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Harwood Prairie Playhouse staging 'perfect' show

Members of the Harwood Prairie Playhouse will be delighting audiences again with their 23rd annual production featuring the Perfect Wedding. The fast-paced comedy is sure to entertain, so much so, the audience is guaranteed to end up crying with laughter.

Show dates are March 15, 16 and 17, March 22, 23 and 24 and March 29, 30 and 31 at 7:30 p.m. and two matinee performances Sunday, March 25 and Saturday, March 31, at 2 p.m., at Dawson Hall on the grounds of Bonanzaville in West Fargo.

A new twist to the format this year will be Senior Citizen's night which has been designated for opening night, Thursday, March 15. Seniors are encouraged to arrive early at 6:45 p.m. and enjoy dessert and then remain after the show to meet the cast. They will also receive a $1 reduction in ticket price. Anyone else interested in attending the open night production is also encouraged to do so.

Director Shanara Lassig said this year's show is truly unique from previous shows that the Harwood Players have presented. "Not only is this show a well-written farce, it also has a sweet love story woven into it. It will make the audience laugh till they cry, but it will also make them say "awww," she said.

Lassig is not new to directing, having co-directed a full-length play for a senior project in college and most recently was the Assistant Director for the Fargo Moorhead Community Theater's production of "You Can't Take It With You."

As a former actor with the group, she is familiar with the highly professional cast. "The group of actors we have this year is topnotch. They were all so eager to be a part of this show and they all work really well together. You can see that they respect each other's ideas and abilities."

Mike Sunram is playing Bill, the groom. He has been with the group since 2000 involved in lighting, so this marks his first time on stage. "All of us are so happy he finally decided to audition," Lassig said. "He is a charismatic actor and works very hard at his craft.

Lassig's husband, David, is playing Tom, Bill's best man, in his seventh straight production. Shanara said it has been both interesting and easy to work alongside her husband. "He is always looking out for the audience and hoping that they are having a great time."

David also serves as President of Harwood Prairie Playhouse and is the co-set construction manager along with Dori Reich, who is in her third straight show with the group. "She plays the bossy bride, and I'm sure she is happy to be speaking English in this show - last year she only spoke Albanian on stage," Lassig explained. "Dori is a very respectful actor, hard worker and puts her heart into all she does."

Kaia Kjellstrom plays the stereotypical mother-of-the-bride and is very funny in her third season with HPP. "She is every director's dream character actor," Lassig said. "Kaia has come up with wonderful idiosyncrasies for her part."

Louisa Cadwell and Lauren Harris are in their first show with HPP. Louisa plays the part of Judy and adds such a funny edge and sweetness to her character. Lauren has been working diligently on the part of the quirky chambermaid, Julie. "It is a very hard part and Lauren has been coming through beautifully," Lassig noted. "They both always come to rehearsal ready to work and ready to take suggestions. On a whole, they are perfect and a joy to work with."

Tickets for any performance of the Perfect Wedding run are available at the Children's Museum at Yunker Farm, once again handling the Box Office this year. Tickets may be purchased by phone at 701-298-6807, or by stopping by Yunker Farm at 1201 28th Ave. N., Fargo, Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., or Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. A $1 donation is being made to the Children's Museum for each ticket purchased.