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Weekend picks: There’s theater galore, with the Fringe Fest, zAmya’s ‘Second Chance’ and Pangea’s ‘Life Born of Fire’


Get ready for the unexpected when the Minnesota Fringe Festival returns to the Twin Cities this week. The best part about the Fringe is the level of unknowns the fest provides. Other theater enticements this week are a return of zAmya Theater Project’s “Second Chance” and a ritualistic performance put together by Pangea World Theater. Also on your weekend picks, check out “The Morning Dip” at the Swedish Festival, for some early morning swim inspiration. For your dose of reggae, a new festival in Bloomington has you covered. And on Friday, head to Rosalux for some dark beauty.

Minnesota Fringe Festival

Let the games begin. Or plays, as the case may be. Dance, juggling, music, storytelling, spoken word and anything else you can imagine. Yes, Fringe is back, with all its surprises and delights. You never know what shows will get this buzz, but you can be an active participant by writing audience reviews and hashtagging favorite shows. There’s a piece called “Swim Team,” based on a Miranda July short story, that looks like it will be pretty great. Gabriel Mata returns as well, along with Adrian Gaston Garcia, with a dance piece about queerness and Mexican American identity with “Joteria: Our Untold Stories…” that should be compelling. And Fringe favorites Saath-MN are back with a new show you won’t want to miss — “Desi Heart Crust.” The festival runs Aug. 4-14 at various locations ($15 per show, 10-show passes are $110, five-show passes are $65). More information here.

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zAmya Theater Project: Second Chance

You have a second chance to see “Second Chance” by zAmya Theater Project, a company that does shows performed and co-created by people experiencing homelessness. In 2018, the actors worked with director Maren Ward, playwright Carlyle Brown, assistant directors Bianca Pettis and Esther Ouray, and choreographer Leah Nelson on a Theatre of the Oppressed-influenced piece. It grappled with the notion of second chances for people who have been homeless, and was performed at the amphitheater outside of Minneapolis Central Library.

“Second Chance” by zAmya Theater Project

Photo by Bruce Silcox

“Second Chance” by zAmya Theater Project

Now, zAmya breaks the fourth wall on a three-location tour, performing 7 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 4, at Mill City Museum in the Ruin Courtyard, 7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 10, at Target Field Station Amphitheater and 2 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 14, at the Downtown Minneapolis Street Art Festival on Nicollet Mall (free, registration encouraged for the Wednesday and Thursday performances). More information here.

‘The Morning Dip: Photography by Peggy Anderson’

Photographer Peggy Anderson turns her lens onto a community of people in the coastal village of Torekov, Sweden, located in the southern province of Skane. Once known as a fishing village, the white sand beaches and 70s summer weather have turned the place into a resort destination, with plenty of locals heading out for a swim each day as well in their bathrobes. Anderson’s portraits capture the colorful robes the swimmers wear on their way to and from their swimming spot. The photographs examine the notion of ritual through the cultural and health practice, and offer a snapshot of a community of people with all their differences as well as shared sense of heritage. On view through Oct. 30 at the American Swedish Institute ($12). More information here.

A rehearsal image of “Life Born of Fire.”

Pangea World Theater

A rehearsal image of “Life Born of Fire.”

‘Life Born of Fire’

Pangea World Theater’s executive and co-artistic director Meena Natarajan collaborated with Ellen Marie Hinchcliffe to create and conceive a ritual performance filled with music, song, poetry and movement. The work comes out of story circles the company has conducted over the past two years and is directed by co-artistic director Dipankar Mukherjee. Sayge Carroll  has created ceramic work for the project. The piece’s subtitle, “An Ensemble Created Ritual Performance for these Tender & Dangerous Times,” speaks to providing a healing space at this moment two and a half years into COVID-19 and as the community continues to grieve and heal from the uprising and unrest of 2020 following George Floyd’s murder. 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 5, and Saturday, Aug. 6, outside of Moon Palace Books (free). More information here.

International Reggae All-Stars at On the One Music Festival

The city of Bloomington launched a new music festival at the end of July called On the One, featuring R&B, Neo-Soul, Reggae, Afrobeat, conscious Hip-Hop music, and spoken word, put together by the multitalented Chadwick “Niles” Phillips of The Avant Garde, LLC. This Friday’s shindig sees the International Reggae All-Stars as the headliners, with Nick Chirch, Joe Davis, and Breen Turner among the other acts. It’s part of Bloomington’s ongoing Friday Night Live series. Food and beer vendors will be on hand — plan to bring a chair or blanket. (free). 6-10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 5, at Normandale Lake Bandshell (free). More information here.

“Your Flower Girl,” watercolor on rag paper on panel, 8 x 10 inches

Amelia Biewald

“Your Flower Girl,” watercolor on rag paper on panel, 8 x 10 inches

Amelia Biewald: ‘Black Tongue’

Adorable macabre dolls, strange flights of fancy and whimsy with a dark twist are on the docket at Rosalux, for the opening of “Black Tongue,” featuring works by Amelia Biewald. With narrative and edgy humor, Biewald brings an audacious, feminist flair to a variety of forms, including colorful, fluid drawings and raucous sculpture, with kitty collectibles as inspiration. The opening reception is 7-10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 10, at Rosalux Gallery (free) with the exhibition running through Aug. 8. More information here.



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