In their poorest winter ever, when the crops have been devastated by locusts and the family must deal with the death of baby Freddie, Charles Ingalls backtracks his family to Burr Oak, Iowa to take over the running of a hotel. And if things weren't bad enough, Ma tells Laura she must be nice to Johnny Steadman, "the worst boy in Iowa." When wealthy Mrs. Starr asks Laura to read to her in the afternoons, Laura is overjoyed to be invited to such a fine house, but when she overhears Mrs. Starr offer to adopt her as her own daughters to ease the burden of so many children to feed, Laura is certain Ma and Pa will give her up. As Christmas morning approaches, Laura is faced with a decision: Will she chose what she believes is best for the family or will she find a way to stay with Pa, Ma, Mary and Carrie? This original play presents the poignant story to the "missing" two years in the life of the Ingalls Family - the only substantial period that Laura chose not to write about in her Little House books. Told with period songs, humor and depth of character, this Christmas play tells a story of healing that celebrates the importance of enduring family bonds.
Cast: 2 men, 5 women
AVAILABLE FROM DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY
A Laura Ingalls Wilder Christmas was co-commissioned by the Coterie Theatre, Kansas City, MO and Nashville Children's Theatre, Nashville, TN. It premiered at the Coterie Theatre, November 2002, directed by Scott Copeland, Producing Artistic Director, Jeff Church
Photo by Dan Brewer, Nashville Children's Theatre
Playwright Laurie Brooks, who has already impressed with her plays for young-adult audiences, aims at the younger crowd here, but with an emotional depth and complexity that adults will find moving, too."
~ The Dallas Morning News, Nancy Churnin