Café Nordo

This page is a profile of the theatre company. Venue profiles forthcoming.


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Café Nordo integrates inventive culinary menus, live music, and a variety of in-house theatrical productions and co-productions.

Founded: 2009

Artistic leadership: Erin Brindley & Terry Podgorski (Co-Founders & Executive Artistic Producing Directors) 


Primary venue: Café Nordo (The Culinarium & The Knife Room) 


The below information is provided by the theatre company. (All material is condensed & edited for clarity.)


Overview: Mission / Vision  

Cafe Nordo is an intimate theatrical experience featuring imaginative cuisine and atmospheric music, where artists create & play, while audiences are cared for with seamless service.


Key Initiatives 

In addition to mainstage and co-productions, Nordo holds the Pressure Cooker program, in which new or just-starting-out theatre artists from diverse backgrounds are selected, to produce a risk-taking original piece of storytelling.



In the spring of 2015, Café Nordo opened The Culinarium at Nordo, a permanent venue in historic Pioneer Square which is home to two mainstage shows each season, as well as year-round programming and co-productions.

Recent shows include 10 world-premiere shows during 2018-19, including:

– The Witching Hour, an original mainstage production 

– Alien/Angel, the music-infused story of legend Klaus Nomi, written and performed by Devin Bannon

– The first-ever adaptation of Tom Robbin’s novel, Jitterbug Perfume 


Prior to opening the Culinarium, in 2009 Nordo launched a hybrid of the pop-up restaurant and underground theater. Venues have ranged from the warehouse of a chocolate factory to a former museum, and each has provided a unique backdrop for an immersive experience.

Examples of past shows include:

– 1960s spy farce in a Boeing 737 headed for the Seattle World’s Fair, revealing the secrets of convenience food and the Green Revolution (To Savor Tomorrow)

– A show unfolding the history of the cocktail, in a jazzy speakeasy in the 1930s (Sauced)

– A tour around Café Nordo’s timeless museum of food, eating each course in a different local artist’s installation (Café Nordo’s Cabinet of Curiosities

Statement of centering underrepresented voices & stories 

Nordo strives to work with diverse and unique voices in the theatre community; with our co-productions; with people of color, women and queer writers and directors; as well as in curating new works with the Pressure Cooker program. 


NWT notes 

Café Nordo is one of the most unique companies in town, thanks to its pairings of original theatre and creative culinary works. Quality of execution (of both theatre and food) varies from show to show; however, we’ve always had an interesting night there, and sometimes a most excellent one.

For a behind-the-scenes look at theatre-and-dining service, see a Seattle Times write-up on the spring 2019 production of Jitterbug Perfume here.