2018-2019 playlabs

PLAYlabs are experiences that provide a chance for GREAT to be brave and take bold artistic risks as we venture into the new.  We need to take risks because we believe you can’t create something new without going somewhere that makes you a little bit uncomfortable. We’re always asking questions. We’re never satisfied with the status quo. It’s the secret to how we find the extraordinary. If you like a little risk with your theater experience, PLAYlabs is for you. The Great River Educational Arts Theatre and the Learning Lab Theatre go hand in hand and each play a role in achieving the vision of building life skills through quality arts education.

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PLAYlabs: How To Have Fun In A Civil War
Saturday, October 6th at 7:00pm
Helgeson Learning Lab Theatre

Tickets: $10 adults, $7 students
Tickets will also be available at the door

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Minnesota-based Somali playwright and performer Ifrah Mansour revisits her childhood memories during the 1991 Somali civil war to confront violent history with humor, and provide a voice for the global refugee stories of children. How to Have Fun in a Civil War, is a one-act multimedia play, which explores war from an idyllic viewpoint of a seven-year-old Somali refugee girl. The play weaves puppetry, poetry, videos and multiple oral stories taken from community interviews to tell a captivating story about resilience while pushing audience to engage in a healing process that is still raw for survivors of the war.  Best enjoyed by ages 6 and up. Runtime is approximately 55 minutes. Post-show discussion to follow.

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This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts board operation support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.


PLAYlabs: The Night of the Living Dead
2nd Annual Radio Drama produced with and live on KVSC Radio

Saturday, October 27th 8:00pm
Helgeson Learning Lab Theatre

Tickets: $15 each

Live Performance at the Helgeson Learning Lab Theatre and broadcast on KVSC 88.1FM and streamed live at KVSC.org

GREAT Theatre and KVSC 88.1FM at St. Cloud State University are teaming up to bring Night of The Living Dead live to the stage and radio. Fall out from a satellite probe shot to Venus returns to Earth carrying a mysterious radiation that transforms the unburied dead into flesh-eating zombies. Seven people trapped in an isolated farmhouse, held hostage by the ravenous ghouls, begin to turn on each other as the dead encroach. A gripping terror-filled monochromatic play that brings all the fright of the cult classic to life. This blend of thrilling horror laced with touches of black humor envelops the audience in the action and unfolds into a shocking theatrical ending. Join our cast of voice actors and live sound effects artists as they recreate one of the most famous radio plays of all time – just in time for Halloween!

PLAYlabs: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime
A co-production with the St. Cloud State University Theatre Department. 

Friday, February 15th at 7:30pm
Saturday, February 16th at 7:30pm
Sunday, February 17th at 2pm
Friday, February 22nd at 7:30pm
Saturday, February 23rd at 7:30pm
Sunday, February 24th at 2pm

SCSU Performing Arts Center
620 6th Street South, St. Cloud

Tickets: $15 each
General Admission

Parking will be available in the parking garage at 4th Ave and 6th St. South. Patrons will get an automated ticket when the enter the ramp and then, at the performance, will be given a voucher card to allow them to exit the ramp for free after the show.

PLAYlabs: Goodnight Moon
Based on the book for preschool & kindergarten children

Friday, March 8th at 6:30pm
Saturday, March 9th at 10:00am

A play by Chad Henry
Adapted from the book Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd
Produced by special arrangement with HarperCollins

Step into the Great Green Room as one of the most iconic children’s books of all time is brought to life. We all know that Bunny wants to put off going to bed for as long as possible as he says goodbye to every object in sight.  Now a world of imagination is in store for you as Bunny’s bedroom springs to life and we encounter dancing constellations, the cat in the fiddle, and of course, the cow jumping over the moon. "Goodnight Moon" is truly a timeless theater experience the whole family can enjoy. Runtime is approximately one hour.