Award winning concert pianist Hunter Noack will perform in Big Sky on December 27 and 28. PHOTO COURTESY JOEY HAMILTON

WMPAC presents an outdoor concert

Even though much of the arts and entertainment world has gone dark during the pandemic, the team at the Warren Miller Performing Arts Center has been determined to present a full winter season as usual.

“We’ve embraced a spirit of creativity and flexibility in planning this season,” said John Zirkle, executive director of WMPAC. “The experience may look different, but WMPAC is presenting performances that are just as compelling and highcaliber as any other year.”

This Saturday, Dec. 19, at 7 p.m., the center will present a live radio broadcast of Hamlet, performed by Montana Shakespeare in the Parks. Shakespeare’s timeless play is just as relevant in 2020 as it was when it was first performed in 1609.

The live production will be performed by ten professional actors at WMPAC. This is the only performance of WMPAC’s season that will not have a live audience, but instead will be streamed on wmpac.live, and available for 48 hours after the show.

Easily the most unique performance of the season (and the center’s eight year history) will take place over two days, Dec. 27 and 28. The show is called In a Landscape: Classical Music in the Wild, and will take place not in the theater but on the Big Sky Resort golf course. A nine-foot Steinway grand piano will be placed in the golf course’s driving range, around which a labyrinthine track will be custom-groomed by the Lone Mountain Ranch. Award-winning concert pianist Hunter Noack will perform at the center of the track while audience members explore the course via cross country ski or snowshoe. Each guest will be given a high-quality set of Bluetooth headphones, through which his concert will be streamed.

Noack has been performing outdoors in unique landscapes for five years now, but this will be the first time he performs in snow. “It’s my first attempt at doing a concert in a winter wonderland. I feel really lucky that we’re able to do this, and that we can do it in a location as epic as Big Sky,” Noack said on Monday.

In-person tickets for the event are $25, and available at warrenmillerpac.org. Guests will provide their own ski or snowshoeing equipment and ski into the golf course from the access point of their choosing. Noack and his piano will be located on the driving range, near the center of the course, along with WMPAC staff handing out the wireless headphones. From there, the experience is up to the audience; they are free to explore the course to the sounds of Chopin’s nocturnes and “Moonlight Sonata.”

For those audience members who prefer to enjoy the concert from home, Noack’s performance will be livestreamed on WMPAC’s new streaming platform, wmpac.live. Virtual tickets are $10. Tickets are more information are available at warrenmillerpac.org

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