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Jesse Johnson, Shelby J book Minneapolis gigs during Prince celebration

Jesse Johnson/ Star Tribune photo by Tom Wallace

Jesse Johnson/ Star Tribune photo by Tom Wallace

There will be more to the Prince celebration next month than what’s happening at Paisley Park for three days to coincide with the first anniversary of his death..

Jesse Johnson, former guitarist for the Time, will be at Bunker’s April 20, 21 and 22. Show time is 10:45 p.m. Advance tickets cost $30; check for an on-sale date.Johnson was outstanding in his performance in December at First Avenue working in an ad-hoc power trio with Minneapolis bassist Sonny T and drummer Michael Bland.. At Bunker's, Johnson will be joined by his Los Angeles-based band.

Shelby J, who just tore it up last weekend with Liv Warfield and Judith Hill at the Dakota, will have a CD release party April 19 and 20 at the Dakota. The shows begin at 10 p.m. Tickets, priced from $40 to $60, will go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday at

On April 19 at the Dakota, LP Music, the group featuring former NPG/Madhouse saxophonist Eric Leeds and Time/Family member Paul Peterson, will perform at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $15.

Theater Latte Da to revive its powerful 'Ragtime' on the coasts

Theater Latte Da is restaging its powerful production of “Ragtime” for audiences in the northwest and southeast next season.

Theater founder and director Peter Rothstein has been tapped to remount his re-imagined version of the musical for the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle in the fall and the Asolo Repertory Theatre in Sarasota in spring 2018.

With a book by Terrence McNally, music by Stephen Flaherty and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, “Ragtime” tells of the American dream as seen by three groups: blacks, whites and immigrant Jews. The size of the show has made it somewhat prohibitively expensive to stage, since it usually has a cast with three distinct groupings of people.

Rothstein decided to stage the show with a slimmed down cast where all the players support each of the three interlocking narratives.

“The metaphor there, that all the people are responsible for each other’s stories, adds another layer to show,” said Rothstein.

He added: “There are reductions that feel like reductions and reductions that feel like bold choices. According to the audience response and reviews, this one worked.”

Rothstein will take most of his creative team with him, including scenic designer Michael Hoover, costume designer Trevor Bowen and choreographer Kelli Foster Warder.

He’s not sure if he will be able to take his actors. In the Twin Cities, the production starred David Murray as Coalhouse Walker Jr. and Traci Allen Shannon as his wife (pictured in this photo by Dan Norman.). Other headliners were Britta Ollmann as the white mother, Sasha Andreev as immigrant Tateh and Andre Shoals as Booker T. Washington.

Latte Da has toured “All is Calm” at the holidays for the past 10 years.

“But this is the first time we’ll take a production that originated here elsewhere,” said Rothstein. “I’m super-excited about it. The piece created such needed dialogue here and we hope that it will instigate similar dialogue in these communities, too.”

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