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NOVA Center for the Performing Arts will host its annual February fundraising event, "For the Love of the HeArts," Feb. 14 at MoAV Coffee, 2501 Montana Ave.

The theater is currently preparing for the staging of "Our Town," a performance staged without props that make the "town" — no walls, doors, stairs, fences, etc. Actors pantomime most of their interactions with things and the audience is left to fill in the blanks. Directed by Dan Nickerson, the show runs Feb 15-17 featuring youth actors in grades 7-12 as well as adults.

Engaging youth in challenging performances is one of the  many missions of NOVA, which provides a venue for drama, musical theater, improv comedy, opera, and a youth conservatory, said Cindy Butler, president of NOVA’s board of directors.

"The center provides a location for these types of productions as well as other organizations to rent space. Another component of the organization is the education of the youth in the Billings region. Classes in the center and outreach programs in the school accomplish this goal," Butler said.

The nonprofit organization hosts four fundraisers per year, which helps fund operations and building costs, payroll, among other expenses. According to Butler, ticket sales account for less than 25 percent of the organization's operation costs.

"NOVA is so much more than a building with a stage and a black box," said Ginger Roll, who assists with marketing for NOVA, acts, and directs plays. "It is alive with the love of arts, compassion for others, and the opportunity for growth, no matter what your age."

During "For the Love of the HeArts," guests will be treated to an evening of appetizers, desserts, and live jazz and blues melodies by John Roberts Duo. 

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and entertainment begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are priced at $50 per couple or $30 per person, and wine and beer are included in the price. Purchase tickets in advance at www.novabillings.org, by phone at at 406-591-9535 or at the box office, open 12 - 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday at 2317 Montana Ave.

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Arts and Entertainment Reporter

Arts & Entertainment Reporter at The Billings Gazette.