Saturday, September 26, 2020

"The Cafe" by Collide Theatrical Dance Company Outdoors at Gremlin Theatre

Since 2013, Collide Theatrical Dance Company has been creating original dance musicals that really blur the line between dance, theater, and music (their name refers to a collision of art forms). Most of their shows tell a story strictly through dance and music (typically pop songs performed live), with little or no dialogue. In February they remounted their adaptation of Romeo and Juliet, which I didn't see because I had seen the original in 2014 and I was so busy with #TCTheater that I couldn't fit it in (can you even imagine?!). But in the last 6+ months my life has become the complete opposite of that, so my schedule was happily free and clear to see their new production, being performed outdoors for a limited time only. In fact only one performance remains, tonight, and can be viewed in person or virtually. I saw it in person last night and was smiling under my mask for 60 minutes! Click here for all of the details of how you can take in this delightful dance show.

Sunday, September 20, 2020

"Live at the Loading Dock: Ordway Cabaret" outdoors behind the Ordway Center

St. Paul's Ordway Center for the Performing Arts had planned a 2020-2021 Broadway season that included touring shows and original productions, classics and new musicals. But as this extended intermission is lasting longer than any of us had hoped, due to a pandemic that isn't slowing down, at least in this country, their plans have changed. The only show on the schedule as of now is a summer 2021 Ordway Original production of RENT, which of course is still dependent on what happens with the virus between now and then. To celebrate this season-that-wasn't, and to show their commitment to producing these shows at some future date, the Ordway is presenting an outdoor cabaret concert consisting of songs from the planned upcoming season, as well as one cancelled show from last season. Live at the Loading Dock is performed outside behind the theater in the loading dock area, which is really a perfect outdoor venue. Seeing this show nourished my theater-starved soul and gave me hope for that day in the future when we can all gather together safely to share music and stories again.

Monday, September 7, 2020

The History Theatre's Virtual New Works Festival "Raw Stages," Fall 2020

Every January, the History Theatre hosts a new works festival called "Raw Stages." Most of their programming is original works, so they rely on these annual workshops and readings as part of the development process. Faced with a long closure of the theater space due to the current and seemingly never-ending pandemic, they decided to hold another "Raw Stages" festival this year - virtually. Workshops and readings are done over Zoom, with the each of five recorded readings available for streaming for a week, spread out about a month apart. I missed the first one, Not In Our Neighborhood (which was supposed to premiere in the spring of 2020), but I just watched the second one, Diesel Heart, which is available for streaming this week. Read on for details of all five new works and how you can watch them.

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

"An Evening with Kate Beahen" at Crooners Lakeside Cafe

What good is sitting alone In your room?
Come hear the music play.
Life is a Cabaret, old chum,
Come to the Cabaret.

I don't know about you, but I've been doing more "sitting alone in my room" the last six months than any six-month period in my entire life. For someone who's used to going to the cabaret, i.e., theater, 3-5 times a week, that's quite a change. As I told someone last night, life just feels a little empty right now. But fortunately, there are still cabarets that are safely happening; one of the few places is at Crooners Supper Club, which has a couple of different options for outdoor concerts. I've been to enough of their drive-in concerts that the workers recognize me and/or my bug, but this was my first time attending a concert at their lovely Lakeside Cafe, to see the one and only Kate Beahen.