Prairie Players Presents Steel Magnolias

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Friendship is One of Life’s Greatest Gifts in Steel Magnolias

Prairie Players brings Steel Magnolias to the stage at 7:30 p.m. on March 24, 25, 31 and April 1 and at 2 p.m. on March 26 and April 2 at Prairie Players Civic Theatre, 160 South Seminary Street, Galesburg. Tickets are $16 for adults and $9 for students. Buy tickets now.

Director Anne Carman-Hendel says that after the pandemic and other events of the world, this play seemed needed. “It’s a poignant story told with humor. As in the title, it shows a gentle, yet strong friendship between these women. It’s this bond that helps them navigate life’s sadnesses and joys. It shows that friendship is one of life’s greatest gifts.”

The cast includes Prairie Players newcomers and veterans: 

  • Truvy Jones: Mary Ellen Milem
  • Annelle Dupuy-Desoto: Christina King
  • Clairee Belcher: Chris Curtis
  • Shelby Eatenton-Latcherie: Maggie Savage
  • M’Lynn Eastenton: Cathy Sheagren
  • Ouiser Boudreaux: Vera Fornander

Written by Robert Harling, Steel Magnolias is set in Truvy’s  beauty salon in Chinquapin, Louisiana, where all the ladies who are “anybody” come to have their hair done. Helped by her eager new assistant, Annelle (who is not sure whether or not she is still married), the outspoken, wise-cracking Truvy dispenses shampoos and free advice to the town’s rich curmudgeon, Ouiser, (“I’m not crazy, I’ve just been in a bad mood for forty years”); an eccentric millionaire, Miss Clairee, who has a raging sweet tooth; and the local social leader, M’Lynn, whose daughter, Shelby (the prettiest girl in town), is about to marry a “good ole boy.”

Filled with hilarious repartee and not a few acerbic but humorously revealing verbal collisions, the play moves toward tragedy when the spunky Shelby (who is a diabetic) risks pregnancy and forfeits her life. The sudden realization of their mortality affects the others, but also draws on the underlying strength—and love—that give the play, and its characters, the special quality to make them truly touching, funny, and marvelously amiable company in good times and bad.

Steel Magnolias is produced by special arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY of Woodstock, Illinois and is supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.

***Courtesy of the Prairie Players Civic Theater***

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