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Current Reviews

Dirt Sticks

"...a wild ride...Ten Thousand Things never lets the audience forget that we're all in this together." Star Tribune

"Dirt Sticks makes magic out of tragedy and second chances." City Pages

"Dirt Sticks grabs with ghosts, dancing shoes and a fine story" Pioneer Press

Past Reviews

General

"The more unlikely the venue…the better - and the more raucous, the more rewarding for Ten Thousand Things." Matt Shaer, Christian Science Monitor More...

"Ten Thousand Things speaks to nontraditional audiences, and they speak back." American Theater More...

"Michelle Hensley and Ten Thousand Things have created one of Minnesota's most vibrant and ingenious theaters out of a simple concept: produce work that can reach any audience. That doesn't mean dumbing down the content, but performing with such energy and honesty that anyone -- even those behind bars and seeing a live play for the first time -- can be swept up in the story. The proof of that? The company's most successful pieces are often the works of Shakespeare. . . The company uses sparse sets, very few props, no lighting and live music along with a dedicated small company of talented actors." City Pages

"Ten Thousand Things theater knows a thing or two about captive audiences" minnpost.com More...

The Music Man

"Rarely has this show seemed so generously poignant, so sentimentally honest." Star Tribune

"I've seen plenty of productions of Meredith Willson's The Music Man over the years…but I have never seen one that truly unlocked Willson's original like Ten Thousand Things' version at Open Book," City Pages

"Ten Thousand Things offers a deft, streamlined rethinking of this classic that preserves its familiar charms while offering ample new ones." Pioneer Press

A Midsummer Night's Dream

"Hensley's skill with Shakespeare has long been established, and here...it makes for a crystal-clear, fast-paced, and thoroughly entertaining evening." City Pages

"Ten Thousand Things always has investigated its Shakespeare for new dimensions and here, Hensley has found the shadowy side of human nature. Halloween certainly is in the air...You'll have to see it." Star Tribune

"Ten Thousand Things does it again. A marvelous cast of 8 breathes new life into a classic." Cherry and Spoon

A Streetcar Named Desire

"an intimate and revealing staging...a Streetcar to be experienced.” Star Tribune

"...brilliant...a heart rending show." City Pages

"…a brutally real and emotionally affecting two hours that's at times difficult to endure. Seeing Williams' tragic story so up close and personal is almost too much to bear. In other words — they did it right." Cherry and Spoon

The Seven

"...a riveting staging. The taut production moves and grooves on the bodies and voices of actors who lyrically transport us." Star Tribune

"…staging gives new breath to a very old tale." Pioneer Press

"Ten Thousand Things' typically energetic and precise production, uncovers the ancient but still-beating heart of the play...the power of the message came through loud and clear." City Pages

"It's a lot funnier than we expected...It's also one of the best things we've seen in the past year." minnpost.com

Measure for Measure

"Hensley again has demonstrated how accessible and enjoyable Shakespeare can be when the text breathes and a production unfolds with simple clarity." Star Tribune

"…an exemplar of what good Shakespeare—let alone good theater—should be…two hours of terrificness." Pioneer Press

"The actors take advantage of the presentation and of one another to produce a rare night of illuminating, thrilling, and, above all, engaging theater." City Pages

"…a wonderfully tantalizing offering…if the measure of a successful performance is its ability to reveal larger truths, this show is a smash." howwastheshow.com

"'…exciting, immersive theater. There are easily ten thousand reasons to see it…'Measure for Measure' should be compulsory viewing for every politician." —minnpost.com

Vasa Lisa

"A fairy tale recast in colors both dark and hopeful." Pioneer Press

"...a rich and engaging show that is funny, thought-provoking, and moving." City Pages

"Vasa Lisa will definitely fill your hunger for a great story and a wonderful theatrical production." Metro Magazine

As You Like It

"Lear de Bessonet's quick-paced creation not only wrestles plenty of laughs, but also gets to the deep heart of the play." City Pages

"Ten Thousand Things' production of Shakespeare's sunny comedy finds a cleansing spirit of nature and love." Star Tribune

"top-notch production, filled with love and laughter, the bittersweet tang of longing and the redemptive power of possibility." Pioneer Press

"…a perfect 'As You Like It.' There isn’t a false effect anywhere." howwastheshow.com

Il Campiello

"This might be the most fun you have in the theater all fall." Star Tribune

"Ten Thousand Things hits again with 'Il Campiello'." City Pages

Man of La Mancha

"Man of La Mancha reaches into the mind, heart, and soul in a way that all the flashy sets, cast of thousands, and bold, auditorium-filling voices never manage." City Pages

"...this 'La Mancha' feels like a new play, its essential ideas immediate and constantly consuming our attention with fresh and vigorous assaults." Star Tribune

"...a fine and moving interpretation of 'Man of La Mancha' that loses no power in its compact telling." Pioneer Press

Doubt, A Parable

"Ten Thousand Things' sharp, taut production of John Patrick Shanley's parable on modernity and tradition is a must-see." Star Tribune

"The conflict of flesh and blood versus ideas and convictions is brought to thought-provoking life in Ten Thousand Things Theater's production." Pioneer Press

"A sizzling 'Doubt' by Ten Thousand Things...Wingert's fierce performance is a must-see." Twin Cities Daily Planet

"...absolutely mesmerizing." City Pages

Life's a Dream

"Ten Thousand Things' members do so many things well that it's perilous to say 'this is what they do best.' I've made that claim for their Shakespeare. But 'Dream' shows a rich love for the allegorical fable." Star Tribune

"...a clear, crisp, comprehensible telling of the tale...Ten Thousand Things' stripped-down style - no set, minimal costumes, audiences seated on all sides of the performers with no theatrical lighthing - drills right to the core." Pioneer Press

"...Michelle Hensley's able direction keep it all clear and direct...The show could easily get bogged down in the philosophical underpinnings that drive the plot, but instead they all lead to the show's stunning finale." City Pages

"This is an engaging production with uniformly strong performances by the kind of dream cast that the company always rounds up. TC Daily Planet.

Stones In His Pockets

"With director Michelle Hensley, these two actors carve out giddily distinctive work, using constant metamorphosis to elicit laughs, despair, vacuity, and a refreshing, enlivening pointlessness when things are steaming along. " minnpost.com

"Ten Thousand Things continues its recent hot streak with "Stones in His Pockets," Marie Jones' examination of lost and found hope in a depressed Irish village. In the hands of veteran performers Steve Epp and Jim Lichtscheidl, the bare stage comes alive with a bevy of quick-but-fully-realized characters." City Pages

Othello

"Directors Michelle Hensley and Sonja Parks have put together a gripping, muscular staging. Luverne Seifert's Iago swaggers with bluff confidence-a vulgar and oily user full of vengeful menace. As the Moor, Ansa Akyea imposes with his powerful physical carriage-regal and noble-and snappish emotions." Star Tribune

"Last year when I was writing an article on the history of Twin Cities theater, I interviewed a number of established local directors, actors, and writers. One of the questions I asked was, "What local theater company are you especially excited about?" The answer I heard more often than any other was Ten Thousand Things. Now I understand why." Twin Cities Daily Planet

Raskol

Raskol gives new life and light to Dostoevsky. The company has streamlined the tale, filled it with color and light, sprinkled it with music and melody and given a classic tale a tempo that is familiar and yet new." Pioneer Press

Ten Thousand Things' reimagining of that novel, Raskol, delivers music, humor, and wrenching depth...This production feels as alive, and relevant, as if it had been created from scratch..." City Pages

"...a masterful staging...a fast-moving and surprisingly comic swirl. The performances are uniformly terrific. Particular kudos must go to Michelle Hensley's deft and intelligent staging." howwastheshow.com

"True to form, Raskol is a taut, surprisingly funny script that cuts to the essence of Crime and Punishment." Jaime Kleiman, mnartists.org

"When Twin Cities actors put on a play for female prisoners, the inmates coud relate - this was an in-the-big-house staging of Crime and Punishment." Star Tribune

Endgame

"The resonance was achingly inescapable...Wordplay crackles, the pace is always insistent...” Star Tribune

"Ten Thousand Things puts on crucial, national-level theater, and this constricting mind-maze tempts mightily." City Pages

"...Bellamy uses his voice like a symphony - now tremulous, now percussive, now muted, now warm. Christiana Clark give Clov an intriguing blend of resignation and resolve..." Pioneer Press

Twelfth Night

"Ten Thousand Things upsets the natural order with a fun, innovative approach to Twelfth Night...Yet another reason why Ten Thousand Things' work with Shakespeare always deserves a studied look." Star Tribune

"Ten Thousand Things creates accessible, interesting, joyful Shakespeare in Twelfth Night...Director Michelle Hensley and her company embrace Shakespeare's language, coaxing out its knowing humor with splashes of color and simple, evocative images." Pioneer Press

"This Ten Thousand Things production of Twelfth Night, burrows into all the ambiguity and emerges with a trove of funny, moving treasures." City Pages

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