In Pursuit of a Dream is performed across the area
The final show of In Pursuit of a Dream: Stories and Songs of 19th Century Immigration will be held on Saturday, Oct. 29, at 7 p.m. at Roosevelt Hall in Barrett. Admission is $15 at the door.
The show is a music and story ensemble with era-specific songs and stories based on historical facts about early 19th century Western European immigration. Several of the show's songs are sung in homeland languages such as German, Swedish, Czech, Finnish and Welsh.
The show's performers include Terry Kennedy of Alexandria, guitar, mouth harp and vocals; Patty Kakac of Evansville, autoharp, penny whistle and vocals; Al Lieffort of Alexandria, mandolin and vocals; Anne O'Flynn of Elbow Lake, accordion and vocals; David Bengtson of Long Prairie, vocals; Todd Nelson of Ashby, bass and vocals; Rachel Nelson of St. Paul, violin and vocals; Sara Schwabe of Corcoran, vocals, storyteller; and Paulette Friday of Alexandria, storyteller, writer, director and producer.
Friday received the funding for this project from the Lake Region Arts Council via a grant made possible by the Minnesota Legacy Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.
Thanks to the grant, free shows were performed at Fort Alexandria and Railroad and Second Event Center in Evansville during the month of September. During the month of October, the show will be performed for Discovery Middle School sixth graders who are studying immigration.
Audiences were asked to complete a survey as part of the LRAC grant requirement. Based on more than 120 written surveys, the show seems to have met Friday's goal of creating a realistic sense of what it was like for immigrants to leave their homelands, as well as create an emotional connection between the performers and audience.