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Posts about Holidays

Choir version of Zach Sobiech's 'Clouds' hits iTunes

Posted by: Chris Riemenschneider Updated: December 13, 2013 - 12:47 PM
Students from Mahtomedi High School were among the 5,000 singers who participated in a "Clouds" singalong at the Mall of America on Dec. 3. / Kyndell Harkness, Star Tribune

Students from Mahtomedi High School were among the 5,000 singers who participated in a "Clouds" singalong at the Mall of America on Dec. 3. / Kyndell Harkness, Star Tribune

Lakeland teen Zach Sobiech, who died of cancer in May the same week his farewell song “Clouds” stormed the Billboard charts, could have another hit single on the radio and iTunes -- and this time he’s bringing 5,000 Minnesotans along for the ride.


The giant choir singalong of Sobiech’s song, which was staged at the Mall of America last week, has quickly been turned into a downloadable single on iTunes this week. Titled “Clouds (Largest Clouds Choir Holiday Version),” the new recording is being sold for $.99, proceeds from which go to Zach's Osteocarcoma Research Fund.

St. Paul-based nonprofit organization Rock the Cause, which has acted as Sobiech’s record label, also sent the recording to radio programmers across the country hoping to get it on the air. KS95 and Cities 97 have already been playing it locally. Here's hoping that KOOL-108, which seems to keep the same 25 songs tirelessy in rotation for its current holiday format, also picks up on it, if only as an airwaves freshener.



“We’re telling them it’s not just a great holiday song, but a great cause,” said Scott Herold, founder of Rock the Cause, who added that Zach’s family “is ecstatic and touched by all the support” behind the new choir single.

Herold said the original version of “Clouds,” which Sobiech himself recorded, is also still going strong six months after its ascent. It attracted about 20,000 downloads in the past month.

Minneapolis museum welcomes kids for Halloween

Posted by: Mary Abbe Updated: October 22, 2013 - 6:13 PM

Trick-Art-Treat kid eager for Halloween

Why deal with wind, rain and unraked leaves when the kids can show off their costumes and imbibe a bit of culture during a "fiendishly fun, family-friendly" Halloween event at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts? The museum and adjacent Children's Theatre Company are throwing a Trick-Art-Treat party during which kids can look for black cats, pumpkins, bats and prizes on a Halloween gallery hunt. Or create their own bats during an art-making activity. Plus nibble cookies, candy and cider. At a CTC photobooth, they can show off their own costumes or try out fun stuff from CTC's hoard of disguises.

And for parents and other culture-vultures, admission to "The Audacious Eye: Japanese Art from the Clark Collections" is also free during the event. While the Clark show is chock-a-block with 1,000 years of sophisticated treasures, it does have delights for pint-sized visitors including lots of birds and animals, a couple of pink elephants rolling on their backs, some huge bulls, a big fat frog, and ghosts. Really.

Heads up: While costumes are encouraged, for safety and security reasons, full face masks or hoods cannot be worn inside the museum.

(5 p.m. - 8 p.m. Oct. 31, free. Minneapolis Institute of Arts, 2400 3rd Av. S., Mpls. 612-870-3131or www.artsmia.org)

Mexico joins Nordic countries at American Swedish Institute tables

Posted by: Mary Abbe Updated: October 10, 2013 - 1:13 PM

American Swedish Institute's Turnblad Mansion

American Swedish Institute's Turnblad Mansion

The American Swedish Instituteis expanding its popular holiday programs to include a Mexican-themed table among the festively decorated rooms in its castle-like museum. Traditionally, the five Nordic countries (Sweden, Iceland, Finland, Norway and Denmark) set out holiday decorations and trees during ASI's two-month  "Jul to the World" festival. In honor of the Mexican-American community in the nearby Phillips West neighborhood, the institute has invited Mexico to contribute a table.

The Turblad Mansion's historic kitchen also will be open to the public for the first time this year.

Other festivities include musical performances, a "Great Tomte Hunt," in which kids search for Swediah elves hidden throughout the mansion, artisanal sausage-making workshops with the chefs at ASI's award-winning FIKA cafe, and Wednesday evening theatrical performances on the stage of  the mansion's charming ballroom theater. Evening glogg (mulled wine) tours are offered Wednesday and Friday evenings and hot chocolate will be served around an outdoor bonfire in the "Enchanted Forest."

The "Jul to the World" festival opens Sat., Nov. 9 with a day-long schedule of musical performances and creative activities. The festival continues through Jan. 5. To book group tours call 612-871-4907 or for a complete schedule of events go to www.asimn.org.

Minneapolis performance artists dis Cheesus on His big day

Posted by: Mary Abbe Updated: March 15, 2013 - 4:55 PM




Stand by for outrage, people. Also lightening bolts from Heaven, assuming God the Father wields such things. Zeus was very good with a lightening bolt, but GTF, who knows? 

In any case, Minneapolis performance artists Jason Wade and Jaime Carrera are about to test the proposition that God is Not Yet Dead. If He is still perking about, He is likely to be extremely peeved by their performance on Easter Sunday.

Wade, pictured here, has apparently drawn the star straw and will assume the role of First Son in this new performance piece designed, choreographed, and otherwise slapped together by Carrera. In it, Carrera "continues exploring his recent obsession with terribleness."

As the press release helpfully explained, "Cheesus shoves the traditional story of the passion through a wood chipper of pyschedelia & ridiculous blasphemy. Aided by the unnatural talents of shock rock celebrity & filmmaker, Jason Wade, this performance piece promises to be horrifyingly sacrilicious."

(7 p.m. Sunday, March 31, $5. Soolocal (next to Pat's Tap), 3506 Nicollet Av. S., Minneapolis. www.soovac.org)

Horror takes a Holiday (8 holidays, actually)

Posted by: Colin Covert Updated: February 14, 2013 - 3:51 PM



Forgot to pick up a cellophane-wrapped rose at the gas station? There's still time to impress that special someone, especially if they're really "special."

Valentine's Day kicks off the Horror for the Holidays series at the Theatres at Mall of America. Tonight at 7:30 there's a special one-time-only screening of 1981's slasher epic "My Bloody Valentine," which no less an authority than Quentin Tarantino called his favorite serial-killer exploitation flick of all time. Tickets are only $5 but you don't have to tell your date that.

The lineup for the rest of the year:

March 14th (St.Patrick's Day) - "Leprechaun" (1993, starring Jennifer Aniston and Warwick Davis)
April 1st - "April Fool's Day" (1986, starring nobody you've ever heard of)
April 22nd (Earth Day) - "The Happening" (2008, with Mark Wahlberg and Zooey Deschanel attacked by wind and tress, get it?)
May 12th (Mother's Day) - "Rosemary's Baby" (1968, Starring Mia Farrow, John Cassavetes and Ruth Gordon)
October 31st (Halloween) - "Trick 'r Treat" (2007, starring Anna Paquin, Dylan Baker and Brian Cox)
December 5th (St. Nicholas Day) - "Sint" (Saint, 2010, a Danish chiller that depicts St. Nick as a murderous ghoul who rides an undead horse over rooftops and picks off hormonal high schoolers one by one)
December 12th (approximately Christmas) - "Rare Exports" (2010) (Another savage Santa seige, this time set in snowy rural Finland)


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