New Year’s Eve events and more

600 Highwaymen's "The Fever"
600 Highwaymen's "The Fever"

Out There 2018

For four weekends every January, the Walker Art Center’s annual Out There festival showcases some of the best experimental theater and performance happening around the world.

This year’s 30th-anniversary edition kicks off with Teatro el Público’s “Antigonón, un contingente épico,” an internationally acclaimed new work by provocative Havanian director Carlos Diaz and inventive young playwright Rogelio Orizondo that confronts the tyrannical themes of “Antigone” and Cuba’s tumultuous history with sharp humor, absurd costumes and exuberant physicality (Jan. 4–6).

Additional performances at the Walker include “Mercurial George,” the debut solo work by Montreal-based choreographer and performance artist Dana Michel that explores the concept of identity with minimalist movement as she digs through random heaps of debris onstage (Jan. 11–13); “The Fever” by New York–based theater company 600 Highwaymen, which examines personal and collective responsibility (Jan 18–20); and “Real Magic,” an absurdist, unconventional performance work by UK theater company Forced Entertainment that’s one part cabaret act, one part game show (Jan. 25–26). The festival concludes with Forced Entertainment’s “Quizoola!” at the Soap Factory, a six-hour interactive performance (Jan. 27 from 4–10 p.m.)

When: Jan. 4–27

Where: Walker Art Center, 725 Vineland Place/The Soap Factory, 514 2nd St. SE
Cost: $25 ($20 members) per show


Art by Joseph Christensen
Art by Joseph Christensen

‘Spit Shade’

While many people view tattoos merely as a form of rebellion or self-expression, tattooing is an art form with a more than 1,000-year history. In the past decade, the art form is starting to become embraced by the fine art world. Prestigious art institutions such as the Musée du Quai Branly in Paris have taken note, presenting exhibitions that explore tattooing as an artistic medium. The art form is being celebrated on a local level with “Spit Shade,” an exhibition of original artwork created by Minneapolis tattoo artists Lindsee Boyer and Nate Vincent Szklarski presented by Gamut Gallery. The show broadens the scope of tattoo art, featuring works that experiment and innovate with the art form and explore other media and inspirations while retaining the spirit of tattoo art. The opening night reception doubles as the official opening for the Minneapolis Tattoo Arts Convention, Jan. 5–7 at Hyatt Regency Minneapolis.

When: Jan. 4–20; opening reception: Jan. 4, 7 p.m.–11 p.m.; closing reception: Jan. 20, 5 p.m.–8 p.m.

Where: Gamut Gallery, 717 10th St. S.

Cost: Free; $5 for opening reception


Painting from Kristie Retzke's Coal Room exhibition
Painting from Kristie Retzke’s Coal Room exhibition

‘Kristie Bretzke: Coal Room’

Minneapolis conceptual realist painter and sculptor, Kristie Bretzke, has been an artist-in-residence at the Kunstlerhaus in Salzburg, Austria; the Centre d’Art-Marnay Art Centre in Marnay sur Seine, France; and Palazzo Rinaldi in Noepoli, Italy. But it was the light found in the humble basement coal room at an artist retreat on the Mull of Kintyre in Scotland that inspired “Coal Room.” The quietly introspective series of figurative portraits demonstrates Bretzke’s expertise in using light in her pensive works to evoke emotion and mood. While straightforward and classical in the tradition of the great masters, Bretzke’s slightly voyeuristic perspective and contemporary subjects lend the works in “Coal Room” a strikingly modern feel.

When: Jan. 8–Feb. 16; public reception Feb. 1, 6 p.m.–7:30 p.m.

Where: Traffic Zone Gallery at Traffic Zone Center for Visual Art, 250 3rd Ave. N.

Cost: Free



On a typical morning in a small American town, a rhinoceros charges down the street — to the alarm of no one except for Berenger. As he watches his fellow townspeople spontaneously transform into a herd of raging rhinos, he experiences a transformation of his own, from an apathetic alcoholic to the savior of humanity. “Rhinoceros,” Eugène Ionesco’s classic absurdist parable of social conformity and human nature, was written in 1959 in reaction to the totalitarian ideologies of the mid-20th century, with rhinoceroses serving as an allegory for the rise of fascism and herd mentality. Against the backdrop of increasingly fractured politics and “fake news,” the provocative, funny play is as relevant (and frightening) as ever. This staging by Theatre in the Round takes advantage of the century-old playhouse’s central arena stage in which the audience surrounds the actors on all sides, further immersing the viewer into the action.

When: Jan. 5–28

Where: Theatre in the Round, 245 Cedar Ave. S.

Cost: $22 (discounts available)


Land O’Lakes Kennel Club All-Breed Dog Show

More than 2,000 purebred canines and their handlers compete for American Kennel Club (AKC) awards every year at Land O’Lakes Kennel Club annual dog show. Top dogs from as many as 192 breeds will be judged in a series of obedience and rally competitions throughout the three-day event. Dog lovers should be sure to take advantage of the opportunity to pet their favorite pooches at a “meet the breeds” event (Jan. 6 and 7, 10:30 a.m.–2 p.m.). The show also includes behind-the-scenes tours, a showcase of search-and-rescue dogs, demonstrations from police dogs and assist dogs, a Midwest top junior handler competition and more than 70 vendors selling canine apparel, treats, toys and dog-inspired artwork.

When: Jan. 5–7, 8 a.m.–4 p.m. daily

Where: Saint Paul RiverCentre, 175 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul

Cost: $9 ($7 seniors & veterans, $5 kids 5–12)

NYE Highlights

Just about every venue in town hosts festivities for New Year’s Eve. Here are some of the most unique ways to ring in the New Year in Minneapolis, from interactive theater to a bash at a quirky, country club-inspired eatery.

“Happy Crazy New Year 7”: For seven years running, Dangerous Productions’ year-end farce — one part performance, one part party — has been storming Twin Cities theaters with its madcap blend of physical comedy, over-the-top characters, dancing, dogs and audience interaction.

When: Dec. 29–31 at 9:30 p.m. nightly

Where: Phoenix Theater, 2605 Hennepin Ave.

Cost: $18 ($13 students/kids)


Perle Noire; photo by Bettina May
Perle Noire; photo by Bettina May

New Year’s Noire: Get a sultry start to the New Year with this show produced by Minneapolis burlesque darling Elektra Cute. It features burlesque performances by international burlesque icon Perle Noire along with her troupe, the House of Noire, and NYC–based performers, Poison Ivory and Pearls Daily, plus a different lineup of local favorites each night and host, Nadine DuBois.

When: Dec. 28–31 at 8 p.m. nightly (7 p.m. doors)

Where: The Lab Theater, 700 N. 1st St.

Cost: $20–$60.


Betty Danger’s New Year’s Eve Gold Party: Toast to the new year at this glam, disco-themed party hosted by quirky country club-inspired eatery, Betty Danger’s, home to a festively lit 60-foot vintage Ferris wheel. A ticket includes sets from DJ Shiek, three specialty cocktails, complimentary champagne toast and Ferris wheel rides.

When: Dec. 31, 9 p.m.–1 a.m.

Where: Betty Danger’s Country Club, 2501 Marshall St. NE

Cost: $45


Psycho Suzi’s New Year’s Eve: Celebrate the New Year at Minneapolis’ favorite tiki bar. A Polynesian Passport includes four cocktails — including Suzi’s famous tiki drinks — tunes from DJ Strangelove and DJ Brownie, an unlimited photo booth, a champagne toast and kitsch galore.

When: Dec. 31, 8 p.m.–2 a.m.

Where: Psycho Suzi’s Motor Lounge, 1900 Marshall St. NE

Cost: $45


Down the Rabbit Hole NYE at Hewing Hotel: The Northwoods-inspired boutique hotel built inside an 1897-era warehouse is hosting an “Alice in Wonderland”-themed party featuring acrobats, contortionists, live performances by neo-soul singer Sarah White and a Mad Hatter tea party. A ticket includes complimentary wine, beer, cocktails and hors d’oeuvres.

When: Dec. 31 from 9 p.m.–2 a.m.

Where: Hewing Hotel, 300 Washington Ave. N.

Cost: $100