Jungle Theater's Founder & Artistic Director Bain Boehlke to Retire in 2015

July 22
11:01 AM 2014
Jungle Theater's Founder & Artistic Director Bain Boehlke to Retire in 2015The Jungle Theater announced today that Founder Bain Boehlke will step down from his current duties as Artistic Director, effective June 30, 2015. An interim director will be appointed while the Jungle Board of Directors searches for a permanent replacement. Margo Gisselman will continue in her role as Executive Director.

Warroad native Boehlke - who turns 75 on July 23 - has been a beloved and vital member of the Twin Cities theater community for more than 50 years. Since the Jungle's inception 25 years ago, Boehlke has directed, designed and/or appeared in most of the theater's productions. He has also worked in theaters around the country including Arizona Theatre Company, Louisville Children's Theatre and Honolulu Theatre for Youth. Before the Jungle, Boehlke was Associate Artistic Director and a leading actor at the Children's Theater Company for 13 years. In 1978, Boehlke founded Trinity Films and produced the documentary Dietrich Bonhoeffer: Memories and Perspectives. He appeared as "Mr. Mohra" in the Coen brothers' film, Fargo. He was the 2011 recipient of Ivey's Lifetime Achievement Award, honored as the 2009 Distinguished Artist of the Year by the McKnight Foundation, and in 2001, received the McKnight Fellowship for Theater Arts.

Boehlke said he plans to travel but also intends to remain connected to the theater he founded in 1991. "As we get ready to mark our 25th Anniversary Season, it seemed like a good time to take leave. I'm so proud of the Jungle. I'm retiring when the theater is at the summit of its artistic and administrative excellence. Our plays continue to get raves by critics and theater-goers. We've completely remodeled the inside and outside of the building. The institution is stronger financially than it's ever been, and our circle of committed friends and supporters continues to grow. I have every confidence that the Jungle's future is secure," he said.

Jungle Board Chair Jeffrey Bores said, "Bain has had a huge impact on the Jungle and the theater community at large. His commitment to a larger vision and high artistic standards leaves the Jungle on a solid foundation, and the Twin Cities a better place. He will be sorely missed but we're positive his legacy will continue."

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