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UPDATED: Paul Bunyan Playhouse to present 'The Rocky Horror Show'

On Wednesday, June 29, the Paul Bunyan Playhouse board of directors announced the cancellation of performances for July 1, 2, and 3, due to COVID-19.

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Paul Bunyan Playhouse’s rendition of “The Rocky Horror Show” will open at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, July 1, at the Chief Theater in downtown Bemidji.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer
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Editor's Note: A midnight show has been added for Friday night, July 8.

Contact (218) 751-7270 for more information.

BEMIDJI — “The Rocky Horror Show” isn’t a typical choice for the Paul Bunyan Playhouse, but director Jim Williams decided it was time to step out of the box.

“I just said, ‘Let’s just try it out, see what happens,’” Williams said. “You can’t play all safe. Every once in a while you need to throw something in there to lighten things up.”

Performances of “The Rocky Horror Show” will be at 7:30 p.m. on July 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9; at 3 p.m. on July 3; and at 2 p.m. on July 6. The production is rated “R” due to sexual content. It is recommended for audience members 18 and older.

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Paul Bunyan Playhouse cast members, from left, Katie Wall, Sanorah Goldoff, Sarah Weyrich, Ben Jaeger, Carter Hoffer and Tyler Peters rehearse ahead of their performance of “The Rocky Horror Show” set to open at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, July 1, at the Chief Theater in downtown Bemidji.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer

“This is a nasty show,” said Williams, who addressed the issue in his curtain speech before performances of Brighton Beach Memoirs. "It’s entertaining, it’s fun, but it’s nasty. So don’t come running to me if you are upset by it.“

The cast of 15 will include a narrator whom Williams called a community celebrity.

“I grew up with the ‘Rocky Horror Picture Show’ as a cult film,” Williams said. “I was in college when it came out. So to me, it seems pretty tame. The live version tries to stay true to the original.”

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Paul Bunyan Playhouse cast member Nikolas Alexander as “Dr. Frank-N-Furter” rehearses a scene from “The Rocky Horror Show” set to open at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, July 1, at the Chief Theater in downtown Bemidji.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer

“The Rocky Horror Show” is a musical with music, lyrics and book by Richard O'Brien. It tells the story of a newly engaged couple getting caught in a storm and coming to the home of a mad transvestite scientist, Dr. Frank-N-Furter, unveiling his new creation, a sort of Frankenstein-style monster in the form of an artificially made, fully grown, physically perfect muscle man named Rocky.

Tickets are $25 or $15 for students with a valid ID. Single show tickets, season tickets and flex passes are available online at thechieftheater.com or at the Chief Theater box office.

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Paul Bunyan Playhouse cast members, from left, Noah Nelson, Maddy Morgan and Anna Gwaltney rehearse ahead of their performance of “The Rocky Horror Show” set to open at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, July 1, at the Chief Theater in downtown Bemidji.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer

Related Topics: THEATER
Dennis Doeden, former publisher of the Bemidji Pioneer, is a feature reporter. He is a graduate of Metropolitan State University with a degree in Communications Management.
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