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What is a Dramaturg?: Carla Steen

Watch as Carla Steen discusses dramaturgy and her process for the Guthrie Theater’s production of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.”

In the course of one sultry evening, a prominent Southern dynasty is pushed to the brink when tender memories are relived and life altering secrets are revealed. It’s the 65th birthday of wealthy Southern plantation owner Big Daddy and his family has gathered to celebrate, while sparing him the news that he’s dying of cancer. As one son Brick, a hunky former football hero, mysteriously retreats from his desirable but sexually frustrated wife Maggie, his money hungry brother and sister-in-law plot to secure more than their share of the family fortune. Don’t miss this Pulitzer Prize-winning gem, an emotionally intense drama that sizzles with passion and greed like you’ve never experienced before.

Spent the day loading in U of M BFA 2017 in the Dowling Studio space here at the Guthrie. First time hanging a nice center cluster from the grid. 3 EAW JFX 200 loudspeakers. A total of 14 speaker zones by the end of setup - EAW JFX 290s, EAW JFX 100s, some nice Meyers. Should be a nice show. Turned out to be a good day overall. Moving on to the Wurtele Thrust space and “Bluest Eye” later this week.

Twin Cities Gothic
  • There is a river. People look at it wistfully and say its so beautiful. They dive into the dirty water and never return. You gaze into the churning, writhing, aching depths and cringe. There is something watching you.
  • The streets are grids. You drive and drive and cross the same streets over and over again. 1st Ave, 4th Ave, 20th Ave, 1st St, 4th St, 20th St, repeat. You don’t know where you’re going anymore. It’s hard to remember where you came from.
  • You get on a bus. You sit. A man gets on after you with his bike. The driver ignores him. The beep of a card being swiped. A man gets on with his bike. A beep. A man gets off with his bike. A beep. A man gets on with his bike.
  • The bikes are everywhere. Green and obvious, you never notice them until someone nearly runs you down. They stop, apologize. You ask about the bike. They gaze into the distance wistfully. Usage fees, they murmur, usage fees. You do not ask again.
  • Where are you? Your friend asks over the phone. You look at the house numbers. They are all four numerals that do not match the streets.  I don’t know, You reply, and your friend laughs.
  • The Guthrie Theater is showing A Christmas Carol. The Guthrie Theater is always showing A Christmas Carol. You have seen it five times and can never remember any details but the rattling of chains. You never mean to end up at The Guthrie Theater but you find yourself there anyway.
  • You get on a bus. A woman gets on with a cane and three people offer their seat. She accepts none. She pays in nickles and grins a toothless grin. She sits next to you, tucks her cane between her legs. She has no eyes and you avert yours.
  • What can I get you to drink? Your waitress intones, a emotionless smile on her face. Could I get a pop? Your friend asks. The waitress doesn’t ask what kind. You order the catfish and fear embeds itself into your gut. It arrives with the eyes intact, staring at you. You choke it down anyway.
  • The light rail is brightly lit. You sit on uncomfortable seats and wait. Please do not put your feet on the seats, An announcer pleads. Be considerate to other passengers. There is a screaming child. Be considerate. A man leans against the doors, falling through them as they open into the sky. Be considerate.
  • You stroll downtown at night and feel someone watching you. You turn around, the people hurry past you with their heads down. The shadows are full of things you do not want to think about. You turn around. 
  • The Green Line is under construction. When you called and asked when it would be open, the man on the line laughed nervously and replied Soon. It is still not open. Sometimes you wonder if it ever will be. Soon.
  • Nice weather today. A stranger comments at the bus stop, rubbing his blue hands together and shivering. It’s always nice here. He nods to himself. You’re not sure if hes trying to convince you or himself. Nice weather today.

anonymous asked:

Hi Katie! Coming to MN for Christmas to visit family. They live outside of St. Paul/Minneapolis about 15-25 min. Any suggestions for Christmas enjoyment? Coffee shops to read in? Places to enjoy lovely meals?

oh gosh, yes! christmas in minnesota is one of my very favorite things. here’s a list of things i think anyone visiting minnesota during the winter should do:

- ice skating at the depot or at the landmark (or on any of our 10,000+ lakes, really).
- sledding at the orono public golf course.
- watch the holidazzle parade.
- grab a donut from bogart’s.
- see ‘a christmas carol’ at the guthrie.
- try cross-country skiing at theodore wirth park.
- wine-tasting at lucia’s.
- wander around rice park.
eat at brasa.
- take a tour of christmas lights.
- visit one of many breweries.
- …or do both at the same time and drink beer while you take a tour of christmas lights.
- hang out at the minneapolis institute of art.
- grab a coffee from any of the following:
      - spyhouse
      - five watt
      - bull run
      - urban bean
      - bob’s java hut (so serious about this one)
      - claddagh coffee
- …and then take a walk around one of the lakes (my favorites are calhoun, harriet, and lake of the isles).
- visit a christmas tree farm in lake elmo or somerset.
- free yoga at the union depot.
- go see the beautiful holiday flower show in the sunken garden.
- visit a winter farmer’s market.

hope this helps, friend.

xo

DECEMBER 28, 2016 - 363/366
THE MIRRORED WINDOWS AT THE GUTHRIE

The Endless Bridge at the Guthrie Theater is usually the first place I bring out-of-town guests; from there you can see the origin of Minneapolis at St. Anthony Falls and the Mills District. 

The space is mesmerizing; the windows are strategically placed to show gorgeous views of the city, which are often doubled, or quadrupled, in the mirrors that line each window. It’s a simple and beautiful effect, which I think of as architect Jean Nouvel’s funhouse.

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“Orpheus Unsung”
Scenic and Projection Design by Bryce Cutler


Some photos from our workshop from this past week. Pretty excited as we continue to develop this new opera by Steven Mackey before we open at the Guthrie in June. Stay tuned for more photos thru the process.

Your humble engineer has accepted a full time position at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, MN as one of the house Audio Engineers. This blog and I are prepping to head North 500+ miles! An incredible opportunity presented itself and I am jumping at the chance to go be a part of some amazing theater.

The techblr community is full of some great and talented artists. I appreciate everyone who had followed me thus far, I hope you will stick around for new adventures, shows, pictures. I am very excited to get my feet on the ground in Minneapolis and start mixing in these new theater spaces.