Renegade-ism: Artists on the Edge

From February 13 – 29, 2020, Pillsbury House Theatre will premiere three brand-new works by independent artists, titled Renegade-ism: Artists on the Edge.

Renegade-ism (n): The creation of art outside of an institutional setting, or three weekends of performances featuring local independent artists.

During Renegade-ism, nothing is off the table. Join us for three weekends of brand new works and experience art outside the box, including puppetry, dance, improv, and more. Featuring a new group of performers each week!

All tickets are pick-your-price (regular price is $25).

Purchase tickets here.

WEEK 1: February 13 – 15, 2020 at 7:30 PM

Crucial Excursions
By Monkeybear’s Harmolodic Workshop
Created and directed by Chamindika Wanduragala, Artistic Director
Performers & collaborators: Kallie Melvin, Antoine Martinneau, Chitra Vairavan, Magdalena Kaluza, Andrew Young, Liping Vong, Denise Hanh Huynh, Ty Chapman, Natalia Choi, Lidia Sanguma and Oanh Vu

Crucial Excursions is a series of vignettes following characters who are all searching; for creativity, for inspiration, for purpose, or for something unknown even to them. Watch as the stories of the The Quilter, The Vinyl Collector, The Musician, The Grandmother, The Magician, and The Mother are woven together through textiles, puppetry, music and more in the first-ever collaborative piece by Monkeybear’s Harmolodic Workshop.

Monkeybear’s Harmolodic Workshop supports Native, Black, IPOC in developing creative and technical skills in contemporary puppetry. Through workshops and developmental programs, they create opportunities for artists to create their first works of puppetry and develop further in the form.

WEEK 2: February 20 – 22, 2020 at 7:30 PM

Call to Remember
Leslie Parker with Collaborators Amara T. Smith, mayfield brooks, and Vie Boheme

Call to Remember is a shared offering of improvisation, experimentation, and conjuring exploring Black pedagogy, artistry, and activism in dance. Launching a yearlong collaboration, four nationally-renowned dancers will come together in Minneapolis for the first time ever to create a work that prioritizes Blackness and explores remembrance as a means to cultivate community.

Leslie Parker is a daughter, sister, dance artist, performer, improviser, choreographer/maker and educator holding an embodied archive of memories, dreams, study, and research that include sacred and contemporary practices of the African Diaspora. Parker initiated Leslie Parker Dance Project as a catalyst and a foundation to explore, make/create, and perform original works that draw upon a multidisciplinary approach that cultivates ancestral memories, collaboration and individual ingenuity. Parker makes dances that are storied to examine social justice, spirituality and identity. She has performed works by Reggie Wilson, Ron K. Brown, Professor Nii Yaarty, Chuck Davis, Dr. Kariamu Welsh, Nia Love and Rosy Simas to name a few. She has collaborated, performed with and was mentored by Mama Laurie Carlos, Patricia Brown and Morris Johnson. Parker is a Jerome Hill Foundation Fellow 2019-2020, a Bessie award winner and received her MFA from Hollins University. Parker is Lecturer in dance at University of Minnesota Theatre Arts & Dance program.

Vie Boheme is a Motown native, blossomed in Pittsburgh and refined in Minneapolis. She is a multimodal artist; a singer, dancer, actress, poet and choreographer. She design theatrical performance experiences that weave all of these mediums. Vie brings athletic agility to vocal performance by singing and dancing in unison, eliminating the boundary between the visual and audio experience. She also weaves sentiment and storytelling through poetry and monologues. Each performance piece is designed to give a glimpse into the sometimes dark and complex emotional spaces people experience that seem elusive and ever present. Her sound is a fusion of Soul, Funk, Jazz, R&B and Pop.

Mayfield Brooks improvises while black, and is currently based in brooklyn, new york working as a movement-based performance artist, vocalist, urban farmer, writer, and wanderer. they studied contemporary dance at the school for new dance (sndo) in amsterdam, moving on center in oakland, ca, and holds a mfa in interdisciplinary performance from uc davis and a masters in performance studies from northwestern university. mayfield was a 2017 artist in residence at movement research new york, a 2019 dance and process (dap) artist at the kitchen nyc, and is currently an artist in residence at the center for performance research (cpr) in brooklyn, ny. mayfield teaches urban farming courses for farm school new york (fsny), and teaches & performs dance and vocal improvisation nationally and internationally.

Amara Tabor-Smith is a dancer, choreographer/performance maker and the artistic director of Deep Waters Dance Theater. She describes her work as Afro Surrealist Conjure Art. Her dance making practice utilizes Yoruba Lukumí spiritual ritual to address issues of social and environmental justice, race, gender identity, and belonging. Tabor-Smith is a 2019 Dance/USA Fellow, and a 2018 United States Artist Fellow. Amara received her MFA in Dance from Hollins University and is an Artist in residence at Stanford University.

WEEK 3: February 27 – 29, 2020 at 7:30 PM

Blackout Improv

During a Blackout show, you’ll experience a dynamic comedy show that will entertain you, take a look at serious current events, and (hopefully!) challenge you. Laugh, listen and learn during a show that’s part sketch, part improv, and all hilarity.

Blackout Improv is an all-black improv troupe based in Minneapolis that’s a mix of comedy, social justice, and arts access. Their misson is to put more Black performers on more stages, to create comedic dialogue around serious truths, and to provide improv access for Black students. Blackout’s cast includes improvisers, standup comedians, musicians, classically trained actors, dancers, poets, writers, storytellers, and educators. Learn more at

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