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NEWS: The 2018 MN Theater Award Honorees

The 2018 Minnesota Theater Awards took place on Monday, September 24 at ARIA in Minneapolis.

Last night, the 2018 Minnesota Theater Awards party unfolded at Aria. Unusually, there were no award recipients announced – only honorees who had been nominated. In a typically Minnesotan development, the organizers announced last week that they would not be announcing the winners of the online award voting, and that they would instead celebrate all of the nominees in a spirit of inclusion.

The current MN Theater Awards were created by Four Humors Theater to fill a gap left by this year’s retirement of the Ivey Awards founded by Scott Meyer. In 14 years of operation, the Ivey Awards honored some 90 theatre organizations and select individual artists. If the MN Theater Awards continue on their current trajectory, they will be arriving in different numbers territory.

The categories and honorees were:

Exceptional Overall Production

  • ≈[almost equal to] (Pillsbury House Theatre)
  • Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax (Children’s Theatre Company)
  • Indecent (Guthrie Theater)
  • In the Heights (The Ordway and Teatro del Pueblo)
  • This Bitter Earth (Penumbra Theatre)
  • Two Mile Hollow (Theater Mu and Mixed Blood)

Exceptional Performative Direction

  • Amber Bjork – Stage Direction
    • The Memory Box of the Sisters Fox (The Winding Sheet Outfit)
  • Jason Hansen – Musical Direction
    • Assassins (Theater Latté Da)
  • H. Adam Harris – Stage Direction
    • Luna Gale (Underdog Theater)
  • Wendy Knox – Stage Direction
    • Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again. – Frank Theatre
  • Sarah Rasmussen – Stage Direction
    • The Wolves – Jungle Theater

Exceptional Design

  • Marcus Dillard – Lighting
    • Thaïs (Minnesota Opera)
    • Man of La Mancha (Theater Latté Da)
    • Assassins (Theater Latté Da)
    • This Bitter Earth (Penumbra Theater)
  • Arnulfo Maldonado – Set
    • Indecent (Guthrie Theater)
  • Kathy Maxwell – Video Projection
    • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (Mixed Blood Theatre)
    • This Bitter Earth (Penumbra Theatre)
    • A Crack in the Sky (History Theater)
    • The Nether (Jungle Theater)
  • Eli Sherlock – Set
    • Assassins (Theater Latté Da)
  • Abbee Warmboe – Properties
    • The Ravagers (Umbrella Collective)
    • Two Mile Hollow (Theater Mu and Mixed Blood Theatre)
    • Underneath the Lintel (Theater Latté Da)

Overall Design

  • The Skriker (Fortune’s Fool Theatre)
    • Joanna McLarnan – Lighting
    • Sean McArdle – Set
    • Terri Ristow – Properties
    • Tracy Swenson – Costume
    • Ariel Leaf – Makeup

Exceptional Individual Performance

  • Joy Dolo
    • The Good Person of Szechwan (Ten Thousand Things)
  • Becca Hart
    • The Wolves (Jungle Theater
  • Sam Landman
    • Prescription: Murder (Ghoulish Delights
  • Thomasina Petrus
    • Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill (Jungle Theater)
  • Miriam Schwartz
    • Indecent (Guthrie Theater)
  • Maren Ward
    • Constance in the Darkness: A Musical in Miniature (Open Eye Figure Theatre)
    • Hatchet Lady (Walking Shadow Theatre Company)

Exceptional New Work

  • Rachel Petrie and Keely Wolter
    • Fadeaway Girl (Raw Sugar)
  • Harrison David Rivers, Ethan D. Pakchar, Douglas Lyons
    • Five Points (Theater Latté Da)
  • Keith Hovis
    • Jefferson Township Sparkling Junior Talent Pageant: A New Musical (Keith Hovis)
  • James Napoleon Stone
    • Moby Dick (Theatre Coup d’Etat)
  • Derek Lee Miller and the Ensemble
    • The Privateer (Transatlantic Love Affair)
  • Joey Hamburger, Iris Rose Page, and Michael Rogers
    • The Minotaur or: Amelia Earhart is Alive and Traveling Through the Underworld (Sheep Theater)
  • Harrison David Rivers
    • This Bitter Earth (Penumbra Theatre)

Exceptional Ensemble Performance

  • dat Black Mermaid Man Lady / The Show (Pillsbury Theater)
  • Ruthless (Theatre Elision)
  • Speechless (The Moving Company)
  • The Wiz (Children’s Theatre Company and Penumbra Theatre Company)
  • Two Mile Hollow (Theater Mu and Mixed Blood Theatre)

Who Did We Miss? (Special Write-In Category)

  • Stage Managers
    • Suzanne Cross
    • Lee Johnson
    • Andre Johnson, Jr.
    • Dylan Nicole Martin
    • Stacy McIntosh
    • John Novak
    • Nancy Waldoch

Exceptional Community Engagement

  • Q-Stage and The Naked I (20% Theater Company)
  • Blackout Improv (Blackout Improv)
  • Radical Hospitality (Mixed Blood)
  • Chicago Avenue Project (Pillsbury House Theater)
  • Turtle Collective (Turtle Collective)

Hanne Appelbaum

Hanne Appelbaum is the Editor of the Twin Cities Arts Reader. She was born in Michigan's Upper Peninsula and moved to the Twin Cities to take up a career as a classroom paraprofessional. She is the mother of three children, an enthusiastic educator, and a passionate fan of dance in all of its forms. She enjoys ice skating, Game of Thrones (books over HBO, but who's counting), and restaurant dives.

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