Travel For Two
Autumn is a Stellar Season for the Arts
By James Riemermann/Courtesy of Explore Minnesota
Indoors and out, this fall will be a stellar season for the arts in the Twin Cities.
Topping it off is the dramatically renovated Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, which reopened this year with $75 million in improvements, $10 million of which is going to the center’s beloved Sculpture Garden. The garden, which first opened in 1988 to national acclaim, features 17 new works, bringing the total to more than 40.
The playful, signature “Spoonbridge and Cherry” by Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen remains at the center of the garden, catching the fall light in the spray from the massive cherry’s stem/fountainhead, along with Siah Armajani’s graceful footbridge connecting the garden with Loring Park across Hennepin Avenue. Highlights among the new pieces include “Hahn/Cock,” Katharina Fritsch’s 20-foot-tall blue rooster; Theaster Gates’ “Black Vessel for a Saint;” and Robert Walker’s iconic “Love.”
In addition to purchasing 3.4 acres of adjacent land and nearly doubling the space both within and surrounding the main building, the Walker has added the 385-seat McGuire Theater for performing artists and film; rooftop terraces with views of downtown; plus a new restaurant, cafe, shop, and underground parking to accommodate the center’s great and growing popularity.
Major exhibits this fall include Minnesota artist Frank Big Bear’s “The Walker Collage: Multiverse #10,” made from a vast composition of images presenting “an expansive view of life on Earth as it reflects the greater cosmos.” “Jimmy Durham: At the Center of the World” is a retrospective of 175 multifaceted works covering more than 45 years of Durham’s complex and influential work.
Music, Theatre & Dance
There are plenty of great theater and music performances coming up this fall, as well. The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis is performing Shakespeare’s best-known and most-performed tragedy, “Romeo & Juliet.” Surprisingly, the Guthrie has produced the play only twice since its founding in 1963. The play will run Sept. 9-Oct. 28, directed by Joseph Haj, who took the helm in 2015 as the eighth artistic director in the Guthrie’s history. From Sept. 30-Nov. 5, the Guthrie will present “Watch on the Rhine,” written by Lillian Hellman about Nazi resisters coming to America.
For family theater fun, the Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis will perform “The Abominables” Sept. 12-Oct. 15, and Dr. Seuss’s “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” beginning Nov. 7. Park Square Theatre in St. Paul will perform a distinctive version of Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” set in the modern world with contemporary music and live video effects.
At Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis, the Minnesota Orchestra will perform a live broadcast concert celebrating the 50th anniversary of Minnesota Public Radio, conducted by Osmo Vänskä. A highlight of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra’s fall season will be Mozart’s Jupiter Symphony with violinist Pekka Kuusisto.