About this project
We are nimbus, and we are building a new home for independent and devised theater in Northeast Minneapolis.
When we opened our first venue in 2011, we thought we were just giving our own company a stage. But it quickly became a valuable resource to the entire Twin Cities theater community.
Now, we're ready for the next phase. We want to do more. We want to offer more space, more shows, and more resources for everyone who comes through the door - artists and audience members alike.
The Crane Theater will be an invaluable part of the performing arts landscape of the Twin Cities - but we can't get there without your help.
To accomplish these goals, we have recently relocated to our new home: the historic Kennedy Building. Located at 2303 Kennedy St. NE in Minneapolis (a block off Stinson between Hennepin and Broadway Avenues), the Kennedy Building originally functioned as a Westinghouse factory that manufactured lamps, small appliances, and passenger elevators. Our new 7,000 square foot space features a gorgeous brick exterior, a visually striking industrial interior, and dramatic 30 ft ceilings. We have entered into a 10-year lease with our new landlords, who want to build a long-term relationship with a quality “anchor” tenant.
What most captured our attention about our new space was its 5-ton overhead crane, which inspired us to give our new home its name, The Crane Theater
The new facility will be much more than a theater. The Crane will have two stages: a 100-seat mainstage and a smaller studio with 48 seats. Our plan is to offer this intimate studio to newer theater companies from the Twin Cities and beyond as an affordable space in which they can build their brand and audience-base. The Crane Theater will also serve as a space to host readings of new works from Twin Cities authors, as well as collaborative workshops for actors, directors, and playwrights to test out and polish works in progress.
Both the main stage and studio will share a common lobby, where we will encourage artists and patrons to engage in conversations about the art they had just experienced. We will offer for sale non-alcoholic beverages as well as beer and wine to fuel these interactions.
In this way, The Crane Theater will be so much more than just another venue. It will be a home for the Twin Cities independent theater community.
While The Crane Theater will ultimately become an invaluable part of the performing arts landscape here in the Twin Cities, we can't make this dream a reality without your help. We are going to need generous donations of your labor, time, and most importantly money.
Money raised from this campaign will fund:
- City permitting and licensing; architect fees
- New electrical distribution
- New HVAC distribution (Our landlord is installing a new HVAC system)
- Window coverings
- New lit sign outside building
- Bike rack
This campaign is just the beginning of our multi-year strategy to help The Crane Theater reach its full potential. Stretch goals and future fundraising will be necessary to fully build out the facility. We will also need:
- Full-height walls around the mainstage and studio spaces
- Fully renovated bathrooms
- Addition of second fire exit
- Fire alarm upgrade
- Wheelchair lift next to main door
- Additional soft goods, lights, and speakers for both spaces
We would not be where we are today without the amazing support of the Twin Cities theater community. Thank you for joining us in this next phase. Your support is essential, and we are very lucky to have you.
Risks and challenges
Running a venue isn't easy, and converting an empty warehouse into a theater is a huge undertaking. However, we have done it once before, and we bring the knowledge and experience we gained at our first location to this project. We also bring a lot of stuff - we already own seats and risers; a full inventory of sound, lighting, and video equipment; tools, hardware, lumber, and shop supplies; and a stock of set pieces, props, and costumes.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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