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Poster for Songwriters In The Raw w/Jessica Smucker, Meghan Cary & Hope Dunbar

Songwriters In The Raw w/Jessica Smucker, Meghan Cary & Hope Dunbar

Coming on May 12

Run Time: 150 min.

Doors – 2 PM
Showtime – 2:30 PM
Tickets – $20 advance/$25 day of show
Songwriters in the Raw is an in-the-round concert series curated and hosted by Jessica Smucker. This Mother’s Day special show features Meghan Cary (Philadelphia) and Hope Dunbar (Nebraska/NJ).

Post-brunch show – doors open at 2pm. Bring your mom or baby mama to Zoetropolis for brunch and she gets into the show free!
Meghan Cary didn’t mean to be a musician. But when her fiancé unexpectedly died, she picked up his guitar, figured out how to play it, and wrote her debut record, earning her Billboard Magazine’s esteemed Critic’s Choice Award. “I wrote my grief into music and sang my way out of the abyss.I keep making music to help others connect with their own stories and find their joy.” 

Her latest album, SING LOUDER, debuted in the top 10 on the US/International Folk DJ Chart, and John Platt of WFUV extols, “These times require songs of compassion and commitment. Meghan has several which inspire us to reach our higher selves, and she sings them with such infectious joy you can’t resist joining in.”

With masterful storytelling and award-winning songs, Cary creates a live music experience that is healing, inspiring, and outrageously joyful. Her message of unity and the power of raising our voices together infuses every show, and her song, “Sing Louder”, has become an anthem for the music-loving community.

Cary is a frequent performer at Philadelphia Folk Festival as well as Falcon Ridge, Spring Gulch, Huntington and DelMarVa Folk Festivals. Her smoky voice, emotional singing, and vulnerable writing garner favorable comparisons to Melissa Etheridge, Brandi Carlisle, and even Bruce Springsteen.

A professional actor and playwright with a successful career in theatre, television and radio, Cary has written and performs a one-woman show, On the Way to the Waterfall, and is currently collaborating on a Broadway-bound musical. Cary released her first book, Sing Louder: The Stories Behind the Songs, on International Women’s Day 2019, and is currently working on another.

Raised in Hershey, PA, Cary studied math and chemistry at Duke University, with plans of becoming a doctor. She made an about-face at school, ultimately earning her B.A. in drama before going on to obtain her M.F.A. in acting at FSU’s Asolo Conservatory for Acting. She is a founding member of the NYC-based, Actor’s Shakespeare Company, and has performed in more than 100 plays throughout the United States and Europe. Cary has supported her creative habit as an on-camera commercial and voice over artist.

As a musician/actor/writer/speaker and the mother of two school age children, Meghan speaks to the subject of life balance with grace and a healthy dose of humor. “As soon as I think I have my story written, someone comes along and changes the setting…or the plot…or the characters. Usually, all three. My mantra: ‘If you don’t know the words…Sing Louder!’”




Hope Dunbar resides on the Nebraska plain, where she finds inspiration in the unchanging landscape outside her window. Despite the familiar surroundings, her music paints vibrant pictures of everyday life, transforming the mundane into the magical. With her album “Three Black Crows,” she garnered acclaim for her visceral authenticity and raw honesty, but fame brought overwhelming pressures. However, Dunbar reclaimed her artistic journey, launching the “Prompt Queens” podcast and crafting her empowered second album, “Sweetheartland,” which boldly expresses her identity and vision. Through her music, she invites listeners to explore the universality of her Midwestern stories and the importance of personal empowerment, proving that even in small towns, there’s always a road to new horizons.




Jessica Smucker believes that the best way to change the world is to channel our pain into connection. Her songs have a way of reaching deeply into people’s souls and inviting the kind of reflection that feels both reassuring and unsettling. Wrapped in catchy melodies, her lyrics appear simple and relatable on the surface, but each listen will uncover more hidden pockets of nuance. She’s the kind of writer and performer who can lull a noisy room into a hush with a single line.

Based in Lancaster, PA, Jessica was raised in the Mennonite faith tradition by a family full of storytellers, activists, adventurers, and pranksters. She has toured nationwide and performs regularly throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern U.S. Her discography spans from 2008-2022 and includes two EPs and three full-length albums. Between the summers of 2021-2022 she released five more singles, including synth-pop anthems “Dinosaurs,” “Rose of Jericho,” and “Phoenix,”  and piano ballads “Stones to Throw” and “War of Attrition.” A new EP is planned for release in 2024.

Jessica has won or placed in several national songwriting contests including SolarFest’s Singer/Songwriter Showcase Competition, the Connecticut Folk Festival Song Competition, and the Mid-Atlantic Song Contest. In her life beyond music, Jessica is a published poet and essayist, a social justice warrior, a freakishly good Scrabble player, and mother to two of the smartest people she’s ever met in real life!



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