The Miracle Worker play at Ivy Green attracts a global audience

By  | June 14, 2018 | Filed under: News

TUSCUMBIA-Each summer, fans of Helen Keller from around the world make their way to Tuscumbia to see William Gibson’s epic drama about her early life performed on the grounds of the home where she grew up.

The 57th season of The Miracle Worker play at Ivy Green kicked off to a packed house June 8. The play will be performed on Friday and Saturday nights though July 14.

“At any given performance, we have people from all four corners of the country and several foreign countries watching,” said director Darren Butler. “They literally come from all over the world to see The Miracle Worker performed at Helen Keller’s home.”

The play depicts the life of Keller, from the discovery of her deafness and blindness, caused by a fever when she was 19 months old, to her learning to communicate with the help of her teacher Annie Sullivan. The climax of the play is when Keller spells w-a-t-e-r in Sullivan’s hand as water flows from the well pump. The miracle occurred barely a month after Sullivan arrived at Ivy Green to begin teaching an unruly and stubborn, 6-year-old. It is the Official State Outdoor Drama for Alabama and has been named a Top 20 Event by the Southeast Tourism Society.

Keller went on to become a world renowned author, lecturer and advocate for people with disabilities. She was known as America’s First Lady of Courage.

Butler, who is in his 20th season as director of the play, is often asked why he has directed the same play for so many years. “When someone asks why I have stayed on as director for so long, I ask them ‘why would I not want to keep directing William Gibson’s play on the very spot where the miracle happened?’ I am extremely honored to be able to direct The Miracle Worker here at Ivy Green.”

The gates at Ivy Green open at 6:30 p.m. for the play with the performance getting underway at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15 for reserved seats, $10 for general admission and include a self-guided tour of Ivy Green and its grounds. Concessions are available.

For tickets, or more details, call Ivy Green at 256-383-4066.

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