#T2RDuluth Prize Winners!

THINGS TO RUIN in the books, gang! And it was one hell of a good time. We spent the past week combing through the awesome deluge of entries in the #T2RDuluth hashtag contest, and we’re pleased to announce our winners (note, names and pics have been blurred in the interest of privacy. If one of these posts are yours, and you’ve won a prize, the info on how to claim it is below):

 

First up, three honorable mentions. You guys don’t win anything but pride. But that’s worth a lot. We had to single you three out for the great shots you were able to capture during the show. Great posts!

 

Honorable Mention 1

 

 

Honorable Mention 2

 

 

Honorable Mention 3

 

Next up, our finalists. If you recognize one of these winning posts as yours, contact Andy Bennett to claim your prizes. These first four posts have all won a super-secret CD prize! You guys earned it! Also, worth noting all that damn nerd love.

 

Finalist 1

 

Finalist 2

 

Finalist 3

 

Finalist 4

 

This is our runner-up. Same prize as the finalists, but a little extra special shout-out for such a great post!

 

Runner-up

 

And now, our grand prize winner. You get the same special secret CD prize as the other finalists, but you also win a PAIR OF SEASON TICKETS TO RENEGADE’S 2015 SEASON! Nice job, you!

 

Grand Prize

 

Thanks to everyone who played, posted and shared the #T2RDuluth love. You guys rock! We’ll see you at the Teatro again this October, for the brilliant and haunting GRACE.

2015 Season Announcement!

Last week, over some burgers and beer, the Renegade Season Selection Committee made our final decisions. Then, we went about securing the necessary permissions. And now … now, we can finally share our 2015 season with you.

 

To say we’re excited is a bit of an understatement. Read on, but scroll slow. The anticipation is the best part …

 

Read the rest of this entry »

Thoughts on “Things To Ruin” and 44 Renegade Shows – By Katy Helbacka

1801203_10203170559803656_501643391_oTonight marks the 44th opening night since I took over as Artistic Director here at Renegade. That’s a lot of shows, a lot of hard working cast and crews and a lot of love from audiences like you.

 

Last night, as I stood in the back and watched our invited preview audience having an absolute blast watching this crazy talented cast and crew perform this brand-new show from an explosive new writer in a totally unexpected way, I was reminded again of why I love what we do and what Renegade stands for.

 

6 years ago, the first decision I made was that Renegade, as long as I was at the helm of it, would be guided by one simple word: Entertainment. That’s all we would care about. Whether you were entertained to the point of laughing, crying, screaming or gasping, the only thing that mattered was that you were entertained. That the few hours you spent inside the Teatro Zuccone watching our shows transported you away from any day-to-day problems or stress. That we never bored you.

 

I’ve been thinking a lot about this guiding idea as we prepare to announce our 2015 season. And I’ve also been thinking about the comments I hear a lot from friends, audiences and people in the arts community. I’m often asked why we pick shows they’ve never heard of and why we don’t pick things with names that we know will sell a lot of tickets. And it’s because we’re thinking of our audience first.

 

We don’t set out to pick the most obscure material we can find. We set out to pick the most entertaining material we can find. And sometimes that means it’s going to be a show you’ve never heard of. But, if you trust us (as so many of you do), you know we will entertain the hell out of you.

 

As for why we picked Things To Ruin? There’s lots of reasons – not the least of which is the thrill of throwing a big party three nights a week – but it really all boils down to a few lyrics in one number of the show. Because Joe Iconis and Renegade Theater Company are kindred spirits. We’d totally be besties. We get each other. And, without knowing it, he basically wrote the Renegade Credo:

 

I am not trying to break new ground,

Be witty, impressive or insincere.

I am just letting it all hang out,

So dig it, or fuck off and disappear.

Don’t matter to me, cause I’m staying here.

You’ve never heard nothing like this shit here!

 

That’s Renegade in a nutshell. Sure, we’re a little less bombastic and angsty about it, but that’s the basic jist. We are trying to make you laugh, cry, have nightmares and rush out to tell your friends about the awesome show you just saw. We’re not trying to change the world or serve as a substitute for therapy or a place for you to catch up on sleep. We’re here to entertain you.

 

So come out to THINGS TO RUIN. And let us know how you like the party.

buy-tickets

 

Oh, and keep your eyes glued to the blog. The 2015 season is coming … soon!

Meet the Cast of “Things To Ruin” – Maria DePesa!

Tomorrow night the Midwest premiere of THINGS TO RUIN blows the doors off the Teatro Zuccone. Get your TICKETS NOW and don’t forget to upgrade for the full VIP package with free food from the Zeitgeist Arts Cafe, free drinks from Bent Paddle Brewing and Vikre Distillery plus table-side drinks service all night long!

 

This is going to be one hell of a party and you do not want to miss out. Throw out everything you know about a night at the theater. Bring an appetite and a thirst and a desire to have a knock-down, drag-out ball. We’ve got you covered with dynamite singing, dancing and rock and roll, plus the best food and drink you could ask for!

 

As we get ready to unleash this show on the Northland, we’re going to take some blog space to introduce you to our dynamite cast of ruffians, troublemakers and malcontents. Next up is Maria DePesa!

mariablogpic

 

Have you ever worked with Renegade before? If so, what on Earth brings you back? If not, what the hell took you so long?

 

Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.  I have previously been seen on the Renegade stage with The Vibrator Play, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, Renegade Improv, and as Natalie in Next to Normal.  As for what brought me back: finances mostly, and Evan cornered me, and he’s bigger than me.

 

What is it like working for 2 directors? Who is nicer?

 

It’s like having an angel and a devil on your shoulders like in an old school cartoon.  But one is on your shoulder, and one is on Dennis Rodman’s shoulder. They are both pretty nice, and I said that in like a cool 90s lingo kind of way. N-I-C-E.

 

What is your favorite song in Things to Ruin? What is your favorite song that YOU get to sing?

 

“Helen” is my favorite song in the show. I’ve always wanted to be in skin flicks myself.  I only get to sing one song.  So, that one.

 

What’s your drink of choice?

 

The nectar of the Gods, but who can afford it in this economy?  Geesh, taxes.  I’ll settle for a nice Pinot Noir, something to pair with my garbage can portion of pasta.

 

What’s your favorite party memory?

 

That one time that we were all listening to David Guetta and Kid Cudi’s song “Memories.”  Man, was that prophetic.

 

Why should people come see this show?

 

Cory Anderson.

 

The answers to this interview were dictated not read, while Maria slept in until 12:18 PM on an air mattress. 

Who Likes Free Stuff? – “Things To Ruin” Contest launch!

Iphone5

<——– This is a cell phone. If you didn’t know that, you should probably stop reading right now cause this blog post isn’t for you. But, congratulations on figuring out how the Internet works!

 

Okay, now that the luddite’s are gone, here’s the deal. We’re pretty protective of our shows. We are also very protective of our audience’s experience, and we custom-tailor our policies to each show in order to do everything we can to ensure you have a good time at our shows.

 

So, normally, we insist you turn these things off.

 

But not at THINGS TO RUIN.

 

This show is a party, and sometimes you need to document the night actually happened. So turn the ringer’s off, please and thank you, but leave those cell phones on. In this show, photos are encouraged. Take a snap of you and your friends having a great time, a pic of your fallen Bent Paddle soldiers or James Franco at that VIP table in the fedora (it could happen). Then, when you go to post it on social media, tag it with this:

 

#T2RDuluth

 

We will be keeping our eyes on this hashtag, and after the run is over, we’ll be selecting our six favorite posts. 5 of you will receive a very special surprise CD – something you can’t buy in stores and something which, if you enjoy THINGS TO RUIN, you will flip for. And the 6th winner, the grand-prize winner? Well, they also get a pair of season tickets to Renegade’s 2015 season!

 

ThingsToRuin-New-RTC-FinalNew-03

 

Meet the Cast of “Things To Ruin” – Cory Anderson!

In less than a week the Midwest premiere of THINGS TO RUIN blows the doors off the Teatro Zuccone. Get your TICKETS NOW and don’t forget to upgrade for the full VIP package with free food from the Zeitgeist Arts Cafe, free drinks from Bent Paddle Brewing and Vikre Distillery plus table-side drinks service all night long!

 

This is going to be one hell of a party and you do not want to miss out. Throw out everything you know about a night at the theater. Bring an appetite and a thirst and a desire to have a knock-down, drag-out ball. We’ve got you covered with dynamite singing, dancing and rock and roll, plus the best food and drink you could ask for!

 

As we get ready to unleash this show on the Northland, we’re going to take some blog space to introduce you to our dynamite cast of ruffians, troublemakers and malcontents. Next up is Cory Anderson!

 

Doctor Who

Have you ever worked with Renegade before? If so, what on Earth brings you back? If not, what the hell took you so long?

 

Yes, I have. I keep coming back because I get to work with some great people, and in every show I get to do something weird I’ve never done before. I’ve been shot, dismembered, doused in gasoline, and attacked by zombies. And after all that abuse, now they’re letting me sing.

 

What is it like working for 2 directors? Who is nicer? 

 

It’s been great. Evan will joke like he’s an asshole, but he doesn’t mean it. And Amber is always full of enthusiasm. We have a running count of how many times she says “I’m so excited!” So I guess they’re equally nice, but Amber’s louder about it.

 

What is your favorite song in Things to Ruin? What is your favorite song that YOU get to sing?

 

My favorite is one our music director, Tyler, sings called “The Guide to Success.” It’s a satirical song that offers great advice like “Exploit everybody who’s helped you” and “Never say what you really feel.”
My favorite to sing is Nerd Love. It was the one I was least sure of at first, but it’s a lot of fun to perform.

 

What’s your drink of choice? 

 

Why? Are you buying?

 

What’s your favorite party memory?

 

That’s the thing with party memories – The ones that would make for the best stories are the ones I’m least likely to remember.

 

Why should people come see this show?

 

It’s got great music. Over the past few weeks I have caught myself humming every one of these songs. And this cast has been performing the hell out of them.
ThingsToRuin-New-RTC-FinalNew-03BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

Meet the Cast of “Things To Ruin” – Tyler Goebel!

In less than one week the Midwest premiere of THINGS TO RUIN blows the doors off the Teatro Zuccone. Get your TICKETS NOW and don’t forget to upgrade for the full VIP package with free food from the Zeitgeist Arts Cafe, free drinks from Bent Paddle Brewing and Vikre Distillery plus table-side drinks service all night long!

 

This is going to be one hell of a party and you do not want to miss out. Throw out everything you know about a night at the theater. Bring an appetite and a thirst and a desire to have a knock-down, drag-out ball. We’ve got you covered with dynamite singing, dancing and rock and roll, plus the best food and drink you could ask for!

 

As we get ready to unleash this show on the Northland, we’re going to take some blog space to introduce you to our dynamite cast of ruffians, troublemakers and malcontents. Next up is Tyler Goebel!

 

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Have you ever worked with Renegade before? If so, what on Earth brings you back? If not, what the hell took you so long?

 

This is my second show with Renegade, with the first show being Spring Awakening back in 2012. When I auditioned for the first time here I was extremely nervous, but I soon found that I really had no reason to be, since everyone there was so friendly and welcoming! The shows here are always awesome, and the people are unique (in their own ways). Renegade is just awesome in general!

 

What is it like working for two directors? Who is nicer?

 

It’s a new experience, but it works really well! Watching Amber and Evan bounce ideas off of each other is a lot of fun, and the fact they were open to the cast’s ideas throughout the entire process doesn’t hurt either.

 

Honestly, I don’t know if I could pick the nicer one, because I think they’re both fantastic at what they do, and they both know what they want out of the actors. Also, I just don’t want pick a side because I’d spend my life terrified of whoever I didn’t pick.

 

What is your favorite song in Things to Ruin? What is your favorite song that YOU get to sing?

 

My favorite song that we all sing is “Never Heard Nothing,” since most likely you’ve never heard nothing like it! And the favorite song that I sing is “Honey,” hands-down. The style of the song is something I haven’t really done before, which was exciting and daunting at the same time. As we worked on it, I realized that it’s a hell of a lot of fun to perform, and I’m hoping the audience has some fun as well.

 

What is your drink of choice?

 

Classic Jack and Coke, minus the Jack.

 

What’s your favorite party memory?

 

I don’t remember many specific details, but a bunch of my friends and I once pulled an all-nighter where all we did was drink, eat, and watch movies. Nobody passed out and nobody woke up hungover either! Best 10th birthday party ever.

 

Why should people come see this show?

 

Umm, where do I start? Joe Iconis’ music and lyrics are like nothing you’ve ever heard before, and it’s done much differently than a classical musical. If anything, come for the experience itself. It’s gonna be a hell of a lot of fun, and no matter how much you drink there, it’ll be hard to forget for a long time!


ThingsToRuin-New-RTC-FinalNew-03
BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

 

Meet the cast of “Things To Ruin” – Kristen Parizek

In less than a week the Midwest premiere of THINGS TO RUIN blows the doors off the Teatro Zuccone. Get your TICKETS NOW and don’t forget to upgrade for the full VIP package with free food from the Zeitgeist Arts Cafe, free drinks from Bent Paddle Brewing and Vikre Distillery plus table-side drinks service all night long!

 

This is going to be one hell of a party and you do not want to miss out. Throw out everything you know about a night at the theater. Bring an appetite and a thirst and a desire to have a knock-down, drag-out ball. We’ve got you covered with dynamite singing, dancing and rock and roll, plus the best food and drink you could ask for!

 

As we get ready to unleash this show on the Northland, we’re going to take some blog space to introduce you to our dynamite cast of ruffians, troublemakers and malcontents. Next up is Kristen Parizek!

 

IMG_2365

Have you ever worked with Renegade before? If so, what on Earth brings you back? If not, what the hell took you so long?

 

This is my first show with Renegade, and I’m super pumped about it. This was my 3rd show that I’ve auditioned for at Renegade so third time’s the charm, right?

 

What is it like working for 2 directors? Who is nicer? 

 

Working for 2 directors is something I hadn’t experienced before but I really enjoy it. They’re your two biggest supporters throughout the rehearsal process and you get two types of input rather than one which is helpful in creating an awesome show. If I HAD to pick who was nicer, I’d probably say neither. They’re both incredibly mean.

Kidding. They’re both fantastic.

 

What is your favorite song in Things to Ruin? What is your favorite song that YOU get to sing?

My favorite song in this show is “Honey”, and my favorite song that I sing is probably “Just Means”. There’s a lot of things I like about both of them such as the catchy tunes from “Honey” and the laughs you’ll (hopefully) get from “Just Means”, but you’ll have to come and see for yourself why I love ‘em so much.

 

What’s your drink of choice? 

 

Definitely Mountain Dew. Otherwise I make a pretty mean and delicious fruity rum drink called the “Shipwreck”.

 

What’s your favorite party memory?

I can’t pick just one party memory, but in general, Halloween parties are my favorite. I think everyone gets to show off their creative side with the costumes, plus there’s free candy so you can’t beat that (The real party is the day after with half off candy).

 

Why should people come see this show?

 

You should come see this show because I’m in it! But actually, the cast is stellar and totally sexy (I may be biased, but I speak the truth here) It’s like attending a pretty rad party with humor, drinks, and rock music all mixed together, and who doesn’t like the sound of that? If you don’t attend, that’s fine but you suck.

 

ThingsToRuin-New-RTC-FinalNew-03BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

Meet the cast of “Things To Ruin” – Vanessa Barr

In one short week the Midwest premiere of THINGS TO RUIN blows the doors off the Teatro Zuccone. Get your TICKETS NOW and don’t forget to upgrade for the full VIP package with free food from the Zeitgeist Arts Cafe, free drinks from Bent Paddle Brewing and Vikre Distillery plus table-side drinks service all night long!

 

This is going to be one hell of a party and you do not want to miss out. Throw out everything you know about a night at the theater. Bring an appetite and a thirst and a desire to have a knock-down, drag-out ball. We’ve got you covered with dynamite singing, dancing and rock and roll, plus the best food and drink you could ask for!

 

As we get ready to unleash this show on the Northland, we’re going to take some blog space to introduce you to our dynamite cast of ruffians, troublemakers and malcontents. Next up is Vanessa Barr!

 

Vanessa

Have you ever worked with Renegade before? If so, what on Earth brings you back? If not, what the hell took you so long?

 

No I have not! That’s a good question, I think typically during the school year is hard for me to participate in theatrical endeavors outside of school. I am really glad to have the opportunity this summer though!

 

What is it like working for 2 directors? Who is nicer? 

 

Haha, well I would say they are both pretty nice. I can’t just say who I think is nicer, the director who loses out will make my life hell!

 

What is your favorite song in Things to Ruin? What is your favorite song that YOU get to sing?

 

“Honey”-because I like singing soulful stuff and “Nerd love” – because the title speaks for itself. My favorite song in the show…hmm..that’s tough! Maybe “Good For You” it’s a heart-tugger.

 

What’s your drink of choice? 

 

White wine. Oh, and coffee, I will never say no to coffee.

 

What’s your favorite party memory?

 

Oh my. Well you know the Blatnick Bridge? The big, beautiful bridge the connects Superior and Duluth? I mean my mom always talks about it because she wants to get a portrait of it for our entry way because she thinks it’s a glorious sight. While it is a sight to behold, the significance of the bridge has really changed for me because now I can’t look at it without being reminded of that awful night, which for a lack of a better word we will call it Vanessa’s night of bad decision making. Which resulted in me throwing up off that bridge like, nine times, on a return trip from Wisconsin point. Not my proudest moment but it’s definitely a memory.

 

Why should people come see this show?

 

Because the music and environment will be unlike anything else you have experienced in Duluth theatres this summer. The songs are unique and edgy, and the cast is comprised of a bunch of talented locals who KNOW how to commit. You will have to see for yourself. :)

 

ThingsToRuin-New-RTC-FinalNew-03BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

 

Meet the cast of “Things To Ruin” – Jake Caceres!

In just over one week the Midwest premiere of THINGS TO RUIN blows the doors off the Teatro Zuccone. Get your TICKETS NOW and don’t forget to upgrade for the full VIP package with free food from the Zeitgeist Arts Cafe, free drinks from Bent Paddle Brewing and Vikre Distillery plus table-side drinks service all night long!

 

This is going to be one hell of a party and you do not want to miss out. Throw out everything you know about a night at the theater. Bring an appetite and a thirst and a desire to have a knock-down, drag-out ball. We’ve got you covered with dynamite singing, dancing and rock and roll, plus the best food and drink you could ask for!

 

As we get ready to unleash this show on the Northland, we’re going to take some blog space to introduce you to our dynamite cast of ruffians, troublemakers and malcontents. Next up is Jake Caceres!

photo

 

Have you ever worked with Renegade before? If so, what on Earth brings you back? If not, what the hell took you so long?

 

This is my first time! (Yaaay!) I have been trying to, though! I auditioned for a show for which I didn’t get cast (aww… single tear), and then for another where I did get cast but I was in another show somewhere else and had to drop (though I could have done both and Renegade was more than willing to work around my schedule… Oh well, whatever). But frankly, it took me a long time to audition because Renegade intimidated the bejesus out of me. Shortly after I moved to Duluth (from Washington, D.C.), I went to see Reefer Madness at Renegade thinking that, if ‘community theater’ was decent in Duluth, I would consider getting involved. I had been in grad school for 9 years on the East Coast and never had the time to do any theater and I really needed to do it for my own sanity (it’s hard to explain), so Duluth could be my return to the stage (I had done some theater back in Barcelona, where I am from… blah). I was shocked. Reefer Madness was stellar and the cast absolutely perfect. I was sure they were a professional troupe from Minneapolis or Chicago. I asked the people at the concession stand during the intermission, but they told me they were all local, non-professional actors (meaning they didn’t make their living as actors, but, hell, the work they were doing was of professional quality, no question about it!). I thought “I’m never auditioning here!” So, as you can imagine, working at Renegade is for me an amazing and awesome thing, a high point in my theater experience. Especially because I am moving (far) away from Duluth literally the second Things to Ruin ends. Sad face.

 

What is it like working for two directors? Who is nicer?

 

Hah! I wish I could joke about this (Evan’s a bitch and Amber a total asshole!), but I have to get serious (boo…), because I have a lot of respect for both of them. A lot. Not to sound like the creep I am, but I knew Evan’s work well before he knew I had set my little foot in the Northland. He was, in fact, the director of Reefer Madness, the show that blew me out of the water, and other Renegade jewels such as Company. And if you missed him as the lead actor in The Wild Party, you can go ahead and hate yourself a little for that. As for Amber, I have seen shows she has choreographed and I also had the privilege to have her as a choreographer, dance captain and teacher, and fellow actor. She is amazingly versatile. What a smart choreographer she is (is that a compliment to a dancer?); she can go from the highly stylized and intricate moves she devised and performed in Spring Awakening, to the silliness that was Spamalot (at the Duluth Playhouse). Her skills as an actor are awesome and her ability to command people effectively have always turned me on a little bit.

 

 

What is your favorite song in Things to Ruin? What is your favorite song that YOU get to sing?

 

I do like the songs where we all sing, like “Born This Morning” or “Never Heard Nothing;” I think the energy we have in those is great. But as for a favorite song, I would have to say “Honey,” because I like to fancy myself, not as the male lead singer (Tyler Goeble does a superb job!), but as one more of the super-sassy, back-up female singers, belting “tell ya!” and “show ya!”, that could put The Supremes to shame (Amber has caught me more than once lip-syncing along from back stage to the voices of the amazing Vanessa, Kristen, and Sara. And yes, doing the choreography as well).

 

As for my favorite song that I get to sing, I have to say “Albuquerque Anyway.” It is a beautifully written, heartfelt song about a boy whose best friend is moving far away. I like that it is challenging for me as an actor–I am the oldest one (by far) in the cast, but the character I play in that song is, by far, the youngest in the show at 9 years old; and I also like that I connect with this character in a very special way, because, as I mentioned above, I am moving away, far away, as soon as this show ends, knowing that I will miss a lot of the friends I have made in Duluth, particularly my theater friends.

 

 

What is your drink of choice?

 

Normally water. Oh, you mean alcohol? A good old-fashioned gin and tonic. You can set it anywhere, I’ll find it.

 

 

What’s your favorite party memory?

 

This one’s easy–any party where the majority of those attending ended up in the pool (or in any other body of water, such as a lake, a pond, a creek, the sea…) fully clothed.

 

 

Why should people come see this show?

 

This one is hard, but because there are too many reasons! Let’s see. For starters, the music and lyrics are just amazing–innovative, corky, fun, raw, sincere, humorous… Also, it is a different kind of show; the format resembles more a rock cabaret or a punk/rock concert with multiple performers, and less a musical theater play, although it has many musical theater elements, like the prominence of the stories our characters tell in the songs and the presence of the characters we play. So it is a show that can reach and please a lot of different people with very different tastes. I’m sure both theater goers and non-theater goers will like it for very different reasons. Another reason is the actors/singers in this show are amazing. The only reason I feel less intimidated to work in a Renegade show this time is that I can feel they got my back. Oh, one more reason people should come to see this show is that there’s copious amounts of booze. The end.

 


 

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