Arts and Parks; a new partnership with Random Acts of Silliness

September 18, 2020

Photo by Doug Loneman

Community theaters are among the many businesses struggling to adapt to changes amid the pandemic. Many have gone virtual in an attempt to stay afloat but watching a performance on Zoom certainly detracts from the whole “live theater” experience. And while it may seem like a less than opportune moment to start a Children’s Theater Company in Montana, one group of actors is on a mission to bring live performance back to the community.

“Performing during the pandemic is a challenge, but we’ve found that by doing small outdoor shows, we can safely bring live theater experiences to kids,” says Danielle Thomsen, creator of Random Acts of Silliness (RAOS). “Our shows take kids’ ideas and transform them into rich stories and bold characters.”

Now, you may be asking, what the heck does theater have to do with Gallatin Valley Land Trust? The answer is simple; public parks and trails are perfect for performances, and in our current climate, we could all use a little magic and laughter.

“In a time of outdoor theater, arts & parks are a match made in heaven!” Thomsen says.

We know how valuable open space and trails are to our community, and partnering with RAOS just provides residents with a new way to explore public lands. Enjoying the outdoors shouldn’t be limited to extreme mountain athletes, hunters, fishermen and women, and mountain bikers. There’s room for all of us outside. How cool is it that you can hop on your bike, cruise down a trail, and then catch a free improv show in a beautiful park?

RAOS is performing again this Saturday, September 19, near the Dino Playground at Gallatin Regional Park. The performance promises to be family friendly, socially-distanced, and over-the-top silly. Children 5 and up are required to wear masks. Next week, GVLT is partnering with the RAOS again to bring a magical Fairy Village – called Flutterby Thicket – to the Gallagator trail. Flutterby Thicket will be hidden along the Gallagator from September 22 – October 5, and RAOS has commissioned 10 local artists to create tiny fairy homes and businesses. Check our website for a map next week and see if you can find all 10 houses!

Montanans have never let weather hinder them from enjoying the outdoors, and RAOS is following suit.

“The theme for performing over the next year will be persistence and experimentation,” Thomsen says. “Montanans like to be outside in the winter, so we’re starting to brainstorm outdoor winter show ideas like a walking tour of wacky woodland creatures in their winter habitat or snow creatures come to life. We promise to keep creating.”

More on events here