THEATER REVIEW | "Test Pilot" at The O'Shaughnessy: The untold story of the Wright brothers' sister

Soprano Carrie Henneman Shaw as Katharine Wright in Test PilotPhoto by Jack Dant.

St. Catherine University launched its 2014-2015 Women of Substance series on September 12 with Test Pilot, a striking new music and dance piece. The work, billed as a dance opera, delves into the early history of aviation from an unusual perspective: that of the Wright Brothers’ sister Katharine. The explorations of flight, its mechanics, and the build-up to the final flight are engagingly rendered in vocal and instrumental music and in modern dance.

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MUSIC PHOTOS | I Am the Avalanche and Dads at Triple Rock Social Club

Photos by Nikki Rykhus

On Wednesday, September 17, I Am the Avalanche with Dads played at the Triple Rock Social Club in Minneapolis.

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TC Weekend | Open Streets Saint Paul and Lowry Avenue, Fall Fine Arts Show, Hip-hop Harambee and more!

This weekend offers a number of colorful outdoor events, from hip-hop fests and fine arts shows, to beer fests and Open Streets. Taking place in Minneapolis and Saint Paul, the events encourage you get out and savor the last official summer weekend of the year.

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THEATER REVIEW | "Hello, Dolly!" greets the Chanhassen Dinner Theatres for the third time

(Photo by Heidi Bohnenkamp, 2014) A team of waiters welcomes matchmaker Dolly Levi (Michelle Barber) back to New York's most exclusive restaurant.

Chanhassen Dinner Theatres has been under new ownership for three and a half years, now, and the artistic team seems to have settled into a strong groove. Spring and summer see a contemporary work gracing the main stage, while autumn and winter see something out of the cabinet of classic repertoire. Hello, Dolly!, which opened on Saturday, September 12, is one of the latter blasts from the past. This is a show with bright fall colors and flavors that are predominately light, refreshing, and a little sweet; it’s more apfelwein than heavy beer and bratwurst – not that there’s anything wrong with that.

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MUSIC REVIEW | Shonen Knife pays tribute to the Ramones in 1,000th show at the Turf Club

Photos By: 
Todd Wardrope

The spirit that drives Shonen Knife was apparent in the song that played over the PA as they left the stage: The Ramones’ “Sheena is a Punk Rocker.” While Shonen Knife didn’t play any of their excellent Ramones covers for their 1,000th show, held at the newly remodeled Turf Club, all of their music displayed how that thunderous punk rock heart of The Ramones is so important to Shonen Knife. With the recent death of the last original Ramone, Thomas “Tommy Ramone” Erdelyi, being reminded how their soul and energy remain alive in bands today was comforting and up lifting.

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THEATER REVIEW | "The White Snake" captivates the Guthrie Theater

(Photo credit Liz Lauren)

The White Snake delivered just what you’d expect from a Tony Award winning director in Mary Zimmerman as her cast presented a heart-filled performance at the Guthrie Theater on September 13.

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MUSIC PHOTOS | Eric Church: The Outsiders World Tour at the Target Center

Being just the third stop on The Outsiders World Tour, a capacity crowd at the Target Center again demonstrated September 16th that Minnesota has much love for Eric Church and country music. The talent packed line-up nicely represented the range of music now associated with this genre including veteran Dwight Yoakam bringing a flavor of traditional while newbies Brothers Osborne rocked out a more current sound.

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THEATER REVIEW | Fortune's Fool Theatre's "In the White Room" and "A Slight Ache": Short and strange (in a good way)

(Photo by HM Photography LLC) The ensemble of Fortune's Fool Theatre's double bill of A Slight Ache and In The White Room - Ariel Leaf, Michael Ooms, John Leaf and Lacey Zeiler.

This will be a rare spoiler-free review because I honestly have no idea what happened in this play and couldn’t explain it simply even if I did. And that’s as it should be. Because it’s Harold Pinter. He loves being obtuse and screwing with your head. He can pack more dread and unsettling questions into a short play than almost any writer I know. It’s why actors and directors can’t get enough of the man’s plays. You can interpret and re-interpret and re-re-interpret the work almost any way you like and almost never be wrong, because the specifics refuse to be pinned down.

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THEATER REVIEW | Mu Performing Arts' "Middle Brother" not lost in translation

(Photo © 2014 Michal Daniel) Brothers from two different countries Hyung (Sherwin Resurreccion) and Billy (Eric Sharp) meet for the first time in Mu Performing Arts' production of Middle Brother.

There’s a powerful and very funny play tucked inside of everything that’s going on in Mu Performing Arts’ world premiere production of Eric Sharp’s new play Middle Brother. Right now it feels like the only thing standing in the way of the play reaching its full potential is a fictional Korean royal family, but we’ll save talk of them for later.

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MUSIC REVIEW | The Birthday Suits are back with Blind Shake at the Turf Club

Photos by Ann Treacy

Sometimes a monopoly is a good thing. First Avenue seems to have a finger in anything musical happening in the Twin Cities but it does lead to some nice double headers. After seeing The Replacements at Midway Stadium, I was happy to hop over to the Turf Club to see The Birthday Suits and Blind Shake. Luckily it had occurred to me to buy tickets in advance because the show was sold out by the time I got there. And a lot of people milling about outside humming "Waitress in the Sky" and asking about other places to go in St Paul.

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