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West Fargo High School Theatre to premiere "Marathon '33"

The West Fargo High School Theatre begins its theatre season with the Midwest regional premiere of Marathon '33 (M33). This new version of June Havoc's original 1964 script has been co-adapted and written by Broadway veterans Tomé Cousin and Peter Gregus. Marathon '33 (M33) will be performed Nov. 9 and 10 at 7:30 p.m. and Nov. 11 at 2:30 p.m. in the High School auditorium.

Mixing elements of vaudeville theatre, burlesque, music hall and dance, Marathon '33 (M33) recreates the forgotten phenomenon of the dance marathons in Depression-era 1933 -- the brutal precursors of today's TV reality shows. This unique theatre experience offers a new perspective on the famed Havoc family (Mama Rose, Baby/Dainty June and Louise "Gypsy Rose Lee"), through the eyes, soul and body of the teen-aged June. The marathon is an often brutal, absurdly humorous, dangerous and exciting world, littered with people who would do almost anything for a meal, some money, a shot at fame, and a place to survive.

West Fargo High School Theatre is the second group to perform this fresh adaptation following a previous production in March 2012 at Pointe Park College in Pittsburgh, Pa. Since its world premiere, the authors have further finessed their script implementing numerous plot and character changes. The WFHS production is serving as a workshop to a possible New York City run at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. The collaboration between the playwrights and the M33 cast and crew has provided an one-of-a-kind artistic opportunity and has further cemented West Fargo High School's nationally recognized theatre department as a leader in arts education.

Forty actors/dancers join the High School's Jazz Ensemble, who will be a part of the onstage action as they play dance numbers from the period and accompany songs and comic routines by the contestants who often performed for the crowd in return for thrown coins. Essentia Health sponsors this West Fargo High School Theatre production.

Ticket can be purchased online at starting Monday, Oct. 29. Phone reservations can be made beginning Thursday, Nov. 1, by calling 701-356-2050. Seats are priced $8 for adults and $6 for students.