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I love live theatre – community and professional – and Saugatuck, Michigan has it this summer! I’m excited to tell you about the 2016 season for two theatre groups, both performing at venues within walking distance to Twin Oaks Inn.

The Mason Street Warehouse produces Broadway-style shows, often featuring professional performers, at the Saugatuck Center for the Arts. The Mason Street Warehouse’s 2016 season will feature Million Dollar Quartet (June 24 – July 10), Murder for Two (July 22 – August 7) and The Great American Trailer Park Musical (August 12 – 28).

For all of you rock ‘n’ roll fans, Million Dollar Quartet is the smash-hit musical inspired by the famed recording session that brought together rock ‘n’ roll icons Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins for the first and only time. Set in 1956, these four musicians came together at Sun Records in Memphis to perform one of the greatest jam sessions ever.

Murder for Two is a wacky and fun story of an aspiring detective who attempts to solve the murder of a popular novelist hoping he’ll be promoted at work. He meets 13 zany suspects, all played by one actor. From the bespectacled wife of the victim to the victim’s gruff, cigar-smoking therapist, he must get to know the suspects and make sense of their wild stories in order to solve the crime.

The Great American Trailer Park Musical explores the relationships between the tenants at the Armadillo Acres Trailer Park in Florida, particularly between the stripper, the Dr. Phil-loving agoraphobic Jeannie, and her tollbooth-collector husband.

For top-notch community theatre, Saugatuck Civic Theatre is producing two shows in Saugatuck this summer. Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, A Trivial Comedy for Serious People is a play about an upstanding pillar of the community in Hertfordshire (Jack) who is the guardian of a pretty 18-year old ward (Cecily). To balance his upstanding persona, he pretends to have an irresponsible black-sheep brother (Ernest) that he must constantly rescue from all sorts of escapades. Jack is in love with the cousin (Gwendolyn) of a wealthy gentlemen (Algernon) who pretends to be Ernest when he meets, and then falls in love with, Cecily. A series of farcical events take it from there. Performances will be held June 17-18 and 24-25 at the Saugatuck Woman’s Club.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is a musical comedy that centers on a fictional spelling bee set in a Putnam Valley Middle School where six middle-schoolers vie for the spelling championship while telling stories from their home life. The popular musical runs July 8-9, 15-16, 22-23 at the Saugatuck High School. There’s also a special performance on July 21 to benefit the high school’s drama department.

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