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Holmes unveils upcoming season

Though season ticket packages have been on sale for several weeks now, Historic Holmes Theatre patrons will finally have a chance to purchase tickets for individual shows starting this Tuesday, Sept. 3.

From The Blues Brothers to Tracy Lawrence, John Denver to Lorie Line, The Church Basement Ladies to “Gladys in Wonderland,” the upcoming 2013-14 season at Detroit Lakes’ Historic Holmes Theatre can be summed up in one word: Variety.

“We have a great season coming up,” said Holmes Theatre Executive Director Amy Stoller Stearns. “We’re going to have a big variety — Broadway, comedy, classical, and some familiar favorites as well.”

“Many of our artists will be doing residencies during their visits here as well,” added Becky Mitchell, the theater’s arts outreach and events coordinator.

The season officially kicks off on Thursday, Sept. 26 with a performance by the Galactic Cowboy Orchestra at 7:30 p.m.

The quartet describes its style as “new grass art rock,” combining bluegrass, jazz, rock and classical music forms to create a truly unique sound. Tickets for this show are $18 for adults, $9 for students.

Next up is the launch of a new monthly series at the theater known as the Holmes Jam Sessions. Starting on Sunday, Sept. 29, local musicians will take turns hosting the sessions on the last Sunday of every month, through the end of April.

Each jam session runs from 2 to 5 p.m. in the Holmes Ballroom, and is free for any local musician to join in. Sessions are scheduled for Sept. 29, Oct. 27, Nov. 24, Jan. 26, Feb. 23, March 30 and April 27, and featured musicians will include Pam Longtine, Tim Eggebraaten and John Hutchinson.

October will bring two vastly different shows to the theater, starting with the Official Blues Brothers Revue on Thursday, Oct. 10 at 7:30 p.m.

“It’s basically the movie (‘The Blues Brothers’) brought to life on stage,” said Stearns. “It’s big and fun.”

Produced by Dan Ackroyd and Judy Belushi (John’s widow), with musical direction by Paul Schafer (‘The Late Show with David Letterman’) the show combines the comedy of the original movie with an homage to Chicago’s rich history of blues, gospel and soul music.

Tickets are $28 for adults, $14 for students.

Also in October, the local community theater group Summit Productions will be staging the first of two planned theatrical shows at the theater this season.

This one is the Pulitzer Prize-nominated play “Love Letters,” which explores the bittersweet relationship between a man and a woman that spans more than 50 years.

This show will star real-life married couple Jim and Sharon Sinclair, and will be shown in three performances, 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 24, and at both 2 and 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 25.

Tickets for all performances of “Love Letters” are $12 for adults, $6 for students.

“Love Letters” will also mark the debut of the theater’s new matinee series, in which four of its showcased events will include both daytime and evening performances.

“It’s a chance for people to get out and enjoy some theater during the daytime,” said Stearns.

(Other matinee shows will include “Rocky Mountain High” on Nov. 22, “What a Wonderful World” on March 8 and “A Mighty Fortress is our Basement” on May 15.)

In November, the theater will host the return of the Minnesota Music Coalition’s annual tour showcasing Minnesota’s up-and-coming musicians, the Caravan du Nord.

Like last year, this year’s Caravan will feature at least one artist with local roots, that being Detroit Lakes native Cecilia Erholtz, as well as up-and-coming Minneapolis band Van Stee and headliners The Pines.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for students.

November will bring several events to the Historic Holmes Theatre, starting with the launch of this season’s Arvig Discovery Series for Kids on Thursday, Nov. 7, with a dramatic presentation of the children’s classic “Peter Pan,” presented by Theatreworks USA.

There will be two presentations of “Peter Pan” on Nov. 7, at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Each year the Arvig Discovery Series brings thousands of students from elementary schools throughout the region to enjoy kid-friendly shows at the theater.

November will also include a “Dance Party in the Ballroom on Saturday, Nov. 16, featuring music by “The Castaway” himself, Dennis Craswell.

This will lead into the return of the Holmes Art Show on Nov. 21-23, featuring some of the region’s most talented artisans showcasing their wares in both the Holmes Ballroom and the theater lobby.

In conjunction with the art show, the main theater will be housing three shows, starting with the return of the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra’s Classical Music Series on Thursday, Nov. 21.

This show will feature “The Lyra Trio,” an ensemble of violin, cello and piano presented by some of the FMSO’s finest musicians, at 7 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, free for students.

Friday, Nov. 22 will bring a tribute to musical icon John Denver, “Rocky Mountain High,” at 7:30 p.m.

Besides showcasing the talents of Ted Vigil, a musician who bears an uncanny resemblance to the late folk music icon in both looks and voice, “Rocky Mountain High” will also include an appearance by special guest Steve Weisberg, who is Denver’s former lead guitarist. Tickets are $22 for adults, $11 for students.

Then on Saturday, Nov. 23, the Lakes Area Community Concert Band returns for the first of three scheduled seasonal performances at the theater, this one coming at the conclusion of the art show at 4 p.m. Admission for this show is a free will donation.

December will once again bring a trio of holiday shows to the theater, starting with a new musical collaboration between two of the region’s finest guitarists, Tim Sparks and Greg Herriges.

“A Winter Wandering: A Guitar Celebration of Music from Around the World,” will be presented on Friday, Dec. 6 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 for adults, $10 for students.

Pianist Lorie Line returns to the Holmes Theatre with her annual holiday extravaganza on Thursday, Dec. 12 at 7:30 p.m. All tickets are $49, though groups of 10 or more can save $5 per ticket.

Thursday, Dec. 19 will mark the third annual visit by the Rock & Roll Christmas Spectacular (RRXS), starting at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 for adults and $12.50 for students.

Though both Lorie Line and the RRXS are familiar to the Holmes Theatre audience, Stearns promises that their shows are “brand new,” featuring a combination of familiar favorites and new material.

The Lakes Area Community Concert Band will also be presenting its annual Christmas concert on Sunday, Dec. 8 at 4 p.m., in the sanctuary of nearby First Lutheran Church.

The start of 2014 will bring several new acts to the Holmes Theatre, starting with iconic, multi-platinum selling country music crooner Tracy Lawrence on Thursday, Jan. 16 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for this show are $30 for adults, $15 for students.

Jan. 28 will mark the return of “Doktor Kaboom” for the theater’s second Arvig Discovery Series presentation, with shows at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

February will bring a flurry of activity to the Holmes, starting with the revolutionary, Twin Cities-based dance troupe, TU Dance, on Saturday, Feb. 1 at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $20 for adults, $10 for students.

For Valentine’s Day, area couples can enjoy a healthy dose of “He Said, She Said” comedy, featuring “Seinfeld” and “Tonight Show” veteran writer Pat Hazell taking on comedienne Karen Morgan, former finalist on Nick at Nite’s “Funniest Mom in America” competition, for a humorous “battle of the sexes” perspective on life.

Tickets are $22 for adults, $11 for students.

Summit Productions returns in February as well, with two performances of the comedy “Gladys in Wonderland” on Feb. 27-28.

Both shows will be presented at 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $15 for adults, $7.50 for students. (Auditions will be held in November, so look for information on how you can be part of this production to be published sometime in October.)

Daddy’s Little Sweetheart Dance also returns to the theater in February, and this year, older girls will also be invited to get into the act.

“Little Sweethearts” between ages 2-12 are invited to bring their dads, grandfathers, uncles and special friends to the theater on Friday, Feb. 7 from 6 to 9 p.m.

Then on Friday, Feb. 21, girls ages 11-16 are invited to bring their dads, uncles, grandfathers or special friends to theater for “D3: Dinner, Dance & Dads” from 6 to 10 p.m.

The theater’s annual arts benefit, Motion, will mark the return of “Deuces Wild” pianists David Eicholz and Ted Manderfeld for a 7:30 p.m. show on Saturday, March 8, for a show benefitting the Historic Holmes Theater’s many arts outreach programs. Appetizers are included in the event’s $50-per-person ticket price (plus its purchase may be considered tax deductible).

Eicholz and Manderfeld will also be offering an afternoon show at 2 p.m., titled “What a Wonderful World.” This show will feature beloved musical standards, spirituals and sing-alongs including everything from “Over the Rainbow” to “16 Tons.” Tickets for this matinee show are $30, and may also be tax deductible.

Also in March, the FMSO Classical Music Series returns on Tuesday, March 18 with a “Brass, Reed, Drum” performance featuring a septet of brass, percussion and saxophone musicians. This show will be staged at 7 p.m., and tickets are $10 for adults, free for students.

In April, six-time Chicago Music Award winners Funkadesi bring their eclectic mix of Indian, reggae, funk and Afro-Caribbean tunes to the Holmes Theatre for a 7:30 p.m. show. Tickets are $18 for adults $9 for students.

The final installment the Classical Music Series takes place on Tuesday, April 22 at 7 p.m., with a performance by the FMSO String Quartet. The Arvig Discovery Series also wraps up on Friday, April 25 with a presentation on the life of “Laura Ingalls Wilder” presented by ArtsPower. There will be two shows, at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

The Lakes Area Community Concert Band presents its final concert of the season on Sunday, April 27 at 4 p.m., which is also the date for the final installment of the Holmes Jam Sessions (which will be in the ballroom, while the concert takes place in the main theater).

The theater season comes to a close on Thursday, May 15, with two performances of the fourth installment in the Church Basement Ladies series, “A Mighty Fortress Is Our Basement.”

Shows will be presented at 2 and 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $26 for adults, $13 for students.

Besides individual show tickets, which go on sale Tuesday, there are also a variety of season ticket options available.

The basic season ticket package offers a savings of over 20 percent on all 12 main stage season shows, plus the three classical music concerts. As season ticket holders, theater-goers can also save 20 percent on additional tickets for their friends and family throughout the season. A partner pass is included with each season ticket, offering discounts and deals at participating area restaurants throughout the theater season, and season ticket holders also get a $5 discount on tickets to the Lorie Line Christmas show and both Motion shows on March 8.

Another option is the new Culture Pass Sustaining Membership package, which for $20 a month will buy theater-goers an opportunity to attend as many shows as they want throughout the theater season.

The theater will also continue to offer ticket cards this season. For each $100 card purchase, theater goers will get $110 to spend on any show throughout the season. A $200 ticket card purchase will buy $240, to be spent on tickets to any show throughout the season. All ticket cards must be purchased by Oct. 1.

For more information about purchasing either season ticket packages or individual show tickets, please call the Holmes Theatre Box Office at 218-844-7469, stop by the box office at 826 Summit Ave. during regular business hours (10 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday through Friday), or visit the website at

Follow Detroit Lakes Newspapers reporter Vicki Gerdes on Twitter at @VickiLGerdes.

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 16 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Lake Park-Audubon School Board. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.

(218) 844-1454