surface winds are 5 knots out of the southwest. The maximum winds at altitude are 45 knots out of the northeast, at 92,000 feet. The temperature at launch time should be about 80 degrees. All continues to go well heading for liftoff of Voyager 1 from Complex 41 at 8:56 AM.”

 

ONE

The air was warm

The day was golden

For being born again

 

TWO

By mid-morning

Shaking off the ice

From the womb of night

And an unlived life

 

ONE AND TWO

The crowd came down to Kennedy

To see it all up close 

Turn on, turn on!

Counting down to see the smoke

And feel the life below

Turn on, turn on!

 

ONE

I believe I was conceived and born

In Pasadena where the air is warm

 

ONE AND TWO

But our lives will change

On Cape Canaveral Day

 

TWO

Let’s get born

And get unfolded

Stretch our arms, find our star

And begin

 

ONE AND TWO

And by the evening

I’ll be on my way

 

ONE

And now it’s time to play

I’ll count us in

1, 2, 3, 4…

 

ONE AND TWO

Welcome down to Kennedy

To see it all up close 

Turn on, turn on!

Counting down to see the smoke

And feel the life below

Turn on, turn on!

 

I believe I was conceived and born

In Pasadena where the air is warm

But our lives will change

On Cape Canaveral Day

 

ONE

I believe I was conceived and born

In California, in the swarm

 

ONE AND TWO

But life will change

On Cape Canaveral Day

ARCHIVAL AUDIO (HUGH HARRIS)

“. . . Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one . . . We have ignition and we have liftoff.”

"GOODNIGHT MOONLIGHT"

ONE

So long, little Mercury

You may be missing me, but I won’t be

Goodnight, to the evening light

Venus shining bright from the horizon

And Mars, Mars, Mars

I’m only missing you by a month or two

 

Goodnight moonlight

I love you, but I’m leaving you tonight

 

Farewell, to the ocean blue

I know I’m seeing you for the last time

And goodbye, Ma, I won’t forget to write

But I’ve crossed the Karman Line

And it’s my time

 

Goodnight moonlight

You’ll try to call me home, but I won’t go

Goodnight moonlight 

I love you, but I’m leaving you tonight

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MAKE YOUR TAX-DEDUCTIBLE DONATION NOW AND HELP LAUNCH VOYAGERS

WHAT WE NEED

 

Saguaro City is looking for your financial support to provide Cameron and his innovative new musical the "space" to explore, the talent with which to explore, and the time to fully realize this incredible vision onstage.

 

Your donation will go to support:

  • Rehearsal Space

  • Actors

  • Props and Scenic Elements

  • Musical Development

WORKSHOPS & AWARDS

APRIL 2024
Workshop #3 (feat. James Kelley Carroll & Samantha Beemer)

JUNE 2023
Workshop #2 (feat. James Kelley Carroll & Samantha Beemer)

JUNE 2023
Awarded: Project Mesquite New Works Grant
by Arts Foundation for Tucson and Southern Arizona

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OCTOBER–NOVEMBER 2022
Workshop #1(feat. Xander Mason & Celeste Lewis)

AUGUST 2022
Fundraising Lyric Videos Created (feat. Cameron Hood & Lisa Gollenberg)

MARCH 2022
Awarded: Research & Development Grant
by Arizona Commission on the Arts

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NOVEMBER 2019
First Public Performance of a Song from Voyagers (feat. Cameron Hood)

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SAGUARO CITY MUSIC THEATRE

is a 501(c)3 organization

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