Keillor Looking for Funny People
September 21, 1998
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) _ Are you unemployed? And funny? Garrison Keillor may be looking for you.
The humorist needs an extra hand to keep "A Prairie Home Companion,″ his acclaimed radio program, witty and entertaining.
Minnesota Public Radio, which produces the show, placed ads recently in The New York Times, Variety, the Los Angeles Times and on the Internet.
"He was hoping to really be bowled over, but he hasn’t been bowled over yet″ by the responses, said producer Christine Tschida.
"With a two-hour show every week for 34 weeks a year, that is an awful lot of material,″ Tschida said. ``Garrison does write nearly the entire program. It would be nice to have a few other submissions to take off some of the pressure.″
Keillor’s Minnesota-based variety show started in 1974 and is broadcast on more than 410 public radio stations.
I must have seen it in the NY Times. Out of all of those ads, I made the cut. I never realized what a big deal that was, really, until now. I never had the nerve to ask the producer how many submissions they got. I just knew I was in. I had had my fair share of rejections over the years, so, no, I wasn't about to question an actual gig. Of course, I was clueless to what I was doing. And I'm sure the fact that I had never listened to the show was a handicap in the long run. I would counter that I do have a good ear and I was certain that I would quickly pick up the voice of the show. I'm pretty certain that might have slipped out during my communication with the producer, Christine Tschida, because she sent me a couple of CDs of the best of Prairie Home Companion to listen to to help me along.