Alive with inventive shows and high-caliber actors, Parallel 45 brings a vibrant professional theater company, often found only in places like Chicago and New York City, to Traverse City for several Northern Michigan events.

Based in Traverse City, Parallel 45 is offering half-off season subscriptions until Monday, August 31. For $60, you and a date can see three wildly entertaining main stage productions including “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” “A Streetcar Named Desire” and “Medea.”

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“Of note with Medea is it’s an original adaptation that we have commissioned to be written for Parallel 45,” says Executive Director Erin Anderson Whiting. “Playwright Kristina Williams is taking the story and contemporizing it to make it relevant to a larger audience. She is writing it specifically for us so this will be a world premier.”

Bringing in nationally recognized talent such as actor Michael Burditt Norton, director Matthew Gutschick and scenographer Matthew McCarren, Parallel 45 connects professional artists with Northern Michigan helping to create a dynamic art culture.

“We are the only resident professional theatre north of Grand Rapids,” Erin says. “What we hope is that people will start to look at (Traverse City) as, yes, we’re a small town, but look at all the international flavor and interesting things we can bring in and have available right here in our backyard.”

Some of the artists, such as New York actress Caitlin McDonough-Thayer, who will play the title role in Medea, have ties to the area through Interlochen Arts Academy. Erin, along with Parallel 45’s award-winning artistic director Kit McKay, also attended the fine arts school.

Entering its sixth season, Parallel 45 is known for producing a repertoire of innovative new works, reinvented classics and imaginative adaptations. This season’s productions are centered on the popular saying, ‘Well-behaved women seldom make history.’

“Our society in particular seems very interested in watching powerful, popular or celebrity women fail spectacularly,” Erin says. “It’s fun to watch that unraveling in a culture of tabloids and sensationalized celebrity news. That’s the lens we’re looking at these shows through—why do we love to watch these women fail so publicly? What is this salacious desire?”

Individual tickets for the shows will go on sale Tuesday, September 1. Call (800) 836-0717 for ticket information or visit Purchase discounted season passes here.

“We hope this is a chance for people who maybe haven’t come to shows before to give us a try and see what Parallel 45 is all about,” Erin says.

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