Voice of the Grand

Emily Anderson and Robert Armstrong will perform as part of an ensemble cast in “KGOH, the Voice of the Grand Presents Christmas Treasures” at the Grand Opera House.

Event: “KGOH, the Voice of the Grand Presents Christmas Treasures”

Site: The Grand Opera House,

135 W. Eighth St.

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Times/dates: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Nov. 27 and 28; 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 29.

Cost: Live audience tickets are $23 for adults and $15 for those younger than 18. Streaming access tickets are $15 for individuals and $25 for groups.

Tickets: Live audience tickets and streaming access can be purchased at the box office or by calling 563-588-1305. Box office hours are noon-4 p.m. Monday-Friday. Tickets also can be purchased at www.thegrand

Synopsis

KGOH will take you inside the Grand’s 1940s temporary radio station. Actors, Foley artists (the technicians who create sound effects) and a piano player will bring “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” and “A Christmas Carol” to life.

Tidbits

  • KGOH is modeled on the radio station WIBJ, a traveling station owned by a Chicago vaudeville booker. It was set up on the Grand’s stage in February of 1926 and aired for one week from the theater, featuring local talent.
  • WIBJ allowed a live audience to sit in the theater and watch the performances in person while it was broadcasting live to those at home.
  • Seven actors will transform themselves into all of the characters from three traditional Christmas stories adapted and directed by Doug Donald. Piano accompaniment will be provided by Terry Dillion.
  • There will be limited distanced seating for those who would like to see the performance live. Masks are required. Visit the Grand’s website for complete details on COVID-19 protocol.
  • All three performances can be streamed live and On Demand for 24 hours after the performance start time.
  • Tickets will be sold in groups of two, three or four.

Quotable, from Marketing Director Michelle Blanchard

  • “Things are very different right now in this world of COVID. We were looking at the possibility of doing a radio show anyway for that reason.”
  • “The idea for our show came first, but our technical director found the information on WIBJ, so it was really cool that we are mirroring what happened then.”
  • “Doug Donald is our director and adapted the stories. He used to do a radio show every year when he taught at Loras College, so he has done a lot of research about how they used to do sound effects. We’re fortunate that he has a vast wealth of knowledge about that.”
  • “In doing his research, Doug read how they used to make the sounds of footsteps in a show by stepping on a box of unopened cornstarch. He didn’t think it worked, so he went to the grocery store and found the cornstarch and discovered that, yes, it does work.”

“We are selling a maximum of 200 tickets in our normally 620 seat theater to allow for social distancing.”

  • “We totally understand that everybody is not ready to be in the theater, so we are offering the streaming option. We are offering that on as many of our shows as possible.”
  • “This is our way of saying that Thanksgiving is past, so let’s kick off the holiday season!”