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'Northwest Passages' brings live theater back

| March 9, 2021 1:00 AM

For the first time in over a year, the Pend Oreille Arts Council will hold a live performance — hosting a Living Voices production of “Northwest Passages”.

The performance will take place Friday, March 19, at 7 p.m. at the Panida Theater. Tickets will be limited due to reduced venue capacity and the required social distancing precautions to help keep everyone safe.

As was the case for arts presenters across the country, POAC was forced to postpone or cancel performances scheduled for its 2020-21 season due to the pandemic. Looking optimistically to the future, some of these performances have been rescheduled for the 2021-22 season, and POAC’s Performing Arts Committee is busy lining up the organization’s trademark mix of music and live theater offerings for the Sandpoint community.

“We have survived and thrived during these times thanks to our loyal supporters who recognize how important the arts are to our community,” said POAC Executive Director Tone Lund. “We have been able to pivot and adapt the visual arts and educational aspects of our mission, and now we look forward to reviving our live performances at the Panida Theater.”

“Northwest Passages” tells the story of the development of the Pacific Northwest, focusing primarily on the years between 1880 and 1920. It is the examination of forces the pulled people here from regions throughout the United States and the world, the dreams they hoped to fulfill, the realities they encountered, and the established communities of people who were affected by this great influx.

The “passage” of the title refers not just to a journey from one place to another, but also from one time to another, from an old way of life to a few way of life — that was embodied in the dream of the bountiful, prosperous, rugged Northwest. The story is told through the eyes of a young girl, Anna Julia Larson, whose family emigrates from Sweden to the promise of a new life in America in the late 1800s.

Living Voices is also a part of POAC’s Ovations program, a free K-12 outreach that provides quality educational experiences in the performing arts for students who would otherwise not have these opportunities. Living Voices, in conjunction with the Nordic Heritage Museum, has produced a study guide focused on the history of the times to accompany performances in multiple elementary schools in the Lake Pend Oreille School District prior to the public performance at the Panida on March 19.

All tickets are $16, available at the POAC office, 110 Main St., Suite 101, in downtown Sandpoint, Winter Ridge Natural Foods, online at ArtinSandpoint.org, or call 208-263-6139.

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A “Northwest Passages” performance will take place Friday, March 19, at 7 p.m. at the Panida Theater.

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A Living Voices' production of “Northwest Passages” will be held Friday, March 19, at 7 p.m. at the Panida Theater.