The musical based on the Laura Ingalls Wilder series of classic American books will star Melissa Gilbert — who rose to fame as Laura in the NBC television series "Little House on the Prairie" — as Ma with Steve Blanchard as Pa and Kara Lindsay as Laura. The Paper Mill engagement is scheduled to begin Sept. 10. After a two-week engagement at the Ordway Theatre, the show will continue to more than 30 additional cities throughout the U.S. and Canada in 2009 and 2010, including Denver, Toronto, Houston, Tempe and Sacramento.
Little House on the Prairie boasts direction by The Little Mermaid's Francesca Zambello. The new musical features a book by Tony Award winner Rachel Sheinkin (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee), music by Academy Award winner Rachel Portman ("Emma") and lyrics by Donna DiNovelli. Kristen Blodgette is the music supervisor, and Michele Lynch is the choreographer.
Little House, according to press notes, "is the uplifting story of an American family forging a new life amidst the mighty challenges, heartbreaks, joys and triumphs that face them in the newly-settled heartland. It is also the story of young Laura Ingalls, as she begins her life as a young woman, finding purpose, and finding love. Above all, it is the celebration of the pioneering spirit and the core values on which this country was founded – a spirit that still resonates today."
The design team includes set designer Adrianne Lobel, lighting designer Mark McCullough and costume designer Tony winner Jess Goldstein.
Producers are Ben Sprecher, Amy Sprecher, Louise Forlenza, Bob Boyett, Jay Harris, William Franzblau, Tony Fusco, Larry Feinman, and Nelle Nugent, in association with Wendy Federman and Bob Reich.
Little House on the Prairie debuted at the Guthrie Theater.