Theater group set for another production

For the past two years, a group of local talented actors joined together to raise money for the Memorial Hall project by holding two successful dinner theater performances.

John Kathrein (L) and Aaron Marxen (R) act out a scene during a rehearsal. The Rainy Butte Productions group are set to perform the comedy ‘Pistols and Posies, a Pioneer Drama’ starting in mid-October. (Photo by Rachel Bock/The Herald)
John Kathrein (L) and Aaron Marxen (R) act out a scene during a rehearsal. The Rainy Butte Productions group are set to perform the comedy ‘Pistols and Posies, a Pioneer Drama’ starting in mid-October. (Photo by Rachel Bock/The Herald)

By RACHEL BOCK
Herald Reporter

For the past two years, a group of local talented actors joined together to raise money for the Memorial Hall project by holding two successful dinner theater performances. This year the group of actors decided to form their own theater group called the Rainy Butte Productions, and will be bringing another dinner theater performance to the community of New England in October.

The Rainy Butte Productions will be presenting the play Pistols and Posies a Pioneer Drama play written by Christy Fredrickson, on Oc. 14, 16, 21, and 22 at the Memorial Hall in New England. The play is a comedy set in Chicago during the 1920s during prohibition, where gangster Primo Malvone is disguising his illegal alcohol establishment as a reputable flower shop business. After a turn of events, Primo’s family forms a plot to try and convince him to turn a new leaf and get out of his illegal business deals. The play will have everyone laughing in their seats, and the audience will definitely be caught off guard with the surprise ending.

The evening performances will offer a delicious meal of appetizers, an entrée choice of either cornish game hen or prime rib, and dessert will also be included. A matinee performance will be on Oct. 16 and will feature an appetizer and dessert menu.

The evening performances will start at 6:30 p.m. with doors opening at 6 p.m., and the matinee performance will start at 2:00 p.m. with the doors opening at 1:30 p.m. The cost of the evening dinner theater is $40 a person or $75 a couple. The matinee price is $20 a person or $35 a couple. A table can be reserved if a group of eight tickets are sold for that performance. Tickets can be purchased at American Bank Center in New England.

Cast member Shannay Witte would like to remind the public to purchase their dinner theater tickets as early as possible as there has been sold out performances during the past two years.

All proceeds raised during the four performances will be retained by the theater group so the group can continue on bringing quality theater art performances to our community. The group is hoping to host a dinner theater every fall, and is also looking into other theater projects for our community.

The 19 actors started practice in early August, and has spent countless hours preparing for this upcoming event. Since the group started off without any startup money, six local businesses generously donated money for the theater group to be able to put on this dinner theater. The group would like to thank Express Stop, Country Style, Slope Electric Round-Up, Fitterer Oil, Centennial Insurance, and Consolidated Telecom for donating money to make this upcoming performance possible. The group was also awarded a grant this summer from the New England Community Foundation which was used to purchase new sound and lighting equipment for the Memorial Hall.

The many silk flowers that will be used during the play, were kindly donated by Sue Jesperson from Celebrations by Design in Mott. Jesperson borrowed the flowers to the theater group to be used during all four performances. Celebrations in Mott is a silk flower and gift shop in Mott and Jerperson also decorates for special occasions such as weddings and anniversaries. Any floral arrangements that are on display during the play will be available for purchase after the final performance on Oct. 22.

“When we contacted her (Jesperson), she did not hesitate to offer her services to us, free of charge, to help make our play a huge success. We are definitely blessed to have so many of our local merchants actively support us and contribute to the cultural arts in our area,” Witte said.

For more information on the play or the theater group you can go to the Rainy Butte Productions website at rainybutteproductions.wordpress.com.

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