"This show went from perhaps the greatest writer-storyteller radio has ever known to a guy who plays a toy instrument and has a voice that sounds like an oboe going through puberty." — Chris Thile

A Prairie Home Companion Extra

2017 Cruise — Scotland and Norway

A limited number of cabins just opened up so you can join us for the MUSICAL EXPERIENCE of a lifetime as Garrison Keillor and A Prairie Home Companion cruise Scotland and Norway from June 10 to June 24, 2017. It promises to be a scenic journey filled with magical music moments as Garrison and company take over the entire ship!

Garrison Keillor

Garrison begins most days by singing with Verne Sutton and the Lake Wobegon Glee Club very early in the morning and ends the day with two full A Prairie Home Companion–style performances. In between, he roams the ship, hosts high tea, has special afternoon showroom programming including duet singing, has storytime with guests where they can share their own “Lake Wobegon” tales, hosts the talent contest, and so much more. The ship provides multiple opportunities for one to get to know the “man on the radio in the red shoes” a bit better and hear his many stories.


By Garrison Keillor

Cruise Glee Club

The Showroom

The main attraction for most fans is the showroom where Garrison and company will hold court for two shows every evening — to accommodate both the early and late dinner sessions. Every evening's show is amazing and will create musical moments you will treasure forever. Whether it is an all-out A Prairie Home Companion show filled with music, comedy and stories; a songwriter’s showcase; an evening of duets; a full opera or sound effects extravaganza that Garrison has written or the talent contest, the show will always hold your attention and have you wishing it could last a bit longer (even though Garrison seems like the Energizer Bunny, performing from dawn to dusk).

Our Guest List

Our Guest List

One of my favorite activities is exploring the many intimate live music venues around the ship and catching some one-of-a-kind collaborations by a few of your favorite Prairie Home guest performers. Whether it is the Ocean Bar, the Piano Bar, the Crow’s Nest or any other nook that can hold an instrument, you are sure to see some wonderful collaborations that will only happen on this ship. Truly amazing music is the centerpiece of every Prairie Home cruise.

Below, you will find a listing of some of the musicians who will be performing around the ship.

Duet singing continues to be one of the hallmarks of A Prairie Home Companion. One of the most unique elements of the cruise is the opportunity to hear duets performed live by one-of-a-kind combinations of singers aboard the ship!


Duets: Vol. 1 & 2

Aoife O'Donovan

In the Magic Hour
By Aoife O'Donovan

Songwriter and vocalist Aoife O'Donovan grew up in a musical family in Newton, Massachusetts. In her teens, she took an interest in the American folk tradition, and she spent her summers in Ireland, studying music and dance. After graduating from the New England Conservatory of Music, she formed the progressive bluegrass band Crooked Still and the trio Sometymes Why.

Watch Aoife perform “Porch Light” from a recent show.


Heather Masse

Bird Song
By Heather Masse

Growing up in rural Maine, Heather sang hymns and folk songs around the home with her family. Now based in New York, this New England Conservatory of Music alum is one-third of the Juno Award–winning Canadian trio The Wailin' Jennys. Whether performing solo, with the Jennys or as Garrison’s duet partner, she always entertains!

Watch Heather perform "Bird Song" during the 40th Anniversary celebration.


Maria Jette and Dan Chouinard

The Siren's Song
By Maria Jette and Dan Chouinard

Versatile soprano Maria Jette can sing opera one minute, then make a sharp turn to pop songs, chamber music, oratorio, or show tunes the next. She is often a guest on A Prairie Home Companion and has appeared with orchestras nationwide, including the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, New York Chamber Symphony, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and Minnesota Orchestra. Her most recent project is her second collection of songs from the P.G. Wodehouse catalog and is a collaboration with pianist Dan Chouinard.

Listen to "Moon Song."


Richard Kriehn

Hop, Skip, Jump
By Richard Kriehn

When Richard Kriehn turned 10, his mom bought him a mandolin; at 19, he won the Buck White International Mandolin Contest. He went on to play with the Nashville Mandolin Ensemble and the bluegrass group, 1946. On the classical side, he has performed with numerous orchestras and was second violin for the Washington/Idaho Symphony.

Listen to "Washington Express"


Other Performers

Karan Casey’s voice has been described by The Los Angeles Times as “pure and clear as the crystal from County Waterford, where she was born.”

Listen to her perform "Home."

Also joining in on the fun: Vocalist Kate Beahen; composer, arranger and multi-instrumentalist Lee Blaske; Italian pianist and accordionist Francesco Cali; bluegrass virtuoso Mike Compton; composer, pianist and harmonica master Howard Levy; banjo extraordinaire Joe Newbury; and Danish jazz singer Clara Vuust, among others.

Our Regular Cast

Our Regular Cast


Richard Dworsky

Each week on A Prairie Home Companion, Richard Dworsky leads The Guy's All-Star Shoe Band and appears as keyboardist, composer, and arranger. An APHC regular since 1986, he's accompanied Garrison Keillor on U.S. and European concert tours and provided original music for many Keillor recordings.



Tim Russell

One minute he’s mild-mannered Tim Russell; the next he’s George Bush or Julia Child or Barack Obama. We’ve yet to stump this man of many voices. In other roles, Tim played the part of Al, the stage manager, in the Robert Altman film A Prairie Home Companion and a detective in the Coen brothers’ A Serious Man.

Read: Tim Russell Guest Interview



Sue Scott

A Prairie Home Companion cast member Sue Scott's connection with Minnesota Public Radio started in late 1988 when she was cast to perform multiple character roles for various local and national MPR broadcasts. When Garrison Keillor returned to St. Paul with A Prairie Home Companion in 1992, Sue joined the cast and has been there ever since. Sue has also performed on celebrated theater stages throughout the Twin Cities and the Midwest, is a veteran voice-over talent who can be heard frequently on radio and TV, and is featured in the Robert Altman movie A Prairie Home Companion as Donna, the make-up lady.

Read: Sue Scott Guest Interview



Fred Newman

Once a freckled-faced, snaggle-toothed kid making sounds behind teachers’ backs, Fred grew up at the foot of storytellers in small town Georgia. He eventually ventured overseas, working for awhile as a street busker, blacksmith and then carpet salesman. He tried to go legit, graduating Harvard Business School and working with Newsweek magazine, and was first heard on A Prairie Home Companion as a guest in 1980 as author of his first version of MouthSounds. He went on to work as an actor, a writer, and a fairly inept puppeteer with Jim Henson, hosting many shows for Nickelodeon and Disney (including the New Mickey Mouse Club). He created voices, music, and sound effects for the long-running Nickelodeon and Disney cartoon series Doug and went on to win Aces, Emmys, Peabodys, Clios, blah, blah ...


Bring Your

Bring Your Instruments!

Jam sessions abound! Bring whatever instrument you play and feel free to join in wherever the jam sessions are being held. It is a fun process to sit and pick along with many of the original performers of A Prairie Home Companion and find the tunes that we all have in common. And, as a person who doesn’t play, it’s always entertaining to watch and listen to some great acoustic music.




We have our naturalists joining us to provide a history of the area as well as insight into the native species and fish you might see. Rich MacDonald will help you see new birds, while Natalie Springuel never loses her enthusiasm for helping passengers decode the mysteries of the deep. Joy and Todd will be joining to provide some dance lessons and fun. These are just a few of the activities that will fill your day and provide memories to last a lifetime!

Finally, this doesn’t even come close to describing the cruise of a lifetime! There is far more activity on the ship, from dancing, to knitting clubs, to fellowship gatherings and so much more. The food is incredible at the many venues — and one of my favorites is the breakfast alarm clock where I order my breakfast and hang it on the door and at whatever time I indicate, it’s brought to my room. I love the service the staff of Holland America provides, the best, bar none, for cruisers! The shore excursions and discovering the various port stops add to the magical journey and for this cruise, there is an overnight stay in Bergin and Oslo, Norway during the Midsummer celebrations. All in all, it should be a great cruise!

If you have any questions, feel free to shoot me an email or give me a call at 1-800-998-8173. If I can’t answer your question, I am almost certain that Dina at EMI can!

As always, sign up for our Facebook fanpage and follow us on Twitter to keep up with all the news!

Have a great week!
David Edin
Merchandise Manager

A Prairie Home Companion's 40th Anniversary Collection