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The Agenda

Theater, art, concerts & more—your best bets for August

The Agenda
Photo by V. Paul Virtuccio

AUGUST 3

FLYING FOOT FORUM

Joe Chvala isn’t afraid to make a bang when his Flying Foot Forum dance company puts on a show. In fact, it’s the troupe’s trademark—percussive dance that’s more physical and acrobatic than graceful, so much so that it once earned Chvala the moniker “Fred Astaire on acid.” Theater in the Woods, Caponi Art Park, 1205 Diffley Rd., Eagan, 651-454-9412
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JULY 31 TO AUGUST 10

MINNESOTA FRINGE FESTIVAL

Like any good Fringe Festival, this one is unpredictable—and sometimes just plain weird. Case in point: Joseph Scrimshaw’s newest Fringe show, An Inconvenient Squirrel, centers on a town of squirrel-people. The festival also serves up other strange brews, such as one show that promises “a beauty pageant, baton-twirling, and inappropriate body hair.” Expect to be surprised: The best part about the Fringe is that even the bad can be brilliant. Various venues. Check fringefestival.org or call 612-872-1212 for more information.
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AUGUST 1 TO 3

UPTOWN ART FAIR

This weekend of painting, pottery, photography, and more is one of the largest art fairs in the country (it also happens to coincide with the Powderhorn and Loring Park art fairs). Besides visual art, you’ll find music and dance on the performance stage and local vintages in the wine garden. This year, the festival stays open an hour later on Friday and Saturday.  Lake Street and Hennepin Avenue; visit uptownminneapolis.com/art-fair or call 612-823-4581 for more information.
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AUGUST 3

MARTIN SHORT

The former Saturday Night Live cast member and SCTV star performs a show of stand-up comedy and impersonations, accompanied by Jeff Babko, who’s currently the keyboardist on Jimmy Kimmel Live. Look for favorite Short characters, such as Franck, the wedding planner in Father of the Bride, and the fictitious talk-show host Jiminy Glick, who will conduct an interview with Andrew Litton, artistic director at the Minnesota Orchestra’s Sommerfest. Orchestra Hall, 1111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, 612-371-5656
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AUGUST 3

TWIN CITY POLO CLASSIC

Don your hat and stomp the divots like the Argentinian gentry at the 19th-annual Twin City Polo Classic in Independence. The Polo Club hosts its yearly event which is also a fundraiser for the Children’s Cancer Research Fund. 6755 Turner Rd., Independence; tickets at twincitypoloclassic.com. For more information, call 952-746-9431
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AUGUST 5 TO 17

YANKEE DOODLE

George Cohan’s Yankee Doodle is perfect for Minnesota’s flag-waving families (or just those who need to get in the spirit prior to the GOP convention). The show’s songs, such as “Over There” and “You’re a Grand Old Flag,” harken back to grade school music-class instruction and the golden years of the Great White Way. You won’t even need to wave a flag to feel patriotic. Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, 345 Washington St., St. Paul, 651-224-4222
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AUGUST 7 TO 10

MINNESOTA BLUEGRASS & OLD-TIME MUSIC FESTIVAL

Think of a PG version of Woodstock: It’s still sticky-skin humid outside, but the only trip you’ll take is to Richmond, where El Rancho Mañana hosts the 29th annual Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Festival. Spend the weekend at the 1,200-acre campground and hear music from local songsters Monroe Crossing, ’60s folk-revivalist Mike Seeger, and female quartet the DitchLilies. El Rancho Mañana, 27302 Ranch Rd., Richmond; tickets and campground reservations at 800-635-3037
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AUGUST 8, 13, AND 15

MUSIC IN THE ZOO

The amphitheater at the Minnesota Zoo is one of the most scenic spots for music in the metro—and the August shows won’t disappoint, either. Check out blues singer Keb’ Mo’ on August 8, the wicked games of pop-rock musician Chris Isaak on August 13, and, on August 15, R&B group Morris Day & the Time. Minnesota Zoo, 13000 Zoo Blvd., Apple Valley; tickets through Ticketmaster, 651-989-5151, or Electric Fetus, 612-870-9300
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AUGUST 15

GLAMORAMA

Minneapolis has never claimed to be a fashion mecca, but Macy’s Glamorama might make us think otherwise. This year’s theme is the ’80s; there will be a live concert by Cyndi Lauper and MC Hammer, plus plenty of neon and side ponytails. Proceeds from ticket sales benefit the Children’s Cancer Research Fund. Rad bonus: The post-party at Macy’s features Pacman and Donkey Kong in the arcade area and music videos on the big screen. Orpheum Theatre, 910 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, 612-673-0404
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OPENS AUGUST 15

LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE

Pa can sing? In the Guthrie’s world-premiere of Little House on the Prairie, which had its workshop staging in New York last year, the entire Ingalls family is likely to break into song. The biggest draw of this show is the talent: Melissa Gilbert, who starred as Laura in the 1970s television version of the books, plays Ma. Guthrie Theater, 818 S. Second St., Minneapolis, 612-377-2224
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AUGUST 15 to 24

SOPRANORAMA VII

You may have seen the stars in the dark period pieces with the Minnesota Opera, but his Southern Theater favorite is a pop-like performance with a playful vibe. It features the vocal talents of Maria Jette, Janis Hardy, and Molly Sue McDonald, plus pianist and accordionist Dan Chouinard. The singers' strong chemistry and catchy tunes always make this production a sell-out. Southern Theater, 1420 Washington Ave. S., Minneapolis, 612-340-1725
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OPENS AUGUST 21

FENCES

August Wilson’s Fences, part of the playwright’s Twentieth Century Cycle, opens Penumbra Theatre’s 2008–09 season. Set in the late 1950s, Fences tells the story of an overlooked baseball player in the Negro leagues who finds success in the era before Jackie Robinson broke into the major leagues. Penumbra’s artistic director, Lou Bellamy, one of the foremost interpreters of Wilson’s work, directs this production. Penumbra Theatre Company, 270 N. Kent St., St. Paul, 651-224-3180
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CONTINUES THROUGHOUT AUGUST

TREEOLOGY

Trees don’t always get a lot of play at garden shows. But tall timber gets its day in “Treeology,” an exhibit continuing this month at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. You’ll find interactive stations along a 1.5-mile loop, along with a land-based “tree house” with living furniture. Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, 3675 Arboretum Dr., Chaska, 952-443-1400
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—COURTNEY LEWIS

Send event information to agenda@mnmo.com.


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