Opinion

An exciting anniversary event

Sue Hennessy

It was a cold and stormy night. It was January 1971. Folks were gathered at the First Congregational Church, sitting together anticipating an event that had never happened before! People from the community, their friends, family, or even neighbors perhaps were going to act. Act in performance in front of them. What would happen? Where would this lead? Insert dramatic music here!

Well, it was a wonderful night and it led to the formation of what is now the Grand Marais Playhouse.

That night three scenes were presented to the community by community members. The plays were Death of a Salesman, Arsenic and Old Lace and a children’s production, The Wizard of Oz.

This January 23, 2016 at 7 p.m. at the same First Congregational Church local community members will again perform scenes from those same three shows in celebration of 45 years of community theater.

The evening will include a reception in the church basement following the shows. Death of a Salesman will be directed by Dick Swanson with the cast of Bob Carter, Marcia Hyatt, Jackson Nickolay and Will Brandenberg. The Wizard of Oz will be directed by EvaLyn Carlson (returning to direct as she did in 1971) with the cast of Mark Abrahamson, Gerry Grant, Jan Healy, Robin Henrikson, Jaymie Kirk, Aurora Schelmeske and Abbey Stoddard. Arsenic and Old Lace will be directed by Sue Hennessy with the cast of Rose Arrowsmith DeCoux, Beth Faraone, Beth Benson and Braidy Powers.

The fundraiser that was held in December was a huge success and may become an annual event. Emma Bradley took the prize for the most votes for Best Curry. Congratulations Emma.

The Cook County High School One Act is well into rehearsal. The play this year is a melodrama called Foiled by the Innocent Maid. The play is directed by Sue Hennessy with the cast of Erica Marxen, Andy Kern, Finn Garry, Linnea Henrikson, Amelia Roth and Lucy Callender.

The play will be presented to the community on January 28 at 7 p.m. Come boo the villain and cheer for the hero and heroine. The play goes to competition against seven other schools on January 30 in Two Harbors.

Following the high school performance there will be a meeting for anyone interested in participating in the 2016 Summer Repertory. One musical and one comedy will be selected based on interest at this meeting. One possibility for the musical is Into The Woods by Stephan Sondheim. This would require a large cast of both men and women with experience singing as well as a host of musicians! Can we do it? Are you willing? Rehearsals would begin in March. Performances would be mid-July – mid August.

Got questions? Contact the Grand Marais Playhouse at 218-387-1284 or email sue@grandmaraisplayhouse.com.

This year’s community youth production will be Little Red Robin Hood It will be a bit of a “fractured fairy tale,” as is evident in this synopsis: The play takes a hilarious detour through Robin Hood’s Nottingham and Sherwood Forest, courtesy of writers Flip Kobler and Cindy Marcus, who have developed multiple scripts for Disney. They have come up with a fresh, hysterical twist on characters we all know.

Auditions will be February 10 at 3:30 p.m. for folks grade 3 to adult. Over 25 roles are available.

Rehearsals will be after school Monday - Thursday except for the weeks of March 14 -18 and March 28 – April 1. Performances are April 15- 17 and 22-24. For more information, come to auditions on February 10.

Grand Marais Playhouse Artistic Director Sue Hennessy provides this behind-the-scenes look at Grand Marais Playhouse activities.


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