Meet Some of Our
Jim Lichtscheidl stands outside the McGuire Proscenium
stage at the Guthrie Theater, a place he knows well.
Jim Lichtscheidl is a very unassuming looking guy. He's someone you'd walk past with nary a second look on the
street or in the grocery store, simply figuring he's another person you'll never see again. But if you've seen any shows
at the Guthrie Theater since 1998, chances are you've seen him a LOT, but never really noticed.
In the summer of 2013, Lichtscheidl, a 1992 graduate from Minnesota State Mankato, appeared as "Karl/Steve" in
the Guthrie's Clybourne Park. By his estimations, it was his 29th show at the esteemed theatre in Minneapolis.
His 30th comes later in the year with Cousin Vanya.
Not bad for a guy who went to Minnesota State to become a speech teacher and, after he got cast in numerous shows
there, took Paul Hustoles' advice and became a Theatre major.
He has, quite literally, never looked back. And he has been noticed.
Lichtscheidl admits to being a bit of a chameleon. While not having "movie star looks," it's the depths to which
he explores and becomes a character that speaks to his ability to disappear in them.
If there was an "ah ha!" moment in his career, it was probably while creating at the Brave New Workshop early in his
post-college career. It was then, more than ever, he said, that he learned the importance of being in the moment, of living
the scene each time anew on stage, even if it was the hundredth or two hundredth time it had been done. It was also when he
realized how much he loved to create, a skill that served him well when his original choreographed piece, "Knock!," won
an Ivey Award for "Best of the Fringe."
Another skill that comes naturally but has been honed is the ability to play more than one character, sometimes at the same time.
As a "Clown" in "The 39 Steps," that can mean being several characters in one scene, often at the same time, and having the ability
to invest just enough to creating the character separation. It demands a lighter touch, he noted, and for awhile it was what
made him known in the Minneapolis theatre community.
Lichtscheidl is proud to say he puts "Actor" on his tax form, with it the only job he has needed to hold for quite some time. Since
he was picked out of a Brave New Workshop session and asked to audition for the Guthrie Theater in the late 1990s, he has
searched for and found a home...pretty much right where he started.
He looks back nostalgically at the kid who, when attending a talk back session with Guthrie mainstay Richard Oomes, did NOT
raise his hand when Oomes asked if there were any actors in the crowd. The next time he was asked that in college, he had a
difference response. And has ever since.
Bill McCallum (Dan, left), Jim Lichtscheidl (Steve) and Emily Gunyou Halaas (Lindsey)
in the Guthrie Theater's production of Clybourne Park, by Bruce Norris. Directed by Lisa Peterson,
set design by Rachel Hauck, costume design by David Zinn and lighting design by Mark Barton.
Photo by Michael Brosilow.
View a video interview with Jim here.
• The Medora Musical 2013: Technicians Matt Gilbertson & Dana Kleiman,
performers Emily Walter and Lauren Mikeal Weber
• Bismarck, ND, teacher/director Erin Drevlow
• Globe-trotting activist Chris Bell
• Minnesota State Moorhead chair Craig Ellingson
• Rapid City graphic artist and actor Jeff Smith
• Our man on the road, Corey Krolikowski
• Taking the stage by storm, Jacleen Olson
• Recognize the voice over? That's Brent Teclaw
• Eriq Nelson is The Dude
• Theatre technicians Allen Weeks and Mick Coughlan said.
—Mike Lagerquist, August 2013
If you have questions or comments,
click on Mike's name above.