Daily Planet Originals

NEWS DAY | Minnesota Nice isn't enough

At the press conference, left to right: Alondra Cano, Marleni Rojas, Rosa Francisco, Jovita Morales, Jasmin Violante, Julio Martinez

How does Minnesota treat you? Instead of asking what immigrants do for Minnesota, a new report asks how Minnesota treats immigrants. Minnesota, we have problems.

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THEATER REVIEW | "Dead Man's Cell Phone" at Theatre in the Round: Dated in the era of smartphones

Charles Numrich (left), Colleen Somerville Leeman (right), Andrew Troth (back). Photo credit Theatre in the Round.

The play-licensing company Samuel French describes Sarah Ruhl's Dead Man's Cell Phone as a dramatic and romantic comedy, with a contemporary setting and a strong role for a leading woman. These are all technically true, and also likely aspects that the audience will overlook when seeing Theatre in the Round's production of the play. Dead Man's Cell Phone is a quirky play populated by quirky characters, and the increasingly odd but consistent things that they do are the main attraction.

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THEATER REVIEW | "Once" hits highs and lows at the Orpheum Theatre

Photo credit Joan Marcus

My grandpa always says, "If you're ten minutes early, you're late." I'm more of the school of thought that if you're exactly on time, you're using your time efficiently. In the case of Once, do as my grandpa does and be earlier than early—so early that you have to wait for the house doors to open. Because when the doors do open, you'll find that you're invited to mosey around onstage for a beer at the cash bar and a pre-show concert from the cast members. One of my favorite nights in Ireland when I went last October was the live music at The Celt pub in Dublin. The jam session that transitioned seamlessly into Once on Tuesday, April 1 at the Orpheum Theatre made me feel like I was back in the Emerald Isle.

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Claire Wellin brings her violin to Minneapolis in "Once"

The musical Once opens at the Orpheum Theatre on Tuesday, April 1. The Tony Award-studded show was the darling of Broadway in its inaugural season and its current tour has drawn large audiences across the country. I talked to Claire Wellin on the phone, an actress and violinist who donned both hats for the Broadway premiere of Once and reprises this dual role in the Once tour. Wellin holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Musical Theatre from Minnesota State University, Mankato.

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The top films from the 2014 SXSW Film/Music/Interactive festival

Faults. Photo courtesy of Snoot Films.

AUSTIN, TEXAS – The 2014 SXSW Film/Music/Interactive festival has been over for two weeks now and while it was another year filled with great films, there is still an ominous feeling surrounding this year's festival. A drunk driver killed two people and injured 23 people on March 13th on Red River Street and 11th Avenue. The death toll is up to four now, and Rashad Owens, 21, is now facing capital murder charges with bail set at $3 million. While it was my first time attending SXSW, it will be hard to forget this tragic incident despite the good times I had seeing movies, catching up with old friends, and seeing live music. SXSW started a donation drive, "SXSW Cares" for the victims and within 24 hours they had raised $40,000. Totals are now up to $55,000. You can still to donate to help out the remaining victims still in the hospital.

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MUSIC REVIEW | Noise to be seen and heard: Indian Burial Ground, Delores Dewberry, fire island AK, and Analscubahive at the Kitty Cat Klub

Monday night at the Kitty Cat Club I saw what I think I expected from a noise show before I’d ever seen a noise show – but in a bar setting. I’ve been to a few noise shows now in basements and apartments or one of two noise bands playing with others at a bar but last night was all noise all night. I noticed a pulse throughout the show. Each performer picked it up or somehow incorporated a sound that beat like a pulse. Sometimes it beat like almost indiscernibly like someone resting - sometimes it pounded with rage, but it was interesting that while the waves of the pulse changed, it was always there. That being said, that may just be me trying to find commonalities and patterns where there are none.

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Conservation districts: Saving the neighborhood or going NIMBY?

Recent controversies over a teardown moratorium in Southwest Minneapolis and massive development in Dinkytown have highlighted many city residents' desire to control what's happening in their neighborhoods. On the other side, many developers criticize the push for limits as "not in my backyard" opposition to progress.

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ST. PAUL NOTES | Low-power FM station approved for St. Paul

Low-power FM is coming to St. Paul, with the FCC approval of a proposal based in the East Side. The next meeting of the radio committee will be April 15th at 6 PM at the Dayton's Bluff Community Council offices at 798 East 7th Street.

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MSPIFF 2014: The final countdown

Spring in the Twin Cities comes with Minneapolis International Film Festival (MSPIFF) where over a hundred movies from all over the globe will be screened April 3-27. 

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MUSIC REVIEW | 20-minute perfect set with Perfect Pussy at the 7th Street Entry

Perfect Pussy at 7th Street Entry

Usually I understand that some people don’t like punk music or noise – but then sometimes I see a band, such as Perfect Pussy, that makes me wonder just what’s wrong with some people. Perfect Pussy played to a pretty full house at 7th Street Entry on Sunday, March 30. They are a noise-punk band out of Syracuse NY. Band members include lead singer Meredith Graves, Ray McAndrew on guitar, Garrett Koloski on drums, Greg Ambler on bass and Shaun Sutkus keyboard – well kinda keyboard.

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