The show must go on: ABT finds other venues for season
“The show must go on,” says Ron Bates, incoming chair of the Alberta Bair Theater board. “We are committed to our mission of bringing the excitement of the performing arts to Big Sky Country – even while our beloved, historic theater is under construction.”
The theater, which closed in April to undergo a $13.6 million expansion and renovation, is taking the 2019-2020 season to a variety of venues, including Petro Theatre on the campus of MSU Billings, Babcock Theatre, Lincoln Center, and First Interstate Arena. The Valley Credit Union Student Matinee Series will be held at Lincoln Center and will serve more than 15,000 students.
“The upcoming season has been thoughtfully programmed to showcase the artistry that is the cornerstone of Alberta Bair Theater,” says programming director Jody Grant. “With a show nearly each month from September to April, we’ve got something to inspire everyone.”
In addition to the Broadway musical “Finding Neverland,” productions include Montana Repertory Theatre’s “The War of the Worlds,” dance by Chicago-based Hiplet Ballerinas, and music by masters of their crafts. The ABT will also launch a premier speaker series by National Geographic Live.
The season kicks off Sept. 14 with two performances of “The Other Mozart,” the true and untold story of Nannerl Mozart, the sister of Amadeus – a prodigy, keyboard virtuoso and composer who performed throughout Europe with her brother to equal acclaim. “Strikingly beautiful,” writes The New York Times of the play.
The National Geographic Live! series begins Oct. 12 with Steve Winter’s “On the Trail of Big Cats,” and continues with lectures in January and March. “Finding Neverland,” which tells the moving story behind one of the world’s most beloved characters, Peter Pan, comes to the First Interstate Arena at MetraPark April 2.
This year’s concerts include International Guitar Night Feb. 15, and the Joe Alterman Trio April 25. “Pianist Joe Alterman pulls off one of the rarer feats in modern jazz,” says Downbeat Magazine, “he swings – hard.”
Tickets for all shows go on sale Saturday, July 13 at www.albertabairtheater.org, and by phone, 406-256-6052.
(Photo): Alberta Bair’s season kicks off with “The Other Mozart,” about Amadeus’s amazing sister, at MSU-Billings Petro Theatre