Jul 24, 2013
08:32 AM
Arts & Entertainment

Garrison Keillor's 'Prairie Home Companion Radio Romance Tour' in Danbury: Tickets Remain

Garrison Keillor's 'Prairie Home Companion Radio Romance Tour' in Danbury: Tickets Remain

Ever wonder what Garrison Keillor is up to when PBS stations rebroadcast favorite shows from the past? He's in Connecticut, of course.

Well, not all the time, surely, but as the legions of fans of Keillor's folksy "A Prairie Home Companion" warm up for this week's show--one from May 2000 in Pasadena, Calif., with Randy Newman singing "The Great Nations of Europe" and Nickel Creek performing "Reasons Why"--Keillor and his talented colleagues are indeed in Connecticut.

Danbury to be exact, where on Thursday night the Ives Concert Park will present Keillor's “A Prairie Home Companion Radio Romance Tour" and tickets are still available. Reserved tickets are $80 and $55, and lawn tickets are $25 in advance and $30 on the day of the 7:30 p.m. show, for which gates open at 6 p.m. Day-of-show tickets are cash-only sales; no credit cards.

What guests who love Guy Noir, Lake Wobegon and Dusty and Lefty will see in the "Radio Romance Tour" is covered in a post on the "Prairie Home Companion" website, which says, "A Prairie Home Companion's Radio Romance Tour 2013 hits the road coast-to-coast this summer, starring host and writer Garrison Keillor, singer Aoife O'Donovan (July 8th - July 26th tour dates), singer and fiddler Sara Watkins (July 27th - August 6th tour dates), comedian Fred Newman, and Rich Dworsky and The Guy's All-Star Shoe Band with guitarist Pat Donohue and violinist/mandolinist Richard Kriehn, two hours of duet singing, absurd improv with sound effects, Guy Noir Private Eye, poetry, outright foolishness, and the News from Lake Wobegon."

As for the long run and broad appeal of "Prarie," Ives Concert Park offers this online:

"If you showed up on July 6, 1974, at the Janet Wallace Auditorium at Macalester College in Saint Paul and plunked down your $1 admission (50 cents for kids) to attend the very first broadcast of A Prairie Home Companion, you were in select company. There were about 12 people in the audience. But those in attendance thought there were worse ways to spend a Saturday afternoon, so Garrison Keillor and the APHC team went on to produce close to 500 live shows in the first 10 years alone. There were broadcasts from this venue and that, until March 4, 1978, when the show moved to The World Theater, a lovely, crumbling building that was one plaster crack away from the wrecking ball. (Now fully renovated and renamed The Fitzgerald, it is the show’s home base.)

In June of 1987, APHC ended for a while. Garrison thought it was a good idea at the time, but only two years later, the show was back, based in New York and called American Radio Company of the Air. But there’s no place like home. So in 1992, it was back to Minnesota and, soon after, back to the old name: A Prairie Home Companion.

There has been plenty of adventure in the past 30-plus years — broadcasts from Canada, Ireland, Scotland, England, Germany, Iceland and almost every one of the 50 states; wonderful performers, little-known and world-renowned; standing ovations and stares of bewilderment. We’ve missed planes, coped with lost luggage, dodged swooping bats and hungry mosquitoes, plodded through blizzards, and flown by the seat of our pants.

Today, A Prairie Home Companion is heard by more than 4 million listeners each week on some 590 public radio stations, and abroad on America One and the Armed Forces Networks in Europe and the Far East. Garrison recalls, “When the show started, it was something funny to do with my friends, and then it became an achievement that I hoped would be successful, and now it’s a good way of life.”

A Prairie Home Companion is produced by Prairie Home Productions, and distributed nationwide by American Public Media. The program is underwritten by General Mills and Ford."

 

Garrison Keillor's 'Prairie Home Companion Radio Romance Tour' in Danbury: Tickets Remain

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