Garrison Keillor has been dropping hints for a few months now that the end is near. A few weeks ago, he staged the first A Prairie Home Companion without him. He sat in the audience while a guest host did the work.
"It was the result of the hard work of a lot of people and I don't think I should let it go into dry dock just because the captain gets old. There are other captains," he told MPR's Euan Kerr.
Keillor raised the possibility of a few more guest hosts but today a report says he's picked a retirement date and is looking for a permanent replacement.
The interview, in an AARP magazine, says Keillor is done in 2013.
"I am planning to retire in the spring of 2013, but first I have to find my replacement. I'm pushing forward, and also I'm in denial. It's an interesting time of life," he said.
But until today, there was no indication when his seat in the audience might become permanent.
Finally, a breath of fresh air into this geriatric show. Maybe picking a younger host will save MPR's moneymaker.
I will be interested to hear other guest hosts of PHC.
Hey, how about Dale Connelly? He's replaced Garrison Keillor before. (O.K., not really replaced, but it was Keillor's old show.)
I hate to see him go but it's probably time, glad he hung in there as long as he has. Represents our great state quite well and I have no idea how he can be replaced...
If there was an honor of national story teller laureate, Keillor deserves it.
His talent and taste in music, however.... or is it all self-parody? :-)
as one of those dinosaurs who started attending at the History center when they were serving popped corn at the door from a old style popcorn popper, GK deserves to rest his bones and listen to a radio masterpiece he and his staff have created.
I attended the PHC with the guest host from California. she's a good singer but couldn't carry the dialogue part of the show.
how about the World Cafe host? or someone with a good sense of humor from the Current?
And anyone who has ever been in a ski lift chair like I was today would rather be associated w PHC and Minnesota than Jesse Ventura or Michelle Bachman!
It's kind of a sad thing. I've often thought that GK was a national treasure, and I still think he does SOME good work. I loved his newspaper column (he doesn't do that any more). And he still tells a pretty good-to-great story. But his show has gone downhill in some ways. For example, he has relied way too much on fecal and other bodily-function jokes in the last few years. You say "fart" in a monologue once in about five years and it's hilarious. Any more than that (and it's been MUCH more), and it's not only un-funny, but it's enough to turn the radio off too.
The Guy's Shoe Band is pretty good, but I don't like gospel or other religious music which they do a lot -- at GK's behest, I suppose. It's kind of funny, but I hated his singing back in the early days of the show, and then I eventually grew to sort of be all right with it.
He has contributed significantly and in some really good ways to our culture, so I'll be sad to see him retire.
My favorite part of PHC is GK 15 minute monologue at around 6:15-6:30. I'll probably listen less when he leaves.