Night Riders—new musical opens this week!

“This is a great little show; something new and different for community theatre around here,” according to Clara Krumrei, who has been serving as stage manager for the new regional premiere production of the Country-Western musical Night Riders, opening this Friday in Belvidere. Krumrei has been involved in community theatre in other states for years and feels this is a new experience. She and Holly Jo Hegge of Roscoe have been assisting the show’s director, local theater critic Bill Beard, in what Hegge described as “a very exciting, but eventful rehearsal period … lots of surprises.”

The show will be performed at the Boone County Community Center with the audience seated right on the stage, close to the cast and band, because the script deserves to be as homey and intimate as possible, with four truck drivers and a trucker’s wife and a truck stop waitress talking personally and honestly about their lives and families. The audience should feel like a part of the action.

Hegge said the band was outstanding. Under the direction of Rockford professional musician and pedal steel guitarist Richard Burgess, and keyboard artist Steve Nece of Kingston, the group handles several styles of music are included in the two-hour show. Drummer Greg Clough, bass player Jim Farley, and 12-string guitar Dave Cox completes the group.

Reservations and tickets can be obtained by calling the Rockford Arts Ticket Hotline at (815) 395-9586 or 1 (800) 208-9198; or directly at the Rockford Area Arts Council, 713 E. State St.; the Tin Whistle, 1414 N. Main St.; the Postal Shoppe at Edgebrook; or, at the Boone County Community Building on First Avenue, Belvidere, (815) 547-3928.

Special note to any truck drivers: Main Street Players’ Board President, Joan Kole, has announced that the show’s “Invitational Dress Rehearsal” at 8 p.m. this Thursday, Nov. 7, will be open with free admission to any driver (and family) who can show a commercial driver’s license with picture at the door.

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