Petunia and Chicken

Inspired by the writings of Midwestern author Willa Cather, two daring performers create an epic story of love and loss as big as the prairie itself.

Petunia, an indomitable immigrant girl determined to tame the wild land around her, meets Chicken, a right smart boy with dreams of great adventures. As the joys of their youth give way to the harsh realities of adulthood, they struggle to stay together. Sprawling fields of wheat, bustling train stations, rain-soaked kisses, wind-blown hair, and the rest of Petunia and Chicken’s world are brought to life with imagination, movement, and song.

Created and performed by Carrie Brown and Karim Muasher, Directed by Melinda Jean Ferraraccio

Petunia and Chicken Press Kit
Petunia and Chicken Press Photo
Petunia and Chicken Technical Rider

“From its delightful introduction to its rousing and heartwarming climax, this is minimalist theater at its absolute finest.
-Nuvo Indianapolis

“Deceptively simple … It is a feat of storytelling using old-fashioned physicality and imagination.”
-Maxamoo NY

Clever physicalization and heart warming storytelling combine to create a fantastical world brimming with vibrant characters.”
-Vue Weekly

“At the end of the show, you feel good. You are happy and hopeful. You know you are in the presence of love. As well as great theater.
-Cincinnati City Beat (Critic’s Pick)

“Weaving together three classic novels by Americana author Willa Cather, Animal Engine’s sole members Karim Muasher and Carrie Brown prove themselves as masterful storytellers.”
-East Village Arts

“Brown and Muasher manage to craft a dozen distinct characters and settings, including a tent, a train, tall grass, a cat, children, and the elderly. I laughed and I cried. This is a show you cannot miss.
-Twin Cities Geek

“The audience is taken on a clever, sweet and imaginative journey.
-NY Theater Now

“Charmingly romantic .. a trulyspellbinding experience!
-L’Etoile Magazine

Performance History


July 7 – 31 Capital Fringe Festival / Washington, D.C.

April 8 – 10 Cloud City / Brooklyn, NY

March 13 – 15 Know Theatre / Cincinnati, OH


October 29 Publick Playhouse / Cheverly, MD

August 13 – 23 Edmonton Fringe Festival / Edmonton, CA

July 30 – August 9 Minnesota Fringe Festival / Minneapolis, MN

June 18 Haymarket Theatre / Lincoln, NE

May 7 Brown Deer High School / Brown Deer, WI

May 6 Monona Grove High School / Madison, WI

May 5 Winfield High School / Winfield, IA

April 29 Crookston High School / Crookston, MN

April 24 Central High School / Omaha, NE

April 22 East High School / Sioux City, IA

April 16 Riverside High School / Cedar Rapids, NE

April 10 Gothenburg High School / Gothenburg, NE

April 9 Alma High School / Alma, NE

March 16 Lincoln Northeast High School / Lincoln, NE

March 13 Belton High School / Belton, MO

February 21 Gettysburg College / Gettysburg, PA


August 14 – 24 Indianapolis Theatre Fringe Festival / Indianapolis, IN

July 16 – 27 Winnipeg Fringe Festival / Winnipeg, CA

July 13 Wessels Living History Farm / York, NE

May 16 Van Horn High School / Independence, MO

May 12 Hershey High School / Hershey, NE

May 8 Fillmore Central High School / Harmony, MN

May 6 Nova Classical Academy / St. Paul, MN

April 30 Gothenburg High School/ Gothenburg, NE

April 29 Beatrice High School / Beatrice, NE

April 25 Belton High School / Belton, MO

April 23 East High School / Sioux City, IA

April 22 Durant High School / Durant, IA

April 21 North Union High School / Armstrong, IA

April 17 Mitchell Senior High School / Mitchell, SD

April 1 Newell High School / Newell, SD

February 22 – March 9 Frigid New York Festival / New York, NY


November 10 – 11 Know Theatre / Cincinnati, OH

June 27 – July 3 Mini Fridge Festival / New York, NY

May 28 – June 8 Cincinnati Fringe Festival / Cincinnati, OH