Play offers a comedic take on finding the good in bad situations

This spring, Rosebud Theatre presents a comedy that is sure to get some laughs.

Rosebud, Alta. is approximately an hour east of Calgary. It is nestled in a cozy valley with fewer than 100 residents. The drive is a great escape from the city and there is a breath of seclusion.

A rib-tickling tale, “$38,000 For a Friendly Face” tells the story of a new funeral home director attempting to create an appropriate celebration of life for a woman nobody liked.

Morris Ertman, theatre artistic director, said he’s hoping for audience members to walk away utterly amused by the play.

Ertman added that the play ends with sort of a heart-warming twist.

Nathan Schmidt plays the role of Matt Watson, an amateur funeral director. Prior to becoming the owner of a funeral home, he was laid off from his previous job that paid him $38,000 a year, hence the title of the play. He chooses to buy a funeral home with no previous experience in the business.

The first reading of “$38,000 For a Friendly Face”.
Photo courtesy of Neil Bousquet, Media Relations for Rosebud Theatre

He not only has to arrange an appropriate funeral service but also has to deal the fact that the daughters of the deceased haven’t talked in years, the menu for the event is up in the air, and the flower-delivery girl will not co-operate.

Throughout these unfortunate events, Schmidt’s character finds his own value and worth. He also helps redeem the legacy of a deceased woman nobody liked.

“He’s learning the ropes,” Schmidt said. “He wants to make sure they have a lovely grieving experience.”

Each ticket purchased for the play provides a buffet meal for both the matinee and evening show times. It is a full, self-serve meal with salads, soups, a wide variety of hot and cold foods, and dessert — yes you can go back for seconds. Alcoholic beverages are extra.

Rosebud Theatre will kick off the spring season with a comedy.
Photo courtesy of Neil Bousquet, Media Relations for Rosebud Theatre

While visiting Rosebud, Alta. be sure to allow time to stop at the various gift, craft shops and the Rosebud Centennial & District Museum located just across the street from the theatre.

Ertman described Rosebud as a “funky arts village.” He said he finds it to be a cool, creative surprise in the middle of the prairies.

Out of five productions that the Rosebud Theatre will present in 2012, “$38,000 For a Friendly Face” will kick off the season. This springtime comedy runs from March 16 to May 12. For information regarding ticket prices and show times go to www.rosebudtheatre.com or call 1-800-267-7553.

For $288 you can create a theatre package including a standard room for one night on the weekend at the Rosebud Country Inn, two tickets to the theatre and breakfast for two. Contact (403) 677-2211 for reservations.

dswan@cjournal.ca