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We talked about going to the live performance of "It's A Wonderful Life" at the Firehall Theater in Grand Forks, and last Sunday, we drove down to Walker to see Fred Roger's lovely version of the original Lux Soap script for the radio show. The Walker Bay Theater is located on the ground level of the American National Bank on the main street of Walker. Albeit an intimate space, the artistic director has spent many years on Broadway designing costumes and scenery.
Last year we drove to the Firehouse Theater in Grand Forks to enjoy a stage adaption of "It's A Wonderful Life: a Live Radio Play." It was so special as had never seen actors portraying the characters, the sound effects man (showing stage secrets) and being taken back in time — 1940s — and the hopes and aspirations of an angel striving for his wings. This year, the Walker Bay Theater is presenting the same show with more performance dates to accommodate audiences. The show opened this weekend and will continue with a matinee today at 2:30 p.m.
Wow! How did "that time of year" roll around so quickly, perhaps we weren't paying attention to the pace of time, being busy with all the musical and theatrical events this fall? Thanks are due to Beverly Everett of the Bemidji Symphony Orchestra for inviting the MIDIots to the concert stage last Sunday. For those not familiar with the group, it was an exhilarating introduction and for those who have heard them before, the addition of the string section of the orchestra was inspired. The audience response was overwhelming.
As I write this column, my mind and body are anxious to catch the sunlight still peeking through the bald trees. I like reading on the porch and will have some more titles for you to pursue before the fireplaces, all snuggled up! The news of this year's coming winter is great for outdoor "fanatics" but not for couch potatoes!
November follows October in celebrating the "hope" that ghosts and other creatures will rise up from the Earth to scare and generally titillate us. Sometimes it is difficult to tell the difference between the black arts and a fruitful imagination that celebrates what we do not know about the next step in our humanity.
When we were young, we'd set off to find another group of kids to tour with and torment the houses that remained dark on the special night—Halloween. Would parents allow that now; probably not but it has been fun driving around Bemidji looking at the wonderful and sometimes scary setups that have already been built on porches and lawns.
The colors of autumn are quickly fading but October still promises the most waited event of the fall — the Studio Cruise is starting this Friday with the largest number of artists opening their studios for observing how they work and various pieces to purchase. The maps are available now at the Visitors Information Center (down by Paul and Babe) and online at visitbemidji.com for a copy of the map that can be downloaded.
Thanks from an appreciative audience to the members of the Bemidji Symphony Orchestra for last Sunday's concert; there were few seats left when Beverly Everett, conductor and artistic director, took to the podium. The opening piece, Holst's "Jupiter" was so magical that we enjoyed speeding through space. Music, either instrumental or vocal, will be abundant now that BSU students are back for the new academic year. There is a new vocal director for the choir and this year's Madrigal promises to be unique.
Take some time out today to enjoy the magical, memorable and musical tour de force promised by Beverly Everett, artistic director, of the Bemidji Symphony Orchestra and the teenage protege who will perform. Gareth Cordery is an 18-year-old piano virtuoso who will dazzle you with his performance of Tchaikovsky's beautiful and much-loved "Piano Concerto No. 1."
We hope that you are enjoying this fall as much as we are: the boat is still in the water; nice sunny and wood-splitting days are here. Desserts by Design, the eighth annual delight of savory and sweet editions in support of the Bemidji Symphony Orchestra, is being held at 7 tonight at the Sanford Center. Seating is limited so get your seat, if you need a ticket; please contact Louise Jackson at (218) 209-0065.