It's true: the legendary "A Prairie Home Companion" is set to come to Durham, specifically the new Durham Performing Arts Center downtown, in May 2009.
N&O music beat writer David Menconi noted the off-schedule news on his blog yesterday, though hedging on the location. We at BCR can report with confidence that this will be at the DPAC; the booking has been in the works for some time (and is the first of a couple interesting announcements to come out in the coming weeks about the DPAC). Menconi notes a May 9 date for the show.
It's a coup for the Triangle and Durham to get this show, and is an example of the booking power Nederlander/PFM have in bringing shows to the Bull City.
If you've never seen Keillor live -- I was lucky enough to have the chance to 15 years ago back in Orlando -- he's a marvelous performer. His radio plays' well-known sound effects are a treat to watch live; even better, though, is Keillor's monologue, performed without note cards or script, the master storyteller typically taking a stool onto center stage to mesmerize the live and radio audiences.
Keillor typically finds ways to bring local color and happenings into his performances; it will be interesting to see how he weaves Durham into the narrative. A look at a revitalized downtown? A focus on old tobacco in the heart of the South? A nod to our basketball heritage? To Duke? To our relationship with down-the-road Raleigh?
No word yet on when tickets will go on sale, though typically in many markets public radio members get some advantage in grabbing seats.