SSU presents Montana Repertory Theatre’s ‘The Miracle Worker’ on stage

March 17, 2014

PORTSMOUTH, Ohio — The Southern Ohio Performing Arts Association and Shawnee State University is bringing “The Miracle Worker” to the Smith Main Stage in the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 25.

The story of Helen Keller and her teacher Anne Sullivan is one of the most memorable and poignant true stories ever told. It tells the story of how one little girl who could not hear or see was taught to communicate.

When Helen Keller’s family hired Anne Sullivan, they thought their six-year-old little girl was retarded. Even when Helen’s parents urged Sullivan to give up, she is determined and deals not only with the tumultuous child, but with the child’s skeptical family.

Helen Keller learned to understand language through the combination of water from a pump on one hand and the spelling of “water” with the manual alphabet into her other hand. Keller said later, “That living word awakened my soul, gave it light, hope, joy, set it free!”

Keller went on to become a significant figure in American history. She wrote several books, earned a bachelor’s degree from Radcliff University, awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and become vocally and politically active as a suffragist, pacifist and socialist.

Keller traveled throughout the world and she even came to Portsmouth where she spoke at the high school on January 16, 1915.

Links to a study guide on the show may be found at In addition, the Portsmouth Public Library and Shawnee State University Library will be featuring informational displays about Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan throughout March, a listing of which may be found at

Tickets for lower tier seating are $45 for general admission, $42 senior, $38 students and $15 children under 12. Upper tier prices are discounted as well as special discounts for families and groups.

Tickets may be purchased at the McKinley Box Office in the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts at Shawnee State University from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, online through Ticketmaster at or any Ticketmaster Outlet, or by calling 740-351-3600. Student and senior discounts are available. For more information, go to

The 2013-14 theater season at the Vern Riffe Center is presented with the support of the Ohio Arts Council, an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Shawnee State University Development Foundation, the Martings Foundation and the Scioto Foundation.