15 Arts and Entertainment Picks: December 2018

The Canadian Pacific Holiday Train, “Loyce Houlton’s Nutcracker Fantasy,” and “Nutcracker (Not So) Suite” help ring in the holidays

Members of the men's vocal group Cantus posing on a stairwway.
Christmas with Cantus

photo by nate ryan


Minnesota Museum of American Art Inaugural Exhibits | 12/2

Three exhibits kick off the reopening of the MMAA in St. Paul. Read our feature on it here.


The Chanukah Guest | 12/2-18

At Minnesota Jewish Theatre in St. Paul, this kid-friendly play tells the story of Bubba Brayna, whose fragrant latkes attract a grizzly guest on the first night of Chanukah.


Bob Woodward | 12/3

Two-time Pulitzer-winning journalist Bob Woodward discusses his new book, Fear: Trump in the White House, at the State Theatre in Minneapolis.


Canadian Pacific Holiday Train | 12/5-14

This 14-car train stops at 20 Minnesota cities, from La Crescent on December 5 to Elbow Lake on December 14, with musicians and so many holiday lights.


Morgan Thorson and Alan Sparhawk: Public Love | 12/6-8

This contemporary dance piece by award-winning local choreographer Morgan Thorson is about reciprocal touch in dance culture. It’s at the Walker Art Center’s theater in Minneapolis.


Nutcracker (Not So) Suite | 12/7-22

This twist on a classic tale features a Barbie in place of a nutcracker, ’60s New York in place of 19th-century Russia, and Broadway choreography in place of ballet at the Cowles Center in Minneapolis.


Melissa Etheridge: The Holiday Show | 12/9

The Grammy-winning rock icon performs songs off her 2008 holiday album A New Thought for Christmas—plus fan favorites—at Pantages Theatre in Minneapolis.


Philip Glass and Dev Hynes for Third Coast Percussion | 12/9

Grammy-winning rhythm masters Third Coast Percussion team up with envelope-pushing composer Philip Glass, to perform a new piece with pop powerhouse Dev Hynes at the Ordway in St. Paul.


Christmas with Cantus | 12/13-22

Nationally acclaimed local men’s vocal ensemble Cantus bring their holiday show to eight cities across the metro—including Fridley, Wayzata, and Stillwater.


Loyce Houlton’s Nutcracker Fantasy | 12/14-23

This Minnesota Dance Theatre tradition enters its second half-century of production. See the 150-dancer fantasia of soldiers, rats, and sugar-plum fairies at Minneapolis’ State Theatre.


Michael Bolton | 12/15

Pop-rock balladeer Michael Bolton sings his hits and holiday favorites at Mystic Showroom in Prior Lake.


Black Nativity | Through 12/23

St. Paul’s Penumbra Theatre’s yearly staging of Langston Hughes’ Black Nativity is directed by Lou Bellamy with the local Kingdom Life Church Choir, TU Dance choreographer Uri Sands, and some thrilling vocalists.


James J. Hill House Holiday Tours | Through 12/30

Discover how a 1910 Christmas would have gone down in the St. Paul mansion of the Hill family, with period-specific décor.


Marie and Rosetta | Through 12/30

The music of guitar-playing gospel singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe (played by Jamecia Bennett of Sounds of Blackness) paved the way to rock ’n’ roll. Learn more in a musical show at St. Paul’s Park Square Theatre.


Louie Anderson | 12/31

Comedian and three-time Emmy winner Louie Anderson, known for sets reflecting on his Minnesota upbringing, is at Ames Center in Burnsville for a New Year’s Eve special.

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