Experience the magic; make Anne of Green Gables-The Musical™ a family tradition this summer.
Anne of Green Gables
Anne of Green Gables - Full Company
Great Workers for the Cause - Rachel Lynde and the Ladies
Where is Matthew Going? - The Townspeople
Gee I'm Glad I'm No One Else But Me - Anne
We Clearly Requested a Boy - Marilla, Anne and Matthew
The Facts - Anne, Mrs. Spencer, Mrs. Blewett and Marilla
Where'd Marilla Come From? - The Townspeople
Humble Pie - Matthew and Anne
The Apology - Anne
Back to School Ballet - The Pupils
Avonlea We Love Thee - Mr. Phillips and the Pupils
Wondrin' - Gilbert
Did You Hear? - Josie and the Townspeople
Ice Cream - Diana and Company
The Picnic - The Company
Where Did the Summer Go To? - Gilbert and the Pupils
Kindred Spirits - Anne and Diana
Open the Window - Miss Stacy and the Pupils
The Words - Matthew
Open the Window (reprise) - Miss Stacy and the Pupils
Nature Hunt Ballet - The Pupils
I'll Show Him - Anne and Gilbert
General Store - Lucilla, Matthew and the Townspeople
Pageant Song - The Pupils
If It Hadn't Been for Me - The Company
There is a Golden Summer - Gilbert and the Pupils
Anne of Green Gables - Matthew
The Words (reprise) - Marilla
Wondrin' (reprise) - Anne and Gilbert
Anne of Green Gables
Lucy Maud Montgomery
Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874-1942)was born in Clifton (now called New London), Prince Edward Island, daughter of Hugh John Montgomery and Clara Woolner Macneill. Her twenty-three-year-old mother died of tuberculosis when Maud was just twenty-one months old, and her maternal grandparents, Alexander and Lucy Macneill, took over her care at the Macneill homestead in Cavendish. She grew up in the seaside fishing and farming community, and knew intimately all of its beaches, woods, fields, and homes.
In 1890 she was invited to visit--perhaps to live with--her father and his new wife in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. She enjoyed the train trip itself and made some wonderful friends while out west--even saw her name in print for the first time--but she and her stepmother did not get along. She was homesick for the Island, too, and returned in 1891. Her awe over the size and beauty of Canada never left her.
Maud graduated from Prince of Wales College in Charlottetown in 1894 and received a first-class teacher's licence. At the convocation exercises, she read her essay on Shakespeare's "Portia" to an appreciative audience. She taught school first in Bideford, Prince Edward Island, where she was reasonably happy though she had a large class. She was courted by several young men and recorded many jolly times in her journal. The Bideford Parsonage, where she boarded that winter, has now become a museum in her honor.
Maud Montgomery had saved just enough money in her first year of teaching to pay for one year at Dalhousie University in Halifax. She thought that a course in English literature might aid her writing career. She received her first payment for a poem while in Halifax, and won a newspaper contest for writing. She returned to the Island to take up a second teaching post, in Belmont, Lot 16. Here she was not happy with the pupils nor with her living arrangement. She became secretly engaged to Edwin Simpson, her cousin, and almost immediately began to regret her decision. The next year, through Edwin Simpson's connections, she filled in as a teacher in Lower Bedeque, PEI. Her journal records her passionate attachment to the son of the family with whom she boarded--Herman Leard. Leard may already have been engaged, and she was herself. Her grandfather's death in 1898 took her back to Cavendish and away from Leard (who died the next year) and teaching. She broke her engagement with Edwin Simpson and assisted her grandmother in the post office for the next thirteen years.
Apart from a ten-month stint as a newspaper reporter on the Halifax Daily Echo (1901-1902), she stayed with her grandmother until Lucy Woolner Macneill died in 1911. She had many activities to keep her busy in Cavendish apart from the post office work: she photographed, she worked on the Cavendish Literary Magazine, she kept scrapbooks and a journal, and she wrote and published poetry and short stories. She was ambitious to earn a living by her pen. She made some far-flung friendships through her writing, three of which lasted for many years: with an elderly Massachusetts writer, Lucy Lincoln Montgomery (whose similar initials had brought them in contact); with an aspiring writer and teacher in Alberta, Ephraim Weber, with whom she began corresponding in 1902; and with George Boyd MacMillan, a young Scottish journalist and aspiring writer, with whom she began a correspondence in 1903. By the time she began writing to MacMillan, she was earning a comfortable living through her writing.
In 1902 Maud developed two important friendships: one was with the Cavendish school teacher, Nora Lefurgey, who boarded at the Macneills in the winter of 1903 and with whom she kept a riotously funny private journal. Nora moved away from the Island in 1904 but reappeared in Montgomery's life in the late 1920's when she moved to Toronto. They renewed their old friendship. The other friendship was with Maud's cousin Frederica Campbell of Park Corner, whom she had known for years as a little girl, but suddenly "discovered" as an adult. They became best friends, and Frede's death in 1919 was a permanent grief.
In 1903 Ewan Macdonald was ordained as a Presbyterian minister in Cavendish. When he left Canada to study for a year in Edinburgh in 1906, he and Maud were secretly engaged. Maud was determined to stay with her grandmother so that she could remain in her old home, and so the two could not wed for another five years. Meanwhile, Montgomery decided to take the time away from her lucrative short-story writing to write a novel. Anne of Green Gables was rejected several times before it was finally accepted by the L.C. Page Company in Boston. It was published in 1908 and became an immediate success. The Page Company contract tied Maud in for years, and she renewed the contract, though she hated doing so, on a visit to Page in 1910.
Anne of Green Gables changed her life. Suddenly she was a celebrity and began receiving fan mail. She earned what for the times was an enormous amount, despite the small royalty of the Page contract. She earned enough to pay for Frede Campbell's two-year course at Macdonald College in Montreal and for her own honeymoon in 1911. For the rest of her life, she was to be famous and sought after.
In March of 1911 Maud's grandmother died, and in July she married the Rev. Ewan Macdonald at her Campbell cousins' home in Park Corner. After a honeymoon in Scotland and England, visiting many of the literary sites she had read of all her life, they moved to Ewan's parish in Leaskdale, Ontario.
The Macdonalds' life in Leaskdale began in joy. Finally Montgomery could have a home of her own--even though it belonged to the church--and she became a mother. Montgomery had published four novels while she lived on the Island and had prepared a collection of short stories. She continued to write for the fifteen years they spent in the village of Leaskdale, and she also performed all of the many duties of a rural minister's wife.
Tragedy struck in 1914, first with the outbreak of the war and then with the still birth eight days later of her second son. The war was a daily agony to Montgomery--much of which is recorded in her novel Rilla of Ingleside (1920). A third, healthy son was born in 1915. When the war was finally over, Montgomery's beloved cousin Frederica Campbell Macfarlane died of the Spanish flu the war brought in its wake. A few months later Ewan Macdonald suffered a severe attack of mental illness. He was to suffer periodically from mental illness for the rest of his life, and Maud Montgomery Macdonald was never free from the strain and worry of the attacks or the dread of them. And Montgomery became embroiled in a nine-year lawsuit against the L.C. Page Company, her original publishers.
Partly because of the Church union controversy and partly because of a car accident and an unfortunate lawsuit against Ewan Macdonald, they decided to leave Leaskdale, and moved to Norval, at the Forks of the Credit, close to Toronto. They lived in Norval for nine years (1926-35). Montgomery was close enough to Toronto to be able to travel in easily and quickly, and she enjoyed her many public engagements as speaker and guest at literary and press clubs. The boys were almost grown and her writing continued to sell well. But her husband's mental illness became a problem that could no longer be hidden or ignored, and they retired to Toronto in 1935.
At their final home, "Journey's End," Montgomery enjoyed her garden and cats and writing. One son became a lawyer; the other, a medical doctor. She became an avid movie fan, and continued to attend public readings and many teas and readings in her honor. The strain of Ewan Macdonald's mental illness continued, and rumblings from Europe began to make Montgomery fear that another huge war was inevitable.
L.M. Montgomery Macdonald died in 1942. She was buried in Cavendish, Prince Edward Island, on the hill overlooking the land and sea she loved. Montgomery was much honored in her time and continues to be so today. In 1923 she was the first Canadian woman to be made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in Great Britain. In 1935 she was elected to the Literary and Artistic Institute of France and was also made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire. In 1936, largely because her books had already made the area a destination for travelers, the Government of Canada purchased land in Cavendish and designated it for a national park. In 1943 Lucy Maud Montgomery Macdonald was declared in Canada a person of national historic significance. In 1999 she was voted one of the top twenty heroes of the Twentieth Century. Her novels are still international best sellers.
In her lifetime she published twenty novels, five hundred short stories and five hundred poems in periodicals, two collections of short stories, one volume of poetry, and contributed three short biographies to the volume Courageous Women. For years she gave public readings and talks and wrote articles for newspapers and magazines. She left behind over a dozen scrapbooks, a couple of thousand photographs, wonderful handiwork, hundreds of clippings, and a million-word journal illustrated with her own photographs. Her novels have been translated into more than a dozen languages and she has inspired productions in radio, television, theatre, cinema, music, and art.
For many people around the world, L.M. Montgomery is Canada.
Dr. Elizabeth R. Epperly,
Curator Picturing a Canadian life: L.M. Montgomery's Personal Scrapbooks and Book Covers.
Anne of Green Gables – The Musical™
This 45 minute minute tour takes a look at 49 years of history. This exclusive tour offers an overview of Canada's National Mememorial to the Fathers of Confederation as well as well as a glimpse of behind the scenes where the theatre cast and crew make it all come to life.