After a major event caused this high profile public company CEO to re-evaluate what’s important in life, a banjo-picking storyteller was born with a message of resilience, hope and perseverance. Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me But Banjos Saved My Life, written and performed by Keith Alessi, is a multi-award winning and deeply personal story that serves as a testament to the human spirit – as well as the healing power of music and the arts.
Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me But Banjos Saved My Life
Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me But Banjos Saved My Life is a heartfelt passion project that began as an idea in March 2018, not long after Keith Alessi was told he had cancer – and a 50% chance of living another year.
Encouraged by friends and family to share his experience, Keith decided to set to work writing it all down. In three days he had the foundation of what would become his one-man show, fuelled by banjo music and the willpower to live a full, happy life.
The story follows Keith’s journey as a highly successful CEO who decides to change gears completely and develops a new, creative passion, while battling life-threatening cancer.
Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me But Banjos Saved My Life premiered at The Oggi Art gallery in Chicago in 2018. Later that year, Keith took the show to the Toronto Fringe Festival, Edmonton and Vancouver, starting with small but enthusiastic audiences and ending with full houses and standing ovations.
In 2019, Keith entered ten Fringe Festival lotteries across Canada, the US, and the UK, and was accepted into eight. His 2019 tour kicked off with three award wins at the Frigid Fringe Festival in NYC, and continued to gain traction with more awards, rave reviews and sellout runs.
Catch the the show in 2021
Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me But Banjos Saved My Life makes its UK premiere on Friday the 8th of January 2021, as part of Online@theSpaceUk Season 2 and can be viewed for free.
Civil Disobedience is delighted to be partnering with Keith to realise his ambition of finding more audiences globally. We are currently courting opportunities for English-speaking audiences internationally – both online and on-stage – and are particularly keen to discuss UK bookings for 2021, as well as the Australian Fringe circuit for 2022.
Contact us for more details
If you want to find out more or discuss potential opportunities for Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me But Banjos Saved My Life, please get in touch with Barry Church-Woods on email:
“Putting accolades aside, the most amazing part of my journey has been to see how the show connects with people on a deep and personal level. The more I brought my own walls down and embraced my vulnerability on stage, the more people were moved.
After many disappointing 2020 cancellations I’m eager to perform the show again in 2021, and I’m excited to be joining the portfolio of great shows that Civil Disobedience supports. I know that their unique ability to reach audiences in the UK, around the world, and particularly at the Edinburgh Fringe, will help make Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me But Banjos Saved My Life one of the destination shows of the 2021 season.”