In these dark winter days, a little glitter can do wonders for the soul. A visit to Russian art museum to see Andréa Stanislav’s personal exhibition, “Cosmist Reconstructions – Memories of the Earth“, lights up the season with brilliant and often macabre shots of Russian science fiction, the philosophy of the cosmos and scientific research into space and the future.
This isn’t the first time that the New York-based artist, who is also an associate professor at Indiana University in Bloomington and works in St. Petersburg, Russia, has exhibited her art in Minnesota in the dead of winter. She has had a number of solo exhibitions here in the Twin Cities over the years, and many of them have opened during the colder months, such as her exhibition at the Minnesota Artists Exhibition Program at the Minneapolis Institute of Art in 2008, “River to Infinity— The Vanishing Points: Landscapes by Andrea Stanislav”, and subsequent solo exhibitions in the former Burnet Gallery at the Chambers Hotel.
We’re drawn to the glow of this time of year, and Stanislav’s clever and dark sense of humor provides a captivating experience of reflection, imagination, and interaction with senses and ideas alike. . Besides its brilliant photo montages and use of collage, the exhibition also uses taxidermy and mirrors as a metaphorical tool in works that are both violent and luminous. The museum also features Stanislav’s three-channel video “Surmatants — Mars Rising”, a strange little work with Slavic dances and haunting score by Jesse Gelaznik. While you’re there, you can shop for last-minute gifts and treats in the beautiful gift shop of the Museum of Russian Art. “Andréa Stanislav, Cosmist Reconstructions – Memories of the Earth”, at the museum of russian art until February 27, 2022 ($ 13). More info here.
Summer: Donna’s Summer Musical: The touring production of “Summer: The Donna Summer Musical”, which is based on the “Queen of Disco” itself, premieres in Minnesota in Saint Paul for a performance by the Ordway. Performed by three different performers at different stages in the singer’s life, the musical follows Donna from her young life in Boston to her days as a chart-topping singer. She went from singing in a gospel choir to selling 140 million records, in addition to receiving five Grammy Awards and an Oscar. The musical mixes with the biggest hits of the summer while telling the story of his life, with the addition of music by Giorgio Moroder, Paul Jabara and others. The Ordway, December 28, 2021 – January 2, 2022 ($ 44 – $ 122). More info here.
All is calm: the Christmas truce of 1914: The Latté Da Theater production of “Everything is Calm” was a favorite of my predecessor, the late Artscape columnist Pamela Espeland. “All Is Calm” is a visceral experience, ”she wrote in 2019.“ It aims right at the heart, and its purpose is true. It’s full of beautiful songs, strong emotions and humanity. The story is based on a true story, when soldiers on both sides of the Western Front during World War I called for a Christmas Eve truce in No Man’s Land. They sang Christmas carols and exchanged gifts before resuming trying to kill each other at the end of the holidays. Incorporating traditional holiday songs as well as mixtures of war songs and Christian melodies, the piece, conducted by founding artistic director Peter Rothstein, was written by former Cantus members Erick Lichte and Timothy C. Takach. Ritz Theater, until January 2 ($ 51-73). More info here.
Dessa: Fresh off the release of her new album “Ides”, Dessa returns to First Avenue, bringing her poetic lyrics, pulsating rhythm and soft voice to a pre-New Year’s Eve concert. local performer and instrumentalist Mayyadda opens the evening of this concert presented by The Current and Radio K. First avenue; Thursday, December 30; Doors open at 7 p.m., show at 8 p.m. ($ 35) More info here.
Love in fact: Get your annual vacation fix from Hugh Grant, Laura Linney, Rowan Atkinson, Emma Thompson, Alan Rickman and other British actors when “Love Actually” is screened at the Parkway Theater. The evening begins with a pre-show by local composer and musician Daniel Ness, who will preview the British romantic comedy by playing tunes from the soundtrack in addition to a mix of Radiohead guitar and ukulele covers, Zeppelin, Tom Attend and Kermit the Frog. Promenade theater; doors open at 7 p.m., screening at 8 p.m. Thursday, December 30. ($ 9 upfront, $ 12 door.) More info here.
Gully Boys: After having their stolen van in October and all of their gear taken (they recovered the van, but it was totaled and none of their items were recovered), the Gully Boys stormed the United States. They also added a new member, Mariah Mercedes, making the group a quartet. The wellness, dancing and socially aware group will tear up 7th St. Entry with guests King Pari and Lupine for their final engagement. December residency the day after Christmas. Seventh Street Entrance, 8 p.m. Sunday, December 26. ($ 15-18). More info here.