Helena-area arts and entertainment news


Appraisal fair at the Holter on Saturday

The Montana Antiques Appraisal Fair, hosted by the Foundation for Montana History, is 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at Holter Art Museum, 12 E. Lawrence St.

Appraisal tickets are $25 per item. There is a limit of two appraisal items per person (or four per couple). Tickets are available in time slots between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Spectators are free and encouraged to experience the Holter art galleries during the appraisal fair.

Please no firearms, chemicals or minerals. Typical items brought in for appraisal include paintings, sculptures, textiles, photographs, Western and Native Americana, dolls, sports memorabilia and other interesting or possibly valuable objects.

Go to mthistory.org/events for more information.

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Eclipse event at Learning Center

The Montana Learning Center at Canyon Ferry Reservoir invites the public to Beyond the Big Sky – Eclipse Edition from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, weather permitting.

Tickets are $25 per adult and $15 per child ages 12 and up. Get tickets at: https://bit.ly/3RJ2og6.

The eclipse will start at 9:11 a.m. Maximum coverage will occur at 10:27 a.m. with the phenomenon ending at 11:50 a.m. Parking will begin at 8:30 a.m.

People can watch the solar eclipse and bring family and friends to this once-in-a-lifetime event and enjoy a morning filled with wonder as the moon begins to cast its shadow on the sun.


Lincoln to discuss ‘Montana Grit’

Author Marga Lincoln will discuss her book “Montana Grit” at Helena’s History Corral.

Ten unsung heroes In Montana history will highlight her presentation at the 5:30 p.m. dinner Monday at the Colonial Delta hotel.

Reservations are necessary by contacting [email protected]

Montana Writers Rodeo coming up 

The Oct. 20-21 Montana Writers Rodeo will host four presenters discussing  how the state of Montana inspires story in plays, novels, screenwriting and filmmaking. 

The event, hosted by Montana Playwrights Network, will be at the Helena Avenue Theatre at 1319 Helena Ave. This conference aims to encourage and educate writers from all genres on story education, author readings and networking. 

Registration is available online at www.montanaplaywrights.org or at the door. Tickets range from $20 to $95. For more information, call or text: 406-235-0353.

Presenters include Montana Film Commissioner Allison Whitmer, Playwright and podcaster Jay Kettering, bestselling author and genealogist Angela Breidenbach and Hollywood Screenplay Consultant and instructor Barbara Schiffman.

At 8 p.m. Oct. 20 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, there will be live readings of submitted materials by registered writers attending the conference. Writers are encouraged to submit 10-minute readings for consideration. Six readings will be performed on both Friday and Saturday night. Submissions are free with conference registration. Writers may submit sections of a play, novel, screenplay or nonfiction work. See ticket prices to readings on Friday and Saturday above.

Vigilantes of Fort Benton ride into town

The vigilante X. Beidler activities in Fort Benton will be discussed Oct. 19 as part of a free series of lectures sponsored by the Montana Historical Society.

Overholser Historical Research Center historian Ken Robison will share “A Hidden Tale: The Vigilantes and X. Beidler of Fort Benton.” The stories of Beidler and the vigilantes in Fort Benton are told from Robison’s new book “Historic Tales of Fort Benton,” and copies of his book will be available for purchase.

Lectures are co-sponsored by the Lewis and Clark Library in Helena and are held every other Thursday at 6:30 p.m. in the Library’s Large Meeting Room, 120 S. Last Chance Gulch. The public may attend.

Recordings will be posted on the MTHS YouTube channel. 


Rastrelli Cello Quartet to perform at Myrna

The Rastrelli Cello Quartet takes to The Myrna Loy stage at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 12, performing music from Gluck, Tchaikovsky and Grieg. 

The Rastrellis, among Europe’s most adventurous classical cellists, make their base in Germany.

Rastrelli Cello Quartet

Rastrelli Cello Quartet

Tickets are $25 and available at 406-443-0287 or at The Myrna Loy, 15 N. Ewing St. and themyrnaloy.com.

Helena Symphony to perform

The Helena Symphony Orchestra presents “Puccini & Schumann” at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 21, at the Helena Civic Center, 340 Neill Ave.

“Puccini & Schumann”

The Helena Symphony Orchestra presents “Puccini & Schumann” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 21, at the Helena Civic Center, 340 Neill Ave.

Single concert tickets can be purchased ($55-$15 plus a $5 transaction fee) online at www.helenasymphony.org, by calling the Symphony Box Office (406.442.1860) or by visiting the Symphony Box Office on the Walking Mall at the Placer Building (21 N. Last Chance Gulch, Suite 100) between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Featuring acclaimed pianist Carl Cranmer, Schumann’s Piano Concerto recalls his love for his wife with sweeping melodies and the concert includes Puccini’s passionate and rarely heard “Messa di Gloria.”

Masterworks II will feature 70 members of the Helena Symphony Chorale performing for the first time this season. 

Rail, Blue Tattoo come to Lewis & Clark Tap Room

Lewis & Clark Tap Room is bringing iconic Pacific Northwest classic rock bands Blue Tattoo and Rail for a show at 7 p.m. Oct. 20 at 1535 Dodge Ave. Tickets are $30 at the door, $20 in advance at lctaproom.com, or find three friends and get a four-pack for $65 in advance.

Blue Tattoo will start the show with music that features classics from the roots of hard rock, glam rock and hair metal from the late ’70s through the 1990s.

Blue Tattoo plays rock classics that include Boston, Journey, Night Ranger, Kansas, Quiet Riot, Motley Crue, Guns N’ Roses, Bon Jovi, Tesla and others.

Headlining the show is Rail. The band was formed by drummer Kelly Nobles, bassist/singer Terry James Young and guitarist Andy Baldwin at Highland Junior High School in Bellevue, Washington, in 1970. Interlake High School mate Rick Knotts joined the band in 1973.

Rail won a best local band award from Seattle rock station KZOK-FM in 1978. The band entered the Billboard 200 albums chart with its self-titled EMI America Records release “Rail.” The band toured with Van Halen, Heart, Ted Nugent, Blue Öyster Cult, Three Dog Night, The Beach Boys, Nazareth and others.

Fiddlers to gather in Townsend

The Montana Old Time Fiddlers will bring their unique music to the Fish Tale Bar in uptown Townsend, 2-6 p.m. Sunday.

The program is free and open to the public, lunch is potluck, and dancing is encouraged. Guitar, mandolin and banjo players, as well as fiddlers, are welcome to participate – and everybody’s welcome to come and experience some great old-time fiddle music. 

The Montana Old Time Fiddlers are dedicated to preserving old-time fiddle music in Montana. For more info call Ron at 605-660-7511.


‘Misery’ comes to Grandstreet Theatre

Grandstreet Theatre presents “Misery” by William Goldman, based on the novel by Stephen King. 

After surviving a wintery car crash, acclaimed romance novelist Paul Sheldon wakes to find he’s been rescued by Annie Wilkes, a seemingly kind nurse, who also happens to be his “No. 1 fan.”

Content advisory: Misery is intended for mature audiences only. This production contains adult language, moments of physical and emotional abuse, fake firearms, loud gunshots and fake blood.

The play runs Wednesday through Saturday evenings at 7:30 p.m. Sunday matinees at 2:30 p.m. through Oct. 22, at 325 N. Park Ave.

For tickets, call the Grandstreet Box Office (afternoons): 406-447-1574, or order online at www.GrandstreetTheatre.com. Tickets are $27 on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings, $23 Wednesday evenings and Sunday matinees, and $17 for kids 18 and under. 

New Play Fest returns to Helena

Helena’s 10th annual Last Chance New Play Fest, the longest-running festival of its kind in Montana, will run Nov. 3-12, and features new projects by Montana writers.

Montana Short Cuts, a program of 10-minute plays, returns to the fest with the theme “Identity Crisis.” Seven plays were selected from the largest number of entrants the fest has ever seen. The lineup includes:

  • “A Nissan Maxima Sort of Thing” – Rebecca Ryland
  • “All the Lost Fathers” – Steve Palmer
  • “Clown Memo” – Emily Walborn
  • “Gun Man” – Barry Stambaugh
  • “Tetrachromacy” – Leigh Ann Ruggiero
  • “Unwritten” – Lily Hoelscher
  • “Who is Joe Hill?” – Ross Peter Nelson

A program of independently produced project will also appear. They include three short one-act plays:

  • “The Interview” – Rebecca Ryland
  • “True Story” – Steve Palmer
  • “Wolves and Pigs 2050”  – Theresa Cardiello

The fest will also include a reading of a full-length new play, Ross Peter Nelson’s “Saint J,” followed by an audience feedback session.

This grass-roots theater event celebrates the works of local and regional playwrights. It will be at the Helena Avenue Theatre at 1319 Helena Ave.

Tickets for individual performances are $18 (adult) or $15 (student/senior) and are available at the door or online. $30 Fest passes, which admit holders to any performance, are also available. Tickets for the fest can be purchased online at https://buytickets.at/lcnpf. Evening performances are at 7:30 p.m., weekend matinees at 1:30 p.m.


Famed appraiser speaks at The Bray  

The Bray Artist Amplified series continues from 6:30-8 p.m. Oct. 12 with internationally recognized appraiser Timothy Gordon at the Frances Senska Center for Education and Engagement or streaming online.

Gordon will discuss his 25-plus year career, from Princess Diana Spencer’s Gown Collection at Kensington Palace to the estates of Montana artists Charles M. Russell, Rudy Autio and Frances Senska.

The Frances Senska Center is at 2915 Country Club Ave.

INKtober show at Queen City

Eighteen Montana artists are being displayed this month in the seventh annual juried INKtober Art Show at Queen City Framing & Art Supplies.

All works were required to incorporate ink as a primary element, and the pieces had to interpret this year’s theme of “Words, Ink & Wit”! This show features calligraphy, watercolor, pen work, block prints and some witty interpretations.

The public may attend a reception 5-7 p.m. Friday at 400 Euclid Ave. 

INKtober happens every October when artists all over the world take on the drawing challenge of doing one ink drawing a day for the entire month.

The Helena show includes artists: Marsha Austin, Marcy Bergmann, Lanelle Christman, Carol Dougherty, Laurie Ekanger, Ann Franke, Jo Lee Hawkins, Caitlin King, Katie Luther, Seth Roby, Kate Runnalls, Jim Schulz, Janet Sheehy, Julie Sherrodd, Becky Smith, Cynthia Tsai, Jane Weaver and Donna Wise.

People are invited to stop in to vote their favorite. The winner will be announced at the end of the month.

Call 442-2760 for more information. 


‘Scream’ served at Brew & View

“Scream,” the 1996 Wes Craven classic slasher is the featured flick Oct. 19 for The Myrna Loy’s Halloween-time Brew & View.

“It pokes fun at the tropes of slasher films,” says Myrna Loy film curator Benji Cosgrove, calling it “a metacommentary on such slasher horror films of the ‘80s as ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’ and ‘Friday the 13th.’”

Scary Movie


Take home a prize for best Halloween costume or best ‘90s outfit.

Doors open at 6 p.m. The show’s at 8 p.m.

Tickets are $22 (alcohol) — three drinks of your choice. Or $12 (non-alcohol) includes soda with popcorn.

For tickets call 406-443-0287 at The Myrna Loy, 15 N. Ewing St., themyrnaloy.com.

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