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The Black Dog inspires creativity -- its high ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows and spacious tables encourage daydreaming, journaling, doodling and other precursors to art making.


Twin Town High (vol. 8)

Your Locally Grown Alternative Newspaper

Hot Tickets for March 7 - 13, 2007
Wednesday 07 March @ 15:49:23
Hot TicketsInternational Women's Day :: Ice Palace :: Piece Story :: These Modern Socks :: Heavy Sleeper :: Bishop Allen :: Benefit for Wain McFarlane :: Badly Drawn Boy :: Blue AND THIS WEEK'S HOT PICK: The Exonerated at Mixed Blood Theatre


International Women's Day
May Day Books
In the winter of 1909, female garment workers at the Triangle Shirtwaist Company in New York City organized and decided to strike. Soon they were walking the picket lines in the cold, protesting low wages, overtime hours and dangerous working conditions. Knowing they wouldn't succeed with other factories still open, they invited workers of other trades to a mass meeting. Clara Lemlich, a teenager still bearing signs of a recent beating on the picket line, stood up and said, "I offer a resolution that a general strike be declared now!" The meeting went wild, they voted to strike, and 20,000 workers walked off the job. In more than 300 shops, workers won their demands. This Wednesday, don't miss "The Clara Lemlich Story: A Strike Leader's Diary," a film that chronicles her lifelong political work. Later blacklisted for her union work, Clara became a member of the Communist Party and a consumer activist. Sponsored by the Freedom Road Socialist Organization, the event honors the historical and present-day women's liberation movements, highlighting the roles of working women and women of color. 6 p.m. Free, donations requested. 301 Cedar Ave. S., Mpls. 612-333-4719. KATRINA PLOTZ

The Exonerated
Mixed Blood Theatre
If you’ve ever been to a prison, you know that there are a lot of people in jail who have done terrible things, show no remorse and, if returned to the rest of the population, will do more terrible things. But there are also a lot of people in jail who shouldn’t be there at all. And I’m not talking about perpetrators of victimless crimes, such as casual pot users. I’m talking about people who are wrongly convicted. People who suffered from an unfortunate series of coincidences that created a compelling, but inaccurate and circumstantial case. People who were bullied into pleading, who were made to feel that a short stint in prison, despite their innocence, would be preferable to what they might get if they went before a jury. The New York Times published a story in 2004 suggesting that there are thousands of wrongfully convicted people in the American prison system. Last fall, the Frank Theatre examined this subject with a one-night reading of Jessica Blank and Eric Jensen’s play “The Exonerated,” which they have now brought back for a full run. The play looks at the experiences of the wrongfully convicted, pieced together from interviews with 40 former death row inmates who were eventually released after their innocence was established. In every single case presented in this play, the eponymous exonerated were released despite the system, rather than because of it. Were it not for activist lawyers and tireless volunteers, each would have been executed. In the wrong hands, this might be less a piece of theater than an angry lecture, but the script is a good one (good enough to have been adapted into a well-received movie on Court TV), and the Frank Theatre is a smart troupe; artistic director Wendy Knox has a talent for finding meaty, compelling plays while avoid the didactic or the haranguing. Read more about this play in a web exclusive review by Lydia Howell at pulsetc.com. Through Mar. 18. Thu. - Sat. 8 p.m.; Sun. 2 p.m. $19/$21. 1501 S. 4th St., Mpls. 612-724-3760. MAX SPARBER

International Women's Day
KFAI Radio
International Women's Day (IWD) was born in the United States during the early 20th century as struggling women labored in sweatshops and fought for the right to vote. It is officially celebrated internationally, but mostly ignored here. For 15 years, KFAI Radio reminds us that women comprise over half of the human population and are more diverse than the narrow image depicted by corporate media. This year's IWD theme is "Broad Band: Women Riding the Airwaves," and includes a variety of programming that features Twin Cities women doing relief work in post-Katrina New Orleans (4 a.m.), Brazilian women's music (8 a.m.), hip-hop 'femcees' (6:30 a.m.), women in the military (noon), Asian women's music (2 p.m.), radio drama "What's the Verdict?" (4:30 p.m.), Native American women's art (5 p.m.), local women activists (8:30 p.m.) and experimental music (11 p.m.). This 24-hour broadcast extravaganza celebrating women starts at midnight on March 8 and runs for 24 hours. 90.3 FM Minneapolis/106.7 FM St. Paul. Live streaming at kfai.org. 612-341-3144. LYDIA HOWELL

Ice Palace
Nomad World Pub
Unfortunately, last week's Minneseries--the first in a month-long residency by ascendant indie rock band Ice Palace--coincided with the worst snowstorm in Minnesota since 1982. Let's pray for a warm-up this week, because Ice Palace are more than worth seeing, and their special guests for this show, the melodic and melancholy Duplomacy and Fitzgerald electro-pop side-project Ghost in the Water, would be worth seeing on their own. The Minneseries started as a Tuesday night showcase for local bands, but starting this month, and coinciding with a new sponsorship by 89.3 The Current, it's being reconstituted as a residency by choice bands who will then be largely responsible for gathering a group of friends to join them every week. Ice Palace have been garnering critical raves for their debut album, Bright Leaf Left, and have been receiving heavy airplay on The Current as well. In this day and age, you never know who's going to be the next band called up to the big time on short notice, so don't miss this chance to see them stretch out and get comfy on a weekly basis before they're called to The Show like Nuke LaLoosh. 9 p.m. Free. 21+. 501 Cedar Ave. S., Mpls. 612-338-6424. STEVE McPHERSON

Piece Story
Bryant-Lake Bowl
Solo performance is an ever-evolving theater genre and one that's often the gateway for new artists to finally be heard. Did you know that women make up only 20 percent of professional theater artists, 17 percent of directors and just 16 percent of playwrights? A spring series of one-woman plays is being presented by 20% Theatre Company, whose aim is to expand women's presence on (and back) stage. Teresa Mock's "Piece Story" combines storytelling, stand-up comedy and performance art that takes you on a journey as one woman searches for peace in her world. Through Mar. 10. Thu. – Sat. 7 p.m. $10 - $15 pay-what-you-can; $8 w/Fringe button. 810 W. Lake St., Mpls. 612-825-8949. LYDIA HOWELL

These Modern Socks
7th Street Entry
One of the best local debut albums of 2005 is now one of the best local debut albums of 2007! OK, OK, so These Modern Socks' debut album may have originally landed in the fall of '05 but there's plenty of reason to celebrate its re-release tonight. Now on board with local heavy hitters Princess Records, the revamped version of the album includes two new tracks (one of them a Tears for Fears cover!) and, most importantly outside of Minnesota, will be getting wider distribution and promotion. So if you've been sleeping on the digitized neurotic pop bliss of These Modern Socks, now would certainly be as good a time as any to wake up. With Umbrella Sequence, Ghost in the Water, The Original Mark Edwards. 9 p.m. $6. 21+. 701 First Ave. N., Mpls. 612-338-8388. NATHAN DEAN

Heavy Sleeper
Hexagon Bar
Heavy Sleeper unleashed arguably my favorite local power pop album of the aughts back in late 2004 with The Gifted Curse, a collection of guitar-strangling heroics with serious cojones and occasional forays into polite balladry. The band made a decent splash locally, gigged a bit and then went into hibernation for the past year. They're re-emerging with a new lineup and a batch of new tunes. If your only previous exposure to Marcel Galang, Heavy Sleeper's frontman has been in his sideman role with the Hang Ups then you have no idea what you're in for--be prepared to have your face rocked off. With The Nightingales, The Plastic Chord. 9 p.m. Free. 21+. 2600 27th Ave. S., Mpls. 612-722-3454. NATHAN DEAN

Bishop Allen
Triple Rock Social Club
Who needs a record deal anyway? Certainly not Bishop Allen: Their self-released 2003 debut, Charm School, was a collection of buzzing mid-period Modest Mouse-isms that instantly converted anyone within earshot. Unsurprisingly--given the number of units the band moved as an unsigned act--record labels came calling. At this point it's hard to say whether Bishop Allen's long-since finished sophomore album will ever see the light of day (rumored label deals have come and gone so many times that die-hard fans have grown used to the wait). While most bands in this record label limbo would sit on their hands and whine, Bishop Allen decided to take matters into their own hands, self-releasing an EP every single month in 2006. Read that again: 12 EPs of slap-dash pop goodness in one year. When the songs are flying this fast and furious, not everything hits, but a good 50 percent is brilliant, evoking shades of Elvis Costello in terms of its sheer chameleonic daring. With Say Hi To Your Mom, The Ashtray Hearts. 9 p.m. $8 adv/ $10 door. 21+. 629 Cedar Ave. S., Mpls. 612-333-7399. NATHAN DEAN

Benefit for Wain McFarlane
Myth Nightclub
This is going to be one hell of a benefit. Cyndi Lauper, Mint Condition, Lifehouse and Soul Asylum perform, coming to the aid of Twin Cities legend Wain McFarlane. The guitar monster and frontman for Ipso Facto and Wain McFarlane & Jahz needs a new kidney, and these folk aim to see that he gets one. John Hines and Robyne Robinson are the night's emcees. That concludes this public service announcement. 3090 Southlawn Dr., Maplewood. 651-779-6984. DWIGHT HOBBES

Badly Drawn Boy
Fine Line Music Cafe
On any given record, it's hard to say which incarnation of British musician Damon Gough (aka Badly Drawn Boy) is going to show up. Will it be the jaunty film score maestro behind 2001's "About A Boy"? The dour folkie responsible for 2004's One Plus One is One? Or, in a best case scenario, the audacious experimentalist who thinks nothing of fusing electro-pop maneuvers, blue-eyed soul and forward thinking folk into an intoxicating hybrid (2000's The Hour of Bewilderbeast)? Unfortunately, none of these three turn up on the new Born in the UK. Instead we have a bloated balladeer that can't seem to come up with winning hooks to form the core of his shiny-as-ever arrangements. Gough reportedly battled writer's block for the first time in his career during the making of Born and I hate to say it, but it shows. All that being said, the man's still a consummate performer who certainly has a stellar enough back catalog that he's worth checking out, provided the set doesn't lean too heavily on his latest endeavor. With Adem. 9 p.m. $18/$20. 18+. 318 First Ave. N., Mpls. 612-338-8100. NATHAN DEAN

Penumbra Theatre
Charles Randolph-Wright's musical drama "Blue" tells the story of a successful African-American family's struggle to maintain a perfect façade. Central character Peggy Clarke (Austene Van) has a luxurious life, an adoring husband (Shawn Hamilton), two healthy sons (Blaine Crawford/Namir Smallwood and Keith Bolden) and the respect of her South Carolina community. Concerned with appearances and social position, Peggy only indulges her passion for the music of Blue Williams (Dennis Spears) behind closed doors. Commenting on the play's exploration of public persona versus private persona, assistant director Harry Waters Jr. says, "The outside appearances are as shallow as the Ebony Fashion Fair photo shoots." Wrapped in the sultry sounds of her blues records, her memories of Chicago in the height of the blues era and of the woman she used to be, Peggy transforms into a woman unknown to her family, a woman filled with desire and a secret love. Director Lou Bellamy explains, "There are people like Amiri Baraka who say that the primary language of black people is music … What I have tried to do this season is highlight and acknowledge that music. Penumbra is typically known for hard-hitting, serious drama. I wanted this season to include humor and music to reflect more of the totality of black culture." Through Mar. 11. Mon. - Thu. 7:30 p.m.; Fri. - Sat. 8 p.m.; Sun. 2 p.m.; 10 a.m. Wed. $15 - $30. Hallie Q. Brown/MLK Center, 270 N. Kent St., St. Paul. 651-224-3180. AUDRA OTTO

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