Off-Leash Area presents their Ivey Award-winning production "Psst!" at the Cowles Center in June 2013.
We have never performed at a theater this size, and must make the most of this break-out opportunity to broaden our audience and increase our outreach into the community like we’ve never been able to before!
“Psst!” is our award-winning, attention-grabbing, heart-warming, mad-cap and heart-breaking, silent film-style dance, mask, & theatre production.
The Cowles Center is one of the major art centers in the region, the 500-seat hub of Twin Cities dance.
Only with your support can we reach this goal to achieve the broader audience that Off-Leash Area’s commitment, quality, and professionalism have merited over the past dozen years!
When we first premiered “Psst!” in 2005 it won us an Ivey Award for Outstanding Production, putting us on the local map. Since then Off-Leash Area has been honored with a second Ivey, a SAGE Award, and a dozen local Best of The Year listings, along with major Fellowships and individual grants for the company’s Artistic Directors.
We are the pre-eminent independent small company that epitomizes the do-it-yourself, and stick-to-your-artistic-guns attitude that makes for powerful, committed, and resonant art. Off-Leash Area produces original physical performance work with a singular vision that neither succumbs to easy commercialism nor goes out of its way to infuriate audiences.
Your donations will go DIRECTLY to marketing the show to reach more people, and helping to pay for the performers salaries.
Let’s work together to seize this opportunity and get as many people as possible to experience this amazing work!
Please donate and help us achieve our goal!
Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Having much of the original cast of "Psst!", the promotional support of the Cowles Center, and having the clout of so many awards and recognitions since we first performed the show to back us up goes a long way to reducing the risk and challenge in re-producing this production. The big risk is failing to get widespread local public attention and audience for the show at such a large venue.
Of course, we are partnering with the Cowles' considerable promotional resources to get the word out - mailings, ads, newsletters, social media, and more. We have also kept the ticket prices low, and offered not only the usual group rates, but discounted rates for families and youth.
We're pulling out all the stops as we make an extra effort to broaden our audience development in order to overcome the challenge of our project and have success. From grass-roots "street actions" to paid advertising - we're doing everything we can imagine to make Psst! and Off-Leash Area the show to see next June!
JASON is John Arne Saeteroy, the Norwegian graphic novelist who took the comics world by storm with his first work, "Hey Wait!" This superbly evocative graphic novella starts off as a melancholy childhood memoir and then, with a shocking twist midway through, becomes the summary of lives lived, wasted, and lost.
This work, and a compilation of short stories called Shhh! were the inspiration for our "Psst!"
We took JASON's characters and created our own story with them. we contacted JASON and told him what we were doing, and with his blessing we set about creating this show.
With help from the folks at the Source Comics store in Saint Paul, we were able to fly JASON to Minneapolis for the premiere, which was also attended by the Consulate General from the Norwegian Consulate here in Minneapolis. It was a fantastic night, and JASON loved what we did with his work.
You can find out more about JASON and buy his books at: https://www.fantagraphics.com/artist-bios/artist-bio-jason.html
The masks are made of simple paper mache – flour, glue, and water – and then painted. Each mask is fitted with a bicycle helmet strap and foam padding. To be able to see, each mask has a pair of pin holes, grouped closely together so that from inside the mask the holes appear to be one large hole to see through, and from a distance the audience can’t tell that there are any holes there at all. Needless to say, they’re really tough to see with – and when you think of fourteen of us running around stage, and backstage in the dark, on stilts, and on a huge rotating 3-tired wedding cake, it's remarkable what the cast does!
Mask work in theatre has been around since the dawn of humanity, and the approach we are taking comes from co-director Paul Herwig’s training at the Lecoq School of movement and devised theatre in Paris.
Unique to these masks are the fact that they cover the entire head – front and back – a lot like a sports mascot character. The skill, and magic of mask work is that the performers have to use their bodies to communicate emotion and character and can’t rely on their faces and voices like in regular theatre. The result is that the audience feels like they’re in some kind of crazy subterranean surreal animated world – a great refreshing change from normal theatre.
pledged of $3,200 goal
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Oct 1, 2012 - Oct 29, 2012
Pledge $5 or more
Donate $5 or more and you will receive a personal thank you on our Facebook page and our sincere & eternal gratitude!Estimated delivery: Nov 2012
Pledge $10 or more
Donate $10 or more and you will be invited to an exclusive “in-process” rehearsal of Psst! and post-rehearsal reception (with food and drinks of course!) with the cast and artistic directors, PLUS a personal thank you on our Facebook page!Estimated delivery: Apr 2013
Pledge $25 or more
Donate $25 or more and you will receive an awesome PDF “Bon Mot” from one of the characters in the show (a mini poster of a character from the show with a goofy/poignant caption which you can print, save to your desktop, or share with your friends!)...PLUS all of the above!Estimated delivery: Nov 2012
Pledge $50 or more
This level's really off-leash! Donate $50 and you will receive an 11x17 poster from the original production of Psst! and signed by the artistic directors, PLUS all of the above!Estimated delivery: Dec 2012
Pledge $100 or more
Donate $100 and you will receive two tickets to Psst! at the Cowles Center (OR a DVD of the original production if you cannot attend the Cowles performances), PLUS the PDF "Bon Mot" described above, an invitation to a rehearsal of Psst! and post-rehearsal reception, a personal thank you on our Facebook page and our eternal gratitude!Estimated delivery: Jun 2013
Pledge $250 or more
Woof! Donate $250 or more, and you will receive an invitation to a private dinner party with the artistic directors AND two tickets to Psst! at the Cowles Center, PLUS you will also receive the PDF “bon mot,” an invitation to a rehearsal of Psst! and post-rehearsal reception, a personal thank you on our Facebook page and our eternal gratitude!Estimated delivery: Jun 2013
Pledge $1,000 or more
0 backers Limited (3 of 3 left)
This will make us roar! For a donation at this level we can offer you ALL of the above, PLUS AN ORIGINAL MASK that is used in the actual production - a beautifully crafted and artistically superb mask fashioned after the amazing drawings by Norwegian graphic novelist Jason, which has been created especially for the show by award-winning scenic designer and co-artistic director Paul Herwig. Paul will even custom-fit the mask for you!Estimated delivery: Jul 2013