Arts Orbit Radar 12/2/10

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What’s happening this week

Thursday, December 2

On the radar: Chicago singer-songwriter Andrew Bird moves from the Church of God to the Cathedral of Rock.

Under the radar: Wait a second, #Movember isn’t just a hashtag? It’s a real thing? Invented in Australia? To fight prostate cancer? “The moustache serves as the ‘ribbon’ and the vehicle by which participants raise awareness for men’s health,” says a press release announcing tonight’s celebration for “Mo Bros” at Bootleggers. Needless to say, “Mo Sistas” (to use the official term: “‘Mo Sistas’ act as ambassadors for the ‘Mo Bros'”) are very welcome to join the party. The event starts at 8:00 and according to the Bootleggers website, “college night” starts at 7, so there’s sure to be plenty of educated, socially conscious conversation to enjoy.

Friday, December 3

On the radar: This holiday season, an old but magically immortal Italian woman takes the stage once again. No, not Liza Minnelli: La Befana.

Under the radar: Tonight, all your Freaky Deeky friends—me included—will be at the 7th Street Entry for a “fun raiser” featuring artists including First Pube, Stewart DeVaan of Savage Aural Hotbed, and Mark Mallman’s pop-rock project Waxx Maxx. What’s Freaky Deeky? Well, you could read my Daily Planet article about the first time I appeared on the show, or you could allow the description on First Avenue’s website to suffice: “Live public broadcast display of mustache piracy in full style freeform eyejuice. Freakzitsauce popping smiles, drinking video milk from their teats of exhibitionism.”

Saturday, December 4

On the radar: As the Weisman Art Museum prepares to shut down for a year-long expansion project, l’etoile magazine is taking the place over for a break-every-rule-(well-at-least-some-of-the-rules) event called WAMarchy! If this is your kind of a party, you’ll dig it.

Under the radar: Zenon alumna and Macalester teacher Krista Langberg has long been an admired and influential member of the local dance scene; she and her husband Terry Chance are both now battling cancer. Today, a daylong event culminating in a dance concert and party at the Southern Theater will raise funds to help Langberg, Chance, and their family.

Sunday, December 5

On the radar: Mason Jennings plays the second of a pair of headlining shows at First Ave. His latest albums have been on the dark side, but he shouldn’t have to reach too deeply to find some warm fuzzies for the holiday season.

Under the radar: It’s opening weekend for Open Eye Figure Theatre’s Holiday Pageant, which I referred to in my review last year as “one of the most fascinating and disturbing holiday shows in town.”

Monday, December 6

On the radar: SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Under the radar: Dance community leaders at the Walker Art Center, the Southern Theater, the Ritz Theater, and the Cowles Center for Dance are hosting Doug Sonntag, director of dance for the National Endowment for the Arts. In a public conversation at the Ritz, Sonntag will talk about “the state of dance throughout the U.S. and some of the efforts that others have been making to thrive and survive in these times.”

Tuesday, December 7

On the radar: Now that National Novel Writing Month is over, send that manuscript off to your agent and hie thee to Coffman Union to hear from three local authors who have just published their debut novels: Peter Bognanni (The House of Tomorrow), Matt Burgess (Dogfight, A Love Story), and John Jodzio (If You Lived Here You’d Already Be Home).

Under the radar: At Honey, a fantastic lineup of performers including Maria Isa, I Self Devine, Mayda, and Adam Levy play a benefit show (admission free, donations accepted) to fight child trafficking. It’s an early show, so if you feel like keeping the rock going, cross the bridge to the 501 for a free show by Speeds the Name.

Wednesday, December 8

On the radar: To sit or to stand during the Hallelujah chorus of Handel’s Messiah? It’s the kind of debate that gets classical music fans fired up, but at the 11 a.m. matinee performance that inaugurates the Minnesota Orchestra’s weekend-long go at the holiday-season chestnut—the first time Osmo Vänskä has deigned to raise his baton to the piece in Orchestra Hall—the audience is likely to include many elderly concertgoers who would really prefer to just remain sitting. If you’re attending one of the subsequent evening performances, remain seated at your own risk.

Under the radar: For those looking for some holiday warm-and-fuzzies, later this month the Cedar Cultural Center will be hosting Neal and Leandra, David Benoit, and Roma di Luna. Those whose favorite holiday movie is The Nightmare Before Christmas, however, will want to get to the Cedar tonight for the show by Dark Dark Dark.

Daily Planet arts roundup

Movies

James Franco and Anne Hathaway will host 83rd Academy Awards (feature by Barb Teed)
2010 British Television Advertising Awards to make a somber impression at the Walker Art Center (review by Jay Gabler)

Music

Red House supergroup Red Horse release a debut disc to enjoy over and over again (review by Dwight Hobbes)
John Mellencamp at the Orpheum Theatre (photos by Erik Hess)
Grinderman play an exhilarating show at First Avenue (review by Kyle Matteson, photos by Marcus Johnson)
Alicia Wiley darkens her musical palette with Both Sides (interview by Dwight Hobbes)
Paying tribute to the Replacements, and beer (is there a difference?), at First Avenue (photos by Jay Gabler)
You sure this is how Richie Havens got famous? Part VI: The nice thing about networking (blog entry by Dwight Hobbes)
Jazz balladeer Mina Agossi: Inspirational nights and unforgettable days (interview by Dwight Hobbes)

Theater and Dance

Brett Favre’s Christmas Spectacular II: The Second Coming at the Brave New Workshop: Face-hurts-you’re-laughing-so-hard funny (review by Kate Gallagher)
Reversing the gaze: Heid Erdrich’s Curiosities (review by Sheila Regan)
At the Old Log Theater, Jeeves in Bloom droops (review by Elizabeth Lofgren)
A Christmas Story comes warmly to life at Children’s Theatre Company (review by Jay Gabler)
The Guthrie’s new Christmas Carol: Shaken up, but fails to stir (review by Jay Gabler)
Walker Art Center presents a Choreographers’ Evening full of pizazz (review by Jay Gabler)
At the History Theatre, The Christmas Schooner wobbles but stays steady on its course (review by Bev Wolfe)
The Harty Boys Save Christmas, thanks to Comedy Suitcase, at the Bryant-Lake Bowl (review by Jay Gabler)
Win-win: David Sedaris’s Santaland Diaries presented by Frank Theatre at Hennepin Stages and by Theatre Limina at the Bryant-Lake Bowl (review by Betsy Gabler)
Penumbra Theatre’s Black Nativity: This is the Time keeps family in focus (review by Jay Gabler)

Visual Arts

Storytelling and beyond: Photographing the cultural landscape (video by Nate Mains)
Jila Nikpay’s Faces of New America: Coming to a library near you (feature by Sheila Regan)

Food and Dining

Venison—Four ways (blog entry by Amy Doeun)
New country, new holiday, new foods for Minnesota immigrants (feature by Nekessa Opoti)
The club: O’Gara’s Bar & Grill (blog entry by Collette Denet)

Lifestyle

Remembering my mom: A life full of love—and baseball (blog entry by Jean Gabler)

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