Monthly Archives: September 2005

Guthrie Becomes Ikea

Sometime after the new Guthrie Theater opens on the riverbank near downtown Minneapolis, a drama devotee may exclaim during a spate of cultural chitchat after attending an Ibsen play, “ It is remarkable how Hedda Gabler’s superfluidity as a mask for her hyperaestivation was so elegantly amplified by that sleek Ikea divan and floor lamp as seen on stage in act three.” Which could draw the response,” And that Ikea writing desk? I have to drive out to Ikea tomorrow to buy one.”

Will this happen, thanks to an Ikea upcoming deal with the Guthrie management to purchase branding rights for the theater? Did Ikea drive the idea for those dark blue metal wall panels that went on the building in its early construction? Soon, will we see those supersized bright yellow letters on the side of the building?

And where could this lead to? Will a deal with NASCAR put Pennzoil patches on Hamlet’s cloak, or a Firestone logo on a spoiler fin mounted on an on-stage Elizabethan carriage?