Sarah Stultz: Upcoming play sparked a beautiful memory

Published 8:45 pm Monday, June 17, 2024

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I remember it clearly as if it were yesterday. As I rode with my grandmother in her dark turquoise minivan many years ago, she would often play a cassette tape with songs from popular musicals.

I remember songs like “The Impossible Dream” from “Man of La Mancha” and others from “Fiddler on the Roof,” including “Sunrise, Sunset,” and “If I Were a Rich Man.”

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At that time I don’t believe I was even a teenager yet, but the lyrics from those car rides burned deep into my mind.

Usually we were accompanying my grandma for a lunch out or a visit somewhere else. My grandmother loved taking me and my sisters out for special meals or treats quite often.

And as I’m writing an article about Albert Lea Community Theatre’s upcoming production of “Fiddler on the Roof,” the memories of those carefree rides with my grandmother came flooding back to me.

My grandmother enjoyed singing, and I often picked out that tape to listen to instead of the one she had with John Denver favorites, which I didn’t have the same appreciation for at the time.

Though I was young, I recognized the beauty of the songs from the musicals and the talent behind those people singing them. But I think even more than the songs themselves, I loved that my grandma loved them, and for that reason alone, those songs will always hold a special place in my heart.

It’s remarkable to think of how a memory like that resurfaced after so many years.

While I’ve never seen the full production of “Fiddler on the Roof,” and I don’t recall encountering those songs again until the last few weeks as I have covered a few things tied to ACT’s production of “Fiddler on the Roof,” I can’t help but smile as I think of the popular songs from that musical and that cassette tape from so many years ago.

I hope community members go check out the play and make memories of their own.

Sarah Stultz is the managing editor of the Tribune. Her column appears every Wednesday.