Two Upcoming Plays Will Help Students Develop Relationship Skills, Celebrate Montana Veterans and Their Families
Missoula, Mont.—The Montana Repertory Theatre (The Rep) and Blackfoot Communications are partnering to bring two upcoming performances, “The Castle with a Thousand Lights” and “Reentry,” to Missoula and statewide audiences this spring.
The first performance, “The Castle with a Thousand Lights,” is an educational performance designed to help Montana teachers meet social and emotional learning objectives for kids in 5th-12th grade classrooms. Featuring original animations, “Castle” follows two friends who have been close since they were young, but now that they’re in high school, they try to figure out who they’re becoming by telling each other a magical story in which they must defeat an evil warlock. Missoula audiences can catch “The Castle with a Thousand Lights” for three performances—two on March 12 and one matinee on March 13—at the Zootown Arts Community Center (ZACC). The play, written by Sam Myers, will then hit the road for an educational tour in middle and high school classrooms across Montana in March and April.
The second performance, “Reentry,” is a docudrama based on real interviews with U.S. service members and their families. The play shows an honest, moving and surprisingly funny look at what it’s like to reintegrate into home and community after tours of duty overseas. Missoula audiences can see “Reentry” from April 7-10 and 14-17 at the Masquer Theatre on the University of Montana campus. The play, written by Emily Ackerman and K.J. Sanchez, will then be performed in Bozeman, Billings, and other locations across the state.
“Montana teachers have told us that they’re really looking for content that helps them address student needs that aren’t easily integrated into the curriculum. Also, we live in a state with among the highest number of veterans per capita in the nation. It made sense to us, in light of our mission to focus on Montana stories, to produce work that spoke to the needs and interests of our communities right here at home,” said Michael Legg, artistic director for Montana Repertory Theatre. “We’re so grateful to Blackfoot Communications for sharing that mission and for the support to bring these performances to stages across Montana this spring.”
The partnership between The Rep and Blackfoot Communications stems from the two organizations’ shared commitment to address important and timely issues through the arts.
“At Blackfoot Communications, we’re committed to showcasing the strength of our communities,” said Jason Williams, CEO of Blackfoot Communications. “We are proud to work with the Rep on these two unique and important initiatives that aim to help the health and well-being of our youth and to honor our veterans. We believe these performances will open up community dialogue and will play a role in building and maintaining the dynamic, passionate and diverse communities we serve. Thanks to the work of The Rep, these performances will provide a great way to celebrate Montana veterans and also give the next generation new skills to create resilient friendships for years to come.”
Blackfoot Communications’ sponsorship of “Reentry” will also allow The Rep to produce a filmed version of the performance, which will be available April 23 for any community center or veterans’ organization to show. To request the filmed version in advance, please email Michael Legg.
“The Castle with a Thousand Lights” performances at the ZACC:
- March 12 in Missoula at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
- March 13 in Missoula at 2 p.m.
- Followed by an educational tour in classrooms across the state
- April 7-10 and April 14-17 in Missoula at 7:30 p.m. at the Masquer Theatre on the University of Montana campus
- April 10 and 17 in Missoula at 2:00 p.m. at the Masquer Theatre on the University of Montana campus
- April 19 at 7:30 p.m. in Bozeman at The Ellen Theatre
- April 20 at 7:30 p.m. in Billings at the Alberta Bair Theater
- April 22 for base members at the Malmstrom Air Force Base
- Other locations to be announced
Missoula performances are subject to University of Montana health and safety guidelines surrounding public gatherings. Patrons attending performances at locations across the state are asked to follow applicable guidelines for each venue.
To support The Rep, its art and mission, donations can be made at montanarep.com.
About the Montana Repertory Theatre (Missoula, Mont.)
Established in 1967, the Montana Repertory Theatre is the resident professional theatre at the University of Montana. Standing at the cross section of educational and professional theatre, The Rep produces work that celebrates, engages and challenges the people of Missoula and the state of Montana.
About Blackfoot Communications
Headquartered in Missoula, Montana and named after the Blackfoot River, Blackfoot Communications has more than 65 years of history in creating strong connections. Blackfoot Communications serves homes in Western Montana and Eastern Idaho, as well as businesses of all sizes throughout the Pacific Northwest. Blackfoot Communications also connects with communities by giving back to local organizations, causes and schools in ways that truly matter.