The reviews are in for ‘Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays'”

Hennepin Theatre Trust and Frank Theatre are both jumping into the gay marriage debate with the staging of “Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays.”

The show, which runs through June 16, features a series of vignettes that celebrate the courage to be in a relationship. It’s being produced in cooperation with Minnesotans United for All Families, the official statewide campaign working to defeat the constitutional amendment that would exclude gays and lesbians from marriage in Minnesota.

According to these reviews you’re likely to have a great time… if you support gay marriage.


Mark Rhein and Jim Lichtscheidl in “Standing On Ceremony”

Photo: Karen Nelson

From William Randall Beard at the Star Tribune:

The plays are by turns thought-provoking, politically astute and bitingly hilarious. Frank Theatre Artistic Director Wendy Knox offers sharp direction to her ensemble of six actors, playing 26 characters. This is one of the smartest, most satisfying evenings of theater I’ve experienced in quite some time.


The pieces are solid, deeply felt, always entertaining. Will dyed-in-the-wool homophobics be swayed by the material? Probably not, but Standing On Ceremony effectively keeps this vital issue alive. It’s well worth seeing.


Shawn Hamilton and Jim Lichtscheidl

Photo: Karen Nelson

From Sophie Kerman at

….the conservative characters are not presented with as much compassion as the homosexuals and their allies. While some of these portrayals are funny, biting, and utterly recognizable – as in the re-enactment of a real-life Facebook debate in Doug Wright’s On Facebook – others revert to familiar stereotypes of conservative paranoia and denial. If this play has a flaw, it is that it prepares audiences very well for blatant, outspoken conservatism, but perhaps less well for the more subtle homophobia that one might encounter in the workplace or a social situation.

From Ed Huyck at City Pages:

On balance, Standing on Ceremony works when the politics are left in the background — still there, but not our main focus, as in the sweet, moving closer, “Pablo & Andrew at the Altar of Words.” In Jose Rivera’s piece, two men share self-written vows that illustrate all that they love about each other. That’s something theater can do that all the political statements, billboards, and bumper stickers can’t: show us the powerful, beautiful, brilliant love at the heart of the issue.


Jim Lichtscheidl and Laura Adams

Photo: Karen Nelson

From Kathleen Watson of Lavender Magazine:

As a whole, the plays provided the perfect balance of side-splitting laughter, gut-wrenching honesty, and loving tenderness which reflects the constantly changing emotional dynamic of marriage.

Standing on Ceremony is a must-see for anyone who cares about marriage equality. Both inspiring and honest, these short plays provide a night of entertainment centered around an issue very near and dear to our hearts: our right to love.

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