Arts Orbit Radar 2/24/11


What’s happening this week

Thursday, February 24

On the radar: Having won lots of fans locally (not, however, including Dwight Hobbes), Sophia Shorai made a splash on the national scene earlier this month by wowing the American Idol judges. Her gig tonight at the Dakota is likely to be packed.

Under the radar: What would it sound like if Björk recorded an album with Beach House? The answer is Braids, and the answer sounds great. They’re at the Entry tonight with Baths and Houses; apparently Beds and Beyonds weren’t available.

Friday, February 25

On the radar: On their new record Outside, local heroes Tapes ‘N Tapes trade the bristling sound of The Loon and Walk It Off for a more eclectic, pop-friendly texture—but they’re hardly going soft, as they’ll demonstrate tonight at First Ave.

Under the radar: T.C. Boyle, the perpetually restless wild child (still, at 62) of literature, appears tonight at the Minneapolis Central Library.

Saturday, February 26

On the radar: “A new play about the science of life and loss, the relationships between fathers and sons, Cambodian fields, Bolivian rainforests and redemption.” I just wasn’t sure I was quite ready for that, so Christopher Kehoe will be reviewing Theater Latté Da’s Song of Extinction for the Daily Planet. The award-winning play makes it regional premiere tonight at the Guthrie Theater.

Under the radar: Did you know that there’s a Minnesota Peony Society? There is, and today they’ve declared “A Day to Celebrate Peonies.” Because why the heck not. Events at Bachman’s on Lyndale include a floral design seminar, a peony culture seminar, and a social that only lasts 30 minutes because this isn’t about you and your problems—this is about the peonies.

Sunday, February 27

On the radar: It’s Oscar night! I’ll be at The Tangential world headquarters, live-blogging and fielding phone calls from Daily Planet writer Barb Teed, who will be backstage at the Kodak Theatre. The official local Oscar night party is going down at the Hotel Ivy.

Under the radar: Another good Oscar night bet is The Depot Tavern, which is distributing First Ave tickets to reward those who guess the winners most accurately.

Monday, February 28

On the radar: Word on the Twittersphere has it that Mondays are the new Wednesdays at Nick & Eddie, but with a younger crowd. So if us 30-somethings have been freaking you out, stop by tonight for a show by the Moonstone Continuum.

Under the radar: Local opera does not begin and end at the Ordway. Well, it may begin at the Ordway, but then it heads to the Red Stag and subsequently stumbles down to the Front.

Tuesday, March 1

On the radar: News graphics are like fonts: taken for granted by 99% of the population and completely nerded out on by the other 1%. If you’re in that one percent, you won’t want to miss tonight’s appearance at the Walker by Kevin Quealy of the New York Times Graphics Department. (If you’d rather not pay $20, or if you’d rather watch naked, you can see the talk streaming live on the Walker’s website.)

Under the radar: Sometimes, it’s a struggle to decide what to recommend in this space. Other times, it’s easy. Today is one of those latter days: at the Ritz, see a selection of locally-made short comedy films for free.

Wednesday, March 2

On the radar: Johnny Cash, Emmylou Harris, Bob Seger, Crystal Gayle, Wynonna Judd, Joe Henry—Rodney Crowell has worked with them all, but he may be best-known as the ex-husband of Rosanne Cash, collaborating with her on the material that made her a star in her own right. He’s at the Cedar tonight, and the gig will be worth seeing for the stories if nothing else.

Under the radar: Indie rock dream couple James Mercer (The Shins, Broken Bells) and Carrie Brownstein (Sleater-Kinney) finally share a…screen?

Daily Planet arts roundup


Books & Bars selection One Day by David Nicholls: A most unconventional romance (review by Courtney Davison)
An evening in celebration of John Berryman, a great poet and a great teacher (feature by Robert O’Connor)

Design and Style

University of Minnesota fashion design students showcase their work with “Distortion” (photos by Jay Gabler)
University of Minnesota fashion design senior spotlight: Elise Diebel (photos by Jay Gabler)

Theater and Dance

Sam Green’s Utopia in Four Movements asks a big question, but gives a wrong answer (review by Jay Gabler)
Our Town by Yellow Tree Theatre: Excellent “community” theater (review by Christopher Kehoe)
Two strong plays about kids facing supreme challenges: Youth Performance Company’s MEAN and SteppingStone Theatre’s Four Little Girls: Birmingham 1963 (review by Betsy Gabler)
My play Leave: The unrelenting power of a mother’s love (blog entry by Matthew A. Everett)
Mad Munchkin and Eclectic Edge present an ode to winter, with dancing and puppets (review by Sheila Regan)
Sarah Michelson’s Devotion at the Walker Art Center: The cycles of life, spinning and spinning and spinning (review by Jay Gabler)
Leave: Urban Samurai takes on Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (review by Sheila Regan)
Walking Shadow Theatre Company dances with desire in Drakul (review by Rebecca Collins)
My play Leave: The audience completes the production (blog entry by Matthew A. Everett)
Teatro del Pueblo’s 10th Annual Political Theatre Festival examines questions of Latino identity (feature by Bev Wolfe, photos by Meredith Westin)
Mixed Blood Theatre’s Agnes Under the Big Top: Six rings shy (review by Christopher Kehoe)
Penumbra Theatre Company’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom at the Guthrie Theater: Bues under glass (review by Jason Zabel)
Walking Shadow Theatre Company’s Drakul fails to catch John Heimbuch’s Transdimensional spark (blog entry by Jay Gabler)
Blank Slate’s Pinocchio is a sterling page-to-stage adaptation (review by Sarah Rattanavong-Wash)
Iranian playwright premieres innovative take on ancient text (feature by Sheila Regan)

Visual Arts

Artists “Navigating the Aftermath” of the Iraq War at the University of Minnesota’s Quarter Gallery (feature by Sheila Regan)

Food and Dining

Food, farming, and relationships—A love story (blog entry by Brian Devore)
Domacin Wine Bar (Stillwater, MN) (feature by Bruce Schneier)
Catching up with Sawatdee’s Supenn Harrison (feature by Phyllis Louise Harris)


Lily Tomlin at the State Theatre: Still makin’ ’em laugh (review by Betsy Gabler, photo by Stacy Schwartz)
Pizzeria pup: Lola gets a restaurant (blog entry by Meredeth Barzen)
Korean Lunar New Year celebration (feature by David Zander)
Tutankhamun: The Golden King and the great Pharaohs hold court at the Science Museum of Minnesota (review by Jay Gabler)
The center of hospitality (blog entry by Amy Doeun)
Mentoring builds friendships and stronger communities (feature by Phyllis Stenerson)
L’Dor V’Dor—Don’t lose the memories (blog entry by Max Orenstein)

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