Minnesota State Fair Day Two: Minnesota 4-H State Arts-In

Look at this glorious Art Deco building!  The Walking Tour brochure says: “Concrete in the building’s horizontal base and central tower conveys a sense of strength meant to boost morale during [the Great Depression.]”

I am here to see the production of “More Than a Wish.”  The State Arts-In is something I’ve never heard of before, so I’m guessing this is a unique-to-Minnesota 4-H experience, or only happens in states where 4-H is a Very Big Deal.  From the brochure:

Minnesota 4-H State Arts-In is a life-changing experience for youth 15-19 years old from across the state. While at State Arts-In, participants develop lifelong skills, and have the opportunity to work closely with professionals who serve as mentors. Each year, 4-H State Arts-In youth perform at least 35 full shows to more than 12,000 audience members.

According to what I’ve pieced together from what the performers told me during the performance and the State Arts-In Facebook page, Prep Week begins on August 10.  At that point, 35 performers, 9 band members, 18 technical crew and 5 costumers from “across the state” (though 34 of 67 come from Anoka county) arrive and create a unique, 30-minute musical which is written, choreographed and staged by the teenagers themselves. Synopsis: Everyone arrives at this beautiful mansion for a fancy party they’ve been invited to.  No one knows why they have been invited. As the songs and exposition unfold it turns out that a brother and sister live at the mansion.  A few people remember helping them out, like when one paid for their gas when they didn’t have any money.  Eventually the brother/sister team reveals that had some hard times in the past, but everyone in the room had helped the brother/sister team at some time.  So that’s why you should always be good people. The End.

There was the guys showcase.

Early on, the girls all shed their long skirts for shorter party dresses, and the guys took off their tuxes.

The Girls had a showcase song/medly too.

Overall, this was a great bit of fun at the fair.  I could have watched it several times.

3 thoughts on “Minnesota State Fair Day Two: Minnesota 4-H State Arts-In”

  1. Last year it was pirate themed and seemingly just as delightful! I could have gotten behind this as a high schooler, for sure!

    1. We didn’t have a fully functioning drama program at Borah, which was a shame. I wonder if things would have been different if we had one? Probably not, for me. Band took up a lot of time. But we would have been able to see our classmates and friends in musicals. That would have been fun.

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