Jeune Lune Goes Dark
After a tumultuous period of shake-ups in the company's creative team and word of mounting debts, Theatre de la Jeune Lune's Board of Directors has voted to put the company's building up for sale and dissolve the group as it is currently organized.
A statement from Board president Bruce Neary expressed regret but acknowledged Jeune Lune's responsibility to donors, staff, and creditors, saying, "The Board is committed to an orderly shut-down."
While the news is a massive disappointment to the Twin Cities arts community, it comes as no great surprise following word of the company's financial woes. Jeune Lune entered into a period of artistic flux after receiving the 2005 Tony award for Best Regional Theater, but in the last couple of years has mounted stellar works including The Deception and Figaro.
Artistic Director Dominique Serrand, in a separate statement, indicated a desire to find a new paradigm for reaching audiences. In the official statement, he noted, "We never sought nor desired to be an institution." He later added, "Today, we begin imagining a new way of working."
Theatergoers will certainly look forward to seeing the fruits of this re-imagining, though for the moment the loss of this distinctive and frequently brilliant theater will be a heavy blow. Jeune Lune's artistic legacy will be talked about, locally and nationally, for decades to come. Less fortunate, perhaps, will be the analysis and conjecture about how such a popular and innovative company couldn't keep its financial boat afloat.