2009 Honorees List

We hope you were able to make the party!  Theater goers and theater professionals alike were proud of their community at the fifth annual Ivey Awards.  The following are 2009 Ivey Awards honorees.  Check out the photos of those who made their debut, or return to, the red carpet.


Little Rock , 1957 by Youth Performance Company

Tyrone & Ralph by the History Theatre

Old Wicked Songs by Theatre Latte Da


Luverne Seifert, Actor

     800 Words:  The Transmigration of Philip Dick by Workhaus Theatre Collective

Christina Baldwin and Jennifer Baldwin Peden, Actors

Sister Stories by Nautilus Music-Theater

Greg Banks, Direction

     Romeo and Juliet by the Children’s Theatre Company

Greta Oglesby, Actor

     Caroline or Change by the Guthrie Theater

Sean Healey, Sound Design

     Shipwrecked by the Jungle Theater

Sonja Parks, Actor

     No Child by Pillsbury House Theatre

Chris Griffith, Props Puppet Design

     Herschel and the Hannukah Goblins by Minnesota Jewish Theatre Company


EMERGING ARTIST           Emily Gonyou Halaas

Emily’s work has been seen on a number of Twin Cities stages this year in such productions as My Name is Rachel Corrie at Emigrant Theatre, Passage of Dreams at Theatre Latte Da, Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde at Park Square, 1001 at Mixed Blood and Vinegar Tom at Frank Theatre. 

Past theatre credits include Third at the Guthrie Theater, The Deception at Theatre de la Jeune Lune and La Jolla Playhouse; Trying at Park Square; King Lear at Starting Gate Productions; Reservoir Bitches, Patty Red Pants and Messalina at Red Eye; Almost Exactly Like Us at Gremlin Theatre; and House of Yes, Lily’s Plastic Purple Purse and Green Eggs and Ham at Children’s Theatre Company.

In New York she has performed with Unbound Theatre.   She received her training at Circle in the Square Theater School.


Dudley Riggs’ contributions to Twin Cities theatre place him firmly among the “founding fathers” of the performing arts in Minnesota. The Brave New Workshop is the third oldest theatre in the Twin Cities, and has been operating continuously since 1958.

Dudley’s artistic achievements are broad and significant in scope. A former Ringling Bros., Barnum and Bailey circus aerialist, Dudley formed the Instant Theatre Company in New York City with fellow circus and vaudeville performers. By incorporating audience suggestions into their sketches, the Instant Theatre Company was able to successfully produce unique comedy shows that differed every night. Dudley is recognized as one of the individuals who invented the performance form of satirical sketch comedy and improvisation.

After touring nationally, with stops in Chicago, Washington D.C., and Los Angeles, Dudley put down roots in Minneapolis in 1958. Originally conceived as a way to bring patrons to his European-style coffee house, Dudley teamed with then Star Tribune reporters Irv Letofsky and Dan Sullivan, cartoonist Dick Guindon, and others to write and perform satirical revues. In 1961, the Brave New Workshop name was added, and in 1965, the Workshop moved to its current home at 2605 Hennepin Avenue. Dudley ran the day-to-day operations of the Brave New Workshop, along with an auxiliary performance space, the ETC, for 40 years.

He introduced satire and improvisation to the Twin Cities with shows that contained sketches, black outs, silent pieces, slapstick, monologues, music, film, and video.   According to actor and writer Dane Stauffer who performed with BNW, Dudley created theater that illuminates and skewer the times in which we live – with topical satire and social and political commentary. “He felt we weren't doing our job if there weren't at least a few complaints from patrons after a show.”


Dudley’s theatres have served as a talent incubator and training ground for hundreds of actors and directors in the Twin Cities. Prominent company members and performers at theatres large and small cite Dudley’s theatres on their resumes, and in fact, the bio of virtually every working performer in the Twin Cities includes at least one credit from the BNW, the ETC theatre, or the Brave New Institute School of improvisation. Many Brave New Workshop writers and performers have gone on to greater success in the national arena – including now the US Senate!