The Grimm Brothers’ Infamous House of Horrors

Photo+courtesy+of+The+Independent
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The Grimm Brothers’ Infamous House of Horrors

Photo courtesy of The Independent

Photo courtesy of The Independent

Photo courtesy of The Independent

Photo courtesy of The Independent

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Legends and Lore is a family friendly Halloween event presented by Old World Wisconsin in collaboration with Kettle Moraine School for Arts and Performance (KM Perform). The event utilizes the buildings in Old World Wisconsin’s Crossroads Village to tell tales that have been brought to Wisconsin. One of the events at Legends and Lore is the Grimm House, which is run by student leaders Cameron Cooley and Ashley Bonestroo from KM Perform. Inside the house, the Brothers Grimm, played by two pairs of students, lead guests through their famous tales.

Cinderella, one of the more well-known Grimm fairy tales, has been told for generations. The oldest known version of the story was published in the first-century B.C.E. by Greek historian Strabo according to the New World Encyclopedia. It followed the story of a Greco-Egyptian girl named Rhodopis, who can be easily comparable to the Cinderella of modern-day versions. The Brothers Grimm published their version of the story in 1812, featuring a scene in which the step-sisters of Cinderella cut off their big toes in order to fit into the glass slipper. This year’s Grimm House team has decided to change this scene slightly while keeping the same gruesome elements. The scene takes place in the front room of the Yankee Farm House and depicts one of the step-sisters cutting off her toe with the help of one of the Grimm brothers.

Snow White, another one of the tales the Brothers Grimm helped popularized, was published in the same collection of stories as Cinderella. However, the Brothers Grimm continued to elaborate and published their final version of the story in 1854. One of the versions’ most pivotal scenes was a scene where the Evil Queen receives the lungs and liver of a boar from the huntsman of which he claims that they are Snow White’s. The team for the Grimm House has changed this scene so that Jacob Grimm brings the organs to the Evil Queen in the dining room of the house.

Hansel and Gretel is the final story being shown in the Grimm House. The story was published in 1812 by the Brothers Grimm in their collection of stories. The story of two young children takes place in medieval Germany and has had multiple adaptations, including variations on the story and an opera. The Grimm version tells the story of a brother and sister who voyage deep into the forest where they find a house made out of sweets. The witch in the story enslaves Gretel for housework and keeps Hansel locked in a cage in preparation to boil him. The Grimm House version depicts a story where Hansel defeats the witch and saves himself from being killed.

The Grimm House and many other events can all be found at Legends and Lore.  Whether or not you want to learn about the tales from the past, try some tasty treats, or listen to live music, Legends and Lore is fun for all ages. Join Old World Wisconsin and KM Perform for Legends and Lore on October 18, 19, 25, and 26 from 5:30-9:30pm.