On Friday, Jan. 11, Chattanooga storyteller Jim Pfitzer will present his one-man play “Aldo Leopold—A Standard of Change,” followed by a celebration of the conservation pioneer’s 126th birthday, complete with live music, cake and a Leopold-themed raffle. Both the play and the celebration will be at Barking Legs Theater, located at 1307 Dodds Ave.
Since Pftizer’s play premiered last April in Chattanooga, he has performed it at Bonnaroo, the Aldo Leopold Foundation in Wisconsin and at venues in West Virginia, Minnesota and North Carolina.
Now according to Pfitzer, the pace of engagements is increasing dramatically as word of the play spreads. After the Jan. 11 celebration, he hits the road for eight shows in January and February in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Tennessee and Wisconsin.
The play was praised by Buddy Huffaker, executive director of the Aldo Leopold Foundation, who said, “‘A Standard of Change’ brings Leopold’s life and vision of a land ethic into the present and looks to the future for audiences both new to Leopold and those that have long looked to him and A Sand County Almanac for guidance and inspiration.”
Leopold lived from 1887 to 1948. As a scientist and forester, he was responsible for creating and implementing environmental policies that he later came to believe were misguided and harmful. Eventually, his ideas and advocacy played an influential role in the modern movement for wilderness conservation and wildlife management and in the development of what he called a “land ethic” that recognized and preserved the value of biodiversity and functional ecosystems. His book, A Sand County Almanac, which laid out his ideas and described this restoration of a degraded farm, became an environmental classic and has sold more than two million copies.
When Pfitzer was researching the play, he spent two nights in the small cabin Leopold stayed in while restoring that land, which is now managed by the Aldo Leopold Foundation in Wisconsin. One of his January engagements will be at the Leopold Heritage Group in Burlington, Iowa, where he will spend the night in Leopold’s childhood home.
Tickets are $10 at the door or $11 via PayPal. For more info on the play or to purchase tickets, visit astandardofchange.com.