~ by Trevor Phipps ~
The Butte Theater has been known for nearly two decades as a place to spend a night out on the town watching a live melodrama or popular musical.
During the early gold rush days, entertainment was a big part of Cripple Creek society. In the early 1900sand late 1800s, people used to travel by train to the mining district to enjoy entertainment in one of the town’s opera houses.
The opera houses are now a thing of the past, but the Butte Theater is dedicated to reliving part of history and continues to put on live performances during the summer, fall, and winter seasons.
Last year, the performances were taken over by a new theater company called the Mountain Repertory Theatre Company. The theatre company launched its inaugural season in 2018 and featured new types of shows to entertain both tourists and locals.
After a successful first season the group is back with another lineup of exciting shows. The 2019 season started on May 24 and offer shows every Thursday through Sunday. On some days 1 p.m. matinee shows are offered as well as their evening shows starting at 7 p.m. Tickets can be purchased by calling the box office at 689-6402 or by going to their website at ButteTheater.com.
Deathtrap May 24- June 16
The 2019 season at the Butte started off with a melodrama filled with “Gasp-inducing thrills and spontaneous laughter!” The show is about an unknown dramatist who attempts to send his play to an award-winning Broadway author for comment.
The well-known playwright then plots with his wife to plagiarize the play for the less known author but things take a sinister turn when the two meet face to face. This play is rated PG-13 for the language, suspense, and murder scenes it portrays.
My Partner : Classic Melodrama and Olio June 22 – August 18
During the summer months the Mountain Repertory Theater (MRT) brings back the classic style of melodrama and olio. The classic show was originally performed by The Imperial Players group and is now back on the stage in Cripple Creek.
Spectators are invited to join in on this live performance by adding in their cheers, boos, and hisses. This melodrama is rated PG and is a good show for the whole family to enjoy.
Grease July 5 – August 17
Starting in July the theatre company is choosing to bring back another classic. During the months of July and August show-goers can experience the MRT version of the famous musical.
The MRT team of actors will sing and dance while performing the show’s classic songs including “Greased Lightnin’,” “It’s Raining on Prom Night,” and “Alone at the Drive-In Movie.” This show is rated PG-13 for the adult themes depicted during the performance.
The Andrews Brothers August 30 – September 15
Towards the end of the summer season, this performance will be put on to highlight the heros of World War II. The theatre company takes spectators back to the 1940’s era with a performance that is filled with song and dance numbers.
The story starts when “The Andrew Sisters” are scheduled to play at a USO show. During the very last minute, the show is in jeopardy of cancellation when the performers fail to appear shortly before the curtain opens.
Three brave male stagehands pick up the slack when they jump on stage to perform 30 songs made famous by “The Andrew Sisters.” This show is rated PG and is a good way for the whole family to experience a little bit of history from the World War II generation.
You Can’t Take It With You September 20 – October 6
This show entertains spectators during early fall and tells the story of a rather eccentric family. The family allows each member of the household freedom to follow their own ambition but their routine gets interrupted by one of their daughters.
Things take a turn when one daughter chooses to seek a regular job and bring home her fiancé and his Wall Street family back home for dinner. The show is rated PG and is a Pulitizer Price winning comedy crafted by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart.
The Great American Trailer Park Musical October 11 – November 3
This late fall performance is coined by the MRT as being a unique country rock musical. The play is set in a trailer park in Florida called Armadillo Acres.
The normal lives of a trailer park couple and other residents get derailed when a new tenant arrives. The new tenant, Pippi is described as an attractive dancer on the run and starts trouble in the trailer park when she comes between the couple. The musical is rated PG but there are some adult themes and adult humor portrayed.
All I Want For Christmas Is: More Olio! November 22 – December 29
During the Butte’s last show of the 2019 the MRT brings back the classic Christmas olio. This community performance invites local performers to help the pros tell a Christmas story.
MRT calls the Christmas play a “full-length olio and revue.” The show is rated PG and is said to be great for families to enjoy.