Guitar-playing, folk-singing octodynamo, Lu Mitchell is mighty fine at 89. Not one to rest on her laurels, Lu is busy writing new songs, launching her tenth album, and rehearsing for her annual Irish show on March 12, 2013 at Pocket Sandwich Theater where she plays four gigs each year. This is in addition to numerous appearances at corporate functions, private parties, a holiday show at Uncle Calvin's Coffee House, and the annual Senior Follies extravaganza at the Eisemann Center.

When the acting bug bit in 1945 Lu auditioned for a melodrama at her hometown community theater in Bethlehem. PA. She won the lead ingenue role in addition to the one of real-life wife of the show's director, Gene Mitchell. When his job brought him to Dallas as chancel choir director of the First Unitarian Church, Lu and Gene headed south with infant son, Sean, who was to become theater critic for the Dallas Times Herald.

Lu became a secretary for Eastman Kodak and suffered the slings and arrows of chauvinistic bosses. She also became enmeshed in the nascent coffeehouse culture of the early 1960s and channeled her covert hostility toward these bosses into her seminal composition, "Mary Stuffed Her Boss in the Paper Shredder – and he's all strung out today." Said Lu: "I wrote many songs at that place; I've never been to a therapist in my life because I've always been able to channel my anger into my music."

Lu and her band, Catch-23, were invited ten years in a row to perform at Musikfest, the prestigious annual folk festival in Bethlehem, PA, most recently in 2011. Besides her ten albums, Lu also wrote a songbook. "Singing For Her Sanity," now in its fifth printing.

Not only does Lu write drop-dead funny parodies such as "The Real Estate Lady," about an overzealous realtor, but also topical spoofs such as, "I Want to be a White House Intern" (you just know who that's about). She turns everyday experiences into LOL songs such as "I'm Back in the Stirrups Again" about a visit to the gynecologist, and her most recent cruise, "Time to Eat Again" (think Willy Nelson).

The religious right is targeted for its share of Lu's irreverent humor in such gems as the Reverend Robert Tilton riff, "Shall We Gather at the Dumpster," "The Ballad of Tammy and Jimmy," and "Onward Jerry Falwell." Lu's recently released tenth album, "Medical Mayhem," is a compendium of all her doctor-inspired parodies. She also pays homage to Tom Lehrer with some of his funniest songs.

You can experience Lu Mitchell's raucous humor March 12 at Pocket Sandwich Theater.

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Key Subjects: 
Lu Mitchell, comedy, Catch-23
Writer: 
Rita Faye Smith
Subtitle: 
89-Year-Old Lu Mitchell Still Brings the Spoofs
Secondary Subjects: 
parody songs