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Reuniting for ‘Run For Your Wife’

Theatre | March 11th, 2015

Harwood Prairie Playhouse still going strong after 31 years

For the first time in 31 years, the Harwood Prairie Playhouse is doing something new. Well, kinda sorta.

The West Fargo theater company known for its annual farces isn’t putting on a different show this year, but rather digging into its past to present a farce for the second time. “Run For Your Wife” by Ray Cooney is presented as a reunion show, rounding up Harwood actors of the last 15 years.

Shanara Lassig is one of those actors; her last Harwood performance was in 2010 before she began directing performances. But now her husband David takes the helm as director as Shanara steps back onstage with other actors who haven’t been seen on the Harwood stage in years.

“Everybody in the cast has been in Harwood shows before,” she said. “When they auditioned, that was what they had to do –be in a Harwood show before.”

Several of this year’s actors haven’t been brought back in over a decade. Perry Rust returns in his same “Run For Your Wife” role from 15 years ago – the last time he was seen onstage in a Harwood show.

Scott Horvik of Theatre B fame was last part of the Harwood Prairie Playhouse in 2001, and Tony Eider’s last time was in 2005.

“This is fun to get everybody together,” Lassig said. “Everybody really enjoys the Harwood experience. It’s been a lot of fun to do so far.”

A farce somewhat similar to “Boeing Boeing” (which Lassig directed last month), “Run For Your Wife” finds its leading man juggling two wives, one in Wimbledon and one in Streatham. When John Smith gets hit on the head and lands in the hospital, he’s later discharged to the “wrong” house, setting up a storm of confusion and characters coming and going.

“It’s kind of along those same lines (as ‘Boeing Boeing’),” Lassig said, laughing, “except those ladies weren’t married. It’s kind of along the bigamy side of things.”

While repeating a show for the first time is definitely something new for the Harwood Prairie Playhouse, the old faces and familiar tone of a farce is something Lassig knows keeps the company’s audiences hooked year after year.

“We hope to be around a lot more than 31 years,” she said. “We just love our audience. They’re so loyal, they know that they’re going to have a good time when they come see us. It’s just wonderful to have such a dedicated audience … and we’re lucky that way.”

IF YOU GO

“Run For Your Wife”

7:30 p.m. March 13-14, 20-21, 26-28; 2 p.m. March 15, 22 & 28

Bonanzaville’s Dawson Hall in West Fargo

701-298-6807

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