Marcy Marxer Recounts Cancer Journey In Original Musical Film ‘All Wigged Out’

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month, Grammy Award-winner Marcy Marxer will share her cancer experience in All Wigged Out, the new musical written with her partner and fellow Grammy winner, Cathy Fink. The pair will screen the award-winning film at iconic venue Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, California on October 16th. The festivities will also include a performance and a Q&A in conjunction with Notes 4 Hope, HERS Breast Cancer Foundation, Cancer Support Community, and the Women’s Cancer Resource Center.

All Wigged Out is Marxer’s poignant, yet often surprisingly hilarious musical show about her cancer journey. The film is 58 minutes of music, storytelling, comedy, and advice based on her firsthand experiences with breast cancer–one that began with a funky mammogram in June 2015 and ended shortly after her last chemo pill in the spring of 2021. “There were times when the wig shop gals gave me more information than my doctors,” Marxer recalls. “So did conversations with other patients in the chemo room.” With her renowned musical mastery and eclectic wit, Marxer traces her transition from an award-winning virtuosic musician to an artist struggling with chemo-induced neuropathy–and the path back to touring musician. It happens to coincide with her hair story.

In the film, Marxer is joined by Fink, Stacy McMichael (bass), and Janet Cramer (drums). All Wigged Out not only tells Marxer’s story, but also helps medical professionals, friends, family, and even strangers learn how they can best support those with cancer, all while keeping a sense of humor.

Filmed by the Emmy Award-winning HMS Media in Evanston, Illinois before a live audience and directed by Tracy Walsh, ALL WIGGED OUT was scheduled to make its theater debut in the summer of 2020, which was canceled due to the pandemic. As theater options became more and more distant, Marxer and Fink decided to reinvent the project as a musical theater piece for film and television broadcasts, potentially reaching a larger audience. Now, the film has been circulating the film festival circuit, garnering praise and accolades from the World Cinema Awards, the WRPN Women’s International Film Festival, the Milan Gold Awards, the Chicago Cinema Awards, and more.

Marxer and Fink, who have made music together for 40 years as duo Cathy & Marcy, are an eclectic folk festival on their own terms. They have entertained the Queen of Thailand, been keynote singers for the AFL-CIO, performed at hundreds of folk festivals, and appeared on the “Today Show” and on National Public Radio. Their superb harmonies are backed by instrumental virtuosity on the guitar, five-string banjo, ukulele, mandolin, cello-banjo, and more.

The duo, whose past students include Kaki King and Rhiannon Giddens, are the artistic directors of the Ola Belle Reed Songwriting retreat and of The Music Center at Strathmore’s annual Ukefest. They are closing in on their 50th recording and have been honored with 65 Washington Area Music Awards, 12 Grammy nominations, and a multi-generational following of fans.