In its 20th year, the Marquette Melodrama Troupe will present the 2008 production of "The Perils of Priscilla," or "The Schoolmarm's Dilemma" and Olio - "Thru the Years," at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 31 and Saturday, Nov. 1, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 2 at the Elizabeth A. Hopp Fine Arts Center in Marquette.
In "The Perils of Priscilla," the young schoolmarm, Miss Priscilla, will be played by Dena Duesberg. She will arrive to take over the school of hard knocks. Smedley Smidgin, played by Thomas DeWitt, having previously disposed of Old Miss Tyler, (Julie Olson,) has plans for Miss Priscilla.
Can the young, handsome and illiterate Harlowe Starbuck, (Pete Hamma,) save the day and learn to read? Will the children of the school , played by Vicki Young, Lara Reid and Kim Coney, survive the violence and mayhem to become upstanding members of society?
The answers can only be explained by watching the drama unfold.
Next, "Thru the Years" will feature repeat performances of the past 19 years of olio productions, using mostly original performers.
Beth Hopp and Gae Ronsse began the fine arts center and two years later, in 1989, the Marquette Melodrama was born. They were inspired by performances at Wichita's Cowtown.
Following Hopp's death in 1995, the Marquette Fine Arts Center was renamed the Elizabeth A. Hopp Fine Arts Center in her memory.
Over the years, the center stage has been the spotlight for plays, such as,  "The Villain of Rose Gulch Hollow," "Her Fatal Beauty," "True Blue & Trusted," and Olio "Great Balls of Fire."
Usually held in November, this years production will be the earliest to date with a performance on Oct. 31.
Reservations can be made for an "Italian Buffet" at the Valley Café from 5:30 p.m. to 7: 30 p.m. before the Saturday show.  Reservations can be made by calling (785)546-2353. The café will also be open to the public.
Tickets for the performances are $10 and may be purchased Monday through Friday at the Marquette Farmers State Bank or by calling (785) 546-2292.