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Rohan Preston

Reporter | Theater
Phone: 612-673-4390

Rohan Preston covers theater for the Star Tribune.


Preston spent his childhood in Jamaica and adolescence in New York before earning an English degree at Yale. He has served on the Pulitzer Prize jury for drama. He has been a Star Tribune theater critic since 1998.
Recent content from Rohan Preston
Misty Copeland: "Dancers come in all shapes and sizes and colors."

Ballet superstar Misty Copeland will share love for 'beautiful art form' in Minneapolis

In Minneapolis, Misty Copeland will talk Prince and inspiring youths to reach for their dreams.
Dean Holt as Bilbo Baggins in “The Hobbit” at Children’s Theatre Company.

Children's Theatre Company stages minimalist, magical 'Hobbit'

Review: A new staging conjures a world of magic and light.
Jungle Theater’s “School Girls” is set at an elite boarding school in Ghana.

Jungle Theater's 'School Girls' earns A-plus for dissecting global beauty standards

Review: The stylish production earns straight A's for dissecting global beauty standards.
Jane, Brigid, Kate and Rita McDonald, from left, youngest to oldest, are the inspiration for “Sisters of Peace.” The four McDonald sisters have jo

These 4 sisters are actually sisters: Minnesota's 'worker nuns' celebrated in new play

Related by blood and by faith, Minnesota's McDonald sisters devoted their lives to protesting war. A new play at the History Theatre tells their story.
Michelle Barber, Kersten Rodau and Therese Walth in “Mamma Mia!” at the Chanhassen.

Abba-themed 'Mamma Mia!' stirs up smiles at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres

The Abba-sourced musical is a font of fun at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres.
Actors Sara Richardson, Ashawnti Sakina Ford, Nora Montañez and Audrey Park from “She Persists: The Great Divide III” at Pillsbury House Theatre.

Pillsbury House Theatre serves up five playlets on women's status in today's divided America

Minneapolis theater has commissioned five playwrights to ruminate on the status of women in "She Persists: The Great Divide III."
Tracey Maloney, left, plays Norma McCorvey, aka Jane Roe, with Dame-Jasmine Hughes as Aileen Jenks in “Roe,” opening Friday at Mixed Blood Theatre

Mixed Blood Theatre's 'Roe' remembers abortion rights plaintiff 'exploited by both sides'

Opening Friday at Mixed Blood Theatre, "Roe" takes a closer look at the complicated woman behind the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark Roe v. Wade case.
The cast of the touring production of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”

'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' is sugary, not sweet for Minneapolis theatergoers

The Broadway tour lands at the Orpheum with a terrific kid performer and a lot of dead air.
Longtime friends Kersten Rodau and John-Michael Zuerlein star in Chanhassen Dinner Theatres’ bestselling “Mamma Mia!”

Acting BFFs pucker up for Chanhassen Dinner Theatres' bestselling 'Mamma Mia!'

Two actors bring special chemistry to the latest show at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres.
At Alice Cooper’s sold-out Ordway concert last summer, 70 percent of the 1,900 fans hadn’t been to the venue before; 1,200 bought tickets to “El

St. Paul's Ordway Center hopes newcomers find 'treasure' in eclectic bookings

Rock 'n' roll acts surprise patrons expecting the usual calendar of Broadway and opera productions.
“Love and Other Social Diseases"

Brave New Workshop's 'Love and Other Social Diseases' mines inappropriateness for laughs

In the Brave New Workshop's 300th show, the jokes cut straight to the heart.
Thatcher Jacobs and Nick Blaemire, from the First National Tour of “Falsettos.”

Set amid 1980s AIDS crisis, Broadway export 'Falsettos' hits winning note in St. Paul

Set amid the AIDS crisis, this musical at the Ordway conjures a broken but lovable modern family.
With kids at the center, Children's Theatre to remember Minnesota's 1985 meatpackers strike

With kids at the center, Children's Theatre to remember Minnesota's 1985 meatpackers strike

Part of the Children's Theatre's 2019-20 season, a new play recalls the state's momentous meatpackers strike.
Miriam Schwartz and JuCoby Johnson in “Actually.”

Minnesota premiere of 'Actually,' a play about rape on campus, is compelling

Campus-set drama looks at issue of sex assault with the involvement of alcohol.
Lauren Diesch in “Antigone” by Park Square Theatre.

Park Square Theatre turns 'Antigone' into modern, relatable antiheroine

Park Square Theatre gives the Greek tragedy an ambitious all-female update.
Tracey Maloney in “Stewardess!” stars as Mary Pat Laffey in History Theatre's "Stewardess!"

History Theatre's jaw-dropping 'Stewardess!' humanizes fight for gender equality

History Theatre's "Stewardess!" is a jaw-dropping and heart-warming experience.
Minnesota Opera already stages certain programs at the Lab Theater. The organization’s Project Opera training program will perform six shows there t

Minnesota Opera betting on a small, versatile venue in the hopping North Loop

By purchasing North Loop theater, Minnesota Opera intends to shake up its programming.
Laura Stearns said Friday she pursued this case because “the judicial system is broken in its handling of sexual abuse.”

Jury: Children's Theatre found negligent, not liable in civil trial over 1983 assault

The same jury returned a $3.68 million verdict against Jason McLean, a former teacher at the school who was never criminally charged in the probe that sent theater leader John Clark Donahue to jail.
A scene from “Minefield” by Lola Arias

Falklands War veterans gather onstage for remarkable 'Minefield' at Walker Art Center

Walker Art Center closes its Out There series with a 95-minute work that evokes the war with testimonials, images and videos.
Theatre 55’s “Hair.”

Minneapolis theatre casts hippie musical 'Hair' with actors age 50-plus

Theatre 55 is producing 'Hair' by actors who lived it.
Sarah DeYong as Amalia and Ryan London Levin as Georg Nowack in the Artistry’s “She Loves Me.”

'She Loves Me' is a well-told fairy tale at Artistry in Bloomington

With superb music direction and casting, Artistry's staging has plenty of romantic sweep.
Rosanna Staffa with one of her set pieces from “The Biggest Little House in the Forest.”

Navigating American English helped Children's Theatre playwright think 'like a child again'

Translation mix-ups inspired an Italian writer's show for Children's Theatre.
Singers Rudolph Searles III, Brianna Graham, Leo James and Allyson Tolbert.

Ordway Center kicks off cabaret series starring Twin Cities talent

Ordway Cabaret Thursday: Under former artistic director James A. Rocco, the Ordway Center had a series of periodic songbook concerts to celebrate the work of…
Richard Holt, Christopher Finn, Susanna Jennings and Monica Nash in “Mr. Popper’s Penguins” at the Children’s Theatre.

Budget British take on 'Mr. Popper's Penguins' imported to Children's Theatre in Minneapolis

After 20 years, "Mr. Popper's Penguins" returns to the Children's Theatre as a cut-rate British production.
Christie Prades as Gloria Estefan in “On Your Feet.”

Gloria Estefan musical is flawed, but brings Minnesotans some much needed Miami heat

Broadway's Gloria Estefan musical arrives at a cold time in Minnesota.
Paul Herwig and Jennifer Ilse opened Off-Leash Art Box in south Minneapolis last winter. The new performance space comes at a time when a rash of smal

Twin Cities performing artists face 'space crunch' as venues close

The closing of key venues has Twin Cities theater and dance artists scrambling for places to perform.
Jason McLean at the Loring Pasta Bar in Dinkytown in 2014.

First trial begins in new lawsuits arising from Children's Theatre scandal

Alleging she was sexually assaulted in 1983, Laura Stearns sued CTC and its ex-teacher Jason McLean.
Lee Sellars and Kurt Kwan in the Guthrie Theater’s production of “The Great Leap.”

The Guthrie gets game: Here are 8 plays in which theater tackles sports

A basketball drama opening Friday is the latest attempt to build a field of dreams onstage.

Walker kicks off Out There series with intense show

Review: Rabih Mroué's "Borborygmus" feels like a figurative self-immolation dressed up cleverly as experimental theater.
With homes in Burnsville, L.A. and Brainerd and three TV projects, Ernie Hudson says he’s “living my best life.”

Burnsville resident and 'Ghostbusters' star Ernie Hudson returns to Twin Cities stage

Screen star Ernie Hudson reflects on the ups and downs of a life launched on a Twin Cities stage.
Abdul Salaam el Razzac

Actor and founding member of Penumbra Theatre dies at 74

Abdul Salaam El Razzac, 74, was in Penumbra Theatre's very first main stage show and has been a pillar of the storied acting company ever since.
Joseph Morales as Alexander Hamilton in the tour of the blockbuster musical “Hamilton.”

'Hamilton' led the charge in a busy season on Twin Cities stages

1. “Hamilton”: Lin-Manuel Miranda’s blockbuster hip-hop musical knocked socks off at the Orpheum Theatre with a cast every bit as good as the…
Sam Hartley stars as Buddy in “Elf: The Musical,” which opened over the weekend at Ordway Center in St. Paul.

You'll get a sugar high from musical 'Elf' at St. Paul's Ordway

The holiday musical is even more amped up in its return engagement at the Ordway.
Hunter Gullickson, access manager at the Guthrie Theater, talked with sign language interpreters Jan Radatz and Lauri Krouse before a recent matinee s

Guthrie staffer works to make the theater accessible to every body

Meet the Guthrie Theater staffer who works tirelessly to make shows available to all.
The investigation, which began after the theater received unspecified complaints, found no “unlawful conduct.”

Theater Mu fires artistic director following complaints about his conduct

A board investigation found artistic director Randy Reyes did not meet the theater's "high standards."
Taylor Collier and Jacob Lewis rehearse a dance number

In a time of unrest, Penumbra's 'Black Nativity' hits home with its quest for refuge

Songs like "No Room at the Inn" take on a special resonance in Penumbra's emotion-packed holiday show.
The cast of “West Side Story,” which was a box-office smash for the Guthrie Theater last summer.
Photo by T. Charles Erickson

'West Side Story' propels Guthrie to record-setting year

Despite turnover in top positions, the theater had its highest-grossing season.
The buyer of the former Intermedia Arts building said he plans to maintain its colorful murals.

Intermedia Arts sells its Minneapolis home for $3.5 million

A technology firm will move in after a deal that wiped out Intermedia's debts, leaving it with $1 million-plus.
Jamecia Bennett learned to play guitar for her role as Rosetta Tharpe in “Marie and Rosetta” at Park Square Theatre in St. Paul.

Sounds of Blackness singer learns guitar for role as 'Beyoncé of her time'

Jamecia Bennett summons the spirit of gospel/rock godmother Rosetta Tharpe in a new show.
“Angels We Have Heard Are High” features (clockwise from left) Lauren Anderson, Doug Neithercott, Taj Ruler and Denzel Belin.

BNW's 'Angels We Have Heard Are High' satirizes stress of the season

Brave New Workshop's sketch comedy revue satirizes the stress of the season.
Nathan Barlow, Kathryn Fumie and William Thomas Hodgson in “Hooded” at Mixed Blood Theatre in Minneapolis.

Black playwrights command the stage in thrilling festival at Mixed Blood

Festival at Mixed Blood offers a trio of hyper-contemporary plays by black men.
Natalie Tran as Young Max and Reed Sigmund as the Grinch in “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas” at Children’s Theatre Company.

'Grinch' has grown as Children's Theatre raises the fun quotient

With new elements in dance and music, Children's Theatre Company's 2018 version is more fun, and also provides the warmth and reassurance of a good holiday show.
From left, Monica L. Patton, Kevin Clay and Conner Peirson in “The Book of Mormon.”

Minneapolis show proves 'Book of Mormon' is still uproarious, even in a changed world

The rude humor is no longer as shocking, but it still captivates in touring show at Orpheum.
T. Mychael Rambo performs.

Minnesota entertainer T. Mychael Rambo shows grace, gratitude in new show after carjacking

The showman sings about his life and survival in "Present," a solo show at Illusion Theater.
Nathan Keepers plays the hapless director, with Sally Wingert and Laura Jordan as actors, in the Guthrie Theater production of “Noises Off.”

Guthrie Theater's inventive comedy 'Noises Off' offers escapist laughs aplenty

Guthrie's staging of the classic "Noises Off" offers a timely diversions from our troubles.
Church founders William Huff, Valeda Huff and Fredia Jordan cut the ribbon Sunday at Kingdom Life Church in north Minneapolis.

Fast-growing black church finds its home in Mpls. but admits it's a 'work in progress'

Fast-growing Kingdom Life puts down roots in north Minneapolis.
David Fraher plans to step down from Arts Midwest next summer.

Minnesotan who brought millions of arts dollars to the Midwest prepares to bow out

Arts Midwest boss is retiring after more than three decades (and $200 million in funding).
From left, theater founders Elena Giannetti (of Prime Productions), Austene Van (New Dawn Theatre Company) and Sara Marsh (Dark & Stormy Productions).

Minnesota's top theater women are creating stages of their own

To create new opportunities, Minnesota women are founding their own theater troupes.
Sara Marsh, founder of Dark & Stormy.

Actress and theater founder Sara Marsh is a true queen of drama

Fierce and driven, Marsh has created a hot theater company – and a safe place to explore tough-minded plays.
Heidi Fellner and Matt Sciple in “The Last Schwartz.”

Minnesota Jewish Theatre finds laughs in drama about a fractured family

Minnesota Jewish Theatre finds the comedy in a fractured family in "The Last Schwartz."
Ayssette Muñoz and Nora Montañez play daughter and mother in Children’s Theatre’s “I Come From Arizona.”

Children's Theatre play about immigrants brings a young 'Dreamer' out of the shadows

New play at Children's Theatre provides a youthful perspective on the immigration debate.
Tony Vierling and Ann Michels in “Holiday Inn” at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres.

Chanhassen Dinner Theatres turns flimsy 'Holiday Inn' into celebration

With "Holiday Inn," Chanhassen Dinner Theatres serves up a seasonal spritzer to mark its 50th anniversary.
Carlo Alban, Steve Key and Kate Nowlin in the Public Theater's production of "Sweat," currently touring to 18 cities across the Midwest.

New Yorkers bring 'heartbreaking' free play to politically divided Minnesota cities

The company that premiered "Hamilton" is touring the state with an economic tear-jerker.
Becca Hart and C. Ryan Shipley are well matched as Mary Poppins and Bert.

Bloomington's Artistry aims high with the musical 'Mary Poppins'

But an odd casting choice mars the magic in a show offering strong lead performances.
Kahlil Burge, an eighth grader at Folwell School, accepted tickets from Project Success employee Kiah Eide to see the matinee performance of Hamilton

5,000 'little Hamiltons' get their shot at hottest ticket in Twin Cities

Students scored tickets through a Twin Cities-based program that uses theater to help kids unlock their potential and an initiative launched by the family of Lin-Manuel Miranda.
Ayssette Muñoz in “I Come From Arizona.”

Children's Theatre hopes to spark 'conversation' about immigration with 'Arizona'

New play fits into the broad mission of the nation's largest theater company for youth and family, which does not shy away from weighty or sensitive subjects.
Mikell Sapp plays Frederick Douglass while Emily Gunyou Halaas is Susan B. Anthony.

'Agitators' explores friendship between Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass

Park Square's "The Agitators" looks at long relationship between freedom fighters Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony.
Katherine Ferrand stars in Frank Theatre’s “The Visit” as a woman who returns to the town where she was wronged as a girl.

Review: Frank Theatre launches its 30th season with indelible production of 'The Visit'

Frank Theatre launches its 30th season with an eerie, moving show.
Alejandro Vega in the role of CJ (left) and Calvin Zimmerman as Jojo in the Children’s Theater Company production of "Last Stop on Market Street."

New rap-infused Children's Theatre musical 'Last Stop' could be 'Hamilton Jr.'

New rap-infused musical "Last Stop on Market Street" by a Motown legend and his son is like "Hamilton" for kids.
Ashe Jaafaru is the Lady in Brown in Penumbra Theatre’s revival of “For Colored Girls.”

St. Paul's Penumbra Theatre brings new colors to 1970s landmark 'Colored Girls'

Review: The revival has a broader cast and contemporary resonance.
Alejandro Vega as CJ, Autumn Ness as Madam Butterfly and Greta Oglesby as Nana in the Children's Theater Company production of "Last Stop on Market St

New musical by 'a Motown god' opens Children's Theatre season in Minneapolis

Motor City music great Lamont Dozier helps drive a new Children's Theatre musical that blends soul, Latin and hip-hop into a teaching moment about urban life.
Harry Waters Jr. and Austene Van play a detective couple.

Wild and witty 'West of Central' gets a stylish premiere at Pillsbury House in Minneapolis

Christina Ham's film-noir-inspired play is suffused with charm — and social history, too.
Shawn Hamilton as MLK and Pearce Bunting as LBJ in “The Great Society” at History Theatre.

Twin Cities' 10 can't-miss theater productions of the fall

Shows offer food for thought and fodder for laughs.
Dame-Jasmine Hughes will reprise her Obie-winning role as a wronged twin sister in “Is God Is.”

Powerhouse actor turns her New York moment into a Twin Cities homecoming event

Obie-winning actor Dame-Jasmine Hughes has grown into a fine artist in front of our eyes.
Raye Birk and Candace Barrett in the Sidekick Theatre production of “The Gin Game.”

Terrific acting lifts fraught 'Gin Game' for Minnesota's Sidekick Theatre

The throwback play features notable performances by married couple Candace Barrett and Raye Birk.
Benjamin Rosas, dressed as George Washington, and his brother Drew Rosas, dressed as John Quincy Adams, waited while their mom snapped their picture i

'Hamilton' lands in Minneapolis to euphoric fans, lucky ticket buyers

The show opened Wednesday at the Orpheum with a frenzy.
Kim Kivens in the Minnesota Jewish Theatre Company’s “What I Thought I Knew.”

Pregnancy rocks a middle-aged woman's world in Minnesota Jewish Theatre Company show

The one-person show is performed with immediacy, power and occasional humor.
Joseph Morales and Nik Walker play Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr in the national tour of “Hamilton” coming to Minneapolis.

Daily lottery for $10 tickets to Minneapolis 'Hamilton' begins Aug. 27 — here's how to enter

Lottery of 40 tickets for each show to be drawn during Twin Cities run.
Laura Osnes will reprise her turn as Cinderella in Saturday’s show.

Minnesota's Broadway Cinderella throws a Princess Party

Will Cinderella end up owning the ball? Perhaps, if Twin Cities-raised Broadway star Laura Osnes has her way. In her first major performance in…
Dexieng Yang as Gao Hlee and Brian Kim as Benedict in “The Korean Drama Addict’s Guide to Losing Your Virginity.”

Lively cross-cultural comedy 'Korean Drama Addict' gets its premiere in St. Paul

Theater Mu premieres a new work by Twin Cities playwright May Lee-Yang.
On Saturday, noted Twin Cities entertainer T. Mychael Rambo was carjacked, pistol-whipped and left on a St. Paul street with a concussion after giving

Famed Twin Cities actor and singer recovering after a bloody carjacking in St. Paul

"I'm saddened that there are so many who are lost," T. Mychael Rambo said of St. Paul attack.
Shanan Custer laughed with pianist Keith Hovis as they rehearsed one of her five Fringe Festival shows, “Couple Fight: The Musical!”

5 shows, one Fringe Festival: How this Twin Cities actor/director gets ready for 'marathon'

Shanan Custer has no fewer than five shows in Minnesota's largest performing arts fest: "It's like theater sports."
Cameron Folmar (Tracy) and Jayson Speters (Casey) in the Guthrie Theater’s production of "The Legend of Georgia McBride."

Guthrie Theater gets into the drag race with the gleefully campy 'Georgia McBride'

Guthrie summer show offers costumes, confetti and clap-along music.
Sara Richardson, left, is Watson and McKenna Kelly-Eiding is Holmes in “Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery” at Park Square.

The secret of one of America's most prolific playwrights

Ken Ludwig has a hands-off policy once he's done with a play, like Park Square Theatre's "Baskerville."
Kevin Kling in CTC's "Best Summer Ever!"

Kevin Kling presents a breezy 'Summer' at Children's Theatre

This two-man show sparkles with his usual folksy brilliance.
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