Gustavus Theatre performs plays for area children and families
For 150 years, Gustavus has continued a long tradition of providing thousands of hours of entertainment for its students, staff and the St. Peter community. Whether it is in sports, theatre, dance, music concerts or public lectures.
Gustavus has been host to some pretty amazing community events. One of the most unique was a tradition to entertain local children with exciting plays. Started by Evelyn Anderson ’29, a longtime Gustavus drama and theatre professor, it quickly became a favorite for the actors in the department. The plays went on for thirty years, and it was a way for theatre students to give back to the community that supports their endeavors.
The Gustavus Children’s Theatre started back in 1951 with the play Cinderella, and only children from the local St. Peter schools were invited to attend. As the scope of the Gustavus theatre department grew, so did the audience for the children’s plays. At the end of the Children’s Theatre run, 6,000 children per year from all over the state were exposed to theatre through Gustavus Adolphus College’s children’s plays. Children and adults alike came to see plays like Sleeping Beauty, Rumplestiltskin, Jack and the Beanstalk, Hansel and Gretel and other various fairytales and folk stories. The Gustavus casts started taking their performances on the road. The 1987 January Term theatre troupe brought their performance of The Ugly Duckling to 23 local venues in the area.