discover :: Production History

The River Becomes Sea

December 1, 2018 - December 16, 2018

Every family has its secrets. Cornelius Aloysius Gaines and his daughters are no exception.


November 4, 2017 - November 19, 2017

The year is 1913. Progress runs on coal, but the miners from the Ludlow mine in southern Colorado are being squeezed beyond endurance. They work the seam, while the corporate forces arrayed against them spy and disrupt any hint of “union”. They lean on one another, wait, hope…and plan.


April 29, 2017 - May 14, 2017

Offenders. Shawn and Sandra have a little gate cash, an overworked case officer, and the weight of their turbulent pasts. The system says their dept is paid, but the eyes of a daughter, of former friends, of passers by, say the ledger is still in the red.

The Kalevala

October 8, 2016 - October 30, 2016

nimbus delves into the world of ancient Finnish folklore with our next production, The Kalevala. Based on the 19th century epic of the same name, this original nimbus production will transport audiences to a fantastic world of magic and legend. A place where stories are born in the bellies of giants; where maidens get turned into fish and hags into eagles; where men and gods walk side by side in the fierce lands of the north.

The Storms of November

October 31, 2015 - November 22, 2015

This fictional tale dives into the lore and mysticism of the North Shore, telling a tale of daring and survival amidst the wild storms and gales of the lake's most dangerous - and deadly - month.

From Darkness

May 16, 2015 - June 14, 2015

From the darkness, a face appears. Lit from within, rendered in oil, charged with mystery and vitality, captivating. Destined to be hung in the most prestigious gallery, admired by millions, discussed, revered, a priceless treasure. And from the darkness, the voice of the master forger: Look closely, for it is mine.

In the Age of Paint and Bone

February 7, 2015 - March 1, 2015

We have long known that ancient people painted caves, engraved rocks, carved in antler and bone. What is not known is why they did it – what moved the first person to create, and why humans have been drawing on the walls ever since. This original nimbus workshop production seeks to explore the great painted caves, to revel in their otherworldly beauty, and to forge a connection to our very first ancestors.

Ghost Sonata

November 1, 2014 - November 23, 2014

A student with second sight longs for beauty, wealth, and the nobility of the upper class. His journey of discovery will show him crimes, lies, regrets, hyacinths. And a talking mummy. Strindberg unflinchingly squires us through a strange maze of desire and disillusionment, drawing us inexorably deeper into a world of bright shadows and dark truths. Rarely produced in English, director Zach Morgan and nimbus’ fearless ensemble, with a new translation by Danielle Blackbird illuminate Strindberg’s seminal work of modernist drama.

Nacirema: Stories of Color

April 5, 2014 - April 27, 2014

Nacirema is funny. It's painful, satirical, offensive, and real. It believes that to be color blind is to ignore the beauty of color. Nacirema is America and Americans and these are their stories.

The Lower Depths

December 7, 2013 - December 22, 2013

A wife, a drink, a future. In a squalid boarding house the hopes and desires of a collection of society’s castoffs swirl and collide. Morality is tested, compassion and empathy struggle against cruelty and greed. A perverse civilization that consigns an ever greater portion of its citizens to desperate poverty, their innate value crushed by indifference.

Perilous Night

September 14, 2013 - October 6, 2013

nimbus presents the world premiere of Lee Blessing’s "Perilous Night." Award winning playwright Lee Blessing unveils an intense, darkly comic look at the dynamics of race, relationships and power in this unusual monarchy.


May 11, 2013 - June 9, 2013

A poet of science, his ideas belonged in the 21st century: neon light, alternating current, wireless power transmission, radio remote control. He designed vacuum tubes, took some of the earliest X-ray photographs, produced artificial lightning. He also dug ditches, feared germs, was fixated on the number three. Friends included Mark Twain, Sarah Bernhardt, and a pigeon whose name is lost to history. Enemies included Thomas Edison, overweight people and pearls. A new workshop based on the life of the eccentric genius.

Bohemian Flats

March 16, 2013 - April 7, 2013

Director and playwright Liz Neerland dips into historical records, photographs, and family archives to bring a vivid portrait of the struggles of a diverse and lively Minneapolis immigrant world to the stage. Our story begins in 1869, and a tiny village grows and thrives literally at the river’s edge, as the years pass and the burgeoning city of Minneapolis tries to crowd it out. Births, marriages, deaths, floods, fights, fires, all play out in a collection of tiny cottages right on the west bank. Nothing now remains but a park bearing the name: Bohemian Flats.

The Cripple of Inishmaan

December 1, 2012 - December 16, 2012

nimbus presents "The Cripple of Inishmaan," a little Irish yarn about a little Irish island, and little Billy Claven’s big Irish dream.

Happy Birthday, Wanda June

October 6, 2012 - October 28, 2012

Harold Ryan is a ‘man’s man’ with a beautiful young wife (his third), a house full of hunting trophies, and a lust for...everything. Missing for seven years, having left on a quest for diamonds in the Amazon, he returns to find a wife beset by suitors, a son he barely knows, and a world in which his violent conquering spirit no longer belongs. If indeed it ever did.

The Golden Ass

April 28, 2012 - May 20, 2012

nimbus presents an original stage adaptation of Apuleius’ classic 2nd Century novel, "The Golden Ass." A crack ensemble tells the story of the hapless Lucius, who longs to practice witchcraft. He tries to turn himself into a bird, but becomes a donkey instead. Unable to reverse the process, Lucius is propelled from one lurid, bawdy and fantastical misadventure to another.


March 3, 2012 - March 25, 2012

Babel imagines the story of the brilliant architect of the biblical tower that would reach to heaven. Driven by colossal failure and personal tragedy, and with the resources of a king at his command, he establishes a vast library. So vast, in fact, that many in the secret society that administers it believe it has no end. But when an Initiate to the Order of Librarians discovers an irregularity in the architecture that points to hidden chambers, the search for tantalizing hidden knowledge is on.


December 2, 2011 - December 17, 2011

A poor soldier, a lonely woman, a questionable doctor, a Drum Major...and peas. Are we the products of our impulses or our conditioning? Woyzeck, a soldier, clings to the bottom rung of sanity and society’s ladder. When his girlfriend casts her eyes on the handsome Drum Major, the dehumanizing pressures of poverty, jealousy and humiliation begin to take their toll. Georg Buchner’s famous and unfinished masterpiece gets a new and visceral staging in nimbus’ latest production. Director Brian Hesser guides a remarkable ensemble through an unflinching exploration of madness and morality, apocalyptic vision and tortured reality.

Accidental Death of an Anarchist

October 1, 2011 - October 23, 2011

When an anarchist accused of bombing a bank "accidentally" falls out a fourth floor window, the police are quick to cover their tracks. But the arrival of a maniac in disguise and a shrewd reporter soon have the authorities scrambling to retract their amendments and amend their retractions.

The Year of Magical Thinking

April 29, 2011 - May 21, 2011

The loss of a husband. The loss of a child. Separately, each is devastating. Taken together in quick succession, one must recalibrate the scales of grief to encompass it. Experience the remarkable journey of Joan Didion, the brilliant author who transformed her torrent of sorrow into The Year of Magical Thinking.

The Balcony

February 11, 2011 - March 6, 2011

The Balcony is set in an exclusive brothel at the center of a revolution that threatens the established regime. Irma, the madam, oversees a collection of patrons acting out archetypes of power in society, including a bishop, a judge and a general. One of the prostitutes, Chantal, has escaped the brothel and has become a symbol to the people, an embodiment of the revolution. As the situation outside becomes more volatile, a plan is formulated to re-establish the status quo using the trappings of authority from the brothel's studios. The patrons' fantasies are fulfilled as they appear in public, posing as the figures of authority while the revolution threatens to overwhelm them.

Emerald and the Love Song of the Dead Fishermen

May 21, 2010 - June 13, 2010

Emerald's father, a fisherman, was lost at sea the night she was born. Now, on the eve of her 25th birthday, Emerald learns of the Day of the Dead Fishermen - a time when the dead awake from their slumber for one day only. Emerald is determined to travel to the mysterious island where the dead walk, even though to do so means certain death. Joined by barista-in-crime Jason and an unlikely boat captain, they face many foes - on land and at sea - in their quest to reunite Emerald with her father.


March 12, 2010 - March 28, 2010

nimbus is proud to present the regional premiere of a play the New York Times called "the most accomplished" of the 2007 Humana Festival, the nation's largest new play festival. Directed by co-Artistic Director Josh Cragun, Naomi Iizuka's Strike-Slip brings to life the stories of a community knit together atop uncertain ground.

The Zoo Story

October 25, 2009 - November 1, 2009

The Trial of Mother Teresa

May 29, 2009 - June 21, 2009

Outside of space and time, Mother Teresa and Joan of Arc meet for the first time. United by chance in a purgatorial limbo, the two women bond over their lives as religious icons. As they share their thoughts on celebrity and sainthood, the pair is judged by a panel of famous male writers bent on either inquisition or canonization, whichever comes first.

Henry IV

March 6, 2009 - March 29, 2009

Sanity and madness vie for control in Pirandello's Henry IV, as reimagined by Tom Stoppard.

Death and the Maiden

November 7, 2008 - November 30, 2008

Written by former Chilean exile Ariel Dorfman, Death and the Maiden is a dramatic meditation on ethics, memory, and forgiveness. nimbus co-Artistic Director Liz Neerland directs.

The Irresistible Rise of Big Daddy Ubu

September 5, 2008 - September 28, 2008

Music, mischief, and murder collide in The Irresistible Rise of Big Daddy Ubu, written and directed by nimbus co-Artistic Director Josh Cragun. This wickedly comic glimpse inside the ganglands of 1930s Chicago follows the rise of Big Daddy Ubu, a killer who'll stop at nothing to overthrow the rival Artichoke Alliance.

TV Men

May 9, 2008 - May 25, 2008

TV Men is a new multimedia production inspired by the poetry of Anne Carson and directed by nimbus co-artistic director Josh Cragun. By placing nine larger-than-life historic and literary figures (the original celebrities) under the scrutiny of the modern media lens, the play interrogates the role of celebrity in our society.

The Mail Order Bride

November 2, 2007 - November 18, 2007

In this adaptation of Moliere's "The Imaginary Invalid," aging, control-obsessed Argan orders a young Asian bride much to the outrage and indignation of his family and friends. But when a handsome young dress-maker arrives on the scene, the bride must choose between loyalty and love, and Argan is forced to learn that love is the opposite of control.


September 7, 2007 - September 23, 2007

Directed by nimbus co-Artistic Director Liz Neerland, Orestes is the second of a two-part original adaptation of the Oresteia trilogy. These classic tragedies have been re-imagined as a daring new work that seeks to trace the reverberations of brutality and introduce the (still) novel idea that mercy should take precedence over cruelty.


June 8, 2007 - June 24, 2007

This is the first part of a two-part original adaptation of the Oresteia triology, directed by nimbus co-Artistic Director Liz Neerland. These classic plays have been re-imagined as a daring new work that seeks to trace the reverberations of brutality throughout world history and to explore how humans and violence are inextricably and, seemingly, exponentially linked.

American Noise: The Savage Re-Birth of the American Dream

March 16, 2007 - April 1, 2007

An original work by nimbus co-Artistic Director Cockroach, the play mashes up live action theatre with animated scenes from six of the Twin Cities' premier animators. The play's characters confront an America united only by its divisions and immersed in a deafening cultural noise that distracts its citizens with the promise of life, liberty and the pursuit of the perfect pair of jeans.

The Goat or, Who Is Sylvia?

November 3, 2006 - November 19, 2006

On the eve of his 50th birthday, architect Martin Gray has reached a new pinnacle in his life. He's won the Pritzker Prize. He's landed a mega-bucks development contract. He's found new love. So what's wrong with this picture? Well, the problem with reaching the top is that there's usually only one direction to go.

You Burn Me

September 8, 2006 - September 24, 2006

William Shakespeare's classic tragicomedy The Winter's Tale is reborn as a gripping modern fable about the redeeming power of love and forgiveness in the nimbus original production You Burn Me. Created through an innovative workshop process, the play draws from the poetry of Sappho, the drama of Charles Mee, Hmong folk tales, Vaudeville, and many other sources to create a wholly unique performance filled with music, laughter, sorrow and joy.

Accidental Death of an Anarchist

June 2, 2006 - June 18, 2006

When an anarchist accused of bombing a bank "accidentally" falls out fourth floor window, the police are quick to cover their tracks. But the arrival of a maniac in disguise and a shrewd reporter soon have the authorities scrambling to retract their amendments and amend their retractions.

Madmen and Specialists

February 24, 2006 - March 12, 2006

A raging civil war threatens to unravel the moral fabric of society. In the midst of it all, a woman tries to hold onto her faith in humanity as those around her spiral into the depths of lunacy. This is the twisted world of Madmen and Specialists, presented by nimbus and written by Wole Soyinka, the first African writer to receive the Nobel Prize for literature.

Propaganda for the Converted

October 28, 2005 - November 20, 2005

The actions of men are a melange of good and evil, of duty and desire, need, drive, and ruthless determination. Knowing this, and seeing that workers are on the verge of revolution, three agitators enter a foreign country to sow the seeds of dissent. Caught in the center of the rebellion is a young woman torn between faithfulness to her cause and compassion for her people.

Minnehaha Avenue

September 9, 2005 - September 25, 2005

Take a trip down Minnehaha Avenue, a street that, in it's own diagonal way, has woven itself into the fabric of our lives. An original work crafted from memoirs, 8mm family film footage, diary entries and neighborhood lore, Minnehaha Avenue spins a yarn that spans 4 generations of growing up and growing old in Southern Minneapolis.

The Firebugs

February 18, 2005 - March 6, 2005

Senseless acts of violence threaten to spread fire and fear like a burning cancer. The populace, meanwhile, sit idly by, clinging to moral platitudes as their world crumbles around them. No, it's not the War on Terror, it's The Firebugs, Max Frisch's deeply disturbing yet wickedly funny play presented by nimbus.

Beautiful Things

November 5, 2004 - November 21, 2004

Five Americans find themselves trapped in comfort and surrounded by luxury when violence breaks out at the seaside resort they are visiting. As the insurrection moves closer, they discover that good taste can have deadly consequences.


August 6, 2004 - August 15, 2004

Unemployable, a new work by local playwright Dustin Hansen and directed by nimbus alumnus Cockroach, follows the lives of two twenty-something art-slackers as they struggle to discover what they want to do, who they want to be, how they want to work-and find that they don't know half as much about themselves or each other as they thought they did.


April 23, 2004 - May 9, 2004

Somewhere between life and death, just short of the night but far past dawn, four spectral characters wait in vain for the end. Not quite comedy, not quite tragedy, nimbus opens its 2004 season with the Samuel Beckett's modern classic Endgame.

Cafe Delphi

August 1, 2003 - August 8, 2003

What is it that humanity hungers for? Truth? Power? Knowledge? Or maybe just a nice turkey club on rye? No matter what it takes to fill the hole in your life (or ease the rumble in your belly), you can find it at Café Delphi.

The Irresistable Rise of Big Daddy Ubu

April 10, 2003 - April 27, 2003

Are you getting your recommended daily allowance of fruits and vegetables? How about murder and mayhem? Slapstick and silliness? Kill all those birds with one tommy gun at the original nimbus workshop performance production of The Irresistable Rise of Big Daddy Ubu, April 10-27 in Minneapolis.

A Five Step Guide to Happiness

August 2, 2002 - August 11, 2002

Tired? Bored? Listless? Hey, it happens to the best of us. nimbus presents the world premiere of A Five Step Guide to Happiness, a new play by Minneapolis author Cockroach, at the 2002 Minnesota Fringe Festival.

Ashes to Ashes

November 29, 2001 - December 8, 2001

A compelling look at how we perceive violence and atrocity in our own lives, Harold Pinter's 1996 work Ashes to Ashes has never been more relevant than it is today. This daring drama examines how our perceptions and understanding of the violence in the world effect our own lives.

Third and Long

August 1, 2001 - August 10, 2001

Third and Long is nimbus' first production, produced as part of the 2001 Minnesota Fringe Festival.