“Breaking Barriers, Expanding Boundaries” is the theme of the 2021 High Plains Chautauqua, online August 2-5. Although you can skip the drive to Greeley, online attendees will be able to watch scholars and interact with them in real time by asking questions of both the character and the scholar, preserving the traditional format of Chautauqua.
Expanding boundaries are portrayed through the life achievements of notable figures like Rosa Parks, Edwin Hubble, and Selena, Tejano music superstar. John D. Rockefeller, Jr. and Mother Jones, key figures in Colorado coal mining, the United Mine Workers strike, and the Ludlow Massacre in southern Colorado a little more than 100 years ago, will appear on opening night.
In recognition of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, participants will meet the combative and outspoken leader of the Women’s Suffrage movement, Alice Paul. John Deere, with his improved steel plow, and trader/rancher William Bent, both of whom played important roles in Western expansion, also join the program. Colorado’s Legendary Ladies will entertain with brief appearances by Dr. Florence Sabin, miner Captain Jack, and Frances Wisebart Jacobs, whose legacy was the forerunner of the United Way. A real treat on closing night will be Doug Mishler, appearing as Nikola Tesla, tortured genius and inventor of alternating current, in what is sure to be an electrifying performance. As is the tradition every year, each performance will be preceded by a Young Chautauqua Cameo, portrayed by elite performers from Greeley-Evans School District 6. The Young Chautauquan character lineup this year includes Edwin Hubble, Selena, Marie Curie, and Oskar Schindler.
High Plains Chautauqua offers a series of interactive daytime programs online that will offer the option to participate in a deeper discussion of the issues presented in the historical context of character portrayals. Live participants can interact with the scholars and should visit highplainschautauqua.org to get the links to join the platform. The program will also stream on High Plains Chautauqua’s Facebook.