WEDNE SDAY 5 /4 COMEDY JOHN CAPARULO ACME COMEDY CO. “I’ve always felt like there’s a fine line between a standup comedian and a raving lunatic at a bus stop,” says comedian John Caparulo. “We’re both babbling about our feelings, but I’m just coherent enough to be funny instead of scary.” Onstage, he continues to turn challenging moments from his personal life into relatable comedy. When his wife was pregnant last year, for example, he realized he wasn’t sure what to say to her. “She’d ask, ‘Does this make me look fat?’” Caparulo would shrug, puzzled, and mutter, “The baby makes you look fat. You’re bigger… can I leave the room now?” Yet, he soldiers on, making jokes out of the uncomfortable and the embarrassing. “I’m never happy about it in that moment,” he notes. “Or on the car ride home. Or while I’m getting hosed off in the backyard. But, eventually, the comedy is what makes it all worthwhile.” 18+. $20. 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday; 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 708 N. First St., Minneapolis; 612-338- 6393. Through Saturday —P.F. WILSON COMEDY JEFF RICHARDS RICK BRONSON’S HOUSE OF COMEDY Long departed from Saturday Night Live and Mad TV, one of only two performers to accomplish that feat, Jeff Richards is giving the people what they want. “I’m doing mostly impressions and characters,” he says of his live set. “That’s what I like to do, and I think that’s what I’m suited to do. And now I’m introducing music into it too. I do a couple of songs.” Describing how the music fits in is difficult. “You’d have to see it,” he says, “because I’m doing standup as myself, but when I go into a song it’s sort of like a character, so it’s a little bit of both.” The music itself is a cross between new wave and EDM, and he’s made videos for several of the tracks including “I Cry at Weddings” and “Someday You Will Die.” As for impressions, he’s added a few, such as Donald Trump and Guy Fieri, and brought a few popular ones back, like David Letterman and David Attenborough. The Trump impression is not necessarily political. “It’s more silly,” he states. “I don’t want to divulge the bit, but I like doing Trump just in the mode of how he fields questions.” 18+; 21+ later shows. $13-$22. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Friday; 9:45 p.m. Friday; 7 and 9:30 p.m. Saturday; 7 p. m. Sunday. 408 E. Broadway, Mall of America, Bloomington; 952-858-8558. Through Sunday —P.F. WILSON THURSDAY 5 / 5 THEATER A NIGHT IN OLYMPUS ILLUSION THEATER On the surface the latest production at Illusion Theater, A Night in Olympus, recalls the premise of a John Hughes teen comedy. For starters, the story is centered upon a shy teenage girl named Maggie who wants nothing more than to be asked to the prom by Chad, the most popular boy in school. She is loath to admit this to her best friend, Harry (who, naturally enough, carries his own unrecognized torch for Maggie). Unique to this teenage love triangle, however, is the setting at Olympus High wherein the teachers are Greek gods possessed of the power to transform Maggie into a mystical beauty capable of ensnaring Chad’s heart. Workshopped in 2012 as part of Illusion Theater’s Fresh Ink series, A Night in Olympus originated with a notion by musician Chan Poling (formerly of the rock band the Suburbs and currently of the New Standards) to expand his musical palette under a theatrical scenario allowing for a fusion of powerpop ballads and ensemble showtunes With the storyline refined by acclaimed playwright Jeff Hatcher (who also collaborated with Poling on last year’s enormously popular musical Glensheen) and lent off-kilter humor by Bill Corbett (of Mystery Science Theater 3000 fame), this Michael Robins-directed production offers an irresistible invitation to the dance — no formal attire required. The show is in previews May 5-6. $23-$42; $15 previews. 8 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays; 7 p.m. Sundays. 528 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-339-4944. Through June 4 —BRAD RICHASON FRIDAY 5 / 6 ART/PARTY BELL SOCIAL: ART, SCIENCE, AND MUSIC BELL MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY In a nod to the Bell Museum’s planned move to St. Paul in 2018, this month’s Bell Social — an after-hours event that combines art, science, and music – will be exploring the concept of movement. Resident artist Carl Flink and his company, Black Label Movement, will be on hand to share a special performance examining the ways that scientific and natural phenomena can be expressed through dance. In addition, visual artist Alyssa Baguss will showcase her work, folks from Café Scientifique will give a presentation, and Romantica will provide live music. The ExploraDome will be open for planetarium shows, there will be DIY shadow puppetry, and a food truck and cash bar will offer libations. $15. 7 to 10:30 p.m. 10 SE Church St., Minneapolis; 612-624-7083. —SHEILA REGAN PARTY COCKTAIL S AT THE CASTLE AMERICAN SWEDISH INSTITUTE This Friday, ASI hosts another one of its fab garden parties, as Cocktails at the Castle returns. This installment pays homage to psychedelic art and twinkling lights. Think Lite Briteinspired activities, live glass-blowing demonstrations, and neon art from Philip Noyed. Water is another theme for the evening, as guests can play with watercolors, and folks from the Water Bar will be sharing info on water resources and sampling H2O. Live music will be provided by Sofia Jannok, Rupert Angeleyes, and Transmission. Meanwhile, special cocktails, beer and wine, s’mores, and bonfires will keep stomachs full and revelers outside toasty. Buy tickets early, as these events tend to sell out. $20/$25 at the door; $50 VIP. 7 to 11 p.m. 2600 Park Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-871-4907. —JESSICA ARMBRUSTER FESTIVAL WIZARD WORLD COMIC CON MINNEAPOLIS CONVENTION CENTER Back in town for its third year, Wizard World Comic Con descends on the Minneapolis Convention Center for three days of celebrity panels and photo ops, cosplay contests, creative sessions, yoga adventures, and more. Take a moment to shop from vendors selling T-shirts, posters, and collectibles. Stop by the artists’ alley and commission some work for your walls. Get your picture taken with the Green Power Ranger. Other celebrities stopping by include Gotham villains (Corey Michael Smith, Robin Lord Taylor), TV vampires (True Blood’s Kristin Bauer and Buffy’s James Marsters), icons (Barry Bostwick from The Rocky Horror Picture Show), a hobbit (Billy Boyd), and cartoon voice actors (Jeremy Shada from Adventure Time). Wear comfortable shoes, bring an energy drink, and get ready to stand in line for the big guests (it’s totally worth it). For more info and tickets, check wizardworld.com/comiccon/ minneapolis. $35-$45 single day admission; $75-$85 three-day pass; VIP packages available. 3 to 8 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. 1301 Second Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-335-6000. Through Sunday —JESSICA ARMBRUSTER FESTIVAL ANIMINNEAPOLIS 2016 HYATT REGENCY MINNEAPOLIS While Wizard World tends to cover multiple bases, AniMinneapolis prefers to geek out primarily over anime arts and culture. As at any good convention, revelers will find oodles of things to experience, whether they’re corralling kids or prefer wild adult offerings. Over the next three days, there will be panels from artists and other creatives, movie screenings, late-night dance parties, cosplay celebrations, karaoke, live music, tabletop gaming, video-game sessions, a formal ball, and room parties galore. Bring friends or proclaim your fandom and make new ones. For a complete schedule, visit animinneapolis.com. $40 daily; $110 three-day pass. Noon to 1 a.m. Friday; 10 to 1 a.m. Saturday; 10a. m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. 1300 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis; 612-370-1234. Through Sunday —JESSICA ARMBRUSTER DANCE ZENON DANCE COMPANY SPRING SEASON THE COWLES CENTER FOR DANCE & THE PERFORMING ARTS This weekend, Zenon returns from a triumphant Cuban tour in a program that showcases the range and vitality of this multifaceted ensemble. A premiere by New York-based Sam Kim explores weight, impact, and other aspects of physics with heavy-breathing physicality and formidable partnering. Reprises include Wynn Fricke’s ritualistic “The Mourning Tree,” set to traditional Bulgarian folk songs; Danny Buraczeski’s ebullient jazz work “Merry Go Round,” with music by Glenn Miller and the Army Air Force Band; and Joanna Kotze’s playfully eclectic “Rouge.” The spring season is dedicated to Stephen Schroeder, who will be dancing his final performance with Zenon, and who deserves nothing less than a military band to honor his abundant gifts. $34. 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sunday, May 15. 528 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, 612-206-3636. Through May 15 —LINDA SHAPIRO SATURDAY 5 / 7 PARTY KENTUCKY DERBATANTE PARTY BETTY DANGER’S COUNTRY CLUB You love horse racing, you have a fancy hat, and mint juleps are your summertime lemonade. So what’s the problem? Well, you’re in Minnesota, not Kentucky. So, no horse-race partying for you. But not so fast! This Saturday, Betty Danger’s Country Club is hosting another glam Kentucky Derby party for all. At this celebration you’ll not only be able to watch the races live on big-screen Tvs, you’ll also be able to partake in all the traditions. Mint juleps will be poured, crazy hats and fascinators are encouraged (and might win you a prize), and violins will keep things classy and set tensions high. There will be horses and ponies on hand for you to pet and pose with, and less traditional fun includes an ’80s dance party, a food truck serving up Tex-Mex treats, and folks racing in person with inflatable horses. $16.95; includes one mint julep. 4 to 9 p.m. 2501 Marshall St. NE, Minneapolis; 612-315-4997. —JESSICA ARMBRUSTER LITERARY GRETCHEN MARQUETTE UPTOWN CHURCH It’s tough to entice readers to pick up a collection of poetry, much less one that meditates on grief, but author Gretchen Marquette has done just that with her new book May Day. Reflecting on the absence of her Army-enlisted brother during his deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan, plus the demise of a 17-year relationship, the Minneapolis-based poet invites readers into an intimate, emotionally authentic exchange that avoids the self-indulgence so often associated with the poetry of loss. The title of the book serves dual purposes: as a distress call and as a source of hope for new beginnings, though Marquette’s poems are heavily weighted on the former. Blunt declarations like “There are places in the universe where time matters / less” or “I’m beginning to understand that parts of me / are wasted entirely” would be hard to swallow if not tempered with lessons learned, like “you have to let love be practice / for what might happen / elsewhere.” By May Day’s end, hope emerges, not unlike its namesake celebration that welcomes the arrival of spring. A writer since she was a child growing up in a small Wisconsin town, Marquette graduated with an MFA from Hamline University in 2012. Her work has been published in Paper Darts, Harper’s, and the Paris Review. Free. 7 p.m. 1219 W. 31st St., Minneapolis; 612-270-5333. —ERICA RIVERA FESTIVAL CRAF TSTRAVAGANZA MINNESOTA STATE FAIR PROGRESS CENTER Eleven years ago, Craftstravaganza hosted its first annual event showcasing the work of local makers. These days, markets like these are common weekly occurrences. What a great era for artisans, creatives, and people who love supporting local talent! This Saturday, Craftstravaganza at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds will host around 80 printmakers, jewelry designers, knitters, candle-makers, and others shilling wares that range from freakin’ adorable to totally bad-ass. There will be gig posters, T-shirts, Minnesota-themed mugs, leather jewelry, quirky candles, totes, vegan makeup, and tons more to explore and consider splurging on. Shop for yourself, shop for your mom, or shop for that three-year-old you know who really needs a tutu and a plushy of Babe the Blue Ox. There will also be free workshops, plenty of parking, and other happenings throughout the day. For more info, visit www.craftstravaganza. com. Free. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 1621 Randall Ave., St. Paul; 651-288-4400. —JESSICA ARMBRUSTER BEER BLESSING OF THE MAIBOCK MINNEAPOLIS TOWN HALL BREWERY Various churches around town bless people, pets, and even bikes. This Saturday, Town Hall will bless its Maibock brew. So cheers to good health, warmer weather, and good beer. After the playful blessing, the taps will open, with free Maibock for all from 5 to 6 p.m. 21+. Free. 5 p.m. 1430 Washington Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612- 339-8696. —JESSICA ARMBRUSTER FESTIVAL CINCO DE MAYO MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL One of the greatest signs that block-party season is here is the arrival of Cinco de Mayo. The big happening is on St. Paul’s West Side, as the area turns into a celebration loaded with family fun and grown-up entertainment. There will be at parade at 10 a.m., marching along Cesar Chavez Street from Wabasha to Ada. There will also be a beer garden, three music stages, a jalapeno-eating contest, food vendors, and the always-awesome car, truck, and bike show showcasing unusual rides, lowriders, insane paint jobs, and exceptional hydraulic setups. Can’t make it to St. Paul? Check out Cinco de Mayo on Lake Street, with food, drinks, children’s activities, dancing, music, and more from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. for free. That party can be found on Lake Street between Second and Portland Avenues. For a full schedule and more information on the St. Paul festival, visit www.cincodemayosaintpaul.com. Free. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Cesar Chavez Street, between Robert Street and Highway 52, St. Paul. —JESSICA ARMBRUSTER THEATER MINNESOTA OPERA PRESENTS: THE SHINING ORDWAY CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS The populist appeal of Stephen King’s bloody bestsellers sometimes overshadows a more salient truth, that King comprehends storytelling not just as a master craftsman, but on a primordial level. King’s best tales frighten so deeply because they deal in the same elemental concerns as Greek myths and fairytales. Don’t let the blue-collar aesthetic fool you — counterintuitive as the pairing may seem at first, King’s work is well suited to getting gussied up for a night at the opera. Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Paul Moravec and librettist Mark Campbell adapt one of his greatest works, the 1977 classic The Shining, for a world premiere to conclude the Minnesota Opera’s 2015-16 season. Baritone Brian Mulligan stars as the tormented Jack Torrance, an alcoholic struggling writer pushed to the brink of madness when he takes his family to stay for a winter season in the ghostly Overlook Hotel. Kelly Kaduce co-stars as Jack’s famously terrorized wife, Wendy, and local fifth grader Alejandro Vega makes his Minnesota Opera debut as spooky tot Danny. Heeeere’s opera! $25-$200. 7:30 p.m. Saturdays; 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 12; 2 p.m. Sunday, May 15. 345 Washington St., St. Paul; 651-224- 4222. Through May 15 —BRYAN MILLER MONDAY 5 /9 LITERARY LOUISE ERDRICH FITZGERALD THEATER How far must one man go to make amends? That’s the question National Book Award-winning author Louise Erdrich asks in her new novel LaRose. When an Ojibwe father accidentally kills a five-year-old boy, he offers his own son of the same age to the grieving family as penance. Alcoholism, drug addiction, and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder are just a few of the issues that plague this community of complex, multi-generational characters. Scenes from everyday life on and off the reservation in rural North Dakota in the late 1990s intermingle with sacred indigenous elements — a sweat lodge, communication with the spirit world — to create a richly detailed narrative about guilt, grief, heartbreak, and healing. The story, which grew out of a tale of loss told to Erdrich by her mother, explores old forms of justice, revenge, and familial ties. Named after one of her ancestors and with a cover design that incorporates images of her grandfather’s penmanship, LaRose is said to be one of Erdrich’s best novels yet. Erdrich discusses new work with Kerri Miller this Monday. $25-$30; $50 VIP. 7 p.m. 10 E. Exchange St., St. Paul; 651-290-1200. —ERICA RIVERA TUESDAY 5 / 10 PARTY HISTORY FLIRT: BEYOND BOLLYWOOD MINNESOTA HISTORY CENTER Did you know that it can be fun to flirt with history? That’s the premise of the Minnesota History Center’s happy-hour series History Flirt, an event geared toward adults 21 and up (with a cash bar, of course). This month’s program explores themes and topics in correlation with the museum’s new exhibit, “Beyond Bollywood,” which takes a look at the experiences and contributions that Indian Americans have made to the United States and Minnesota through history. The party includes a mini-fashion show of original Indian textiles by Briana Turnbull and Dr. Anupama Pasricha, sari-tying demonstrations, henna body art, and a pop-up shop by Khazana, a Minneapolis boutique of rare Indian textiles, art, and jewelry. Try out some delicious snacks from Hot Indian Foods and Gray Duck Chai, enjoy an Indian folk-dance performance, and partake in dance tutorials by Bollywood Dance Scene Twin Cities. The soundtrack will be provided by DJ Sharabi. “Beyond Bollywood: Indian Americans Shape the Nation” runs through July 10. Free; RSVP requested (reserve tickets at minnesotahistorycenter.org). 5 to 8 p.m. 345 Kellogg Blvd. W., St. Paul; 651-259-3000. —SHEILA REGAN
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