What is Cabal?

Cabal is a live performance in which the audience participates in the action of the show by doing large-scale, hands-on puzzles. These puzzles are interspersed with theatrical sequences (much like cut scenes in a video game) and the story is revealed through this combination of performance and puzzles. 

Have you done this before?

Yes, Walking Shadow has created two previous plays with puzzles, 1926 Pleasant (2006) and Saboteur (2011).

Has anyone else done this before?

As far as we know, we’re the only company in history to combine theater and puzzles in this way.

Is Cabal an audience participatory show?

Yes, but not in the way you might be used to. The audience isn't expected to act or converse with the performers. You won't be required to dance or wear funny hats. You just get to do awesome puzzles.

Do I have to role-play?

No. You won’t be asked to take on a specific role. You’re just yourself. The actors won’t put you on the spot.

Is this an escape room or a play?

Cabal is a kind of show we call a Play with Puzzles. It’s a play: it has actors who perform scenes that you’ll watch. But it also has puzzles and elements that you’ll get to interact with. In that way it’s a little like an escape room. But these puzzles are bigger, and designed for everybody to play as a team, without splitting up. Plus, the puzzles are integrated into the story in a way you don’t usually get in an escape room.

What if puzzles aren't my thing?

You'd be surprised -- you may have just the insight your team will need! But there will be other people at your performance who love figuring out the puzzles, and helping them find solutions can be lots of fun. We won’t put you on the spot. We won’t force you to do anything. You don’t need previous experience with puzzles. You can participate more or less, depending on how you’re feeling.

What kind of puzzles are they?

These are original, large-scale, hands-on puzzles. Not paper-and-pen games, not crossword puzzles, not trivia. The puzzles are big, and built into the environment. Past shows have included a laser maze, dark room full of eggs and bones, and an enormous jigsaw puzzle. Puzzles require the audience to work together as a team.

Is it difficult?

It’s designed to be fun, not difficult. Unlike some escape rooms, there’s no ticking clock, so you won’t run out of time before the end. The puzzles are meant to be clever, not fiendish. Everyone will “win”! 

Is it scary?

Maybe a little. If it were a movie, it’d be more of a mystery or a thriller than a horror flick. The show deals with ancient magic and dark secrets. But there’s no blood or violence.

Is this like Sleep No More?

Only in that it’s an immersive, environmental show. The popular Sleep No More in New York might currently be the most famous interactive show, but the history of site-specific performances is long and varied. While Sleep No More lets you choose your own path from among so many possibilities you can’t possibly encounter them all, Cabal tells a specific story, and you’ll definitely get to see the whole thing. In Cabal, you won’t need to wear a mask, you are allowed to talk with your fellow audience members, and you’ll get to solve big puzzles!

Can I attend more than once?

It’s tricky, because once you know how the puzzles work, you could spoil the discovery for your fellow audience who are experiencing it for the first time. If you think you can keep from giving away the surprises, by all means!

How much territory will we cover?

Cabal takes place in one location. You'll be walking from room to room, but we won't be kidnapping you in a van and taking you anywhere. Total distance traveled will be about 600 feet, all indoors.

Will the audience be moving around a lot?

Cabal does not have standard theatre seats. Audience members move through the space, and will alternate between standing and sitting. You should expect to be on your feet for approximately half of the 90 minute show.

Is the venue wheelchair accessible?

Yes. The entire experience is wheelchair accessible, including the bathrooms.

Will concessions be available at the show?

No. We ask that you bring no food or drink into the performance space. There is a drinking fountain in the building.

Where is Cabal being performed? 

Cabal is being performed at 2010 East Hennepin Ave, just east of Stinson Blvd, between I-35W and Highway 280. This address is shared by several different buildings. Details on our specific location are available when purchasing tickets. If you previously attended Saboteur, please note that this is the same address, but a different building.

Why do I have to buy tickets in advance? Why can’t I just show up?

Because of the hands-on nature of Cabal, it's important to keep the audience small (maximum of 10 people per performance). Most shows will sell out well in advance, and we won’t be able to add extra people at the door. That’s why we’re doing so many performances, so everyone gets a chance to see it.

How early do I need to arrive?

Please note that there is no late seating. We ask that you arrive 15 minutes before showtime, to make sure you’re able to get in and get settled. (And use the bathroom.) The lobby will open 15 minutes before showtime.

Why don’t you allow late seating?

The audience moves through the space. If you’re late, we’ll have moved on to another area. Cabal doesn’t happen in a traditional venue with a lobby and a box officer, so once the show starts, there won’t be anyone to guide you safely into the playing area. Also, the audience works together as a team, so everyone needs to start together.

What will I get if I win?

Success is a journey, not a destination! Cabal won't have winners and losers, just people who participate in the show and people who miss out on a unique event. Don't worry, we're not going to time you, and we won't be comparing one audience against another. Sure, there are puzzles to solve, but it's more of an experience than a competition.

Book your tickets for Cabal