Academy Award winner and western Iowa native Donna Reed will be remembered this week with the 23rd annual Festival of the Performing Arts in her hometown of Denison. Event director Molly Paulsrud says the fest draws aspiring actors and actresses from all across the region.
Paulsrud says it’s a week of performing arts workshops where participants can learn about all aspects of acting on the stage and on the screen. She says the workshops range from acting and singing to writing scripts and even children’s theatre. Paulsrud says students have personal contact with the instructors all week and learn a host of skills, including: Shakespeare, improv, musical theatre and career development.
Two of the stars of the Donna Reed television show, which ran from 1958 to ’66, will be at the festival — Paul and Patty Peterson. Reed was also well known for her role as Jimmy Stewart’s wife in the 1946 film, "It’s a Wonderful Life." In a close-knit community like Denison, Paulsrud says much of the town is touched by the events.
There’s a weekend event with the city called "Rewind to the 50s" to complement events on Friday and Saturday. Paulsrud said the second season of the Donna Reed Show will be released on DVD on July 21st. For more information visit the Donna Reed Festival website , or call (712) 263-3334.