History Theatre

Support for Vital Educational Programs
and the Theatre’s 2018-2019 Season


A scene from neighbors,
a production funded by the Olseth Family Foundation.

Education Programs

The Family History Project

Early in 2019, the History Theatre debuted “neighbors”, a play developed for elementary school age children and funded by the Olseth Family Foundation. The goal with this project is threefold; highlight the similarities of all immigrant stories, explore the uniqueness of cultural diversity and introduce youth to live theatre.  The show will then travel to schools around the Twin Cities.


The play follows four children living in St. Paul who come together and begin to discuss how each of their families settled in Minnesota. In the process, the children conjure up ancestors to fill in the gaps of their family journeys. The resulting stories take the audience to Somalia, Norway, Myanmar, and Guatemala.


What unfolds is an emotional and joyful interaction between children and cultures illustrating what can happen when neighbors are given the opportunity to share another side of themselves.


In researching this new piece, History Theater staff spoke to teachers and administrators, to students and to their families, so that the play might reflect the communities, schools, and students that they serve. Based in part on this information and on additional interviews between St. Paul youngsters and family elders, the playwright has created a fun and moving piece about family, about history and what makes a place a home.


Live Theatre for All

A portion of funding will expand access to the Morning Matinees program, which provides discount tickets to underserved schools and youth community groups. In addition, Seats to Stage, a playwriting residency program presently offered at five traditional metro high schools, will be further expanded to a Chinese-language immersion school. A team of seventeen experienced teaching artists will lead approximately 200 participants through a creative arts residency.  Moreover, each participant will be provided with a ticket and transportation to see a live History Theatre play.

2018 – 2019 Season

“The Great Society” and “Teen Idol-The Bobby Vee Story” began the 201-19 season playing to rave reviews. The winter and spring season will bring three World Premieres by three Minnesota playwrights; “Stewardess” by Kira Obolensky, “The Sisters of Peace” by Doris Bailey and “Dirty Business” by Laurie Flanigan Hegge.

“Stewardess” is set in 1958 against the backdrop of the Civil Rights Movement and birth of feminism, tells the story of how one woman, Mary Pat Lafferty fought against Northwest Orient Airlines to make-over the lives of the women in the airline industry.  “The Sisters of Peace”  portrays the story of four Catholic nuns and real-life sisters who were legendary peace activists, standing up for social justice and taking to the streets of the Twin Cities.   Finally, “Dirty Business” is a gripping musical thriller set in 1939 about the ingenious Betty Pack who, along with three other women, changed the course of World War II.

To learn more about the History Theater, click here: HistoryTheatre.com


A scene from All The Way, a History Theatre
production from last season.