This partial list shows the depth and range of activity in the Twin Cities and includes upcoming shows.
Founded: By Claire Avitabile in 2006.
Niche: New works by female and transgender artists, often with GLBT themes.
Known for: A regular presence on year-end best-of lists.
Upcoming: The premiere of EB Boatner's "Changes in Time," May 11-25, Minneapolis Theatre Garage.
Founded: By Andrew Rasmussen in 2004.
Niche: Broadway-style shows.
Known for: "Rocky Horror – Live," featuring Don Shelby.
Upcoming: "Mrs. Smith Live!," "The Donkey Show" and "The Wiz."
Niche: Provocative work by the playwright/producer/director.
Known for: 2012's "Are You Now or Have You Ever Been."
Upcoming: A surreal new play, "Abe Lincoln and Uncle Tom in the White House," next year.
Founded: By Zaraawar Mistry and Leslye Orr in 2006.
Niche: The 46-seat, artist-owned venue hosts theater and music.
Notable for: Sun Mee Chomet's and Katie Hae Leo's much-lauded "Origins Project" in 2012.
Upcoming: SoulPlay Performance Ensemble's "The Frill Is Gone," April 26-27.
Founded: By Wendy Knox in 1989.
Niche: Artistic, gutsy work, often in raw spaces.
Known for: Last year's "Ajax in Iraq" was unforgettable.
Upcoming: Enda Walsh's "Misterman," April 5-28 at the Southern Theater.
Founded: By Peter Christian Hansen, Carl Schoenborn and four others in 1998.
Niche: Frisson-inducing, high-quality productions in its own intimate space in St. Paul.
Known for: Ivey Awards for "Orson's Shadow" and "Burn This."
Upcoming production: "The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds," in June.
Founded: By Noah Bremer, Galen Treuer, Vanessa Voskuil and Megan Odell in 2003.
Niche: Physical theater and dance.
Known for: Ivey Award for overall excellence for "The 7-Shot Symphony."
Upcoming: Collaboration with Bedlam Theatre in the fall.
Founded: By Steven Meerdink and Kevin Hansen in 1992.
Known for: Touring the Upper Midwest.
Upcoming: "Sunset Boulevard," New Century Theatre, May 31-June 23.
Founded: By Barbara Brooks in 1994.
Niche: Theater rooted in Jewish history and culture.
Known for: Three Iveys, a "flawless" 2012 staging of "Photograph 51."
Upcoming: Comedy "Handle With Care" opens April 13.
Founded: As a program of Minnesota Opera in 1986.
Niche: New musical theater.
Known for: Ivey Awards for both "I Am Anne Frank" and "Sister Stories."
Upcoming: "Alice Unwrapped" and "The View From Here."
Founded: By Jennifer Ilse and Paul Herwig in 1999.
Niche: Interdisciplinary physical theater, dance and visual art.
Known for: Two Ivey Awards.
Upcoming: A remount of "Psst!" June 21-23, Cowles Center, Minneapolis.
Founded: By Michael Sommers and Susan Haas in 2000.
Niche: Puppet and figure theater.
Known for: Ivey Award for "Faust" and its "driveway tours."
Upcoming: Three-week puppetry-and-performance series, April 4-21.
Founded: By Dipankar Mukherjee and four others in 1996.
Niche: Progressive works that celebrate global culture.
Known for: "House on Mango Street" in 2012.
Upcoming: "Lorca in a Green Dress," with Teatro del Pueblo, April 12-28, the Ritz.
Founded: By Charles Campbell, Gülgün Kayim and Sean Kelley-Pegg in 1996.
Niche: Site-specific shows.
Known for: Putting audiences in the backseat of a car for "The Car."
Upcoming: An unnamed show in May.
Founded: By Laura Leffler-McCabe, Blake E. Bolan, Eric Avery and Ben Mattson in 2007.
Niche: Sharp, often satiric contemporary theater.
Known for: Frequent mentions in year-end top 10 lists.
Upcoming: Workshop of Candace Bilyk's opera "The Golden Carp," April 19-20.
Founded: By Al Justiano and Amy Paulson in 1992.
Niche: Latin America.
Known for: Joyce Award.
Upcoming: "Lorca in a Green Dress," with Pangea World Theater, April 12-28, the Ritz.
Founded: By Lisa Channer and Vladimir Rovinsky in 2007.
Niche: Multilingual and physical new theater.
Known for: Working deeply with playwrights and designers.
Upcoming show: Constance Congdon's "Something About a Bear," April 11-21, University of Minnesota.
Founded: By Anne Bertram, Stacey Poirier and five other women in 1999.
Niche: Stories by and about women.
Known for: Ivey Award for all-female "Julius Caesar."
Upcoming: Carol Critchley's "girl group," about a '60s rock band.
Founded: By Anton Jones, Kristoffer Diaz, Reginald Edmund and Jessica Huang in 1999.
Niche: Develop underrepresented theater artists.
Known for: Diaz's "The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity" was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.
Upcoming: Jessica Haung's "Elysium Blues" at the Fringe Festival, Aug. 1-10.
Founded: By Judy Cooper Lyle in 1974.
Niche: Grassroots company with offerings for urban audiences.
Known for: "Honeydripper," adapted from John Sayles' musical drama, sold out.
Upcoming show: A reading of short plays.
Founded: By Trista Baldwin, Dominic Orlando and others in 2006.
Niche: Playwright-driven ensemble.
Known for: Luverne Seifert won an Ivey Award for his portrayal of Philip K. Dick in "800 Words."
Upcoming: A new play by Alan Berks, April 18-21, Playwrights' Center.
Founded: By Jason and Jessica Peterson in 2008.
Niche: Good plays in a northwest suburb (Osseo).
Known for: Growing artistically and fiscally (to a $300,000 budget).
Upcoming show: Premiere of "Stay Tuned," April 5-May 5.