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Posted on Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 9:20 a.m.

'A Prairie Home Companion' with Garrison Keillor coming to Ann Arbor

By Bob Needham


Garrison Keillor

photo by Velenchenko

It's long been a given that the Ann Arbor / Ypsilanti area loves its public radio. So it's pretty big news that the public-radio mainstay "A Prairie Home Companion" and host Garrison Keillor will return to Ann Arbor for a live broadcast from Hill Auditorium next year.

The show will take place Saturday, June 1, 2013. Although announced today, tickets won't go on sale until next April.

The event will be part of the Ann Arbor Summer Festival, and will be sponsored by Michigan Radio, the public-radio operation at the University of Michigan, including WUOM (91.7-FM) in Ann Arbor.

Tickets will be priced at $75, $65, $55, $45 and $35. They will go on sale Monday, April 15, 2013, at 9 a.m., and will be available online at; by phone at 734-764-2538 or toll-free in Michigan at 800-221-1229; or in person at the Michigan League Ticket Office, 911 N. University Ave.

Hill Auditorium turns 100 years old next spring, and the live broadcast is considered part of the celebration of that milestone. This will be at least the fourth time "A Prairie Home Companion" has broadcast from Hill; the most recent was in 2008. Broadcasts were also done in 2001 and 1996.

“Over the years, Hill Auditorium has been home to some of the world’s best performances, and we’re excited that Garrison Keillor is returning to Ann Arbor to help pay tribute to that great history," Steve Schram, director of broadcasting at Michigan Radio, said in a press release.

"A Prairie Home Companion" is one of the landmark programs in public radio, combining sketches, roots-oriented music, storytelling and more into a long-running package. The show, which started in 1974, airs weekly on more than 580 public radio stations and is heard by more than 4 million listeners. Keillor has also written 13 books.

The Ann Arbor performance is expected to include live performances by special guests, along with comical skits by Keillor and the Royal Academy of Radio Actors; Tim Russell, Sue Scott, and sound effects man Fred Newman, and The Guy's All-Star Shoe Band. Keillor will weave local humor into the show, the announcement said.

"'A Prairie Home Companion' is a public radio gem," Schram said, “and I'm delighted that fans throughout the region will be able to enjoy this local, live performance."

The show regularly airs Saturdays at 6 p.m. on Michigan Radio, and is repeated at noon Sundays.

Bob Needham is director of entertainment content for Reach him at or 734-623-2541, and follow him on Twitter @bobneedham.


An Arborigine

Wed, Nov 28, 2012 : 1:26 a.m.

Ann Arbor must be soiling its collective undergarments over this...,30502/


Wed, Nov 28, 2012 : 12:40 a.m.

Imagine how much the tickets would cost if taxpayers weren't subsidizing him.


Wed, Nov 28, 2012 : 12:32 a.m.

I'll be spending my $75 on some better-than-average libations. At least I'll get a buzz. if I were there in person (and fully sober), I'd be asleep after his first few dulcet-toned syllables. Be gone, Lake whatever it is!! :)

Dog Guy

Wed, Nov 28, 2012 : midnight

Garrulous Keillor?


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 9:18 p.m.

Love the band, especially Rick Dworsky, and the other music. Also the corny stories. I'll be there!


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 8:36 p.m. check details. He was here at Hill in 1992 as well.

Bob Needham

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 8:43 p.m.

Thanks! I wasn't positive that was all, which is why I said "at least." Were you there that time?

Greg Dooley

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 8:22 p.m.

Any chance he gives Denard a shout out a la the POTUS?

Bob Needham

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 8:44 p.m.

I bet there's a good chance!

Kellie Woodhouse

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 7:35 p.m.

A Prairie Home Companion is a road-trip staple of mine, it's the only good thing about driving hours on the turnpike during the weekend (well, that and Wait Wait Don't Tell Me). I am definitely looking forward to this!


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 5:23 p.m.

Better Poll Question: How over-priced do you think tickets for "A Prairie Home Companion" at HIll are? a. Excessively b. A lot c. Somewhat d. Not so much

Kyle Mattson

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 8:35 p.m.

L-chaim- Compared to many other live events the tickets are actually pretty average, for example when Wait, Wait...Don't Tell Me! was at the Fox in Detroit last year the price range was the same but quickly sold out. In fact I was seeing tickets on craiglist leading up to that show in upwards to $200 each. Good 'old supply & demand for ya...


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 5:05 p.m.

A legend in his own mind. But, I have to admit its perfect for the Ann Arbor crowd!


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 6:59 p.m.

Doesn't AA stand for "above average?"


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 5:32 p.m.

Being a town of all above-average people and all. Lake Woebegon has nothing on us!


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 4:34 p.m.

Seems like a lot of money to pay to fall asleep in a theater.

Ryan J. Stanton

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 4:01 p.m.

This is the best news I've heard all day.

Jessica Webster

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 3:58 p.m.

I was just thinking that it was about time we got to witness another taping! Looking forward to it.

Unusual Suspect

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 3:48 p.m.

I was a loyal listener until he got political. I haven't listened since. Part of the allure was that the whole show had the context of taking place in an ideal, fictional place and time, and bringing current-day politics into it contradicts that fantasy.

Jenn McKee

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 3:38 p.m.

Good news! I've loved seeing tapings in Detroit at the Fox.


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 3:09 p.m.

I am a big fan. As the mores of our cultures, and what passes for entertainment(cough) slide (daily) even deeper into the gutter it is good to know that there remains such a non-objectionable offering. Long live PHC!


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 2:45 p.m.

Looks like I will need a tent and a day off to get tickets. Every time I try? Sold out. Can't wait.


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 3:13 p.m.

jns, i may be pitching my tent next to yours!! can't wait!


Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 2:38 p.m.



Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 2:34 p.m.

A great show to take your whole family to!

Unusual Suspect

Tue, Nov 27, 2012 : 3:49 p.m.

It used to be. Lately, though, he has introduced content that isn't family-friendly.