|Jo Ann Castle|
Stars of America’s all time favorite variety show are in Branson this week for the Welk Stars Reunion 2007. The five-day schedule with nine live performances at the Welk Resort Theatre begins Wednesday, Sept. 5 and runs through Sunday, September 9.
Original guest stars from the Lawrence Welk television show appearing in the Welk Stars Reunion 2007 include Jo Ann Castle, Anacani, Ava Barber, Dick Dale, Jack Imel, Mary Lou Metzger and Roger & David Otwell (see entertainer bios below).
The Welk Stars will be joined by the dance team of Pasha & Ailona and the Champagne Music Makers under the direction of Bobby Tillery. Produced by Mary Lou Metzger, the show will include Big Band favorites, the stars’ signature songs and a few surprises -- topped off by an emotion-filled patriotic salute to veterans.
Show times for the Welk Stars Reunion 2007 are Wednesday thru Saturday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. plus Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets may be purchased at the Welk Resort Theatre Box Office, by phone at (800)-734-5515 or (417)-337-7469, on the internet at sullivanshows.com or at select Branson-area ticket outlets. Ticket prices including all taxes range from $39.50 for Elite Seating to $34.50 for adults and $14.50 for children. An every day “locals rate” is available to people who live or work in Stone or Taney counties. Proof of employment and/or residency is required.
“The Lawrence Welk Show” was broadcast for 27 years – on the ABC television network from July 1955 to September 1971 and in syndication from 1971 to 1982. Demanding that his shows be clean and wholesome, Welk featured easy-listening music performed by a “family” of wholesome musicians, singers and dancers. The show’s enduring popularity has been proven time and again through highly rated re-runs and specials on PBS since 1987 and 11 years of live performances at The Welk Resort Theatre in Branson.
The Welk Resort and Theatre are located 3 miles south of Highway 76 on State Highway 165. The destination resort complex opened in 1994 and includes a 160-room hotel, the Stage Door Restaurant & Lounge, miniature golf course, swimming pool, game room and other amenities. The 2,245-seat theatre near Table Rock Lake was home to the Lawrence Welk Show from 1994 through 2004. A new alliance announced in October 2003 united the Welk Resort Group and SullivanShows in a venture designed to bring an array of new shows to Branson. Welk-Sullivan Productions has operated, managed and marketed the Welk Resort Theatre in Branson since January 1, 2004.