Hey You, Get Out There And See Some Theater!

November 2, 2011

Dominique Serrand and Steve Epp's The Moving CompanyI had a conversation recently with someone who has lived in the Twin Cities for more than 10 years and has never been to a theater production. It’s difficult in those situations to maintain a calm, non-incredulous tone and withhold a “SERIOUSLY?!?”

This is not me being judgmental. This is not me assuming EVERYONE has to be interested in theater. This is just me being continually surprised at the general lack of awareness of the amazing theater scene our city offers. Want Broadway? Want an original local production? Want experimental? We got it. After all, it’s said that Minneapolis has more theater seats per capita than any U.S. metro except New York City. And in 2009, Travel and Leisure Magazine ranked Minneapolis/St. Paul in the top must-see cities for theater, just behind New York City and Chicago.

A few years ago, I had the privilege of working with some of the most talented artists and performers in Minneapolis at Theatre de la Jeune Lune. While Jeune Lune may have closed its doors in 2008, the forces that breathed life into the building and the magical experiences created within are still very much alive and kicking and I feel compelled to spread the word.

Former Jeune Lune artistic directors Dominique Serrand and Steve Epp have founded a production company — a society of artists creating art. Along with longtime collaborator Nathan Keepers as artistic associate and a crew of established and emerging talent, The Moving Company has been busy.

According to givemn.com, in the works for 2012 are:

  • “Werther and Lotte” – Lab Theater, Minneapolis, March/April 2012
  • “The War Within/All’s Fair” – Southern Theater, Minneapolis, May-June 2012
  • “Invisible to the Eye” – Pioneer Theater, Salt Lake City, January 2012
  • “Massoud” – Center Theater Group, Los Angeles, in development
The War Within/All's Fair at the Rarig Center

The Moving Company and the University of Minnesota are giving people a chance to see “The War Within/All’s Fair” this month before it hits the Southern Theater in May. The group has been working with students from the U of M BA program to create the original work.

“A major part of our mission is to partner with universities and colleges to not only workshop and research our own ideas, but to teach the students and introduce them to a new way of thinking. To stretch their imaginations. The U has been a great partner, and the kids are fantastic. It’s not easy to do what they’re doing, and they’ve been awesome,” Keepers said.

“The War Within/All’s Fair” is based on the theme of war. However, as described on The Moving Company’s website, “…not the war we typically think of, far away in some other country, but the war within ourselves, the everyday wars we all battle, all the little wars we create or find around and in between us. It’s funny, poetic, tragic, messy and beautiful. The show will be a comic exploration of the continual folly of humanity, at times disturbing, provocative and even brutal, but always funny.”

“The War Within/All’s Fair” will perform at The Rarig Center’s Thrust stage, Nov. 10 – 13. Information on tickets is here

I suggest you check it out. And, if you are already familiar with their work and have an interest in supporting The Moving Company’s mission to maintain and nourish an atmosphere for the development of new ideas, you can give here.

As I mentioned at the beginning of my post, there is no shortage of great theater in our city. What are your favorite organizations? What do you love about theater in Minneapolis? Let’s get the word out!