Written by Klaire Howerton
Posted by Mark Ruda
Andy Williams Moon River Theatre – Great Performers Scheduled Every Year
There are a lot of fantastic theaters in Branson – there is the Clay Cooper Theater, for example, or the Hamner-Barber Theater. Few theaters are as memorable, though, as Andy William’s Moon River Theatre. Loved by many, Andy Williams had a legendary career in the music industry, and thousands of people have visited his theatre in Branson to hear the star sing, or attend the other great shows performed on that popular stage. For a truly unique theatre experience, stop by Andy Williams Moon River Theatre.
Andy Williams began his musical journey in a small town in Iowa at the age of eight. He and his three brothers formed the Williams Brothers Quartet, and soon became popular on radio stations around the nation. Their first professional recording was done in 1944. Eventually, Andy moved to New York to continue pursuing music. It wasn’t long until he began scoring Top 10 hits like Canadian Sunset. His career continued to skyrocket and he eventually moved to television and live performances. In 1992, Andy fulfilled his dream of opening a 12 million dollar theatre in Branson, Missouri, a town he had come to know and love through his friend Ray Stevens. And so, the Moon River Theatre was born. Andy performed there up until 2011, when he bowed out of show business due to a cancer diagnosis. He passed away in September of 2012, and is still sorely missed.
The theatre itself was an architectural revolution in the area at the time it was built. It encompasses 16 acres of beauty, including rock formations, naturally inspired landscaping, waterfalls and a rushing stream. The theatre won the 1992 Conservation Award for Developed Land Use from the State of Missouri. Inside the theatre, guests will find a museum like atmosphere, where Andy displayed pieces of art from his personal collection so that the whole community of Branson could enjoy them.
Dozens of famous performers have wowed crowds on the Moon River Stage – aside from Andy Williams himself, stars like Randy Travis, Lee Greenwood and Clint Black have all performed here. One of the most popular performers to grace the Moon River Theatre is Daniel O’Donnell, PBS star and Irish singing sensation. Daniel performs a wonderful show filled with Irish ballads and folk songs, gospel hits and country favorites! Another popular Moon River Show is The Andy Williams Christmas Show – thousands of theatre guests have seen this holiday spectacular; it is by far one of Branson’s most popular Christmas shows! Featuring the Osmonds and the Lennon Sisters, this is a Christmas show for the whole family, featuring singing, dancing, amazing sets, a full orchestra and even some magic acts. Moon River is also proud to be a host to The Cat’s Pajamas, featured on America’s Got Talent and The Sing-Off. This great capella group will wow you with their talent – it’s no wonder they were voted Branson’s Best Vocal Group in 2011 and 2012.
Andy Williams Moon River Theatre has long been a favorite in Branson. With rich history and great performers past, present and future, it’s a theatre you’ll want to be sure and visit.