Arts Orbit Radar 9/29/11

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On the radar

1. After a two-year expansion project designed by its original architect Frank Gehry, the Weisman Art Museum reopens to the public on Sunday with an opening day celebration called WAMdemonium! and featuring such wild and crazy activities as…um, yoga?

2. Yeppers, it’s Halloween season again, and that means the Soap Factory’s Haunted Basement—perhaps the only haunted house in America to be advertised as “conceptually unique”—is opening for business. Watch for Heidi Schatz’s report in the Daily Planet; I don’t care how many artists are involved, I’m not going down there.

3. In what may be the first time that a performer appearing on the cover of Spin has her next local gig scheduled at an art museum, indie darling St. Vincent—whose new album Strange Mercy earned a 9.0 from Pitchfork—plays two shows Sunday night at the Walker Art Center.

4. It’s yet another exhaustingly awesome weekend for local theater openings, as The Burial at Thebes (adaptation by Seamus Heaney, original music by local legend J.D. Steele, direction by Caroline, or Change helmswoman Marcela Lorca) takes the Wurtele Thrust at the Guthrie and a new adaptation of A Wrinkle in Time, directed by Greg Banks (Romeo and Juliet, Robin Hood) opens at the Children’s Theatre.

5. Now at the tail end of a career that’s seen him go from being cool cat to standup sensation to TV dad to subject of scandal to meme, on Friday night Bill Cosby brings his inimitable routine to the Mayo Civic Center in Rochester.

Under the radar

1. The very funny (watch for my full review on Friday) backwoods horror/comedy/buddy movie Tucker & Dale vs. Evil opens at the Lagoon.

2. Intermedia Arts throws its hat into the cooperative workspace ring with the Thursday opening of ArtsHub.

3. In all honesty, I’m not sure it’s worth the drive all the way to New Richmond, Wisconsin for the party celebrating the opening of the 10th season at the Old Gem Theater. I just like the idea of going to see a guy named “Shotgun Johnson.”

4. You don’t have to be in art school, or have open-minded friends, to draw the nude figure: a 10-week life drawing cooperative begins Monday at ArtiCulture on Franklin.

5. You can’t expect us to publish a free newsletter and not engage in some blatant self-promotion! Well, maybe you could, but you’d be disappointed, because hey, guess what! On Wednesday night at the Twin Cities Daily Planet global HQ, I’m teaching a class on the writing of arts reviews. It’s free! But still high-quality! Like this newsletter! Right? Am I right? Huh? Anyone? Hello?