Ageing Matthew Cuthbert suffers a heart attack during harvest, 1903, and his grim-visaged sister determines to adopt an orphanage boy to help with the farm work at Green Gables. By mistake, a girl arrives, red-haired, freckled and over-talkative. Her vivid imagination and entertaining flow of chatter endear her to Matthew, but sister Marilla is set on packing her back as soon as possible. For once, Matthew wins, and this enchanting musical tells how young Anne Shirley finally overcomes the hostilities of her companions at the local school, and wins the hearts of the gossiping inhabitants of a close-knit Canadian community - even Marilla's. Laughter comes far too often for the sentiment to cloy.