Runestone! A Rock Musical, the larger-than-life story of a Minnesota farmer caught in the whirlwind of an ever growing myth, is playing through May 29 at History Theatre, 30 E. 10th St. The new play by Mark Jensen with music by Gary Rue is the true story of Swedish immigrant Olof Ohman, who in 1898 dug up a rock on his farm near Kensington that contained carved runes indicating that the Vikings were in Minnesota centuries before Columbus. Tickets are $15-$65, and streaming will be available. Visit historytheatre.com or call 651-292-4320.
Airness, playwright Chelsea Marcantel’s comedy about the world of competitive air guitar playing, is playing through June 5 on the proscenium stage at Park Square Theatre, 20 W. Seventh Place. Call 651-291-7005 or visit parksquaretheatre.org.
Mikell Sapp will present his one-man autobiographical show, Charlie Black, from May 28 through June 12 at Pillsbury House Theatre, 3501 Chicago Ave. S. in Minneapolis. The comical and heartfelt drama tells of the trials and triumphs of a young Black man from Alabama striving to find his place as a theater artist in Minnesota. Show times are 8 p.m. May 28, June 1-4 and 8-11 and 5:30 p.m. May 29, June 5 and 12. For ticket information, visit pillsburyhouseandtheatre.org.
A madcap comedy inspired by the earliest stirrings of the gay rights movement, Perfect Arrangement will open on June 3 at Theatre in the Round, 245 Cedar Ave. S. in Minneapolis. Set in 1950, the play by Topher Payne tells of two State Department employees who have been tasked with identifying sexual deviants within their ranks. The problem is, they are gay and have married each other’s partners as cover. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays through June 26. Tickets are $25, $20 for students and seniors. Call 612-333-3010 or visit theatreintheround.org.
The Roommate, a dark comedy by Jen Silverman about an empty-nester who takes in a Bronx lodger sight unseen, will be performed June 3-19 at Mixed Blood Theatre, 1501 S. Fourth St. in Minneapolis. Greta Oglesby and Alison Edwards star as an unlikely pair of women who in sharing pieces of their past discover what it takes to reroute your life and what happens when the wheels come off. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays and 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are $20-$32. Visit primeprods.org.
Twelve Angry Men, a musical version of the courtroom drama about jury deliberations in the trial of an alleged murderer, will open on June 11 at Theater Latté Da’s Ritz Theater, 345 13th Ave. NE in Minneapolis. Peter Rothstein directs the production, which was adapted from the play by Reginald Rose and features music and lyrics by Michael Holland. Curtis Bannister, T. Mychael Rambo, James Detmar and Bradley Greenwald star. Following previews on June 8-10, 33 evening and matinee performances are scheduled. Tickets start at $35. Call 612-339-3003 or visit latteda.org.
The Minnesota Cuban Film Festival will light up the big screen at 7 p.m. Thursdays, May 26 through June 30, at the MSP Film Society’s Saint Anthony Main Theatre, 115 Main St. SE in Minneapolis. The schedule includes Canción de Barrio (Neighborhood Song), a documentary about Silvio Rodríguez’s tour of Cuban neighborhoods; La Emboscada (The Ambush), a drama about a standoff between four Cuban soldiers and counterrevolutionary forces in Angola; Cuba in Africa, a documentary about the 420,000 Cuban soldiers, teachers, doctors and nurses who gave everything to end colonial rule and apartheid in southern Africa; El Mayor (The Major), a drama about Cuban revolutionary Ignacio Agramonte y Loynaz (1841–1873); Los Hermanos (The Brothers), a documentary about Cuban-born brothers living on opposite sides of a geopolitical divide; El Último Balsero (The Last Rafter), a drama about a young Cuban who risks his life crossing the Florida straits to search for his father in Miami; and Volverán los abrazos (I’ll hold you again), a documentary about the Cuban doctors who have fought the coronavirus pandemic. For reservations, call 612-824-6109 or visit facebook.com/MNCubanFilmFestival.
Minnesota Center for Book Arts, 1011 Washington Ave. S. in Minneapolis, will display the works of its own artist collective from May 26 through July 30. Featured book artists include Robyn Awend, Julie Baugnet, Celeste Brosenne, Megan Burchett, Marjorie Fedyszyn, Wendy Fernstrum, Robin Garwood, Genevieve Lapp, Jessie Merriam, Raven Miller, Bridget O’Malley, August Schultz, Christopher Selleck, Richard Stephens and Ben Weaver. An opening reception is scheduled from 6-8 p.m. Thursday, May 26. Admission is free. To RSVP, visit mnbookarts.org.
Historic Fort Snelling will reopen on Memorial Day weekend with a new visitor center, rehabbed cavalry barracks, expanded interpretive displays, Indigenous landscapes, scenic paths and stunning river overlooks. See the $34.5 million in recent improvements to the Minnesota Historical Society’s premier site. New exhibits relate the history of this place where the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers meet. In addition to the fort’s century and a half as a U.S. Army post, the displays address the area’s long history as home to the Dakota, Ojibwe and other Native Americans. Hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday through Monday, May 28-30, and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays during the rest of the summer. Admission is $12, $10 for seniors and college students and active military, $8 for children ages 5-17. Visit mnhs.org or call 612-726-1171.
Walking tours of the historic areas in and around downtown Saint Paul will be offered at 10 a.m. Wednesdays in June, July and August. Led by the Landmark Center Volunteer Association, the tours are free with pre-registration. The schedule includes It Happened Right Here: Saint Paul’s Origins Tour, conducted by storyteller J.B. Eckert on the first Wednesday of each month beginning at the Robert Street entrance to Kellogg Park; the Rice Park Tour beginning at Landmark Center on the second Wednesday of each month; and the Great River Tour beginning at Upper Landing Park on the third Wednesday of each month. The Rice Park and Great River tours are also available virtually. For reservations, visit landmarkcenter.org or call Sydney at 651-292-3063.
Bach Tage (Bach Day), the 15th annual celebration of the music of J.S. Bach, will be presented on June 4 and 5 at Mount Olive Lutheran Church, 3045 Chicago Ave. S. in Minneapolis. The two-day convocation will feature two free public concerts. The magic of three voices will be highlighted at 4 p.m. Saturday in a concert featuring soprano Heather Cogswell, baroque flutist David Ross, cellist Tulio Rondon, violinist Marc Levine and harpsichordist Tami Morse. Bach’s Cantata 78 and Pachelbel’s Magnificat will be performed by the Bach Tage orchestra and chorus with guest soloists, conductor Kathleen Romey and organist David Cherwien at 4 p.m. Sunday, June 5.
SubText Books, 6 W. Fifth St., will present a virtual discussion with Stephanie Trudeau, editor of Anthony Scaduto’s Bob Dylan biography, The Dylan Tapes,at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 26; and an in-person discussion with Andrea Gilats, author of After Effects: A Memoir of Complicated Grief, at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 2, at the Jewish Community Center, 1375 Saint Paul Ave. Both programs are free. Call 651-493-2791 or visit subtextbooks.com.
The Teddy Bear Band will present a free show from 6-6:45 p.m. Wednesday, June 1, in Mendakota Park, located off Dodd Road and Highway 62 in Mendota Heights.
The Flint Hills Family Festival returns to downtown Saint Paul on June 3 and 4 with scores of free and low-cost performances. Featured in the Ordway Concert Hall or the adjacent Landmark Center will be Cirque Mechanics in Birdhouse Factory at 6 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday; Shapeshift in Be Your Own Superhero at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday; and Artistry in Polkadots: The Cool Kids Musical at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday. Tickets for these shows are $8. More than 50 free performances will be presented on Friday evening and all day Saturday in Rice Park, in front of the Ordway or on Landmark Plaza. Performers include Squonk Opera, Chicks on Sticks, Afrocontigbo, Dao Lan Dance, drumHeart, Enso Daiko, Katha Dance Theatre, DJ Digie, DJ Huh? What??, Kalpulli Yaocenoxtli, Los Alegres Bailadores, Natyakala Dance, House of Dance, Native Pride Dancers, Salsa del Soul, Siama’s Congo Roots, Nunnabove, magicians Kristoffer Olson and Markus Klegg, Todd ’n’ Tina and the Unicycling Unicorn. Free art activities, face painting and balloon artistry will also be in abundance. Food trucks and a beer garden will be available. For information, visit ordway.org/festival.
Juneteenth, a commemoration of the end of slavery in the American South in 1865, will be celebrated with live music, art exhibits, a story stroll and food trucks from 11:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, June 11, outside of Latimer Library, 90 W. Fourth St. Thomasina Petrus, Junauda Petrus-Nasah and Lance Brunius will be among the performers. Call 651-266-7000.
Kickoff to Summer, a five-day event with 31 State Fair food and beverage vendors and live entertainment on three stages, will be held from May 26-30 at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds. Children’s activities, Trivia Mafia, board and yard games, specialty shopping and Memorial Day programs will also be featured. Attendance is limited. Timed tickets are $12.50, free for children age 4 and under. Hours are 4:30-9:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and 4:30-9:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, and 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday. Visit mnstatefair.org or call 651-288-4427.
Two free courses in mindfulness meditation will be offered this summer by Highland Park resident Diane Rubright of Compassion Within LLC. Four 90-minute classes will be held on Wednesdays, June 1-22 or June 29-July 20. They meet three times by Zoom and a final time outdoors as a group. They are part of Rubright’s participation in a meditation certification program. For information or to register, contact her at email@example.com or 612-723-0569.
Safe Passage for Children will hold its spring open house from 3-8 p.m. Saturday, June 4, at the Highland Picnic Pavilion, 1200 Montreal Ave. Learn more about this child welfare organization and enjoy food, beverages, live music, games and a silent auction. To RSVP, visit safepassageforchildren.org by May 28.
“What the World Needs Now,” the Northern Spark arts festival, will be held from 9 p.m.-2 a.m. June 11-12 on University Avenue and in downtown in Saint Paul. Featured at each location will be the following: Victoria Theater Arts Center, 825 University Ave.—the interactive puppet show Drive-In Movie Extravaganza, the interactive Post Office for the Ancestors, and community panel painting; Springboard for the Arts, 262 University Ave. —Mangoes are Memories soundscape, improvisational shadow puppetry of the Bureau of Lost Things, an interactive exhibit of traditional Hmong embroidery, Frogtown Neighborhood Association’s theater-of-the-oppressed performance about the politics of displacement, the weaving of a community tapestry, and the audiovisual Waves in the Night vampire dance club; Rondo Library, 461 N. Dale St.— “Rooted in Rondo,” a documentary exploring the past, present and future of Saint Paul’s Rondo neighborhood; and the Minnesota Museum of American Art, 450 N. Robert St.—guided tours of the Mestizaje: Intermix-Remix exhibit and screenprint-making. Northern Spark will close with an art installation of song, visual storytelling and movement celebrating the Mississippi River from 2-5:30 a.m. on Raspberry Island. Visit northern.lights.mn.
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