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Pulling Plays Out of the Hat: A Conversation with Greg Gasman

Drama will essentially be pulled out of hats this weekend in Bemidji! Five playwrights, five directors, 20 actors, a handful of musicians and a select group of lights, props and behind the scenes theater elves will convene for Out of the Hat - a one of a kind theatrical experience that will take the stage at 7:30pm Saturday evening at the Chief Theater in downtown Bemidji. 

Friday evening, writers will randomly pull slips of paper out of hats that will provide the following information: the location of the play, the first line of a play, a prop to be used in the play, and the character make up of the play.  Those playwrights will take the amalgam of information and each create a 15 minute one-act play before Saturday morning.  Saturday morning, the writers, actors, directors and technicians will gather once again.  Each director will draw from hats  to determine which original play and they will draw to find out which actors will be in their play.  By Saturday evening, the troupes will have memorized, blocked and created a play, each one of which will take the stage starting at 7:30pm Saturday. 

Greg Gasman organized the wildly creative event.  He was a longtime staple in the Bemidji theater scene and has recently returned to the community after seven years of living elsewhere. Out of the Hat is just the first of many dramatic projects he's working on and bringing to Bemidji.  He stopped by the morning show to tell us more about Out of the Hat, how his passion for theater was ignited, and how he started Bemidji Community Theater!  

Tickets are available and cost $10 for adults, $8 for students and senior citizens.  They can be purchased in advance at Brigid's Irish Pub in Bemidji or at the Chief Theater prior to showtime Saturday night. 

Katie Carter started at Northern Community Radio in 2008 as Managing Editor of the station's grant-funded, online news experiment Northern Community Internet. Since 2016, she's produced Area Voices showcasing the arts, culture, and history stories of northern Minnesota. She's our local host of NPR's All Things Considered and CBC's As It Happens every weekday from 4-7pm.