THURSDAY, February 21
‘We lost everything’
by Jeremy Stratton, The Bridge
Downtown East resident Tom Labanowski called his upstairs neighbor Roberta “Bobbi” Wicka a hero just hours after their building was gutted by a mid-morning fire on Wednesday, Feb. 20.
Public Art Saint Paul receives grant to commission new Wing Young Huie work on University Avenue
by Betsy Mowry, TC Daily Planet
Two weeks ago, Public Art Saint Paul announced that it had been awarded a 2008 Joyce Award—the sole Joyce Award in the visual arts this year. The award carries a $50,000 grant to support the commission of a new work of public art. In this case, the award will pay for a major installation along University Avenue by local photographer Wing Young Huie.
Plasma torch maker pitches waste-to-energy project
by Dan Haugen, Minnesota Monitor
I must look like a drunk Darth Vader, fumbling to get my bearings through the thick, dull green lens of a black welder’s helmet. I’m standing next to an outdoor furnace that sounds like it has an idling TIE Fighter inside. My guide motions me through a wavy blast of warm exhaust and points toward a round opening in the oven. I hunch over and peer inside at a torch tip that’s glowing as hot and bright as the surface of the sun.
Property tax cap: a solution in search of a problem
by Jeff Van Wychen, Minnesota 2020
The facts don’t lie. Large property tax increases are giving Minnesotans sticker shock. In his state of the state address, the Governor trotted out his perennial solution to the problem of increasing property taxes: cap them. Unfortunately, his proposed remedy is a solution in search of a new problem.
INSIDE THE DAILY PLANET
Views and Reviews
Interview: Folk legend Bill Staines
by Dwight Hobbes, TC Daily Planet
Bill Staines makes real warm music—music that goes down well with your morning coffee. A recording artist for St. Paul’s Red House label, Bill Staines is a true joy behind the mic.
Ertijal (improvisation): a film where small victories are possible
Marcia Lynx Qualey, Engage Minnesota
While an “uncontroversial” film set in Palestine and Israel might sound like code for “ignorant” or “milquetoast,” this film is neither. And while Ertijal, directed by Raed Andoni and appearing at Minneapolis’ Oak Street Cinema on Feb. 22, doesn’t explicitly engage in polemics, it does achieve the unusual in portraying Palestinians as full-spectrum human beings. They are not only interested in politics, as eldest brother Samir Joubran remarks in an interview with the International Herald-Tribune. They also love.
Theater note: Jeune Lune’s ‘Fishtank’ is bubbly fun (but watch for life’s big questions floating by)
by Anne Nicolai, TC Daily Planet
No one ever says they’re going to a play at Jeune Lune, even though it’s a theater in which actors tread the boards. It is always a performance.
Jeune Lune’s ‘Fishtank’—A Conversation
by Jay Gabler and Anne Nicolai, TC Daily Planet
TC Daily Planet arts writers Jay Gabler and Anne Nicolai both attended the opening night performance of Fishtank, the new play at Theatre de la Jeune Lune. Afterward, they had this exchange about the Minneapolis company’s unique production.
NEW IN VOICES
Call me M. Elizabeth
by M. Elizabeth Hirsch, Minnesota Women’s Press
In an honors course at the University of Minnesota, the woman I was writing a paper with and I decided we would be taken more seriously as writers if we made a slight change in our names, so I became M. Elizabeth Hirsch. Perhaps I should have kept writing under that name.
NEW IN BLOGS
Are revolutions won by hands clenched into fists or clasped in prayer?
by Emily Bright, Engage Minnesota
When I arrive at the History Theater in downtown St. Paul, a school bus is parked in front of the door. It’s the perfect audience for Jeffrey Stetson’s play The Meeting, which imagines a meeting between Malcolm X and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1965 Harlem.