1 Hear spirituals in an entirely new way in “Choir Boy,” Tarell Alvin McCraney’s music-infused coming-of-age play at the Guthrie’s Dowling Studio. The show’s rugged old songs start off traditionally, but thanks to Sanford Moore’s updated arrangements, they end up sounding more like something you might hear at a Jay Z or Drake concert. This 90-minute one-act is as much about the music as it is about a gay young man named Pharus (fleet phenom John-Michael Lyles) finding himself and his voice in the rigid world of a prep school choir. www.guthrietheater.com
3 “Ted 2” is profane, socially incorrect, pro-pot, irreverent, deliberately obnoxious and packed to the end credits with decadent jokes. Co-writer/director Seth MacFarlane again plays the animated animal, whose efforts to have a child (despite lacking a male appendage) set off a downpour of bodily fluid jokes. MacFarlane reminds us that we’re all juggling problems, and making fun of ourselves is a part of dealing with that. Dadaist absurdity like this is a rare gift in an era when ethnically offensive laughs are increasingly off limits.
4 In her frank and engaging “Blackout,” Sarah Hepola writes about how deeply attracted she has always been to alcohol. From the first sip, it was her drug of choice. Within a few years, she was regularly drinking until she blacked out. Recounting her harrowing (and sometimes funny) drunken adventures, the street-smart Hepola is sassy and funny, mouthy and flip, hard on herself and without a shred of self-pity.
2 Mark Mothersbaugh, the Devo frontman turned film composer, is now the subject of an art retrospective at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. “Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia” is the first comprehensive exhibit of Mothersbaugh’s visual output — which precedes, overwhelms and informs all things Devo. A highlight of the show is more than 30,000 of Mothersbaugh’s drawings, each postcard-sized and searingly colored. www.artsmia.org
5 The title tells you who he is: “Allen Klein: The Man Who Bailed Out the Beatles, Made the Stones and Transformed Rock & Roll.” But music journalist Fred Goodman digs deep, with the help but not control of Klein’s family, to provide the perspective on the pugnacious manager/brilliant accountant, who stalked and wooed clients, made money for them and took a huge chunk himself. Klein managed to be revered (Yoko showed up at his funeral) and reviled (ask McCartney, Jagger), and Goodman explains why with detail, humor and style.