There’s something special about Rosebud Theatre. Just a short drive away from Drumheller, the province’s largest rural theatre has served as the home base for the artistic heart of the Badlands, drawing in tourists and patrons from all over. This year, the theatre turns 35 and is throwing the anniversary season of the year to celebrate. Consider these seven reasons why you should make visiting Rosebud Theatre a top priority this year.
1. 2018 Is Rosebud Theatre’s 35th Anniversary Season
Rosebud Theatre has come a long way since its early beginnings as a high school summer program, with productions taking place in an old community hall that was previously a grain storage facility. Now it’s one of the jewels of the Alberta theatre scene, staging numerous shows each year on two stages. With that said, Rosebud is pulling no punches with their 35th anniversary lineup, dubbed “The Amazing Season.” Several productions fill out the lineup such as “Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” Mark Twain’s take on “The Diaries of Adam & Eve,” “Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Christmas Carol,” and “The Amish Project”.
2. Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Is Coming To The Stage This Summer!
Speaking of great shows, the original Broadway-inspired rendition of Joseph & The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat broke box office records at Rosebud, sending people back to absorb the stage show again and again. So it’s only right it returns as the central production for the 35th anniversary season. With music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Tim Rice and boasting one of Rosebud’s largest casts, the 2018 production reimagines the staging to get a fresh take on the visually irresistible story of Joseph, Jacob and one glorious coat. The show runs from June 1 to September 1, making Joseph & The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat a summer staple you should not miss.
3. Take In The Rosebud Experience
Did you know 35,000 from all over Alberta come down to Rosebud each year for shows at the theatre? While the theatre and its programming are exceptional, it serves as just one part of the Rosebud Experience. No matter where you’re coming from, the drive to Rosebud Theatre is spectacular. A leisurely drive, Badlands views and the thought of wholesome entertainment harken back to those summer daytrips you remember as a kid. Plus you know your ticket comes with a buffet meal, right?
4. Dinner And A Show
Tickets to most Rosebud Theatre performances include a buffet dinner served at the Haskayne Kenney Mercantile. Talk about fancy pre-show eats! With seven dining rooms to spare, expect a top tier culinary experience with plenty of selection. Plated meals are available for those with special dietary restrictions (make sure to provide advance notice!) and students from the Rosebud School of the Arts will serve as hosts and servers respectively. Plus you’ll get live music by a few students roaming room to room singing a song or two.
5. The Setting
Located right on the Rosebud River and surrounded by the Canadian Badlands, Rosebud is a charming hamlet with a big appetite for hospitality. It’s more than just picturesque; with its tiny shops, stunning prairie backdrop and lack of convenience stores, the hamlet feels straight out of a simpler era – something that makes the theatre and its two stages stand out in comparison. The Opera House, capable of seating 232, is home to the majority of the productions that take place at Rosebud and is regarded as a world-class facility that’s comparable to theatres in Stratford, Ontario (home of the Stratford Festival Theatre) and around the world. The BMO Studio Stage, is a black box theatre that houses a Rosebud Theatre production in the summer and Rosebud School of the Arts productions in April and December. But once again, it’s not just about watching fantastic theatre, it’s about the experience of spending a day in Rosebud and taking in everything the Rosebud Experience has to offer.
6. Meet The Cast And Crew
Get to know the cast behind the scenes! Arrange a backstage tour where you can learn more about the theatre. Take the opportunity to check out some of the artistic director/cast discussions that take place before select shows throughout the summer. Held in an intimate, campfire-like setting, you’ll get a new perspective of what goes into staging a production. Rosebud is home to a professional performing arts school and given the hamlet’s size, the chances you’ll run into students or members of the cast and crew are high. Even the Mercantile is home to plenty of students working as servers, hosts, kitchen staff and dinner musicians. So don’t hesitate to say hi or ask for a pre-show selfie if you can!
7. It’s A Hot Ticket
As mentioned, Rosebud Theatre averages about 35,000 attendees every year. With many shows selling out, acquiring a ticket to a Rosebud Theatre show becomes a big deal. That’s why we recommend you get tickets to Rosebud Theatre as far ahead as you can! Also good to note, special pricing is available for groups of 20+ people.
If you’re looking to catch more than one production at Rosebud Theatre (and let’s be honest, why wouldn’t you?), then a subscription will be your new best friend. Rosebud Theatre has numerous subscription package options available annually between October and December, each offering great value for theatregoers. The perks of being a subscriber means getting to pick your seats before everyone else does, getting the best prices locked down, allowing you to switch tickets to fit your schedule and best of all, your nights out can be booked up to a year in advance. Whether you pick a package of three shows or five, having a subscription means having even more reasons to visit Rosebud Theatre!