Theaters around Mankato are preparing for a busy spring season

KEYC News Now at 6 Recording
Published: Jan. 30, 2023 at 6:22 PM CST
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MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - Mankato is shaping up to have a busy winter and spring performing arts season.

Mankato Playhouse is just two weeks away from their production of Steven Sondheim’s “Assassins”, and held auditions for their Broadway Teens show on Sunday and Monday of this week, and says that their tendency to sell out shows is indicative of the community’s overwhelming support for the performing arts.

“Mankato has the population to make the arts thrive. Mankato is a fantastic hotspot for this type of stuff, which is the reason we opened up Mankato Playhouse,” said David Holmes, co-owner of Mankato Playhouse.

Meanwhile, Merely Players is in the thick of their 40th season of operation, and is also running auditions for their upcoming show, “The Nerd”.

The theater just wrapped up their winter Cabaret, and says that they’re grateful for the support they’ve seen and the community they’ve built over all four decades of their operation.

“You go downtown and you run into people, and Saturday night at Cabaret, I mean every time I turn around there’s someone else there that I knew. And people who were there at the beginning for Merely Players too. So that’s important,” explained Maggie Maes of Mankato Players Community Theater.

Performances outside of these established theaters are also thriving, as “Tony and Tina’s Wedding” is just a couple of weeks away, and the Social Justice Theater is finishing their covid-postponed performance of “The Shadow Box”.

Local theater operators say that the blossoming of Mankato’s performing art shows the strength of that community, and says that local theaters see one another as partners in growing the community, rather than competitors to beat out.

“We can make theater bigger, and just really partner with the other theaters is kind of what we want to do, and just work as one community. There’s a lot of resources out there from other theaters that if we all just kind of come together and share each other’s resources, theater could be even bigger in Mankato,” said Holmes.