“Passion can create drama out of stone.”
– Le Corbusier
Theatre de la Jeune Lune’s building opened with great fanfare and acclaim in the fall of 1992. The enormous, versatile performing space had been carefully imagined by the Company as an urban courtyard, a public space, a space at once human and monumental. We did not want to build a theatre; we wanted a space in which amazing things could happen. Thus a movable seating structure was planned; the space is re-configured for each show. Preserving the urban character of the building was a top priority; using the history and industrial tradition of the space as a base we fuse the present with the past, revealing and reveling in the unbreakable bond between the two.
The structure was at the turn of the century as a series of warehouses. In 1906 the Gothic Revival facade was added by the celebrated Cass Gilbert, the Saint Paul based architect whose major projects include the Minnesota State Capital, the U.S. Supreme Court building, and New York’s Woolworth Tower.
The building was placed on the National Historic Register in 1986. Our renovation was recognized nationally, appearing on the cover of Theatre Crafts Magazine and Architecture Minnesota, and won a number of awards: an American Institute of Architects Merit Award; an award from the United States Institute of Theatre Technology; and a citation from the City of Minneapolis’s Historic Preservation Commission.
Theatre de la Jeune Lune is a company of artists. This Company has project itself into a building. The building makes the work possible, represents the work, and the work spells a new history for the building. It is not only about beautiful architecture, it is continued history in the making. Since moving into the remarkable home, we have been able to realize projects of increasing scope and ambition. Landmark productions like Children of Paradise: Shooting a Dream; Germinal; Don Juan Giovanni; Don Juan Giovanni; The Hunchback of Notre-Dame; and The 3 Musketeers that have gone on to tour nationally; and have been favorably received by publications including Time, Newsweek, The New York Times, Vogue, The Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, Le Monde,and USA Today.