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Actors find opportunity to perform in Billings

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Posted at 10:45 AM, Mar 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-20 12:45:05-04

The Billings Symphony performs Guys and Dolls this weekend and some special guests will join the musicians stage.

The Lockwood Performing Arts Center is one of few venues open nationwide and now welcoming musical actors from Broadway and big cities.

The actors arrived on Tuesday and have been rehearshing with the symphony at the Lockwood Performing Arts Center.

"Guys and Dolls: A Musical Fable of Broadway" will be their first performance in more than a year.

"It feels really, really good to sing with people and a live orchestra again," said Jessica Soza, an actress from San Diego playing the part of Sarah Brown.

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"This is our first job in front of an audience with an orchestra," said Nicholas Dromard, an actor from New York playing the part of Nathan Detroit. "Together with other cast members, it's really wonderful to be here."

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They're excited because they have not been on stage for more than a year.

"It didn't feel real, you know, in the weeks leading up to this, to coming here to Billings," said Robert Ariza, a New York actor playing the part of Sky Masterson. "But there's a familiarity with what we do and there's such a love, and you can tell that everyone has felt that loss right? And so we're all just so excited to jump in."

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"I don't know that words can express how important it is for this opportunity to happen," said Korie Lee Blossey, a New York actor playing Nicely-Nicely Johnson. "I'll do anything. I'll do rehearsals from 9am to 9pm. Whatever it takes. I just, I need to do this."

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And they're ready even after that time off from not performing.

"You kind of share this bond," said Desiree Dromard, a New York actress playing Miss Adelaide. "And actors, we get excited and become friends, quick."

"It is like our group of best friends just reunited in the sandbox again," Blossey said. "And we're six feet apart, but we're so happy that we get to be in the sandbox."

"It's just fun to, to be up on stage," said Colin McAdoo, an actor from Sonoma, California playing Benny Southstreet. "It makes me feel like I'm fine, you know. And it's just the best feeling in the world.

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"We are one of the very few orchestras performing with audiences," said Ann Harrigan, Billings Symphony musical director. "We're really leading the way in the country. And part of that is because we're adhering so strictly to health and safety protocols. Our audiences have been great.

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"It's exciting to kind of feel that energy again with with others and not only onstage, but once we have people in the house that's going to be just a glorious experience," Soza said.

"Guys and Dolls: A Musical Fable of Broadway" runs at the Lockwood Performing Arts Center on Saturday at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m and Sunday at 2 pm.

The Saturday night show will be live-streamed.

Desiree Dromard is married to Nicholas Dromard and is listed in the cast as Desiree Davar.