Garrison Keillor has become an American household name over the last four decades. The famous radio personality's claim to fame is his self-created and immensely successful live radio variety show, A Prairie Home Companion. Keillor is a humorist par excellence, as his dry monologue has captured the imagination of audiences with its sly tongue-in-cheek wit. The wonderful characters and innovations on A Prairie Home Companion, like Lake Wobegon's inhabitants, have also helped him forge into Hollywood with its movie adaptation. Fans have often attested to the fact that his lectures catch him in his true element, as he takes his meandering monologue over social issues, Midwestern lifestyle, journalism career choices, and a variety of pertinent topics. Lecture tickets are hot on the market as people flock to hear this gifted speaker.
Gary Edward "Garrison" Keillor was born in Anoka, Minnesota to a carpenter and postal worker of Scots and Norwegian ancestry. While completing his English bachelor's from University of Minnesota, Keillor started off as student broadcaster at Radio K. From 1969, he hosted MPR's daily The Morning Program (6-9 am) which the station dubbed "A Prairie Home Entertainment". The unorthodox music contrasted with the station's usual classical fare and won him great fanfare. He resigned over artistic interference in 1971 only to rejoin in months, with the show renamed A Prairie Home Companion. Keillor had continued writing for The New Yorker, but the show became a certified hit when it moved to Saturday night's time-slot. Folk musicians and a comedic cast that performed hilarious skits backed Keillor's enchanting storytelling on A Prairie Home Companion. Keillor also hosted The Writer's Almanac. He expanded his writing repertoire to include advice columns at Salon.com under the "Mr. Blue" pen-name, and sold a number of books. Many of these were accompanied by elaborate book signing ceremonies and lectures. He starred in and wrote the screenplay of the 2006 movie A Prairie Home Companion opposite screen legends Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones.
A Prairie Home Companion's quaint charm is mainly due to its folk and traditional music leanings. The cadre cast performs various skits parodying film noir, politics, and social issues. Keillor's dry wit has made his signature "News from Lake Wobegon" segment a booming hit. Over two million viewers in 450 NPR stations tune in weekly. Keillor has received a 1988 Grammy (for Lake Wobegon Days recording), a John Steinbeck Award, and a Medal for Spoken Language by the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
A Prairie Home Companion broadcasts from St. Paul, but its appeal has increased manifold with its various nationwide and overseas tours. Lenox's Tanglewood, New York's Town Hall and Nashville's Ryman Auditorium are famous tour venues. Lecture tickets sales for Keillor's upcoming sets at the Minnesota State Fair and Texas dates are gaining momentum.
Garrison Keillor is a literary giant. His lectures give more insight into his astonishing creativity, the offhand humor, and his erstwhile advice for youngsters. His lecture tickets are definitely prized possessions for all Keillor fans.