Prairie celebrated in song and story

Critic's Choice: Theater

March 18, 2001|By J. Wynn Rousuck

"Songs from the Tall Grass," a musical celebration of the songs, writings and stories of the American prairie, opens its world premiere run at Ford's Theatre in Washington tomorrow.

The genesis for the show was a car trip taken by two of its creators, composer Randy Hale and his wife, Emily Corey. Beginning at the Library of Congress and then journeying to various libraries, historical societies and museums in the Midwest, the pair collected primary source material that was further honed and adapted by two TV producers, Michael Ross ("Designing Women," "Evening Shade") and Pheof Sutton ("Cheers," "The Fighting Fitzgeralds").

Focusing on a family of homesteaders, the show is directed by Will Mackenzie and narrated by Tony Award winner Scott Waara.

Show times at Ford's, 511 10th St. N.W., Washington, are 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays, with matinees at 1 p.m. Thursdays and 2:30 p.m. Sundays, through June 3. (There is a final preview performance tonight at 7:30 and no performance March 23.) Tickets are $27-$43. Call 202-347-4833.

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