Off-Leash Area: Contemporary Performance Works

A nonprofit organization

$22,197 Raised by 156 Donors

99% complete

$22,482 Goal

To Become a SUSTAINING SUPPORTER, Donate here, or through our website by clicking HERE!


For the past 23 years Off-Leash Area’s mission has been to create and present original cross-disciplinary and risk-taking productions and programming throughout the Twin Cities metro area, through which we enrich our local community and nurture independent voices within the performing arts.

With nearly 30 original productions earning numerous awards, and widespread recognition for our innovative community programs, Off-Leash Area has greeted each new year with optimism, enthusiasm, and endless creativity.

        Afterwind - 2015                       The Time Is - 2019                  i want to change the subject, again- 2021


Since the pandemic forced us to close our performance space, the Off-Leash Art Box, we have pivoted to find innovative ways to continue our programming, this time as Art Un-boxed!

  • One exciting new program is Off-Kilter, a community program to support artists with disabilities. Keep an eye out for our first Off-Kilter Cabaret in June 2022, with performances around the theme “Organ Recital.”

  • Co-director Jennifer Ilse has returned to teaching dance to a range of students, from the very young to seasoned professionals, allowing her to re-engage her community.

  • Co-director Paul Herwig has initiated his Projector Bike, allowing him to bring live animated projection art out of the theater and into the world.


We persevered and found ways to safely continue to create and present original work during unprecedented pandemic conditions.

  • Co-director Paul Herwig used the shuttered Art Box to immerse himself in studio to create a multi-media living digital art mural and performance called i’d like to change the subject, again, presented virtually and as part of the Virtual MN Fringe Festival.

  • We determinedly put forth our gorgeous 22nd MainStage production, Mulier Dierum: Live at Caponi Art Park. Co-director Jennifer Ilse directed and led the production, collaborating with the 40-voice See Change Treble Choir. Jennifer led the 50+ artistic team through the pandemic, rehearsing individually with each of the 8 women dancers and recording individual choir member’s voices to be assembled together for the final production. The result was a powerful and seamless performance illuminated by co-director Paul Herwig’s live animation projection and design, set among the trees and under the stars.

Mulier Dierum, 2021 Photography by Bill Cameron


Now we are excited to move forward with our 2022 MainStage production, Minotaur. This mask and movement performance uses the myth of the menacing creature, half-man and half-bull, who lured women to their deaths in his dark labyrinth. The show, exploring different gender presentations and their relationship to masculine power, will be fantastical, dramatic, and utterly otherworldly. Not only will the performance feature powerfully transformative mask-work led by co-director Paul Herwig, a graduate of the world famous Lecoq School of Movement and Theater in Paris, but it will also include the atmospheric soundscape of incredible collaborator Queen Drea


Your participation is vital! It takes $500 a month to sustain our tiny organization, maintaining the day-to-day work of the small platform that makes our big projects and programming possible. We’re looking for 20 supporters to commit to a monthly donation of just $25- the cost of a take-out meal- only instead of sending us food, you are feeding powerful creative work!

Your generous contribution, in whatever amount is meaningful to you, will ensure that we can continue to pay artists, offer resources, and provide a solid foundation for the exciting programming you expect from us, all while remaining flexible and sustainable.

There is light ahead, and your 2021 GiveMN investment in Off-Leash Area's 2022 programming will guide our way.

Thank you! - Jennifer Ilse & Paul Herwig

Co-Artistic Directors - Off-Leash Area: Contemporary Performance Works

Organization Data


Organization name

Off-Leash Area: Contemporary Performance Works

Tax id (EIN)



Arts & Culture

Significantly impacted by pandemic

Significantly impacted by pandemic


3540 34TH AVE S
MINNEAPOLIS, MN 55406-2733



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