This summer, there’s no end to the drama — or to the musicals, original children’s plays and comedies — scheduled in the Black Hills. With area troupes offering everything from “Rapunzel” to “Urinetown,” it’s the perfect time to escape through the stage.
If you can’t wait for the June 6 opening of “Boeing, Boeing” at the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park, you’ll want to attend the Tatanka Teaser at 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 31, and Saturday, June 1.
“This is a new thing we’re trying,” said Linda Anderson, executive director. “It’s a review of the company. Basically, it’s set up like an audition. People will get to hear how people audition into the company.”
The event is free for season ticket holders, Custer State Park & Resort workers and Room Service volunteers. Admission for others is a $5 suggested donation. Call 255-4141, email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.blackhillsplayhouse.com to make reservations.
While you’re there, you can see the playhouse’s new grand drape and fly system for the lights and scenery, purchased by the playhouse's alumni association for $25,000. The new apparatus is important for the safety of the company, Anderson said.
“It’s the kind of thing you only replace every 30 years,” Anderson said.
The playhouse also is offering rides from Rapid City on the Buff Bus for the Wednesday evening and Saturday matinee performances. The bus leaves from the parking lot behind Safeway on Mount Rushmore Road. A play ticket plus a ride is $38 for adults or $29 for children; for ticket package holders, a ride is $10. Call 255-4141 to reserve a spot.
And if you want to learn about the behind-the-scenes process, check out the “bonus features” at 6:40 p.m. on the opening nights of each performance.
“It’s a great way to hear about all the artistic process that happens to get the production to the stage,” Anderson said. “You get the insight from the costume designer, the set designer, the painter.”
Here are the summer theater schedules:
Black Hills Playhouse, Custer State Park
- “Boeing, Boeing,” a classic, quirky farce about one man with three fiancées, by Marc Camoletti, June 6-16
- “Tuesdays with Morrie,” a drama by Jeffrey Hatcher and Mitch Albom, based on Albom’s book, June 20-30
- “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” a Stephen Sondheim musical comedy, July 4-21, with a July 4 matinee and holiday picnic
- “Children of Eden,” a musical based on the book of Genesis and the age-old conflict between parents and children, July 25-Aug. 4.
- “Hound of the Baskervilles,” a funny adaptation of the classic Sherlock Holmes tale by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, adapted by Peepolykus, Aug. 8-18
- Tickets: $32 for adults, $29.50 for seniors, military and students; $15 for children ages 18 and younger; call 255-4141 or email email@example.com to make reservations. Shows are at 7:30 p.m. with 2 p.m. matinees on Saturdays and Sundays. You’ll need a park sticker to get into Custer State Park.
Black Hills State University Summer Stage, Spearfish
- “The Fox on the Fairway,” a comedy by Ken Ludwig, at 7:30 p.m. July 11-13 and at 2:30 p.m. July 14.
- “The Adventures of Mr. Toad, a musical in two acts by Piers Chater Robinson, at 7:30 p.m. July 18-20 and July 25-57 and at 2:30 p.m. July 21 and July 28.
- “Lie, Cheat, and Genuflect,” a comedy by Billy Van Zandt and Jane Milmore, 7:30 p.m. Aug. 1-3 and 2:30 p.m. Aug. 4
- Tickets: $14 for adults, $12 for seniors, $9 for students and $6 for ages 17 and younger; season tickets are also available. To make reservations, call 642-6171 or go to www.bhsu.edu/theatre.
Firehouse Brewing Theatre, 610 Main St., Rapid City
- “Urinetown: The Musical,” a comedy by Mark Hollmann satirizing the legal system, capitalism, social irresponsibility, populism, bureaucracy, corporate mismanagement and municipal politics; 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, June 14 through Aug. 31 (no performances the first two weekends in August during the Sturgis rally).
- Tickets: $20; for reservations, call 348-1915 or go to www.firehousebrewing.com.
Storybook Island Children’s Theatre, 1301 Sheridan Lake Road
- “What the Good Woman Does is Always Right,” “Nitwits from Neptune, “Rapunzel” and “The Brave Little Tailor” will be performed Tuesdays through Saturdays from June 4 through Aug. 17. Shows are at 10 a.m., 11 a.m. and noon.
- The plays were written by local playwright Kristi Thielen. In the cast are high school students Sydney Bonar, Chase Hammond, Parker Oleson, Savoy Schuler and Chelsea Scott with understudies Jake Babbe and Kaitlynn Quinn. The troupe is directed by Justin Speck.
- Tickets: $1 per person or free for those younger than 3
Uncle Monkey’s Melodrama, Dahl Arts Center, 713 Seventh St.
- “School Marm’s Matrimony Mayhem,” a story by D. Chappelle about a zany double wedding, 7 p.m. Thursday, June 13, and Saturday, June 15, and 2 p.m. Sunday, June 16
- Tickets: $12 for adults or $9 for children 12 and younger; call 394-4101or to go www.thedahl.org.