Weather Forecast


Offbeat comedy explores beauty, sadness of life

Pamela Knudson

The Empire Theatre Company is presenting a contemporary musical farce, "Melancholy Play," at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday and March 15-17 and 22-24 at the Empire Arts Center.

The play, written by Sarah Ruhl with music by Michael Roth, is an offbeat, poignant comedy about the beauty and sadness of life.

"Melancholy Play" is focused on Tilly and her melancholy, which is objectionable to her employer but oddly attractive to those around her.

As the story unfolds, Tilly finds herself surrounded by quirky friends and lovers who've fallen under her spell. But things change when she suddenly wakes up deliriously happy.

The play features an all-star cast of regional actors, including AnneMarie Brack, Darin Kerr, Misti Koop, Courtney Miller and Maddie Sharp, said Mackenzie Teepen, communications coordinator for the Empire.

The production is directed by Chris Berg and stage managed by Katy Bushaw.

Tickets are $22 for adults and $17 for students and military.

Purchase tickets weekdays by calling (701) 746-5500 or anytime at

Agatha Christie's classic play, "And Then There Were None" opens at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Fire Hall Theatre in downtown Grand Forks.

The play, based on a mystery novel widely considered to be Christie's masterpiece, centers on a group of 10 people who are lured to an island under different pretexts.

Each has been involved in someone's death but have avoided punishment for various reasons.

On their first night on the island, from which they can't escape, they learn they've been brought there to pay for their actions.

You can enhance your evening out with a dinner-show package offered Fridays through March. It includes your choice of a traditional British meal of fish and chips, bangers and mash or shepherd's pie at Ely Ivy's restaurant in downtown Grand Forks.

Traditional pub music will be performed by Tom and Jeanne O'Neil on March 16 and 23 while guests enjoy dinner.

For $40, or $25 for season ticket holders, the package includes food, a drink, gratuity and a show ticket.

The show runs Thursdays through Saturdays and 2 pm. Sundays through March 31.

Tickets are $16 and $13 for seniors, students, military, Altru employees, first-responders, Canadian visitors and teachers.

Call (701) 777-4090 for tickets.

The theater is at 412 2nd Ave. N.

The Northern Valley Youth Orchestra concert, "Inspired by Nature," begins at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Empire Arts Center.

Admission is $5. There is no charge for children ages 12 and younger.

At the concert, the group is collecting non-perishable food and personal care items for the local food banks.

The NVYO Allegro orchestra also is presenting a free preschool storytime concert at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the Grand Forks Public Library.

The "2 Wives Craft and Vendor Show" is set for 5 p.m. Thursday at the Canad Inn in the Playmakers Lounge and Ambassador Banquet Room C.

More than 40 vendors are expected to participate.

Admission is free.

Canad is at 1000 S. 42nd St.