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Giving Tree’s new owners kick off their first season with ‘The Mousetrap’

his past April, Jamie and Andrea Henley were talking about opening a small family business. Three months later, they became the new owners of Giving Tree Theatre in Marion. A month after [, they opened their first show, The Mousetrap, by Agatha Christie. […]

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Artisan’s Sanctuary confirms Neil Young to close out Woodstock celebration (Updated)

The dream of the ’60s is alive in Marion. That’s where, on Aug. 18, nonprofit community arts collective the Artisan’s Sanctuary will present their own tribute to the 50th anniversary of the fair that redefined music, festivals and naked mud dancing. […]

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Midwestern folk laborman Chicago Farmer is ‘getting somewhere’

Despite his name, Chicago Farmer has a tough time even getting grass to grow at his home in Bloomington, Illinois. It’s not for lack of trying, though. “I actually have this mud pit in my backyard right now,” he says, laughing. “I’ve been planting grass, but I’m never around here to water it.” He plays the Famous Mockingbird in Marion on Friday, May 3 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10. […]

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‘Cornfield Chronicles’ opens a window on mid-20th century Iowa

To open up Cornfield Chronicles: Featuring Snowball: Pony from Hell by Myron Williams is to open a window onto the Iowa of half a century ago. This set of short stories and vignettes tells of the author’s experiences growing up as an Iowa farm boy in the mid-20th century. […]

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Local student activists and Parkland shooting survivors will unite as the Road to Change Tour comes to Linn-Mar (Updated)

The March for Our Lives movement, started by survivors of the mass school shooting in Parkland, Florida to push for political action on gun violence, has launched a national bus tour, which will make two stops in Linn County on Thursday. […]

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Giving Tree takes audiences to ‘Almost, Maine’

In 2010, an off-Broadway flop surpassed the classic, whimsical — royalty-free — Shakespeare comedy ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ as the most-performed show on U.S. high school stages. The play? John Cariani’s 2004 series of vignettes, ‘Almost, Maine.’ […]

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Giving Tree’s ‘Six Degrees of Separation’ finds success in both humorous and serious moments

Under the direction of Rachel Korach Howell, the cast of the Giving Tree Theater’s production of the play successfully balances the script’s humor — which often asks the characters to slide toward caricature — with its more serious concerns.
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‘One Man, Two Guvnors’ gives audiences the gift of laughter

Giving Tree Theater is offering audiences a gift: an evening of such silliness that one’s troubles can’t intrude while the stage lights are up. Under the direction of Joe Link, the cast of One Man, Two Guvnors delivers a rapid-fire collection of sight gags, linguistic trickery, recurring bits and general zaniness. […]

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