Fall Arts Guide | 2015

    Innovative. Creative. Nostalgic. Thought-provoking. Fun. Sexy. Historical. Hilarious. Bittersweet. Cutting-edge.

    These are just a few words to describe the performances, productions, exhibits, and venues in our annual guide. This all-star lineup shows—once again—why Minnesota has earned a national reputation in the world of arts and entertainment. 

    Chanhassen Dinner Theatres

    501 W. 78th Street, PO Box 100
    Chanhassen, MN 55317-0100
    Box office: 952-934-1525 • 800-362-3515 | 
    Group sales: (12+): 952-934-1547  800-355-6273


    Who we are

    Chanhassen Dinner Theatres is Minnesota’s only year-round professional, producing musical theatre company. Known for its Broadway musicals, CDT also features an array of entertainment options including a comedy cabaret, concerts, and more.

    What we do

    We are committed to delighting audiences and creating lifelong memories with a high-quality end-to-end theatre, dining, and service experience.

    2015-16 season highlights

    Currently playing on the Main Stage through October 24 is Disney’s Mary Poppins. Direct from Broadway, Sister Act, featuring Regina Marie Williams, opens October 30  and runs through February 27. Don’t miss this feel-amazing musical comedy smash filled with razzle-dazzle costumes and roof-raising tunes. It’s divinely cheerful entertainment for everyone.

    Avenue that has it all

    With shows, concerts, comedy, weddings, corporate meetings and a pub, there’s never a dull moment at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres.  Experience endless opportunities to be wowed and entertained. Visit ChanhassenDT.com or call 952-934-1525 to see which options are perfect for you.


    Photos courtesy of Chanhassen Dinner Theatres

    Minnesota Opera

    620 North First Street
    Minneapolis, MN  55401

    Box office: 612-333-6669


    Who we are

    Minnesota Opera’s world-class productions draw you into a synthesis of beauty: stunning voices, breathtaking music, gorgeous costumes and extraordinary sets. Minnesota Opera performances bring together the love of art and the joy of entertainment. 

    Support Minnesota Opera

    Explore the full breadth of the season as a subscriber, enjoying exclusive benefits and significant savings—or purchase individual show tickets to one or two favorites. English translations are projected above the stage and
    you’ll have plenty of opportunities to get insights into these magnificent works.

    2015-16 season highlights

    Rising star Amber Wagner stars in Strauss’ comedic charmer of art, fidelity, and love in Ariadne auf Naxos, September 26-October 4; Mozart’s mystical masterpiece returns in the fantastical production,The Magic Flute, November 14-22; mortal and mythical worlds meet in Dvorak’s Rusalka, January 23-31, 2016; a spellbinding web of deceit, love, and honor set the stage for Puccini’s masterwork, Tosca, from March 12-26, 2016; and the world-premiere thriller, The Shining, brings Stephen King’s novel to the stage with music by Paul Moravec and libretto by Mark Campbell, May 7-15, 2016.


    Photos © Michal Daniel

    Ames Center

    12600 Nicollet Ave
    Burnsville, MN 55337
    Tickets: 952-895-4685 800-982-2787
    Ames-Center.com • ticketmaster.com

    Who we are

    Opening in Burnsville in January of 2009, we’re your “south of the river” entertainment destination  with a 1,014-seat Main Theatre and 150-seat Black Box Theatre.

    2015-16 season highlights

    Ride through 60 episodes of the hit show Breaking Bad in one sitting during One Man Breaking Bad October 21. Actor Miles Allen smacks the senses with his supercharged, crazily accurate renditions of the show’s iconic characters. 

    On October 29, see Masters of Illusion, the largest magical touring show in the world, combining the time-honored art of illusion with 21st century speed and design. You’ll see grand illusions, levitating women, escapes, vanishing tricks, and comedy magic—all in front of a live audience.
    The Ames Center winter lineup includes Lightwire Theater’s A Very Electric Christmas December 19, a performance by American songwriter Jim Brickman December 30, 1964: The Tribute January 23, and Men are from Mars—Women are from Venus LIVE! February 6, 2016.


    Photo courtesy of Ames Center

    Ballet Minnesota



    Who we are

    We have an excellent reputation for presenting classical ballets in Minnesota. Our season consists of the Fall Concert, the Classic Nutcracker, the Minnesota Dance Festival, the Spring Classic, and Summer River Songs. 

    Classic Nutcracker

    In celebration of over 28 years of magnificent, magical ballet, Ballet Minnesota is pirouetting off their season with the Fall Concert in October at St. Paul’s Bedlam Theater. The concert will feature Hiawatha with original choreography, produced by choreographer and artistic director Andrew Rist. 

    From December 18-20, Ballet Minnesota will perform the full-length, traditional Classic Nutcracker, a brilliant, moving performance from beginning to end. The German fairytale, written in 1816 (and first performed as a ballet in 1892), still appeals to audiences nearly 200 years later thanks to the timeless storyline, classic music, and graceful dancing. Ballet Minnesota’s Classic Nutcracker includes original choreography, a cast of more than 130 talented dancers, incredible set design, colorful costumes, and fun special effects that bring Clara’s dream to life. It’s the perfect festive holiday show for families of all ages. 

    For ticket information, call 651-690-6700, or visit oshaughnessy.stkate.edu.


    Photo courtesy of Ballet Minnesota

    The Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts

    528 Hennepin Avenue
    Minneapolis, MN 55403
    Box office: 612-206-3600


    Who we are

    The Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts is the Twin Cities’ newest arts center and the flagship for dance, including the newly refurbished 500-seat Goodale Theater; the former Hennepin Center for the Arts (home to 20 leading dance and performing arts organizations); the state-of-the-art Target Education Studio, housing The Cowles Center’s distance learning program; and the new U.S. Bank Atrium.

    Nutcracker (not so) Suite

    From December 4-20, James Sewell Ballet will ring in the holidays with Myron Johnson’s off-kilter Nutcracker (not so) Suite, a coming-of-age tale much closer to the grittier original story than the Sugar Plum Fairy version many of us know today.

    Johnson’s highly inventive production is set in the 60s, beginning on the Upper East Side and careening into a beatnik downtown vibe, complete with a life-size Barbie doll. Colorful characters accompany a musical mash-up of hip-hop, R&B, contemporary tracks, and Christmas carols. Sewell’s invitation to collaborate with Johnson (James’ first dance teacher) gives this Twin Cities Dolls’ holiday tradition a new twist for its first season at The Cowles Center.

    For a somewhat racier version, see Naughty Nutcracker on Friday, December 11 or Saturday, December 19.


    Photo courtesy of the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts

    History Theatre

    30 E. 10th Street, Saint Paul 55101
    Box office: 651-292-4323


    2015-16 season highlights

    The year was 1977: A kind and generous heiress was found dead in her bed, and the night nurse was lying lifeless on the staircase. Was it a robbery? Conspiracy? Clumsy break-in? What, exactly, happened on that fateful night in Duluth’s Glensheen Mansion? This dark musical mystery tackles those questions in Glensheen from October 3-25, 2015.

    Other exciting History Theatre productions include Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story from November 21-December 20, 2015; George Bonga: The Black Voyageur, the story of a legendary Boundary Waters voyageur tracking down a murderer from February 6-28, 2016; Watermelon Hill, detailing the funny, smart, and heartbreaking story of a pregnant unwed teenager sent away to the Catholic Infant Home on Cathedral Hill from March 18-April 10, 2016; and Complicated Fun: The Minneapolis Music Scene from April 30-May 29, 2016, capturing the passionate recklessness of the 80s music scene.


    Photo courtesy of History Theatre

    Northrop at the University of Minnesota

    Northrop is always buzzing with both free and ticketed events. 
    Visit Northrop’s website for a complete schedule.
    Connect on social media for special announcements and offers.


    Who we are

    Northrop at the University of Minnesota is an epicenter of world-class dance and music performances, artistic discovery, diverse ideas, and academic collaboration, connecting the U of M and communities beyond in a beautiful revitalized space. 

    The 2015-16 dance season

    The 2015//16 Northrop Dance season features nine world-class dance companies, five performances with live music, three large-scale ballets, and one film/jazz special. 

    Special offers and deals

    For the best perks, become a subscriber, or purchase single tickets early for the best seats.


    Photo courtesy of Luke Isley

    Old Log Theatre

    5185 Meadville Street
    Excelsior, MN 55331
    Box office: 952-474-5951


    Who we are

    Old Log Theatre is one of the longest running theatre companies in the nation producing year-round professional classic, contemporary and musical theatre in our historic 11-acre setting near Lake Minnetonka.

    What we do

    We bring Broadway hits to the western suburbs!

    2015-16 season highlights

    Don’t miss The Velocity of Autumn, a family dramatic comedy, straight from Broadway regional premiere September 11-October 24; The Wedding Singer,  a romantic comedy/musical set in the 80s, from November 6-February 20, 2016; Cinderella, our beloved children’s holiday matinee show, from November 17-December 31; and Noel Coward’s Blithe Spirit, the most spirited comedy you’ve seen in years from March 4-May 28, 2016. 

    Support us

    • Make dinner reservations before the show at our new restaurant Cast & Cru: 952-767-9700. 
    • Purchase gift cards for friends and family. 
    • Organize a group outing—discounted group rates available. 
    • Host your company party, event, or wedding in our unique space.


    Photos courtesy of Old Log Theatre

    Ordway Center for the Performing Arts

    345 Washington Street
    Saint Paul, MN 55102
    Box office: 651-224-4222


    Who we are

    The Ordway, recognized as one of the U.S.’s leading not-for-profit performing arts centers, is home to a wide variety of performances throughout the year that encompass the finest in American musical theater, world music, dance, and vocal artists in its Music Theater and new Concert Hall, which opened its doors in March 2015.

    2015-16 season highlights

    The Pedrito Martinez Group kicks off the Ordway’s World Music and Dance series on October 18, followed by the acclaimed Lula Washington Dance Theatre on October 30.

    November 24-25, the Ordway presents Hip Hop Nutcracker, re-imagining Tchaikovsky’s classic score through explosive hip hop choreography, and features hip hop legend Kurtis Blow as the guest MC.

    From December 10-January 2, the Ordway is alive with the sounds of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s classic musical, The Sound of Music—a blockbuster family event you won’t want to miss!

    Take action

    For more information, visit Ordway.org or call 651-224-4222 for tickets.


    Photo above courtesy of Ian foxx | Photo below courtesy of Pordway

    Penumbra Theatre

     270 North Kent Street
    St. Paul, MN 55102
    Box office: 651-224-3180


    Who we are

    Penumbra Theatre creates professional productions that are artistically excellent, thought-provoking, and relevant. Our shows illuminate the human condition through the prism of the African American experience.

    Get involved

    Join us this season as we move from empathy to action, from emotion to solution. Hear from the very people who founded movements that shaped history, talk with local leaders, and meet others like you who love theatre and believe deeply in justice. 

    Fall & winter season highlights

    From October 1-11, see Rodney King, written and performed by Roger Guenveur Smith, an achingly beautiful portrait of a brutally beaten man and the moment that set a city ablaze. Through rich poetry and compelling research, Rodney King emerges as an unlikely but unforgettable celebrity in this powerful one-man show.

    Penumbra’s treasured holiday tradition, Black Nativity (directed by Lou Bellamy), returns from December 3-20 with a focus on compassion, connection, and community. This Christmas, be the light.


    Photo courtesy of Patti McGuire

    Park Square Theatre

    408 St. Peter Street, Historic Hamm Building
    St. Paul, MN 55102
    Box office: 651-291-7005


    Who we are

    Park Square gathers the area’s top talent and smart, curious audiences to explore a wide range of new performances. We grab your heart, mind, and spirit with big art in intimate spaces.

    Nina Simone: Four Women

    From the iconic “I Want a Little Sugar in My Bowl” to “Sinnerman,” and the “Four Women” of the title, civil rights and feminist activist Nina Simone, played by Regina Williams, cuts right to the truth. Throughout the movement for equality, the cast of Nina Simone: Four Women remain proud “To Be Young, Gifted and Black” and sometimes even “Feelin’ Good.” Playing on Park Square’s Andy Boss Thrust Stage from March 8-26, 2016.


    Our education program—made possible through your patronage—helps inspire one of the nation’s largest teen theatre audiences traveling from Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa; gives audiences with disabilities an opportunity to experience our work; and helps keep ticket prices low to make sure everyone is welcome. Because of you, hundreds of local artists are at work in order to keep our community vibrant. 


    Photo courtesy of Park Square Theatre

    Theater Latté Da

    Box office: 612-339-3003


    Who we are

    Theater Lattè Da brings to the stage a bold approach to musical theater—re-imagining the classics, developing new work, and experimenting with unusual forms, musical styles,  and compelling stories.


    Subscribe to Season 18 for ticket savings, priority seating, invitations to special events, an inside look at the creative process, and more.

    Fall & winter season highlights

    Stephen Sondheim’s bloody, worldwide success, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street will run from September 23-October 25, 2015 at The Ritz Theater (345 13th Avenue NE Minneapolis). Follow the story of an unjustly exiled barber who returns to 19th century London and plots a delicious plan with deadly consequences.

    From December 16-20, 2015, see All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914  at the Pantages Theatre (710 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis), in partnership with Hennepin Theatre Trust. This moving docu-drama recreates an astounding moment in history when Allied and German soldiers laid down their arms and celebrated the holidays together.


    Photo courtesy of Joe Dickie

    Plymouth Playhouse

    2705 Annapolis Lane North
    Plymouth, MN 55441
    Box office: 763-553-1600 ext. 1
    Group sales: 763-383-1073


    Who we are

    Celebrating 41 years, Plymouth Playhouse is the Midwest’s premiere destination for original musical comedy entertainment for all ages, including How to Talk Minnesotan: The Musical, and the national hit musical comedy series Church Basement Ladies.  

    Our intimate 211-seat theater is conveniently located in the Best Western Hotel and Conference Center, on the lower theater level below the Green Mill Restaurant at 1-494 and Highway 55W, 20 minutes west of downtown Minneapolis. Handicapped accessible and free parking is available. 

    Fall & winter season highlights

    The original show in the hit musical comedy series Church Basement Ladies returns for its 10th anniversary from now through November 15, 2015. Tickets range from $28-$39, with group, student, and senior discounts available. From September 12-13, meet the people behind the Ladies and share your favorite church basement stories, photos, bars, and hot dish recipes after the show. 

    Celebrate the Holidays in swingin’ style with Christmas My Way, A Sinatra Holiday Bash from November 18, 2015-January 17, 2016. Enjoy your Christmas favorites and Sinatra classics just in time for Frank’s 100th birthday. Celebrate December 11-12 for a special “Sinatra Birthday Bash Weekend” tribute. 


    Photos courtesy of Plymouth Playhouse

    Twin Cities Ballet of Minnesota

    16368 Kenrick Ave.,
    Lakeville, MN 55044


    Who we are

    Twin Cities Ballet of Minnesota is an innovative ballet company that creates high quality, professional performances and meaningful educational opportunities for audiences and participants alike. TCB’s home and official school is Ballet Royale Minnesota, widely recognized as one of the foremost ballet academies in the state.

    Coming this spring

    TCB’s original full-length ballet Cinderella 1944: A Love Story returns with performances in Minneapolis and Burnsville. Set in WWII England, this is an original story inspired by the classic tale blending tragedy, humor, hope and love along a journey of discovery.

    Fall and winter season highlights

    Coming this December, see the premiere of TCB’s newly enhanced production, A Minnesota Nutcracker. TCB’s original Nutcracker is a cherished holiday tradition for thousands; this fresh rendition retains all the magic of TCB’s beloved classic—but with a Minnesota twist.  A Minnesota Nutcracker, at Ames Center in Burnsville from December 11–13, 2015, promises the same delightful entertainment for the whole family, from ballet novices to loyal patrons alike.

    Tickets for A Minnesota Nutcracker: in person at Burnsville’s Ames Center Box Office, via Ticketmaster at 800-982-2787, or at ticketmaster.com. (Tickets range from $18-$34.) 


    Photos courtesy of Brianne Bland 

    Weisman Art Museum

    333 East River Road
    Minneapolis, MN 55455


    Who we are

    Offering an educational and friendly museum experience, the museum features American modernism, ceramics, and traditional Korean furniture, all housed in the building designed by Frank Gehry. 

    What we believe

    Art should be an essential part of the human experience.

    Community connection

    As a teaching museum for the University of Minnesota, the museum is dedicated to making arts accessible—that’s why admission to WAM is free every day.

    The Human Touch

    Experience more than 400 works of art reflecting the diversity of the society in which we live and work—paintings, prints, and photos focusing on the human body—during The Human Touch: Selections from the RBC Wealth Management Art Collection, from October 10, 2015 to January 3, 2016. Artists Kerry James Marshall, Elizabeth Peyton, Hung Liu, Frank Big Bear, Jr., Alex Soth, and Kehinde Wiley are represented in this collection, curated by Don McNeil.


    Photo courtesy of Rik Sferra 

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