Calexico & Iron & Wine
When Sam Beam was still known only as the soft-voiced solo indie-folkie Iron & Wine in 2005, he paired up with Arizona’s great Mexi-Cali folk-rock band Calexico for “In the Reins,” a gorgeous EP that became a cult fave. Several more volumized Iron & Wine albums later, the two enduring and self-inventing units paired up again for an excellent full-length album, “Years to Burn,” and now they’re finally on the road together. Fellow best-Americana-album nominee Madison Cunningham opens. Chris Riemenschneider
7:30 p.m. Fri. Palace Theatre, St. Paul, $40-$60, etix.com.
Framed around the board game Snakes and Ladders, Ragamala Dance Company’s “Written in Water” draws on imagery from the ancient Sufi poem “The Conference of the Birds” for its Bharatanatyam movement, as well as for its large-scale projections by artist Keshav. With live music that fuses Carnatic and Iraqi traditions as well as jazz, the show is both an inward journey and an expressive message of hope and collaboration.
7:30 p.m. Sat. Ordway Center, St. Paul. $27-$42, 651-224-4222 or ordway.org.
Paisley Park is launching an occasional live series, Musicology 2020, based on Prince’s mantra of “real music by real musicians.” Meshell Ndegeocello will kick it off with a show being billed as “Reimagining Prince.” She interpreted his “Sometimes It Snows in April” on her 2018 covers collection, “Ventriloquism,” but recent set lists indicate that the bass-playing blender of soul, hip-hop, jazz, rock and politics has been revisiting her 1990s material.
8 p.m. Sat. Paisley Park, 7801 Audubon Road, Chanhassen. $60-$75, paisleypark.com.
“Three Little Birds” is all about songs — specifically, the songs of reggae legend Bob Marley. The one-act musical revolves around Ziggy, a Jamaican kid whose worries keep him in front of the TV. But with the help of three little birds and a good friend, he eventually puts down the remote control. This Children’s Theatre show has two kinds of warmth: the kind you get from a friendly welcome and the kind you get in the tropics.
2 & 5 p.m. Sun., 7 p.m. Fri., 11 a.m. & 2 p.m. Sat. Ends March 1. Children’s Theatre Company, Mpls. $15-$66, 612-874-0400 or childrenstheatre.org.
Are your toddlers and tweens getting in the way of your Valentine’s Day? No worries — the Loring Community Arts Center in Loring Park hosts a party where everyone can get in on Cupid’s holiday. Make that special someone a valentine or other craft. Play games and maybe even sneak a brief slow dance to the music.
3:30-5 p.m. Fri. Loring Community Arts Center, 1382 Willow St., Mpls. Free, minneapolisparks.org.
American conductor Karina Canellakis recently became the first female chief conductor of a Dutch orchestra. Her Minnesota Orchestra debut will be interesting. The main showpiece is Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra, tailor-made for both conductor and musicians to make a powerful impact. Interest is added by the choice of soloist for Ravel’s Piano Concerto: outstanding Swiss pianist Francesco Piemontesi, a protégé of the great Alfred Brendel.
11 a.m. Thu., 8 p.m. Fri.-Sat. Orchestra Hall, Mpls. $12-$125.75, 612-371-5656 or minnesotaorchestra.org.
After canceling summer gigs due to oral surgery, longtime Minnesota music maker Chan Poling proved he was back at the New Standards’ annual holiday shows. He surprised the faithful when his other band, the Suburbs, joined him for a couple of numbers. Now the beloved ’Burbs are back at their old haunt First Avenue, for Valentine’s Day, to reprise the romantic “Love Is the Law,” “Turn the Radio On” and other nervy new-wave rockers. With Miloe and DJ Jake Rudh.
9 p.m. Fri. First Avenue, Mpls. $25-$30, etix.com.
A full performance of Handel’s great opera “Giulio Cesare” takes four hours, so it’s useful to get a pared-down introduction in a concert by the Minnesota Bach Ensemble. A selection of the opera’s key arias are sung by soprano Linh Kauffman and mezzos Nerea Berraondo and Christina Christensen.
3 p.m. next Sun. MacPhail Center for Music, 501 S. 2nd St., Mpls. $10-$30, mnbach.org.
We all know that January through March in Minnesota is not for wimps, which is what the Embrace the North Festival is all about. Bring on the cold, snowdrifts and ice with a day of outdoor fun. Slip your feet into a pair of snowshoes or try out dog sledding. Also: winter-themed games and snacks around a cozy campfire.
Noon-4 p.m. Sat. Mississippi Gateway Regional Park, Brooklyn Park. Free, threeriversparkdistrict.org.