The cast of “Steel Magnolias” includes (from left) Carol Mason as Clairee, Michele Lazerow as Ouiser, Lauren Billings as Annelle, Kim Mileski as Shelby, Jaimie Page as M’Lynn and PJ Keenan as Truvy. TRACY GREEN PHOTO

Steel Magnolias

ELLSWORTH — Six local actresses will take the stage Friday when “Steel Magnolias” opens at The Grand.

PJ Keenan, Michele Lazerow, Kim Mileski, Carol Mason, Lauren Billings and Jaimie Paige will star as six friends and “frenemies” sharing their lives as they breeze in and out of a small-town Louisiana hair salon.

Written first as a short story and then as a play by Robert Harling, “Steel Magnolias” became a household name when it was made into the 1989 star-studded movie. The film starred Julia Roberts, Sally Field and Daryl Hannah. Roberts earned an Oscar nomination for best actress for her portrayal of Shelby.

Harling wrote the play in response to losing his sister to complications from Type 1 diabetes. And while the show can be a real tear-jerker, the play is also very real and very funny.

The Grand production will go on for two weekends, Aug. 23-25 and Aug. 30-Sept. 1. Show times are 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Tickets are on sale now at the box office, by phone or at Ticket prices for reserved seating are $20 for adults/seniors, $20 for Grand members and $15 for students (15 and under).

Appropriately, given the setting, the play is sponsored by Hairbenders salon.

Live theater at The Grand is “community-driven” with the cast and many of the production staff donating their time and talent to bringing great entertainment to the region. All shows have open auditions and The Grand welcomes inquiries from directors, music directors, designers and builders.

For more information, call the box office at 667-9500, visit or find The Grand on Facebook.

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