This Week in Arts MN: Superhuman Dance Moves, China’s Indie Rock Subculture, and a One-Man Odyssey

In honor of our progression into the double-digit dates of March—and hopefully into spring weather at last!—we focus this week on all things double. Dancers that double as stunt artists, a two-for-one concert and Kickstarter event, performances that present and contrast artists from two cultures (Chinese and American, as well as Irish and American), and a one-man show in which the actor not only plays dual, but multiple characters. Everything this week is sure to be double the fun.


Black Label Movement…They Do Their Own Stunts

Cowles Center, 528 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN // March 27–29 // 8:00pm

Black Label Movement

Photo courtesy of Black Label Movement

The mission of Black Label Movement has four central tenets: work hard, embrace risk, challenge always, and make art. Furthermore, they claim to seek to push “the mind, body, and heart to the edge of what is possible and beyond.” Sounds ambitious? It is, but somehow Black Label Movement delivers what it promises. This March will mark the Twin Cities–based dance theater’s third season at the Cowles Center and will feature both the world premiere of Hive, choreographed by Artistic Director Carl Flink, as well as BLM repertory Lost Lullabies, the intimate A Fractured Narrative for a Sad Ending, and a live performance of the TED Talk Let’s Talk About Sex set to live music created and performed by Jello Slave. On top of everything, audiences will have to chance to connect with Black Label Movement through panel sessions that follow each performance. Doors open at 7:30pm each evening and tickets, which can be purchased online, are $26.

Beer bonus: Mason’s restaurant, which offers both full beverage and food menus, is so close to the Cowles Center that it’s literally in the same building. Better still? The restaurant is offering $4 Irish pints and $5 Irish flights all March. Since Black Label Movement is sure to inspire conversations of superhuman abilities, grab a pint and find out which superpower each of your friends would prefer to have if given the chance.

Adam Meckler, Amsterdam, and Ales

The Amsterdam, 6 W 6th Street, Saint Paul, MN // Tuesday, March 25 // 9:00pm

Adam Meckler Orchestra at Amsterdam Bar & Hall

Adam Meckler Orchestra at Amsterdam Bar & Hall

Attention all brass players, former and current! This Tuesday at Amsterdam Bar & Hall in downtown Saint Paul, trumpeter Adam Meckler and his 18-piece (mostly horn) orchestra will preview pieces from their soon-to-be-recorded album. If your heart skips a beat every time you hear a super high horn riff, or if your fondest memories are of improving with your fellow high school band members, this jazz trumpeter and his arrangements are not to be missed. Note that the event is 21+ and that there is a $10 cover. Some of the proceeds are sure to go towards reaching the orchestra’s Kickstarter goal, which will allow them to record their first full-length album. If you’re interested in donating online, visit their Kickstarter page here.

Beer bonus: Ample amounts of assorted ales are available at Amsterdam! Alliteration never tasted so good.

Exploring the Indie Rock Subculture…of China!

Bryant Lake Bowl, 810 W Lake Street, Minneapolis, MN // Tuesday, March 25 // 7:00pm

Beijing Punk at Bryant Lake Bowl

In anticipation of White+ and Carsick Cars’ (two groups from Beijing) upcoming performance at Cause on March 27,  Bryant Lake Bowl will host screenings of the 2010 feature documentary Beijing Punk, as well as a series of related short films. In addition, Minneapolis local and longtime Beijing DJ Danny Sigelman will hold a panel discussion following the film to answer any and all of your questions concerning the indie rock and punk subcultures of China. This is a great chance to become more knowladgable about a fascinating topic that most of your friends are sure to know nothing about, which will also translate to you being the most interesting individual at the next party you attend. Impressive. Doors open at 6:00pm, while the show arts at 7:00pm. Tickets can be purchased in advance (by calling or stopping by BLB) for $8, or $10 at the door.

Beer bonus: BLB has a solid selection of craft beers, all of which can be taken with you into the theater itself. Enough said.

Echoes Across the Pond: Voices, Irish & American

The Loft Literary Center, Open Book, 1011 Washington Ave S, Minneapolis, MN // Wednesday, March 26 // 7:00pm

Photo courtesy of Open Book

Photo courtesy of Open Book

Being midweek, Wednesday is the day on which most of us are in real need of a pick-me-up, albeit one that will still allow us to finish the work week in good health. If you find yourself in such a situation on this Wendesday, March 26, consider trekking on down to The Loft Literary Center’s Open Book space for a special evening of Irish and American literature. The event will feature such authors as Joyce Sutphen (who was named the second Minnesota Poet Laureate following the tenure of Robert Bly), Patricia Kirkpatrick (recipient of the first Lindquist & Vennum Poetry Prize), Tim Nolan (author of The Sound of It and And Then), poet Anne-Marie Fyfe, and C.L. Dallat (winner of a Strokestown International Poetry award). Find out more information here.

Beer bonus: Haven’t forgotten about the Town Hall Brewery have you? After what seems like months of renovations, the brewery is scheduled to reopen April 1, 2014 (and no, this is no April Fools). Go peer inside at the new décor and anticipate spending summer on the patio.

Walking Shadow Theater Company presents Charlie Bethel in The Odyssey

Open Eye Theatre, 506 East 24th Street, Minneapolis // March 28–April 6


If you’ve never seen a one-actor show before, why not start with one whose story you may already be familiar with? From now until April 6th, Charlie Bethel of Walking Shadow Theater Company presents his solo show rendition of The Odyssey at Open Eye Theatre. Bethel, whose credits include previous solo shows of both Beowulf and the Epic of Gilgamesh, describes his version of The Odyssey as both faithful to Homer’s epic, yet accessible. Marvel at the way one man portrays everything from a siren and a goddess to Odysseus and his loving wife, and make your high school English teacher proud in the process. Ticket prices range from $15–$22, but a number of $10 tickets may be available for each production through Walking Shadow’s Economic Accessibility initiative. To find out more about tickets, or to reserve them in advance, contact [email protected]. Evening performances begin at 7:30pm, while Sunday matinees are at 3:00pm.

Beer bonus: Down for some post-show imbibing? Icehouse is a hop, skip, and a jump away on Eat Street (Nicollet Avenue) and will definitely deliver in both the food and beer categories.


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