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Kristin Chenoweth to Kick Off Alberta Bair Theater 2021-22 Season

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The season also features Roald Dahl's Charlie and The Chocolate Factory and more.

Kristin Chenoweth to Kick Off Alberta Bair Theater 2021-22 Season

Alberta Bair Theater announces its lineup for the highly anticipated 2021-22 season featuring performers of the highest caliber to showcase the historic $13.6 million renovation and expansion.

"We are thrilled to be welcoming full capacity audiences to LIVE entertainment in our beautifully renovated theater in September," says Ron Yates, chair of the Alberta Bair Theater Board of Directors.

"We have been planning our grand re-opening celebration for months and are extremely proud of our staff and board of directors for getting us through a total theater renovation in addition to these unprecedented times. Live performing arts is exactly what many of us need personally while also bringing tremendous tangible and intangible benefits to our community."

The theater, which has been closed to the public since April 2019, welcomes Emmy and Tony Award winning actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth on September 18. Chenoweth's career spans film, television, voiceover, and stage. Chenoweth has performed to sold-out audiences across the world, including performances on Broadway, at Carnegie Hall, and Royal Albert Hall. Her most recent album For The Girls is a heartfelt tribute to the great female singers throughout history, particularly some of Chenoweth's heroes and friends.

"We can't wait to have crews loading in shows," says Jan Dietrich, executive director. "and patrons will absolutely love their new experience with the theater's new lighting, sound, seats, and concessions. An evening at Alberta Bair was the wait!"

Following is the current schedule presented by Alberta Bair Theater for the 2021-22 Season. All performances begin at 7:30 p.m. unless otherwise noted. More information about each performance can be found on the official ABT website, albertabairtheater.org.

September 21

John Driskell Hopkins Band

As a founding member, vocalist, multi-instrumentalist and songwriter of the GRAMMY Award winning Zac Brown Band, John Driskell Hopkins is not one to sit idle when ZBB is not touring. Working out of his studio Brighter Shade Studios, John Driskell Hopkins works on his songwriting and producing a growing crop of talent. He performs at music festivals and venues across the country with his original six-piece band, The John Driskell Hopkins Band.

October 1

Quarteto Nuevo

Quarteto Nuevo merges western classical, eastern European folk, Latin, and jazz with an organic feel that packs a wallop! The ensemble's razor-sharp precision is enhanced by jazzy interludes, lightly rumbling percussion motifs, and mesmerizing rhythms. They effectively meld the music of ancient worlds and faraway places with a contemporary groove that hooks audiences of all ages.

October 28

National Geographic Live: Ocean Soul with Brian Skerry

Wildlife photographer Brian Skerry has spent more than four decades exploring the world's oceans-capturing "the soul of the sea" for National Geographic for more than 20 years. His images illuminate the mystery of the depths and offer portraits of creatures so intimate they sometimes appear to have been shot in a studio. Skerry dives eight months of the year, often in extreme conditions beneath Arctic ice or in predator-infested waters, and has even lived at the bottom of the sea to get close to his subjects.

His book, Ocean Soul, is a stunning tribute to our seas. Go beyond its pages to journey with him from the glacial waters of the North Atlantic, where harp seals face the threat of declining sea ice, to the temperate waters of New Zealand, home of the fastest shark in the world-the mako. He'll share a fascinating look at some of the oceans' apex predators, as well as stories of hope from marine reserves where wildlife is protected and thriving. A passionate spokesman for the oceans he loves to photograph, Skerry inspires reverence for the marine realm and powerful motivation to protect it.

November 6

Raul Midón

Along with releasing 10 studio albums as a solo artist, Grammy Nominated Raul Midón - dubbed "an eclectic adventurist" by People magazine - has collaborated with such heroes as Herbie Hancock, Stevie Wonder, and Bill Withers, along with contributing to recordings by Queen Latifah, Snoop Dogg and the soundtrack to Spike Lee's She Hate Me. A native of New Mexico who was educated in the jazz program of the University of Miami - and who now lives in Maryland after years in New York City - Midón has earned acclaim the world over, with a fanbase that stretches from San Francisco to India, Amsterdam to Tokyo. A rapt critic for the U.K.'s Guardian newspaper wrote: "Midón has a lovely voice, a beautifully controlled tenor that can express anything from tenderness to passion... And the guy can play. His strumming has a flamenco flourish, but after a while, you realize he can do every kind of accompaniment he needs on acoustic guitar."

December 2

The Simon & Garfunkel Story

Using huge projection photos, original film footage, and featuring a full live band performing all the hits including "Mrs. Robinson," "Cecilia," "Bridge Over Troubled Water," "Homeward Bound," and many more, this immersive concert-style theater show chronicles the amazing journey shared by the folk-rock duo, Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel. It tells the story from their humble beginnings as Tom & Jerry to their incredible success as one of the best-selling music groups of the '60's to their dramatic split in 1970. It culminates with the famous "The Concert in Central Park" reunion in 1981 with more than half a million fans in attendance.

December 15

Santa Saves Christmas

Santa Saves Christmas brings Santa and his merry band of helpers, who happen to be cirque performers and singers, through town as they try to save Christmas. Just as Santa and his elves pull their sleigh into Alberta Bair Theater, they run out of gas! Santa, Mrs. Claus, Snowflake, and the elves need to fill the tank with holiday cheer or Christmas will be ruined! There's only one way to fix this: Sing along to all our favorite holiday songs and help Santa and his friends find joy and happiness to save the holiday season.

December 31

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy

Since its formation in the early 90s in Ventura, California, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy has toured virtually nonstop, performing on average more than 150 shows a year and has produced a sizable catalog of recorded music, with sales of more than 2 million albums to date. Early on, during their legendary residency at the Derby nightclub in Los Angeles, they reminded the world, during the grunge era no less, that it was still cool to swing. The band, cofounded by singer Scotty Morris and drummer Kurt Sodergren, was at the forefront of the swing revival of that time, blending a vibrant fusion of the classic American sounds of jazz, swing, and Dixieland, with the energy and spirit of contemporary culture.

January 28

National Geographic Live: View From Above with Terry Virts

Sometimes, a little distance is all you need to see things in a brand-new way. For astronaut Terry Virts, his newfound perspective was from the International Space Station (ISS), where he installed the Cupola module, granting an unprecedented 360-degree view from the station. When he later became the commander of the ISS, he made good use of the Cupola, taking more photographs than any astronaut who came before him. Many of those images were later used in the National Geographic book View From Above and IMAX film A Beautiful Planet, but to hear Virts tell it, no photo can capture the perfect shade of blue from a sunrise viewed from outer space.

February 2

compagnie Hervé Koubi

Choreographed by Hervé Koubi, What the Day Owes to The Night is a highly physical, stunningly fluid 65-minute work defying gravity for 13 male virtuoso dancers who are from Algeria and Morocco. What the Day Owes to The Night combines capoeira, martial arts, urban and contemporary dance with powerful imagery evocative of Orientalist paintings and stone filigree of Islamic architecture. Its music is a combination of Sufi sounds interpreted by The Kronos Quartet, music by Hamza el Din from Egypt and excerpts of Johann Sebastian Bach's Passion. This is a must-see cultural experience! Created on January 21, 2013 at Pavillon Noir in Aix-en-Provence,France, What the Day Owes the Night had its U.S. premiere at City Center Theater's Fall for Dance Festival on October 2, 2015 in New York City.

February 18

The Choir of Man

Raise your glass to the international sensation THE CHOIR OF MAN! Yes, the boys are back by popular demand - ready to take America by storm in their third U.S. tour. Known across the globe as "the ultimate feel-good show," THE CHOIR OF MAN offers over 90-minutes of non-stop adrenaline-packed powerhouse vocals, hair-raising harmonies, and foot-stomping choreography. The nine handsome blokes from across the pond hit all the right notes performing radio hits, classic rock, pub tunes, folk, Broadway, and more. It all takes place in that holy house that turns strangers into familiar faces: a real working pub, where the beer and rhythms flow freely! CHEERS!

February 24

Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir

The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (EPCC) is one of the best-known Estonian music ensembles in the world. The EPCC was founded in 1981 by Tõnu Kaljuste, who was the artistic director and chief conductor for twenty years. Since 2014 Kaspars Putniņš has been the artistic director and chief conductor of the choir whose repertoire extends from Gregorian chant and baroque to the music of the 21st century, with a special focus on the work of Estonian composers, such as Arvo Pärt. Each season the choir gives about 60-70 concerts both in Estonia and abroad.

February 26

International Guitar Night

Proudly celebrating 22 years of touring the United States! For the 2022 tour, International Guitar Night is bringing back three of the guitarists from the COVID-postponed lineup. Lulo Reinhardt, Germany's Latin Swing Master, is joined by Stephanie Jones, contemporary classical guitarist from Australia; Alexandr Misko, two-hand tapper from Russia; and Eleonora "Lele" Strino, jazz guitarist and vocalist from Italy.

March 2

Roald Dahl's Charlie and The Chocolate Factory

Roald Dahl's amazing tale is now Alberta Bair Theater's golden ticket! It's the perfect recipe for a delectable treat: songs from the original film, including "Pure Imagination," "The Candy Man," and "I've Got a Golden Ticket," alongside a toe-tapping and ear-tickling new score from the songwriters of Hairspray.

Willy Wonka is opening his marvelous and mysterious chocolate factory...to a lucky few. That includes Charlie Bucket, whose bland life is about to burst with color and confection beyond his wildest dreams. He and four other golden ticket winners will embark on a mesmerizing joyride through a world of pure imagination. Now's your chance to experience the wonders of Wonka like never before - get ready for Oompa-Loompas, incredible inventions, the great glass elevator, and more, more, more at this everlasting showstopper!

March 6

Nobuntu (3 pm)

Nobuntu, the female a cappella quintet from Zimbabwe, has drawn international acclaim for its inventive performances that range from traditional Zimbabwean songs to Afro Jazz to Gospel. The ensemble's concerts are performed with pure voices, augmented by minimalistic percussion, traditional instruments such as the Mbira (thumb piano) and organic, authentic dance movements.

March 18

National Geographic Live: Untamed with Felipe DeAndrade

Filmmaker Filipe DeAndrade believes animals saved his life-and he wants to return the favor. Raised in poverty, surrounded by addiction and abuse, he felt voiceless. He related to animals, because they too were voiceless, and he fell in love with photography as a way to tell their stories. Now the star of Nat Geo's digital series Untamed works to save the animals that saved him. In this presentation, DeAndrade will talk about finding your passion in life and living it with intent. Along the way, he'll bring you face to face with lions, sharks, snakes, jaguars, jumping spiders, whales, and one of the rarest animals in the world-a hawk moth caterpillar that resembles a venomous snake.

March 19

The British Invasion

THE BRITISH INVASION - LIVE ON STAGE is an immersive multi-media show that puts you front and center of pop culture history. Huge projection period photos and original film footage recreate the era's excitement, fashion, and headlines; all while a full, live band performs all of the hits of the 60s; the iconic British pop sound that swept across America and the world.

On Sunday night, Feb 9, 1964, close to 50% of US television viewers tuned in to the #1 variety show of the era, The Ed Sullivan Show, to see the American debut of a British group called The Beatles. The very next morning all music, art, fashion, literature... in fact, the very essence of pop culture had been transformed, erased, re-vitalized, and reinvigorated.

Within a week, British music dominated the charts and the airwaves; The Rolling Stones, Dave Clark 5, The Animals, Hollies, Manfred Mann, Dusty Springfield, The Searchers, Gerry & The Pacemakers, The Zombies, Freddie & The Dreamers, Herman's Hermits, The Kinks, and dozens more. There was a sense of teenage rebellion with long hair, pointy boots and a unique kind of music that sped up and mashed up American sounds with an unstoppable urgency and rhythm. You could be whoever or whatever you wanted. The rules were gone!

March 27

Beautiful - The Carole King Musical (8pm)

Long before she was Carole King, chart-topping music legend, she was Carol Klein, Brooklyn girl with passion and chutzpah. She fought her way into the record business as a teenager and, by the time she reached her twenties, had the husband of her dreams and a flourishing career writing hits for the biggest acts in rock 'n' roll. But it wasn't until her personal life began to crack that she finally managed to find her true voice.

Beautiful - The Carole King Musical tells the inspiring true story of King's remarkable rise to stardom, from being part of a hit songwriting team with her husband Gerry Goffin, to her relationship with fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann, to becoming one of the most successful solo acts in popular music history. Along the way, she made more than beautiful music, she wrote the soundtrack to a generation.

Featuring a stunning array of beloved songs written by Gerry Goffin/Carole King and Barry Mann/Cynthia Weil, including "I Feel The Earth Move," "One Fine Day," "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman," "You've Got A Friend" and the title song, BEAUTIFUL has a book by Tony Award-nominee and Academy Award-nominated writer Douglas McGrath, direction by Marc Bruni, choreography by Josh Prince and took home two 2014 Tony Awards and the 2015 Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album.

March 30

The Magic of Bill Blagg Live

The MAGIC of BILL BLAGG LIVE! combines his mind-blowing magical talents along with his trademark off-the-cuff personality to take you on a magical journey you'll never forget! Witness objects float in mid-air, vanish in the blink of an eye and so much more! The MAGIC of BILL BLAGGLIVE! is more than a magic show, it's an interactive magic experience!

April 1

Aquila Theatre: Shakespeare's Macbeth

A powerful commentary on unchecked ambition and power, Macbeth is one of Shakespeare's most influential contributions to world literature. The play, read by millions each year, offers timeless lessons about motivation and human nature.

Aquila Theatre breathes new life and vigorous dramatic fire into this wickedly famous work, with The New Yorker describing their productions as "The classics made relevant with superb acting and clever staging" while The New York Times exclaims "The excellent Aquila Theatre, an extraordinarily inventive and disciplined outfit."

April 25

An Evening With David Sedaris

David Sedaris is one of America's pre-eminent humor writers. He is a master of satire and one of today's most observant writers. His new book, The Best of Me (Little Brown/Hachette, Fall 2020), is a collection of 42 previously published stories and essays, about which novelist Andrew Sean Greer wrote in The New York Times: "You must read The Best of Me. It will be a new experience, knowing that enough time has passed to find humor in the hardest parts of life. More than ever - we're allowed to laugh." This October, he'll release his second volume of his diaries, A Carnival of Snackery, Diaries (2003-2020).

April 29

TAIKOPROJECT

TAIKOPROJECT was founded in 2000 by a group of young, emerging taiko drummers led by Bryan Yamami and Masato Baba. The show continues to define a modern American style of taiko, blending traditional forms with an innovative and fresh aesthetic. TAIKOPROJECT became the first American taiko group to win the prestigious Tokyo International Taiko Contest in 2005. They have performed and recorded with Stevie Wonder, Usher, Alicia Keys, John Legend, Kanye West, with appearances on the Academy Awards, the Grammy Awards, and many more.

In addition to its 2021-22 Season and Student Matinee Series, Alberta Bair Theater is hosting the following performances (Current as the date of this announcement. Shows will be added):

September 25: Billings Symphony presents Pictures

September 30: Pub Station presents Josh Turner Tickets on sale now!

October 20: Warren Miller's 72nd Film (National Tour)

October 23: Billings Symphony presents Buffalo Crossing

November 13: comedy beCAUSE benefiting Family Promise

November 21: Faith E presents Zach Williams Tickets on sale now! Fewer than 100 tickets remain!

November 26, 27, 28: The Nutcracker

December 18, 19: Billings Symphony Country Christmas

February 2: Billings Symphony presents Appalachian Spring

March 12: Billings Symphony presents May The Score Be With You

April 23: Billings Symphony presents Beethoven's Symphony No. 9


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