YPC was established in 1989 by Jacie Knight, in a special arrangement with Minneapolis’ Theatre in the Round. Given a desk in a shared office and access to rehearsal space, Knight produced twelve shows in three years, all performed by (and most written and composed by) artists 21 and younger. The company immediately established a reputation among young artists as the place to do smart, original, professional-quality work. YPC also quickly developed a loyal audience of school groups who appreciated the innovative, bright aesthetic as much as the affordable ticket price. In 1993, YPC became an independent tax-exempt organization and moved into its own leased office and rehearsal space.
For twenty years, Youth Performance Company has been empowering young people and teaching core values of creativity, responsibility, and quality—while simultaneously providing Twin Cities families with affordable theater for youth. In its two decades of programming, YPC has directly served more than 17,000 young people of widely varied socio-economic backgrounds. Each year, a racially diverse audience of approximately 15,000 people attends YPC’s theater productions. Alumni of the company have gone on to become accomplished leaders in the arts, business, education, and public service fields.
See the full list of past productions.