Date:   10/17/2009

Laura Ingalls Wilder - the play/musical

 Back by popular demand, ArtsPower National Touring Theatre returns to the historic Thrasher Opera House with the beloved Laura Ingalls Wilder story.  Experience the exciting adventures of the Ingalls’ family as they travel across the prairie in search of a little house to call home.  Based on Wilder’s own childhood experiences, which she began recording in her 60s, this original musical will come to life onstage on Saturday, October 17 at a special 3:00 p.m. matinee performance.


Laura Ingalls Wilder follows the tomboyish Laura, her older sister Mary, her Ma, and her Pa as they travel across the unsettled frontier of the late-1800s American Midwest.  Many challenges threaten the Ingalls family’s security, including Indian attacks, disease, and devastating crop losses; powered by their devotion to each other and an unwavering “pioneering spirit,” however, they are able to overcome anything.


The show features a lush musical score with five original songs, among them “Move On,” which captures the restlessness and excitement of loading up the covered wagon to find a new home, and “Fishin’,” a duet in which Laura and Pa laugh and share tall tales at a favorite fishing hole.


Mrs. Ingalls would like Laura to pay more attention to her studies, but lessons make Laura feel like a misfit – especially when she compares herself unfavorably to the “smarter” Mary.


Yet in the end, it is love for Mary that helps Laura overcome her insecurities.  When Mary is blinded by scarlet fever, Laura becomes her sister’s eyes.  She entertains Mary with outlandish descriptions of everything around them in another of the show’s songs, “Seein’ Things I Never Saw Before.”  In the process, Laura discovers that her own talent for storytelling, the same talent that will someday bring her national fame as one of America’s best-loved children’s authors.


 “At ArtsPower, we are committed to enriching children’s lives through the performing arts,” says executive producer Gary Blackman.  “By introducing our audiences to enthusiastic characters like Laura, children can see new possibilities in life and in themselves.”


This special afternoon matinee is sponsored in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin, with additional support from Kindred Hearts of Green Lake.  Tickets for the performance are only $8 and can be purchased at the Thrasher office, Knowledge Emporium, Green Lake State Bank (Green Lake); Pick N’ Save, Ripon Drug (Ripon); Twister (Princeton) or by calling 920- 294-4279.  Online tickets available at 






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