Shakespeare in Montana: The importance of being human

To be human is to be flawed. And yet there is perfection in those flaws. In so many ways, that is the magic and enduring legacy of William Shakespeare. So, I’m thrilled to share that Cascadin, in a small way, is a proud partner to the 50th season of Montana Shakespeare in the Parks (MSIP). We’ll be collaborating with the amazing MSIP staff to help them do less, better, and we’re excited to work with them. 

As part of this collaboration, MSIP invited us backstage. And it was incredible. 

We recently attended a behind-the-scenes party for MSIP. Thinking it would be a cocktail reception, I was blown away by the experience. We toured the costumes, props, and set. We learned more about the history of MSIP. And, we heard how the interpretations of the plays developed this season. We even had a fun photo taken on stage on King Lear’s throne. 

Team Cascadin on the stage of Montana Shakespeare in the Parks 2022

But here’s why it was magical.

Kevin Asselin, MSIP’s artistic director, gave a heartfelt welcome highlighting why Montana Shakespeare in the Parks is so important. Every summer MSIP tours Montana and surrounding states, performing one of two plays in small towns. For free. It is a professional production with paid actors, directors, and crew. Performing the plays of Shakespeare in towns like Birney, MT, population 110, Ekalaka, MT, population 390, and Trout Creek, MT, population 178

This season, MSIP will visit 61 communities in 5 states. And they will bring light, laughter, and thought-provoking interpretations of King Lear and Twelfth Night to these communities. 

As Kevin explained, this mission of performing Shakespeare in rural communities is important because it brings our shared humanity together. Most of the actors and crew of MSIP are not from Montana. They’re from cities like Chicago, and many have not been to Montana before. They will be invited into homes across Montana. They will experience the beauty and challenges of rural life. And they will bring art to the communities they visit. It is a beautiful exchange. 

We’re honored to participate in this mission.

I am humbled that Cascadin gets to play a small role in this mission. The staff of MSIP works year-round, and they are a small but mighty team. We’ll be working with them to help them organize, track, and document all the cool things they do together and provide a more streamlined communication system. 

I’m excited to work with this team and support their mission. I participated in theater in high school, and I aspire to make time for it again in my life. Because for me, theater, and the arts in general, is about being human and sharing that humanity. And that is something that we care deeply about at Cascadin. 

Here’s all you need to know for the 50th season of Montana Shakespeare in the Parks.

The opening night of King Lear in Bozeman is this Wednesday, June 15. The opening night of Twelfth Night in Bozeman is Wednesday, June 22

If you live in one of the larger communities it visits, go to a performance in one of your neighboring communities. MSIP is so special in the smaller towns. Truly. 

Alyson Roberts

Co-Founder & CEO

Known for organizing the dirty dishes before cleaning them, Alyson is learning how to do less, better and helping others do the same. She loves exploring beautiful lands near and far, trying new recipes, aspiring to be the next Star Baker, growing her garden, and avoiding board games at all cost.

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