MAT is hosting a host of events and shows this holiday season
The Montana Actors’ Theater has a busy few months ahead as it gears up for a number of events and shows this holiday season.
MAT Artistic Director Grant Olson has said that the cast for this year’s “A Christmas Carol” production has been announced, the cast of “Monty Python’s Spamalot” will be announced later this week and, this weekend, MAT will be hosting its 24 hour game festival, a MAT event has been going on for many years.
Olson told Crawford Distillery at 7 p.m. on Friday that writers, directors and actors will be randomly grouped together and given a topical headline that will need to be turned into dialogue somewhere in a play they will have 12 hours to write. , then 12 additional hours. to repeat.
These six 10 to 15 minute pieces will be performed from 8 pm Saturday and the doors will open at 7:30 pm The show will be open.
He said these pieces often become stepping stones for complete pieces that MAT offers later, and some of the previous years are still in development.
“It’s a great experience for everyone,” he said. “… It’s the adrenaline and skills that everyone brings to the table.”
The following Friday and Saturday, in partnership with KNMC and the Little River Institute, MAT will also host “The Last Best Waltz”, a show where local and Montana bands perform together in tribute to “The Last Waltz”.
Olson said both nights will see bands bringing their own interpretations of the concert to MAT, including The Nick Crawford Band, The Cover Band, The Milk River Band, Steeds, Music from Big Dirt and Counting Coup.
He said he was especially happy that Billings’ group Counting Coup, which performed at Montana State University-Northern in September, was able to return.
“They had a great time and we found a way to get them back here,” he said.
He said KNMC’s Dave Martens was a driving force behind this event, which he has wanted to do for some time.
Olson said that due to the pandemic Northern could not host their typical musical events, so MAT played music performed by local bands in their theater using their new sound and lighting systems, but from many artists have stated that they would actually like to perform for people in the theater someday and this seems like the perfect opportunity to do so.
During the second week of December, MAT will also present this year’s “A Christmas Carol” using Bunraku, a Japanese style of puppet that he said will allow MAT to include many of the most magical elements. of history that cannot be done with a typical performance.
“It will be a really interesting version,” he said.
He said the show will be family-friendly and authentic, using a script taken directly from the work of Charles Dickens.
Olson said that because they wanted to make the show kid-friendly, the shows will start at 7 p.m.
He has said that “Spamalot” will begin airing in January, which he is also looking forward to.