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Premiere Friday for new Empress play

Stage that made us
jedi handbook
A play commissioned for the Empress Theatre’s centennial has its premiere Friday, June 29.
“The Stage That Made Us” will debut following a ceremony at 7 p.m. that officially launches the Empress Theatre centennial celebrations.
“‘The Stage That Made Us’ has everything you could want in a piece of theatre — comedy, drama, live music, some cinema, and action, with a rather fun wrestling match and of course some great history,” summer program director Andy Jenkins said.
The Empress Theatre Society commissioned University of Lethbridge professor Ron Chambers to write a play for the centennial.
“The Stage That Made Us” takes the audience back 100 years to when the Empress Theatre first opened its doors.
The play tells the romantic tale of a star-crossed romance involving a fiery actress and a drifter.
“The Stage That Made Us” is one of three live theatre productions this summer at the Empress Theatre.
“The Stage That Made Us” will be performed Wednesdays and Saturdays at 7 p.m. until July 21, with special performances July 1 at 7 p.m. and July 3 at 3 p.m.
Also having its premiere this week is “The Boys Own Jedi Handbook.”
“The Boys Own Jedi Handbook” by Stephen Massicotte is set in 1977 when the movie Star Wars was first screened.
“‘The Boys Own Jedi Handbook’ is recommended for families though every play is suitable for all ages and everyone will take something memorable away with them,” Jenkins said.
The comedy details how Star Wars sparked the imagination and friendship of two young boys.
The first performance of “The Boys Own Jedi Handbook” is Saturday, June 30 at 1 p.m.
A special performance is set for 3 p.m. Sunday, July 1 as part of Canada Day celebrations.
“The Boys Own Jedi Handbook” will be performed Saturdays at 1 p.m. through July and August, with the final performance Sept. 1.
The third live theatre production this summer is “That Men May Fly” by Winn Bray.
“That Men May Fly” is set in 1943 and is based on the World War Two air training base in Macleod.
No. 7 Special Flying Training School in Macleod was part of the British Commonwealth Air Training Program that got air crew ready for battle.
The musical comedy tells the story of the relationship between pilots Neville and Jack and a female aero engineer Kit.
Also on tap this summer is Franken-Vaudeville on Friday, July 27 and Jungle Vaudeville on Friday, Aug. 17.
The vaudeville shows feature talent from across southern Alberta, as well as students from the Empress Theatre’s summer drama camps.
Lethbridge Drama Nuts will present Improv comedy shows at the Empress Theatre at 8 p.m. on Aug. 10 and Aug. 24.

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