October 2014 Twin Cities Arts and Entertainment Picks

Quinton’s Picks for the month of October

Mercury

Photographer Shelly Mosman creates portraits that burn into the memory with dream-like intensity. “Mercury,” her show of 20 pieces (including “Defender Lover,” the name of this girl’s cat) appears in a pop-up gallery in the 811 Glenwood building in Minneapolis.

10/10–18shellymosman.com


Lithograph by Dorothy Waugh, Courtesy of Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum

Lust for Leisure

It isn’t obvious when we’re opening bargain-offer emails from Orbitz or dreaming on Airbnb when we should be working, but the concept of the average person traveling for pleasure is one that emerged only in the previous century. Lust for Leisure at the Weisman exhibits travel posters from the 1920s to the 1940s, when technology and economics created new ways for people to dream. This was art designed to seduce everyday explorers with visions of the exotic and all the ways we’ve come to think that travel will broaden, enrich, and pull us out of the confines of our lives. We’ve yearned to see what lies over the horizon since we first stood up on two legs—but it’s only recently that we could buy a ticket to the sky and cross the ocean, climb the mountains, and return home to tell the tale. • opens 10/3, wam.umn.edu

 


 

Photo by Heidi Bohnenkamp

Master Class

Maria Callas fit the archetype of the tempestuous opera singer—scaling vocal heights while living very public feuds, spats, and affairs that made her constant fodder for the press. Hers was a life lived in thrall to great art, and it’s here where Master Class begins: with Callas coaching students at the Juilliard School and being pulled into reminiscence of her remarkable highs and lows. This Theater Latté Da production directed by Peter Rothstein stars Sally Wingert, who knows a thing or two about transforming into a character and transporting an audience. There are few anywhere who can draw me in with such assurance and studied reflection of life—here in a character she describes as “a mess of contradictions, ferocious, vain, insecure, all of it.” You might even call her operatic. • 0/8–11/2, latteda.org

 


 

Photo courtesy of Film in Progress

“Arrivals and Departures”

Winding down a year of ambitious transit projects in the Twin Cities, this public art experience looks to transform Union Depot with “motion poems.” Four pieces, chosen by a Minnesota-wide competition, will be read by local actors and accompanied by original films that use 3-D mapping technology to fit the Depot’s grand scale. This visual-and-word experiment kicks off at dusk and goes on a continuous loop until 10:30 p.m., with stories about coming and going in the literal and figurative senses. This will be a can’t-miss if you’re in downtown St. Paul—and, with the Saint Paul Art Crawl opening that night, an evocative capper to a night of sights, exploration. • 10/10, motionpoems.com

 


 

Minnesota SAGE Awards for Dance

It feels like yesterday, or at least months ago, when I would drive up Hennepin Avenue and see the old Shubert making its way, snail-like, up the street to its second life as the Cowles Center. The venue is now a fixture in the dance scene, as are the SAGE Awards—a decade old now and still honoring local dance while mixing in an array of performance, a sampling of new artists, and a great see-and-be-seen evening for the fashion conscious (those who, unlike myself, own more than two nice outfits). This is the first go-round after the death of the awards’ namesake, Sage Cowles, a dancer of many years and, with her late husband, John, a titan of local arts philanthropy. Look for a well-deserved homage that we can hope will inspire the next generation of arts leaders with an example of passion, vision, and downright coolness. • 10/14, thecowlescenter.org

 


 

Photo by Charles Waldorf

Ani DiFranco

She’s done it her own way: Managing to work only for herself (and her self-founded record label) over the course of a 20-year-plus career, she’s also walked her own path musically, armed with an acoustic guitar and signature wit, bridging genres and collaborators and admirers including the Purple One. DiFranco is a live-wire performer, tossing out song after song with trademark jitterbugging energy and charisma to spare, as well as a couple of love songs that have left a mark on my own heart. She’s also relentlessly outspoken and socially conscious, bringing along a core audience while waxing and waning in popularity (eschewing throwing in her lot with corporate concerns). You might have first seen her in the ’90s or you might know a young person who could do with a dose of this joyful and independent spirit—this time out, the show is open to ages 18 and up. • 10/18, first-avenue.com

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