Hennepin Theatre Trust in Minneapolis announces new leadership

Man stands on stage with ladder
Todd Duesing has been named the next President and CEO of Hennepin Theatre Trust. He begins his new role July 10.
Courtesy of Hennepin Theatre Trust

Hennepin Theatre Trust has found its next leader. The performing arts organization manages several historic theaters and event spaces in downtown Minneapolis. It announced Monday that Todd Duesing will be its next president and CEO.  

Duesing comes to Minneapolis from Ohio, where he currently serves as the vice president and chief operating officer at Cincinnati Arts Association. Duesing says his time there has informed how he will approach his new position in Minnesota.  

“I think there's a lot of similarities between Cincinnati and Minnesota and Minneapolis,” Duesing told MPR News.  

“I will say that in Minneapolis, it feels like there's a much broader selection of arts and entertainment.” 

Grow the Future of Public Media

MPR News is supported by Members. Gifts from individuals power everything you find here. Make a gift of any amount today to become a Member!

His career in arts management has included securing Cincinnati as the host of a major international music event, the World Choir Games, in 2012 while with Cincinnati Arts Association.  

“Hennepin Theatre Trust has made an excellent choice for its next president and CEO,” said president of the Cincinnati Arts Association Stephen A. Loftin in a press release.  

Duesing will be replacing current president and CEO Mark Nerenhausen, who announced his plans to retire earlier this year.  

“I feel confident that, aided by the passionate, dedicated and thoughtful professionals at Hennepin Theatre Trust, Todd will continue to propel Hennepin Theatre Trust as the driving force of entertainment and culture in Minneapolis, benefiting our communities for generations to come,” Nerenhausen said.  

Duesing comes into his new role at Hennepin Theatre Trust while Minneapolis is still in the midst of a racial awakening after the murder of George Floyd. While Duesing admits the situations are not the same, he does remember being an arts administrator during the 2001 Cincinnati civil unrest in the wake of the killing of Timothy Thomas, a young Black man shot by police.  

“That was a pivotal moment for us in Cincinnati,” Duesing said.  

“Because I had that particular experience early on ... the idea of building diverse audiences and inclusion is ingrained in my professional experience.”  

Duesing is inheriting his position after the Theatre Trust announced last fall it had paid back its loans to the City of Minneapolis over a decade in advance and now owns the Pantages, State and Orpheum theaters outright.  

"I think it's important to emphasize that the arts not only brings people together for enjoyable experiences, but we're an economic driver and business contributing, particularly in city centers, and in a community as a whole,” Duesing said. 

Duesing begins as CEO and president on July 10.  

Correction (June 5, 2023): An earlier version of this story misidentified the World Choir Games.

This activity is made possible in part by the Minnesota Legacy Amendment‘s Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund.