And just like that, summer is underway. Kick things off by toasting the new Prince mural in downtown Minneapolis during a block party Thursday night. The block party vibe continues on Friday with a shindig over at the American Swedish Institute, where lawn games and jazz music ease in the summer night’s fun. Also this week, theater collaborators Maren Ward and Josef Evans mark their 31st show together with “Hairball! A Bigfoot Musical Adventure” presented by Open Eye Theater and the Bakken Museum. Other shows to check out include “The Roommate,” put on by Prime Productions at Mixed Blood Theatre, and a new dance piece/vocal soundscape performance experience by Lelis Brito at the Red Eye Theater’s new digs. Finally, do yourself a favor and check in with your ecosexual pulse as Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens open natural orifices you didn’t know existed.
#CrownOurPrince block party
The much anticipated Prince Mural gets its official unveiling on Thursday during the Purple Block Party and Official Prince Mural Unveiling in Lights. Come see what the fuss is about after Florida-based artist Hiero Veiga puts the final touches on the 100-foot mural at the city’s Ramp A. Party starts at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 2, light show at 9 p.m. (free). More information here.
‘Hairball! A Bigfoot Musical Adventure’
From their first two shows together in 2004, ”What God Said on Tuesday” and “The Haunted Spoon,” at Bedlam Theatre, Maren Ward and Josef Evans have been partners in zany theater creativity at venues across the Twin Cities. Whether it’s productions with zAmya Theater, In the Heart of the Beast, or Open Eye Theatre, the longtime theater collaborators make magic full of imagination, silliness and music. Their 31st show together — “Hair Ball! A Bigfoot Musical Adventure!” — opens at the Bakken Museum this week, in a co-presentation with Open Eye. It’s a kind of sequel to last summer’s “Log Jam! A Paul Bunyan Musical Spectacular,” also performed on the green rooftop of the museum. Directed by Open Eye’s Joel Sass, the show features a hairy creatures on stilts, puppetry and fun. Bring a blanket or lawn chair. 7 p.m. Thursday, June 2 -Sunday, June 5, through June 19 at the Bakken Museum ($30, $25 students/seniors, $20 children, limited # of $15 economic accessible tickets). More information here.
Celebrated Twin Cities actor Greta Oglesby performs alongside PRIME Productions co-artistic director Alison Edwards in a play called “The Roommate,” by Jen Silverman. The story centers around an Iowa City empty nester who takes in a new roommate from the Bronx in a kind of Odd Couple scenario, but darker. Greta Grosch directs. June 3-June 19 at Mixed Blood Theatre ($30-$32, discount performances for preview June 2 and PWYC Thursday, June 9.) More information here.
‘A Binding Strangeness’
Red Eye Theater’s New Works 4 Weeks Festival kicked off last week with its Works in Progress Festival of short pieces. This week, the festival moves into the Isolated Acts portion, where audiences get to see new works a bit farther along in development. This weekend was supposed to be a double header with new works by Ricardo Beaird and Lelis K. Brito, but sadly COVID-19 has interfered with Beaird’s show being performed. You can still, however, see Brito’s “A Binding Strangeness.” Part dance, part vocal soundscape, the work features some of the Twin Cities’ most interesting movers: Arwen Wilder, of the dance duo Hijack, Butoh mover/performance and theater artist Masanari Kawahara, and burlesque performer/dancer Genevieve Draškocí. 7 p.m. Thursday, June 2, through Saturday, June 4, at Red Eye Theater ($20-$30, accessible options available by emailing box office). More information here.
Friday Night Lawn Party
The American Swedish Institute is gearing up for a night of jazz music, sweet and savory flavors from Fika, and the Viking lawn game Kubb among other activities for its first of three Friday Night Lawn Parties. Patty and the Buttons will be performing, specialty cocktails, beer and nonalcoholic beverages will be on hand, and don’t forget to save room for some fermented beet sausage or possibly grilled prawns with Lingonberry Cocktail sauce available for purchase. 5-8 p.m. Friday, June 3, at the American Swedish Institute ($20 general, $5 children age 6–11). More information here.
Ecosex Walking Tours, Ecosex clinic and book signing with Annie Sprinkle/Beth Stephens
The great porn star turned sexologist and performance artist Annie Sprinkle and her co-conspirator of the past two decades Beth Stephens bring their joyful Ecosex Walking Tour experience to Franconia Sculpture Park as part of the art center’s launch party for the new regional festival, 4Ground: Midwest Land Art Biennial. Sensual walking tours will take place 6:30-8 p.m. Saturday, June 4, and 11 a.m. -12:30 p.m. Sunday, June 5 (preregistration required for both events) plus an ecosex clinic 1 p.m.-2 p.m. Sunday, June 5, which is free and no registration required, all at Franconia. More information here.