In the first week of May we received an email from the Dallas Summer Musicals, inviting a group of 15 from Champions of Hope to attend at Saturday matinee of Little House on the Prairie, starring Melissa Gilbert. The date was not far off, so we sent out an email and quickly got a group of kids and mentors that were excited to experience the production.
First time experience… We got there in plenty of time to find our seats and chat for a while, learning that none of the kids had ever been to Music Hall at Fair Park (which is right in their ‘backyard’!!) and not many of the mentors had been either. If you have ever attended a musical there or at a similar venue, you know that it is an experience that will impress you, regardless of the story. The set design, acting, music and dance performances, and the coordination of a whole crew that comes together seamlessly when the curtains raise is amazing!
Needless to say, the kids were too young to even know any thing about Little House – with the exception of our Booker T. Washington theater student, who had read the play!! Melissa Gilbert’s presence and performance was great — but had little meaning to the kids, just us ‘old’ mentors who grew up watching her as Laura Ingalls. 😉 Regardless of historical context, or nostalgic significance, the kids had a great time.
We all enjoyed the show and it was an awesome opportunity to have a great experience right in the South Dallas neighborhood.
** Interesting note: The following week as mentors and kids attended the Rangers game, the actor who played Pa Ingalls was the guest singer of the National Anthem.