Magical, minimalist ‘Hobbit’
With “The Hobbit,” director Greg Banks has brought J.R.R. Tolkien’s elaborate world of warring hobbits, trolls and dwarves to the Children’s Theatre stage with imaginative flair. And he does it all with a potently gifted cast of just five actors, using shadows and the power of suggestion to deliver a fantasia of magic and light. Bilbo Baggins (Dean Holt) has been hired by the dwarf king Thorin (Reed Sigmund), who seeks to recover gold from the dragon Smaug (H. Adam Harris). With its compelling performances, this “Hobbit” is ingenious and absorbingly beautiful. Rohan Preston
7 p.m. Thu.-Fri.; 2 & 5 p.m. Sat.-Sun. Ends April 14. Children’s Theatre, 2400 3rd Av. S., Mpls. $15-$64, 612-874-0400 or childrenstheatre.org.
For the Cedar’s annual Midnimo series (named after the Somali word for “unity”), Somali-American pop duo Faarrow has paired up with local electro-R&B/funk troupe Astralblak for a residency that culminates with performances in Minneapolis and Mankato. Mogadishu-born sisters Siham and Iman Hashi have been channeling Beyoncé and other American influences as Faarrow since their teens and landed on Warner Bros. for their 2016 album, “Lost.”
8 p.m. Fri., the Cedar, Mpls., $10-$15; 8:30 p.m. next Sun., Minnesota State University, Mankato, free; thecedar.org.
The NCAA Final Four comes to Minnesota as fans cheer on their favorite college teams. Whether or not you scored a ticket to some of the most-watched games of the year, Final Four Fan Fest rallies basketball aficionados in interactive games, autograph signings and athlete and celebrity appearances. Aspiring cheerleaders who have the spirit can take part in a cheer clinic. Snap a selfie with the championship trophy or use your athleticism in other sports challenges.
Fri.-next Sun. Minneapolis Convention Center. $4-$10, free 12 and under; ncaa.com/final-four/fan-fest.
New York’s celebrated American Ballet Theatre returns with an eclectic program. Dancers Sarah Lane and Herman Cornejo have big slippers to fill in “Other Dances,” originally choreographed by Jerome Robbins in 1976 for Natalia Makarova and Mikhail Baryshnikov (set to music by Chopin). Also on the program are Alexei Ratmansky’s folk dance-inspired “Songs of Bukovina” and Twyla Tharp’s wild “In the Upper Room” from 1986 (set to music by Philip Glass).
7:30 p.m. Tue. Northrop, Mpls. $50-$75, 612-624-2345 or northrop.umn.edu.
Wonder what Pink Floyd sounded like before “The Dark Side of the Moon”? Then check out Floyd drummer Nick Mason’s Saucerful of Secrets. After debuting in Europe last year and hitting the States this spring, he parties like it’s 1969, with the help of Spandau Ballet singer/guitarist Gary Kemp and Floyd touring bassist Guy Pratt, among others. While Floyd’s Roger Waters tours stadiums and arenas, Mason, 75, is keeping it intimate in theaters and infinitely psychedelic in a prog-rock way.
7:30 p.m. Wed. Orpheum, Mpls. $45-$199.50, ticketmaster.com.
Zeitgeist explores the legacy of Pauline Oliveros, a colossus of American experimental music, with its ninth annual Early Music Festival. It’s an unmissable opportunity to get to know Oliveros’ output, with the ensemble tackling her vocal and chamber works alike. Included is a rare screening of Oliveros’ dance-opera “Io and Her and the Trouble With Him.” British sound artist Viv Corringham also presents a new work in the composer’s honor.
7:30 p.m. Thu. & Fri.; 3:30, 5:30 & 7:30 p.m. Sat.; 2 p.m. next Sun. Studio Z, St. Paul. $10-$15, zeitgeistnewmusic.org.
Few things can excite kids like spring break. The good times will last longer at the Minnesota Children’s Museum, open for extended hours. Burn through extra energy in the Cosmic Junkyard, a space-themed experience where creative minds gather materials to create their own story. Play giant games and boogie with an interactive dancing game on the Landing. The featured exhibit is “Wild Kratts: Creature Power,” based on the PBS show.
9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun.-Thu.; 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Fri.-Sat. Minnesota Children’s Museum, St. Paul. $12.95, mcm.org.
Six years since she last issued an album as Cat Power and three since becoming a mom, there’s no mistaking Chan Marshall’s smoky vocals and haunted but hopeful writing style on the new album “Wanderer,” one of the rawest but best efforts of her 20-year career. An incomparable live performer when she’s on, the Atlanta-reared songwriter offsets the record’s mellower tones by getting hard-grooving local punks the Bad Men to open.
8 p.m. Mon. Varsity Theater, Mpls. $43, ticketmaster.com.
One of the world’s most exciting cellists, Gautier Capuçon partners with superstar pianist Yuja Wang for a pair of power-duo recitals. With sonatas by Chopin, Rachmaninov and Franck, these programs are sure to set sparks flying.
10:30 a.m. Wed., 7:30 p.m. Thu. Ordway Concert Hall, St. Paul. $26-$68, 651-292-3268 or schubert.org.