Weddings at the Guthrie Theater

When you hear about weddings at the Guthrie Theater, you definitely picture something showstopping, right?

Showing off Minneapolis to out of town guests is easy at the Guthrie.

I have loved photographing events and weddings at the Guthrie – from couple portraits and engagement photos to large events over multiple floors. Some of the unique features of the Guthrie include:

• Modern, striking architecture and color, from deep blues to bold yellows.
• Multiple spaces and floors for a variety of events.
• Panoramic views of the Mississippi river and St Anthony Main riverfront, as well as the stone arch bridge.
• Outdoor ceremony space at the endless bridge overlooking the Mississippi river.
• Indoor ceremony spaces, including the Amber Box room with floor to ceiling yellow windows overlooking the river.
• Professional dramatic theater lighting in black box theater and throughout.

guthrie theater wedding winter minneapolis photographer
First dance with all the theater lighting

But more important than any of the actual amenities, a wedding at the Guthrie Theater tells your out-of-town-guests that Minneapolis holds a place in the modern world of theater and architecture. It tells your family that they are in for an elegant adventure of color and light and space.

Its a space that was designed to be amazing, and it delivers.

When I photograph events at the Guthrie, its so important to incorporate the space into the images – the bold yellow of the Amber Box on the 9th floor, the hazy blue of the Endless Bridge, the stark narrow 4 story tall escalator – every nook is a new opportunity for storytelling.

Guthrie theater wedding reception first dance
These two brides took their first dance under the light of a theater moon in the black box reception space at the Guthrie. This is an amazing space for LGBT weddings in Minneapolis!

And that is ultimately the purpose of any space – to showcase the stories being told there.

These are examples of what photography coverage you can expect from me for weddings at the Guthrie Theater.


Q: How do you keep things from being so yellow?
A: I don’t! The space is yellow, the photos should show that as well. The longer answer is that use a variety of lighting techniques to make sure that people don’t look too yellow even as they are part of the space.

Yellow light bounces around the Amber Box of the Guthrie theater.

Q: Is it hard to plan a wedding around the theater schedule?
A: It can be complicated and it seems to vary by the year. In the past, the Guthrie has reserved certain times of year for events, but most planning can’t be finalized until the final theater schedule is announced.

Q: Can we take engagement/family/personal photos in the Guthrie?
A: So far, the Guthrie has been amazing at keeping their common spaces open to the public, including for photography.

Because they are so generous with their spaces, there are a few responsibilities for people who use the space for family or personal photos. Generally, I check with the schedule to make sure that we won’t conflict with showtimes or special events. Also, because it is open to the public, we can’t use tripods or lightstands. So, yes, if we stay respectful, it will stay available!

Guthrie theater minneapolis mn
This image took 20 minutes and a 1/4 mile run from the Guthrie to finish, but it was worth it to showcase the couple on the 9th floor during their reception, where they had been married just hours before.

Q: Isn’t it really dark in places? How do you show off the space with all those shadows?
A: Yep! The Guthrie is an operating theater, so the lighting is professional in all spaces, and that feeling needs to be preserved in your photographs.

That moody and shadowy quality is part of what makes it such an amazing space for your guests – seeing the skyline in the evening, letting spaces go into total shadow. Keeping the dark moodiness of the space is vital for things like a candle-lit ceremony, or dancing against all the theater lights! Again, this is a reason for nuanced use of light and space to bring the right clarity to people while making sure the space feels right in photos.

Q: Can I see more examples of photos you’ve taken at the Guthrie?
A: Of course – here are my recent blog posts that feature the Guthrie!