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ArtPlace America, a three-year-old Chicago-based consortium of public and private arts funders, has included three Minnesota projects in its 2013-14 round of grants totalling $52 million.
Two arts projects in St. Paul and one in Lanesboro, Minn., have each received six-figure amounts for efforts toward "creative placemaking."
Bedlam Theatre received $350,000 to develop a Lowertown space designed to serve as an arts nexus for the Central Corridor light rail.
Blue Ox, an artists' collective, also got $350,000 to construct a mini-golf course as the anchor attraction on a 15-acre redevelopment of teh Schmidt brewery site.
The city of Lanesboro in southeastern Minnesota received $313,000 toward its ambitious "arts campus" project, which aims to transform the city into one big arts experience.
This is the third grant cycle for ArtPlace, which has previously funded five other projects in Minnesota, for a total (including the above) of $3,073,000.
Laura Osnes at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre on Broadway. Photo/Renee Jones Schneider
Laura Osnes has shown that her ascendancy to Broadway was not a flukey result of some reality TV show. The Eagan musical theater actor was among the winners when the Drama Desk awards were announced on Sunday.
Osnes landed on Broadway in the 2007 production of "Grease" after competing on the NBC show "You're the One That I Want." Her arrival, however, was greeted by some New York skepticism because she was chosen by TV rather than an audition. Osnes, who had starred in Chanhassen's "Grease," began quickly to win over the nay sayers with better-than-average notices as Sandy -- the good girl who goes bad to win her dude.
Shrewdly making smart choices, Osnes has now accumulated lead roles in "South Pacific," "Anything Goes," "Bonnie and Blyde" and "Cinderella." She was nominated for a Tony for her "Bonnie" and was picked again for "Cinderella." The Tony ceremonies are June 9.
A friend cautioned me not to "give away the story" as I left the Elevator Repair Service's "Fondly, Collette Richland" on Thursday night. Jolly joker. The work, written by Sibyl Kempson and shaped by ERS, is intentionally a diffuse dreamscape that throws out images and ideas with little narrative structure.
The performances this weekend at the Walker are previews, giving Kempson and ERS artistic director John Collins a first chance to see how this experimental work looks on its feet, in front of an audience. As such, it is not being reviewed by critics.
So, in that spirit, here are a few observations from one audience member. The piece is about two hours and 15 minutes without intermission, likely intended to serve the piece's unity as a stretch of fantasy. There are two distinct settings -- a modest kitchen in a small northeastern U.S. town and a resort hotel in the Alps. Characters mundane and bizarre inhabit these worlds, each with his or her own agenda. Kempson has written types and details rather than a story.
It's not wrong to be baffled by the work. It's also not wrong to appreciate the inventive staging and the dense rush of ideas and physical juxtapositions. Kempson borrowed a quote from Russian formalist Victor Shkolvsky in her program notes. It says in part: "Browse through our works, look for a point of view, and if you can find it, then there is your unity. I was unable to find it."
I would love to be a fly on the wall as Collins, Kempson and the rest of the ERS crew do their post mortem on the Walker performances. Those should be interesting conversations. Collins has said they'll let "Collette" rest for some time -- gestate -- as they move on to other projects. But Collins said the plan is to get a New York opening.
"Fondly, Collette Richland" continues Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Walker.
Linda Lee Jacobs, the indefatigable and vivacious former publicist at the Children’s Theatre, died Thursday at Hennepin County Medical in Minneapolis. She had suffered from Hepatitis C.
Jacobs, 64, served from 1997-2007 as the theater’s communications manager. During that decade, she helped frame the narrative of the Children’s Theatre as it became the first family-focused company to win the regional Tony Award and as it expanded into its new Cargill Stage.
“She was my energetic, intelligent and witty partner,” said artistic director Peter Brosius. “Linda was a fireball who lit up the company. We’re all rocked by losing her.”
Jacobs was born in Kenosha, Wisc. When she was five, her family moved to New York. From childhood, she had a lot of pluck and determination, said her mother, Janet Jacobs.
Janet Jacobs recalled that she and her parents went on a trip to Paris in 1969, leaving teenage Linda back home in New York.
“She booked herself on a flight to Luxembourg,” said Janet Jacobs. “One night at midnight in Paris, I get a call. And I couldn’t believe it. We met her off the bus in a square at 3 a.m. The trip took 19 hours and she was totally bedraggled, but she wasn’t going to miss out on the family fun.”
Jacobs entered the work force after graduating from prestigious Hunter College High School. Her first job was as a receptionist at a New York advertising agency, where she was promoted to copywriter in six months.
She moved to the Twin Cities in 1985 and began work at a financial services firm, where she also was promoted quickly. But she did not love the work. She came alive, her mother said, when she took a job doing publicity and much else for Dudley Riggs’ Brave New Workshop.
She spent five years there before eventually landing at the Children’s Theatre, where she bonded with many, including managing director Teresa Eyring. When Eyring became head of the Theatre Communications Group, the nonprofit theater industry’s New York-based advocacy group, she lured Jacobs to Manhattan.
Jacobs was twice married and divorced. She remained close friends with hers second husband, residential remodeler Jonathan Kalstrom.
“She was one of the most warm-hearted people I’ve ever met,” said Kalstrom. “She was a big hugger, always hugged everyone.”
In addition to her mother, Jacobs also is survived by step-father Ted Fine. Her body will be cremated. A memorial service is being planned.
“As Tiger Lily said to Peter Pan, you are the moon, the stars and the sun,” said Janet Jacobs. “That’s what Linda was to us.”
Over there is Marlon Brando in "Apocalypse Now" (1979) and John Belushi in "The Blues Brothers," (1980). And Johnny Depp in "Sleepy Hallow," 1999 and Nicole Kidman in "Australia," 2008.
The name dropping is inevitable in Mark's first solo show at Weinstein in more than a decade. The gallery persuaded the photographer to sift through 40 years of her behind-the-scenes shots taken on film sets over the decades. The photos are, for the most part, candid and casual snaps made during rehearsals or while the cameras are rolling --but taken from a different vantage and without a story line to drive a narrative. So we'll see Sean Penn in his New York dressing room and Woody Allen adrift on his Manhattan balcony, and even the "Lone Ranger" (Clayton Moore) at home in Los Angeles.
Mark herself will be on hand for the opening party, 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, June 6, free. Weinstein Gallery, 908 W. 46th St., Minneapolis. "Seen Behind the Scene/ Forty Years of Photographing on Set," runs through July 27, free. 612-822-1722 or .www.weinstein-gallery.com/