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NEWS: Patrick Scully’s Leaves of Grass – Illuminated Sells Out (Guthrie Theater)

If you want to see Patrick Scully’s Leaves of Grass and haven’t bought tickets, you might want to put the Guthrie’s box office on your speed dial. The show’s July 12-14 limited run at the Guthrie Theater sold out before the 4th of July fireworks even had a chance to cool.

There are few people in Twin Cities theatre and dance as legendary as Patrick Scully. Over a more than four-decade career, Scully has continued to push the boundaries in dance, performing arts curation, and progressive programming. For decades, Patrick’s Cabaret – an organization that he founded – carried a bright torch of transgressive art in the Twin Cities.

But wait – Scully is still performing? Indeed. The artist began his professional career in the arts in 1976, as a co-founder of Contactworks Dance Collective. Then, in 1986, he founded Patrick’s Cabaret, an organization that he lead as Artistic Director for the next 25 years. After stepping down in 2001, he returned again in 2005 for another 3.5 years at the helm. In “relative” retirement, he busied himself with activities like choreographing a water ballet with dozens of boats.

Leaves of Grass – Illuminated is a refocused and refined, version of a larger show that premiered in 2014 as Leaves of Grass: Uncut (see above). The 2014 version used a large cast of dancers; the version playing at the Guthrie reworks this ode to Walt Whitman using projected footage of dances created in 2014, plus a cast of seven live dancers to complement the 11 in the original. Scully himself has taken the solo version on tour to New York City in 2016 and has performed it around Minnesota for the last two years. (The Minnesota tour has reached 48 communities in Minnesota, with support from the Minnesota State Arts Board’s Legacy Fund.)

While Leaves of Grass is formally sold out, tickets are sometimes returned and made available for resale. The Guthrie Theater recommends that interested patrons call or visit the Box Office before showtime to see if any tickets have become available.

Due to a communications error, the original version of this article stated that Patrick Scully would give a solo performance at the Guthrie. This article has been updated to accurately reflect the cast size.

Leaves of Grass – Illuminated runs July 12-14 at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, MN.

Basil Considine

Basil Considine is the Performing Arts Editor and Senior Classical Music and Drama Critic at the Twin Cities Arts Reader. He was previously the Resident Classical Music and Drama Critic at the Twin Cities Daily Planet and remains an occasional contributing writer for The Boston Musical Intelligencer and The Chattanoogan. He holds a PhD in Music and Drama from Boston University, an MTS in Sacred Music from the BU School of Theology, and a BA in Music and Theatre from the University of San Diego.

Basil was named one of Musical America's 30 Professionals of the Year in 2017. He was previously the Regional Governor for the National Opera Association's North Central Region.