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REVIEW: Love Sublime: A Valentine’s Day Shuffle (LOFTRecital)

Pianist James Barnett and soprano Bergen Baker at Saturday's LOFTRecital performance. Four years ago, a small organization called LoftOpera launched in Brooklyn, NY. It's motto, "Something between a loft party and a startup opera company", speaks to both sides of its audience experience: intimate performances stripped down to an industrially tinged, repurposed

REVIEW: Dead Man Winter @ First Avenue

Photo by David McClister. First Ave is packed, but it's noticeably not annoying. I am chesting through what is undeniably the salt of the earth: Minnesotans buzzing with anticipation, familial-like recognition, whiskey. It’s cozy like a homecoming dipped in flannel, and I have the sense that if the world were to

REVIEW: Sweeping Peter and the Starcatcher (Latté Da)

Tyler Michaels as Peter in Theater Latté Da's Peter and the Starcatcher. Photo by Dan Norman. There's a lot of great stuff going on in Theater Latté Da's production of Peter and the Starcatcher. Where to begin? This show has visual humor galore, old-fashioned stage effects that impress you with their subtlety, a script

REVIEW: Dr. Seuss & Sneetches + Musical = !!! (Children’s Theatre Company)

Photo by Dan Norman. Marvelous, simply marvelous.  These are not just my words, they are also the words uttered by my five-year-old granddaughter when she saw Dr. Seuss’ The Sneetches: The Musical, which had its world premiere performance this weekend at the Children’s Theatre Company.  The musical is based on the Dr. Seuss’ book The

REVIEW: Skylark Opera Theatre Charges Back with Tragedy of Carmen

Tess Altiveros as Carmen. Skylark Opera Theatre's artistic director Bob Neu made headlines last year with his Angels & Demons Entertainment production of The Marriage of Figaro at the Hill House. When Skylark announced its first season after last spring's sudden cancellation, therefore, expectations were high for something other than business as usual. The

REVIEW: Ladysmith Black Mambazo Still Smithing Strong (State Theatre)

Photo by Luis Lea. Ladysmith Black Mambazo’s recent performance at the State Theatre was as much about educating the audience on the group’s African musical heritage as it was about entertainment.  Most of the songs they performed were from their most recent album Walking in the Footsteps of Our Fathers, which

REVIEW: Mamma Mia! – The Last Tour (Orpheum Theatre)

Photo by Kevin Thomas Garcia. The vivacious spirit of ABBA has returned to the Orpheum Theatre in the form of the Broadway hit Mamma Mia!  This is the megamusical's eighth run in Minneapolis and is reportedly the last tour for a while. (Proving that nature abhors a vacuum, an ABBA tribute band

REVIEW: Numb with Grace (Yellow Tree Theatre)

Powerful is an apt description for Yellow Tree Theatre’s new production of Grace.   Playwright Craig Wright’s thought-provoking play centers on belief systems and what happens when they prove to be insufficient.  Under the direction of Terry Hempleman, this production generates compelling acting by each of the four players (Hempleman also plays