Staff Directory 10645706

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
A sign at an entrance to the Guthrie Theater on March 15.

Guthrie Theater cancels rest of its 2019-20 season

The Guthrie's building, which used to be open seven days a week, will remain closed until further notice.
Helen Anker with Keith Rice in the Chanhassen Dinner Theatre’s “Camelot.”
Heidi Bohnenkamp

Guthrie, Chanhassen Dinner Theatres star fears she has been stricken with coronavirus

Helen Anker, who starred in "My Fair Lady" and "Camelot," is in self-quarantine.
Stephen Pelinski and Veanne Cox headlined the Guthrie’s 2007 production of “Private Lives,” the Noël Coward comedy that will be revived in Sept

Coming up at the Guthrie: Kathleen Turner as Molly Ivins, 'In the Heights,' more

On tap are Kathleen Turner's Guthrie debut, Lin-Manuel Miranda's breakout musical and Joe Dowling's return.
Michael Gruber (center) in "The Music Man" at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres.

Chanhassen's 'Music Man' captivates while toning down archaic gender politics

Review: Director Michael Brindisi's smooth production tones down archaic gender politics.
Director Anne Bogart talked with actor Donnell E. Smith, who plays Pentheus, during rehearsal of “The Bacchae.”

Auteur Anne Bogart brings 'The Bacchae' to the Guthrie

Auteur Anne Bogart closes some circles with "The Bacchae" at the Guthrie.
Leslie Alexander as Mrs. Higgins, Shereen Ahmed as Eliza Doolittle and Kevin Pariseau as Colonel Pickering in the touring production of “My Fair Lad

Broadway tour of 'My Fair Lady' gorgeous and problematic at Orpheum in Minneapolis

Bartlett Sher's lush 2018 revival uses wit and irony to mute show's sexist baggage.
Ricky Falbo starred in the 2016 production of “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” at Children’s Theatre.

'Wimpy Kid' anchors a revival-heavy Children's Theatre season

The show anchors a season heavy on revivals, including "The Wizard of Oz," "Seedfolks" and "Dr. Seuss's The Cat in the Hat."
Ronnie Allen in “Thunder Knocking on the Door” by Ten Thousand Things Theater Company.

'Thunder Knocking on the Door' returns to the Twin Cities two decades after bowing at Guthrie

Blues fable "Thunder Knocking on the Door" returns in an elemental production.
Bonni Allen, Jen Maren, Shana Eisenberg, Sara Marsh and Melinda Kordich in the Old Log production of “The Dixie Swim Club.”

Old Log Theatre's 'Dixie Swim Club' plumbs the depths of life with laughter

The Old Log revival of "The Dixie Swim Club" offers a well-timed cornpone comedy about the stages of life.
Director Eric Morris, right, observed during the rehearsal of Dixie Swim Club." BACKGROUND INFORMATION: Eric Morris directed a rehearsal for "Dixie Sw

A young leader strikes sparks at Minnesota's venerable Old Log Theatre

Artistic leader Eric Morris is trying to lure younger audiences while retaining longtime fans.
Marcelo Mena in "Spamtown USA."
Children's Theatre

Children's Theatre play 'Spamtown' uses charm and wit to navigate bitter 1980s P-9 strike

New Children's Theatre play "Spamtown" uses child's-eye charm to navigate bitter 1980s P-9 strike in Austin, Minn.
The Ordway presented "42nd Street" as its summer musical in 2019. Photo by Rich Ryan

Musical 'Groundhog Day' won't see the light at Ordway this summer

Partnerships to defray expense of $1 million production fell through.
Tony-nominated director Marion McClinton, who piloted August Wilson's plays to both Twin Cities and Broadway stages, will be celebrated March 1.

Tony-nominated director McClinton to be celebrated March 1 at Minneapolis' Pillsbury House Theatre

The legacy of Tony-nominated director Marion McClinton, who piloted August Wilson's plays to Broadway, will be celebrated March 1 in Minneapolis.
Garrison Keillor canceled his planned fundraising show for the Woman’s Club of Minneapolis.

Garrison Keillor cancels event at Woman's Club over 'social media' complaints

Fallout continues for former "A Prairie Home Companion" host, who was dropped by MPR in 2017.
Australian actress Nicole Kidman (L) and Scottish actor Ewan McGregor (R) in a scene from the movie "Moulin Rouge" which was nominated for 8 Oscars.

8 movies and plays to get you in the mood for love this Valentine's Day

Whether you're paired up, poly-ed up or single, these plays and movies are a great way to prime an evening of romance.
Lynnette R. Freeman, who plays a rising artist, in a scene with Michelle O’Neill, as a wealthy collector, rehearsed for Thursday’s opening of “T

'Genius' Claudia Rankine shuffles a stacked deck with 'The White Card'

"Genius" playwright Claudia Rankine plumbs America's sensitive seams in "The White Card," making its regional premiere at Penumbra.
Mia Williamson, Alex Newell, Hailey Kilgore and the cast of “Once On This Island.”

Tropical-themed theater in the Twin Cities offers more than escape

Stage shows steeped in the humidity and magic of tropical worlds also teem with deeper issues.
Artistry Theater’s “Bridges of Madison County” stars Jennifer Baldwin Peden as Francesca Johnson, Ryan London Levin (Michael Johnson), Charlie C

Artistry's 'Bridges' delivers in subtle, beautiful tones

Review: Musical version of "The Bridges of Madison County" soars on lead's voice.
Flordelino Lagundino

St. Paul's Park Square Theatre cuts job of artistic director

Facing funding shortfalls, the St. Paul theater eliminated a key position.
Lynnea Doublette and Ellis M. Dossavi Alipoeh in "Bob Marley's Three Little Birds" at Children's Theatre.

'Bob Marley's Three Little Birds' makes regional debut at Children's Theatre

A Bob Marley-infused "reggae fairy tale" makes its regional debut at Children's Theatre.
Michael Wangen.

Lighting designer Michael Wangen dies at 65

The self-taught lighting designer worked on productions in the Twin Cities and at playhouses across the country.
Akshay Krishna as Yazen and Gamze Ceylan as Noura in the Guthrie Theater’s “Noura.”

Regional premiere of Heather Raffo's 'Noura' paints surrealist picture at the Guthrie

Review: "Noura" dramatizes an immigrant's soul struggle.
Britta Ollmann, Nora Montanez, Kate Beahen, Regina Marie Williams (foreground) and Meghan Kreidler in “Bernarda Alba” at Theater Latté Da.

Theater Latté Da offers up a poetic, powerful 'Bernarda Alba'

The regional premiere of "Bernarda Alba" is potent and poetic at Theater Latté Da.
"Jogging" by Hanane Hajj Ali

Guthrie Theater kicks into high gear with its first celebration of Arab and Arab-American artistry

Guthrie Theater kicks its celebration of Arab and Arab-American artistry into high gear.
Logan Verdoorn and Olivia Wilusz in “Becky Shaw.”

Review: Love comes at you fast in Gremlin's spooky 'Becky Shaw'

The Gina Gionfriddo play gets a taut, spooky production at Gremlin Theatre.
When Tony Vierling, center, performed in the Guthrie Theater’s “The Pirates of Penzance,” his rear end made a cameo appearance, thanks to a ripp

Split britches, errant bras: How Minnesota actors cope with costume catastrophes

Costume mishaps cause actors to go from embarrassment to tittering glee.
Nancy Nelson greeted Connie Johnson 78, as she arrived with her daughter Mary Melby to see “Mamma Mia!”

Longtime Twin Cities broadcaster greets guests at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres

Minnesota Broadcasting Hall of Fame inductee Nancy Nelson is the first female greeter at the Chan.
Marion McClinton at his home in St. Paul on July 30, 2014.

Acclaimed August Wilson director Marion McClinton dies at 65

He died the death of a wise man or prophet. As director, playwright and actor Marion McClinton was taking his last few breaths at Regions…
The queens of “Six”: Abby Mueller, Samantha Pauly, Adrianna Hicks, Andrea Macasaet, Brittney Mack and Anna Uzele. Liz Lauren

'Six' opens a four-week, pre-Broadway tryout at the Ordway

If "Hamilton" cracked open a door with its hip remix of history, "Six," about the wives of Henry VIII, bursts through it.
From left, Jane Bennet Bingley (Roshni Desai), Mary Bennet (Christian Bardin), Elizabeth “Lizzie” Bennet Darcy (Sun Mee Chomet) and Lydia Bennet W

'Miss Bennet' is revived at the Jungle with more physicality and humor

Director Christina Baldwin's production has more physical humor, thanks to some newer actors.
Kirsten Wyatt portrayed Miss Adelaide in “Guys and Dolls.”

The Guthrie Theater finds success with broadly inclusive programs

Successful, diverse offerings let the theater finish season in the black.
Sally Dixon. Undated photo by Laura Crosby.

Sally Dixon, pioneering curator and champion of avant-garde films, dies at 87

She died Tuesday in the car of her son, Alexander, as he was fulfilling her last wish by taking her out of hospice and driving her home.
John Townsend

Arts writer John Townsend, a champion of Twin Cities theater, dies at 60

John Townsend, a prolific Twin Cities arts writer and rights activist who contributed freelance reviews to the Star Tribune and wrote for Lavender, billed as…
Playwright Lauren Yee

Playwright Lauren Yee has won over $400,000 in literary prizes in 2019

Lauren Yee, who considers the Twin Cities an artistic home, has won over $400,000 in literary prizes and has four upcoming shows in the area.
Children's Theatre production stage manager Jenny Friend.

Meet the folks who serve as air traffic controllers for Twin Cities theater

Combining an air traffic controller's calm with nimble troubleshooting skills, stage managers keep shows in tiptop shape.
Visitors toured the Capri Theater, where Prince had his first solo concert in 1979, as the theater broke ground on a renovation and expansion that’s

$12.5M Capri Theater renovation pinned as linchpin to north Minneapolis revitalization

A $12.5 million expansion of the Capri Theater promises to help with the revitalization of north Minneapolis.
Filsan Said, Lina Jamoul, Rasha Ahmad Sharif and Noor Adwan in the New Arab American Theater Works’ production of “Zafira and the Resistance.”

New Arab-American play 'Zafira' evokes Orwellian dystopia at Guthrie

Review: Donald Trump is not mentioned by name but his aura permeates the drama about spreading Islamophobia.
Bill Marshall, Sarah Lawrence and Laurel Armstrong in Skylark Opera Theatre’s production of “The Most Happy Fella.”

Review: Skylark Opera Theatre's 'Happy Fella' is low-budget but not cut-rate

Skylark's "Most Happy Fella" is a stripped-down but entirely charming Golden Age musical.
Former civil rights lawyer Chad Quaintance has devoted his life to protecting the most vulnerable. He now serves as a volunteer chaplain.

80-year-old Minnesotan 'lives his faith' — from early civil rights to comforting the sick today

In late life, one-time civil rights prosecutor and lawyer Chad Quaintance has taken to helping hospital patients in their crucibles.
Director and adapter Greg Banks, center, watched actors Dean Holt and Joy Dolo during rehearsals for “Snow White.”

British director and adapter Greg Banks has become a master of reducing classic texts to their play-filled essences

Adapter Greg Banks has become beloved in the Twin Cities for his re-imagined classics.
Joy Dolo is “Snow White” and the Stepmother in the Children’s Theatre Company production.

Children's Theatre's 'Snow White' full of theatrical virtuosity while raising questions about stepmom archetype

Review: Children's Theatre's entertaining "Snow White" offers theatrical virtuosity with its cast of two.
Danielle Wade (as Cady Heron), Megan Masako Haley (Gretchen Wieners), Mariah Rose Faith (Regina George) and Jonalyn Saxer (Karen Smith) in “Mean Gir

Review: 'Mean Girls' offers colorful hellscape at Orpheum

"Mean Girls" offers a funny, sweet and superficial view of the hellscape that is high school.
Actor Erika LaVonn plays the character Nya during a dress rehearsal for “Pipeline.”

'We criminalize black kids': Playwright explores black children's humanity

Playwright Dominique Morisseau seeks to expand ideas around black kids in "Pipeline," opening this week at Penumbra Theatre.
Charity Jones as Gloria Steinem, center, with (left to right) Lolly Foy, Jamila Joiner, Katie Bradley, Dana Lee Thompson, George Keller and Cathleen F

'Gloria' celebrates feminist icon Steinem at History Theatre

"Gloria" looks at the dreams, aspirations and struggles of the feminist legend that didn't make the headlines.
“Jimmy and Lorraine: A Musing” stars Vinecia Coleman, Sasha Andreev and Jon-Michael Reese.

'Jimmy and Lorraine' offers a heady party at Pillsbury House Theatre

Activist authors Baldwin and Hansberry come to life through arguments — and dance.
Grayson DeJesus as Jim O’Connor and Carey Cox as Laura Wingfield in “The Glass Menagerie” at the Guthrie Theater.

Guthrie offers up a witty version of 'The Glass Menagerie'

REVIEW: Theater last staged the play in 2007.
What needs to change on the Minnesota arts scene? Artists and leaders weigh in

What needs to change on the Minnesota arts scene? Artists and leaders weigh in

Here's what Twin Cities movers and makers told us.
Cheryl Willis, Janis Hardy, Maria Asp and Barbra Berlovitz play women gathering for a free-associative chat in “Escaped Alone.”

What's it like to die? Frank Theatre stages two Caryl Churchill one-acts

Frank Theatre stages two Caryl Churchill one-acts that wrestle with the grim oblivion that awaits us all.

Artistry's 'Our Town' nods to the weirdness afoot

A revival of Thornton Wilder's "Our Town" shows that it's a carpe diem ancestor to the Netflix series "Stranger Things."
Pop icon Sting gave a sneak peek of “The Last Ship,” his former Broadway show at the Ordway. Sting will perform in the production in St. Paul.

Sting will be an Englishman in St. Paul when 'The Last Ship' plays the Ordway

The singer-songwriter was all charm at the Ordway as he previewed "The Last Ship," which he will headline in April.
Michael Lupu

Longtime Guthrie dramaturg Michael Lupu, who shaped shows for decades, dies at 89

A giant in the field, he was internationally recognized in a role that often goes unnoticed.
Playwright and physician Anton Chekhov peers from his Guthrie mural over actor-turned-physician Dr. Lee Mark Nelson, a Chekhov admirer.

One of the Twin Cities' finest actors gave up the stage for a new life in medicine

Lee Mark Nelson gave up a career as a leading man of the stage for a new life in medicine.
Above: Shavey Brown, Kevin Brown Jr., Ben Bakken, Rendell DeBose and Dwight Leslie of “Smokey Joe’s Cafe.”

'90s musical 'Smokey Joe's Cafe' rises again at St Paul's Ordway Center

"Smokey Joe's Cafe" bows Tuesday at the Ordway with a cast of Twin Cities singers the creative team describes as "spectacular."
Sue Kotila, the Guthrie Theater’s visitor services director, held an ushers meeting before a matinee performance of “Floyd’s.”

Vomit, panties, teeth: Theater house managers handle all kinds of issues

The good, the bad and the downright weird: The life of a theater house manager.
Theater Mu’s dark comedy, “Hot Asian Doctor Husband,” features Mikell Sapp, left, Damian Leverett, Meghan Kreidler, Eric Sharp and Danielle Troi

Theater Mu's 'Hot Asian Doctor Husband' premieres with deadpan wit

"Hot Asian Doctor Husband," full of profanity and sharp wit, has its buzzy premiere at Mixed Blood.
Brian Oake hosted a birthday bash for 89.3 the Current at First Avenue shortly after joining the station in 2016.

After Facebook rant, Twin Cities morning-show DJ Brian Oake is out at the Current

No reason was given for his departure, but he had posted an angry message after getting kicked out of a concert.
“Stuck in an Elevator with Patrick Stewart II: The Wrath of Fandom” stars Travis Bedard, Ali Daniels, George Michael Calger.

8 mini-reviews from the Minnesota Fringe Festival

Festival runs through Aug. 11 at multiple venues throughout Minneapolis.
The cast of "Fiddler on the Roof."

Beloved classic 'Fiddler on the Roof' shows its emotional center at Orpheum in Minneapolis

The production nods to tradition even as it adds exuberant updates.
More than half the cast of "42nd Street" has been tapped from the Twin Cities area.

Twin Cities tap dancers are better than New Yorkers, says a hotshot choreographer

A New York creative team was pleasantly surprised about what it found in the Twin Cities while refreshing a Broadway classic, "42nd Street."
Casting directors Sheena Janson Kelley of the Jungle, Jennifer Liestman of the Guthrie and Kelli Foster Warder of the Ordway posed for a portrait at t

These casting directors are three of the most powerful people in Twin Cities theater

Meet the casting directors responsible for hiring hundreds of Twin Cities actors every year.
Kirsten Wyatt, portraying Miss Adelaide, in a scene during tech rehearsal for “Guys and Dolls.” ] JEFF WHEELER • Th

Guthrie updates 'Guys and Dolls' with strong women for the 21st century

The Guthrie's splashy summer musical "Guys and Dolls" gets a 21st century update.
Kristin Stokes, Chris McCarrell and Jorrel Javier in “The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical.”

Percy Jackson musical at St. Paul's Ordway offers more thunder than light

The Percy Jackson musical "Lightning Thief" lacks heart.
Lily Tung Crystal, the new artistic director at Theater Mu.

Theater Mu hires leadership coach, ex-journalist to 'reunite' company

Lily Tung Crystal arrives from the Bay Area, where she helped launch another Asian-American theater company.
Laura Stearns read a statement at a news conference at the office of attorney Jeff Anderson, at right, after a Minneapolis jury found the Children's T

CTC apologizes for seeking court costs from sex abuse victim

"Last week we failed in our commitment to be empathetic and respectful in our handling of our legal obligation," Children's Theatre Company artistic director Peter Brosius said.
Tyler Michaels King and JuCoby Johnson in “To Let Go and Fall” at Theater Latté Da.

Theater Latté Da plays with memory, romance with 'To Let Go and Fall'

Theater Latté Da's "To Let Go and Fall" tracks a same-sex romance at varying life stages.
Stephen Christopher Anthony in the title role in “Dear Evan Hansen.”

Broadway's socially awkward 'Dear Evan Hansen' charms Twin Cities audiences

Review: The show brings a light touch to heavy subject matter, including social anxiety and suicide.
Minnesotans Christopher Schout, Jennifer Melin Miller and Frances Wilkinson are Broadway producers.

Meet the Minnesotans who helped bankroll Broadway's hottest new musical

These Twin Citians theater lovers invested in the hit "Hadestown."
Katie Bradley as Wang Min in Full Circle Theater’s “Caught.”

Theatergoers feel 'Caught' between truth, reality with sly play at the Guthrie

Full Circle Theater stages Christopher Chen's high-concept, highly provocative play.
James A. Williams and Stephen Yoakam in “Blood Knot” at Pillsbury House Theatre.

Pillsbury House Theatre's 'Blood Knot' is a gnarly Apartheid-era play on race

A new production features masterful performances, even as the apartheid-era script shows the drama's shortcomings.
Samantha Biatch, Del M. Logeais and Melissa Miller in “Féminaal” by the brand-new Grumble Theater.

Grumble Theater asks patrons to see very first show 'solely as a woman'

A promising new company asks viewers to take a feminine perspective on its first show.
The ensemble cast of “Autonomy” features (from left) Ansa Akyea, Malachi Caballero and Harry Waters Jr.

Mixed Blood Theatre's epic 'Autonomy' takes hard-driving look at future of cars

Mixed Blood Theatre parks its ambitious "Autonomy" at Xcel Energy Center.
Sofia Salmela in Children's Theatre Company's "Matilda the Musical."

Children's Theatre triumphs with hilarious, heartfelt 'Matilda the Musical'

The Minneapolis company stages a honking take on the Broadway musical, loaded with show-stopping performances.
Friends since college, actors Stephen Yoakam and James A. Williams will play brothers in “Blood Knot,” a 1961 drama by South African playwright At

Twin Cities stage stars draw on long friendship for racially charged 'Blood Knot'

Longtime friends Stephen Yoakam and James A. Williams play brothers in a South African play that speaks to them as Americans.
Sarah Rasmussen, artistic director at the Jungle Theater.

'A Dolls House, Part 2' landing amid Jungle Theater season packed with buzzy new titles

"A Doll's House, Part 2" is just one highlight in an exciting 2019-20 season.
James Craven, Regina Marie Williams, Sherwin Resurreccion and Kurt Kwan in "The Brothers Paranormal."

Theater Mu and Penumbra team up for thrilling, chilling 'The Brothers Paranormal'

This world-premiere ghost story packs plenty of heart and heartbreak.