Arts Orbit Weekly: 5/14/09


This week’s picks

Thursday, May 14
Celebrate David Byrne’s birthday by downloading his new live EP, proceeds from which benefit Amnesty International. Then head north (if you’re not there already)—tonight is one of your last chances to see Workhouse Theatre Company’s How I Learned To Drive. Later, Lookbook—the band City Pages deemed best new act of 2008—are at the Red Stag. If you want to see them up close and personal, this is your chance.

Friday, May 15
The .EDU Film Festival kicks off today, showcasing films by high school filmmakers from across the state. At the other end of the age spectrum, the Walker is showing Mr. Freedom, a scathing 1969 satire by the (now) 81-year-old William Klein.

Saturday, May 16
It’s Art-a-Whirl weekend in Northeast Minneapolis, and many of the best events include not just art but music as well. Case in point: this afternoon’s show by One for the Team, outdoors at the 331 Club. Two hours later, Lady Sovereign will be holding court at the Fine Line with openers Chester French, the other Ivy League indie rock sensation.

Sunday, May 17
Get your nautical-themed pashmina afghan and do Art-a-Whirl on a boat, motherf-ers!

Monday, May 18
METRO magazine, designating Monday “Saturday II,” has launched a series of happy hours to cheer this cruelest of days. Tonight they’ll be at Stella’s, and if ’tis isn’t t’season to sip a METROtini (by which I hope they mean a mojito), then I don’t know what is.

Tuesday, May 19
The press don’t get to see Tiny Kushner, the latest entry in the Guthrie’s Kushnerfest, until its official opening tomorrow night—but you lucky dogs in the general public have the opportunity to see tonight’s preview performance! Of course, you’ll have to pay $18-$34 for it while we get in for free…but there are a lot of worse ways to spend $18-$34.

Wednesday, May 20
You have to love a job where your boss sends you press releases about Dildo Bingo.

Daily Planet arts roundup


Get a load of Dengue Fever…Greg Swan did, and he can’t stop listening to it. Meanwhile, I interviewed the inimitable Lady Sovereign, the British rapper-who’s-more-than-a-rapper, and grilled white bread with Keith Urban. Rod Johnson took in the Black Dog Block Party and sent his photos our way, while Casey Merkwan and Sadie Lundquist visited a rehearsal of the (mostly) GLBT One Voice Mixed Chorus.


When he retired from the Minneapolis City Council in 2004, Paul Zerby said he was going to finish his Korean War novel—and now he’s actually done it. Jeremy Stratton writes about Zerby and The Grass.


“Objectively,” writes Matt Everett, “I know that no theater production is ever perfect. But if something is wrong with Workhouse Theatre’s current presentation of How I Learned To Drive, I sure as hell couldn’t tell you what it is.”


Jeremy Iggers found enlightenment in Zen Contemporary Asian’s appetizers—but darkness and confusion reigned when it came to the main course.


The Walker’s William Klein retrospective opens on Friday, and the Daily Planet is publishing reviews of some of Klein’s most important films. First up: my takes on Mr. Freedom (“a parade of variably coherent set pieces, all of which viciously skewer what Klein portrays as America’s empty, destructive braggadocio”) and The Model Couple (“blunt but effective in conveying its message—here, that standardization is folly and social science is chasing a chimera”).

Visual Arts

I reported on my road trip to Madison, Wisconsin, where I was pleasantly surprised by UW’s Chazen Museum of Art and unpleasantly surprised by the Madison Museum of Modern Art.

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Jay Gabler ( is the Daily Planet’s arts editor.

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