We Love Words.
The Twin Cities are home to some of the finest sketch comedians, storytellers, and poets on either side of the Mississippi. However, there is no dedicated space for any of these communities, and finding places to perform or produce shows can be a difficult challenge. Strike Theater is dedicated to creating a home and a hub for these three communities in NE Minneapolis. We already have a space which we will be transforming into a theater which will be designed to meet the needs of these communities. We have three directors who have years of experience producing shows and are dedicated to growing the sketch comedy, storytelling, and poetry scenes in the Twin Cities. We have the audiences and performers that are excited about the potential of Strike Theater. Now all we need is do is make it happen.
As the directors of Strike Theater, we bring years of experience, unending passion, and a dedication to grow the storytelling, poetry, and sketch comedy scenes in the Twin Cities. We have the space. We have the audiences and performers that are excited about the potential of Strike Theater. Now we need your help to make it happen.
We’re converting a space in the Thorp Building, an artist-friendly building, into a theater that will be an amazing home for performers. However, the cost to turn a room of an old bomb factory (for real!) into a warm, intimate, and inviting theater space isn’t cheap. We’re pursuing crowdfunding because we know that these communities deserve a place to call home, but we need help building that home. From lights to the stage to those pesky things like permits and taxes, we need money to make this theater happen. We’re doing everything we can to keep costs as low as possible (the glitter cannons will be part of Phase II) but there are still plenty of costs that we can’t ignore. Your donations will help make Strike Theater happen.
We have a business/partnership model that's different from a lot of theaters. Instead of buying a space or trying to rent a space on our own, we’re partnering with the SEIU Local 26 (janitors, security guards, window washers, etc.) to share some costs of the theater. Not only does this make economic sense, it also plays into our desire to reach communities that aren't often represented in the MPLS performing scene. As part of this collaboration, we're going to partner with union members through classes and performances, where they'll have opportunities to share some of their amazing stories. We not only want to provide a home for the city's existing performers, we want to provide a home for the next generation as well.
Who is Strike?
Allison Broeren is the head word grower at Word Sprout. She produces the longest running Story and Poetry Slams in Minnesota. Allison has organized between 50-70 shows a year since 2006. She has been named an artist to watch by the City Pages. The Erotica Slam was named Best Spoken Word Event by the City Pages and her Slam events were named the Best of Performance by the Star Tribune. She was in charge of running the Women of the World Poetry Slam 2013 and was the Hospitality Coordinator for the National Poetry Slam 2010, and was named Changemaker of the Year by the MN Women's Press for her work with spoken word.
Mike Fotis is a comedian, writer and story teller from MPLS, MN. He is the host of the Moth Twin Cities Story Slam, the taller half of Ferrari McSpeedy and a member of The Mess. Mike was also the co-director of the BNW Student Union for five years, where he helped hundreds of improvisors and sketch comedians learn their craft.
Joe Bozic is an improvisor and sketch comedian from Minneapolis, MN. He moonlights as a poet and published his first book of poetry in 2015. Joe is the smaller half of Ferrari McSpeedy and a member of The Mess. Joe was also the co-director of the BNW Student Union for five years, where he helped hundreds of improvisors and sketch comedians learn their craft.
Risks and challenges
As with any construction project, there is always a chance for unforeseen delays or hidden costs. However, we will be working with construction companies that have worked in this building before, and we have built a buffer into our calendar to allow for any unexpected delays.
Once the theater is open, the challenge will be to grow and maintain an audience. Our partnership with the union will help keep a majority of our costs down so we can build our audience and lessen the chance of closing our doors. We are also teaching sketch writing and storytelling classes to cultivate the next generation of performers and to strengthen our community.
- (30 days)