In her new single, “Shoot This Arrow,” musical artist and actress Kate Voegele (“One Tree Hill”) sings in protest of sexual harassment, which “One Tree Hill” creator Mark Schwahn has been accused of by cast and crew of the teen drama.
Voegele debuted the single, her first since the 2016 album “Canyonlands,” on Friday. She described the new song as “an anthem for everyone who needs the courage and strength to speak up about what they’ve been through and for anyone who has ever felt taken advantage of, abused, or manipulated.”
The singer-songwriter is just one of 18 women who worked on “One Tree Hill” who signed a letter, published by Variety last month, in support of writer Audrey Wauchope, their former colleague who first shared a claim that Schwahn had sexually harassed her. Stars Sophia Bush, Hilarie Burton, and Bethany Joy Lenz were also among those who signed the statement.
“Many of us were, to varying degrees, manipulated psychologically and emotionally,” read the letter, in part. “More than one of us is still in treatment for post-traumatic stress. Many of us were put in uncomfortable positions and had to swiftly learn to fight back, sometimes physically.”
Wauchope went public with about her experience with Schwahn only weeks after Voegele recorded “Shoot This Arrow.” A few days after publishing the letter, Variety released a report investigating allegations of Schwahn’s misbehavior. In the story, “One Tree Hill” alumni elaborated on specific harrowing incidents involving Schwahn over the years.
Voegele initially teased the song on Instagram with a caption that referred to music as her “therapy,” using the #MeToo caption that has marked a movement on social media encouraging survivors of sexual harassment to tell their stories.
“Songs are cathartic for me and it’s how I cope,” she said in a statement while debuting “Shoot This Arrow.” “I also wrote this song to come alongside everyone who has ever experienced this kind of abuse in the hope that it would be empowering for them as it has been for me. ‘Shooting the arrow’ not only means speaking your truth even if you’re afraid, but also being yourself and going after what you believe in — sharing your art and your voice — despite the person or people who try to silence you.”
Following Voegele’s return from her current Australian tour, the Cleveland native will embark on a month-long U.S. tour beginning Sunday, Dec. 17, in Pawling, N.Y.