09 November 2011

The Worlds of Genealogy and Theatre Collide

My daughter, Kirsten, is currently in rehearsal for "The Secret Garden" musical at Light Opera Works in Evanston, Illinois.  Last night, I received a text from Kirsten telling me that Light Opera Works used a picture of our ancestors, August and Louise Fredrick, in the design presentation for The Secret Garden.  I was blown away.

August and Louise Fredrick are my great grandparents; Kirsten's great, great grandparents.  Can you imagine sitting in rehearsal (or anywhere) and seeing your ancestors used for inspiration?  Kirsten texted "What a random coincidence and a great example of how genealogy affects everything."  I agree. 
The design team for The Secret Garden must have found the picture online during their research as Kirsten was blown away as much as I was.  The picture was used for costume inspiration for the characters of Ben, the gardener and Martha, the chambermaid.

When I attend one of Kirsten's productions, just as the lights go down I reflect on how proud I am of Kirsten and how hard she works as she follows her dream.  This time, in addition, I will be remembering the inspiration for Ben and Martha and how genealogy and theatre collided for this one moment.


  1. Brenda, What a thrill indeed, and everybody loves "The Secret Garden" story. Kirsten will do a great job, but I'm wondering how you will be! You'll have to share pictures.

    On another note, I've 4 generations of Pooles from Evanston, incl. my father who was born there. So feel free to do some genealogy while you are there ;-))

  2. Barbara, I already asked Kirsten to get a picture of Ben and Martha in costume. You and I have too many coincidences with places, I am still waiting to find one relative in common:)

  3. Thank you for sharing such a lovely story. I'm sure you're incredibly proud and thrilled about such a "coincidence "

    I'm anxious to hear more of the story.

  4. Thanks, Michelle. I will be sure to post a follow up to this.

  5. What thrilling news - and what a great combination. Let us know how it goes!

  6. Greta, I agree and I will post a follow up.