Standout performance: New murals get convergence-continuum Theater noticed

Since August 2002, convergence-continuum Theater Company has been producing experimental and edgy theater by living playwrights in the rather unremarkable red brick Liminis Theater building on Scranton Road near Brevier Avenue in Tremont’s Lincoln Heights area.

But for 20 years, there has been nothing to beckon theatergoers to the black box theater that is attached to the historic Emerson Taylor mansion (The 150-year-old mansion is reportedly the second-oldest building in Tremont and now serves as the theater’s green room, prop storage area, dressing rooms, and offices).

The Liminis in Tremont will get a new mural by Fade Resistant Artist“It says ‘theater’ on it, but it didn’t have any sort of presence that reflected the vivaciousness of what was going on inside,” says theater board member-at-large Jean Leathers of the 120-year-old storefront that now serves as the theater. “This is a hidden secret—people just don’t know about it.”

That has been changing in the past week, as convergence-continuum teamed up with Graffiti HeArt artist Miguel Garcia, aka Fade ResistantArtist, to paint two murals—one paying homage to actors and playwrights on the 40-foot-wide by 15-foot-tall Scranton front, and one depicting patrons waiting in line on the Brevier Avenue side—for a total of about 800 square feet.

“It enlivens the spot—it drives attention to it,” says Leathers of the mural project. “It enlivens the neighborhood, which is going through so much revitalization right now. The whole impetus for the project was to raise the profile of the theater.”

The Scranton front pays homage to the actors and playwrights with a mural depicting a scene from a play as though one is peering in through a wall that has been torn open, while the Brevier mural shows about two dozen patrons waiting in line behind a velvet rope.

Cory Molner, convergence-continuum’s executive artistic director, says the depiction of actors, playwrights, and audience members sums up the theater experience well.

“We were trying to come up with a way to bring the [theater] inside out,” he explains. “When you have a plain building that [just] says ‘theater,’ you don’t know what that is. The people who get recognized in the theater are generally the actors, but the story isn’t complete without the playwrights. And the piece is not complete without the audience—there is no theater if the audience doesn’t come.”

As Garcia finishes the murals this week, Molner says he already sees a new life for the theater. “It really gives the building character and life,” he says. “The building has been known for 20 years as a nondescript red box, and we really wanted to give it character and vibrancy.”

For two decades, convergence-continuum Theater has focused on producing timely works. “We focus on living playwrights to evoke more relevant and newer topics, and we often focus on marginalized communities,” Molner explains. “Our goal is to do shows you’ll rarely see anywhere else in Cleveland.”

Molner says the convergence-continuum Theater has a loyal following, but it hasn’t gained a lot of attention in its 20 years. “We’re a little-known theater, and we’re trying to change that,” he says. “That is our goal—to do shows you rarely see anywhere else in Cleveland.”

The convergence-continuum Theater, 2438 Scranton Road, presents Topher Payne’s “Angry Fags,” now through Saturday, July 30. Jennifer Haley’s “NEIGHBORHOOD 3: Requisition of Doom” opens Friday, Aug. 26 and runs through Sept. 17. Click here for descriptions and full 2022 season.

Read more articles by Karin Connelly Rice.

Karin Connelly Rice enjoys telling people's stories, whether it's a promising startup or a life's passion. Over the past 20 years she has reported on the local business community for publications such as Inside Business and Cleveland Magazine. She was editor of the Rocky River/Lakewood edition of In the Neighborhood and was a reporter and photographer for the Amherst News-Times. At Fresh Water she enjoys telling the stories of Clevelanders who are shaping and embracing the business and research climate in Cleveland.