Founded in 2002 by Erik Sanborn, a Minnesota native whose art has taken him to stages across 25 countries, the Metropolitan Ballet curates a company of skilled dancers, some with ties to such prestigious companies as the Bolshoi Ballet. The curriculum is grounded in the Vaganova method of ballet, which emphasizes a strong core and full-body perfection of movement. The company also stays busy with a full season of performances, with lavishly costumed dancers moving through dramatic stories that have ranged from Dracula to The Nutcracker.
Joke Joint Comedy Club packs its schedule with touring comics and local stars, restocking spectators' mirth supplies during several shows every week. Audiences can browse a wide selection of humorists, whose collective resumé includes appearances on Comedy Central and Showtime’s Louie Anderson Presents. Housed in the historic Diamond Jim's Supper Club, the auditorium seats up to 200 chucklers at tables, where they can comfortably rest their elbows and laugh-track cassettes during performances.
A modern mixed-media collaboration, Bridgman/Packer Dance is the brainchild of Art Bridgman and Myrna Packer, two collaborating choreographers, performers, and Guggenheim Fellows who have spent more than 30 years turning the dance duet on its head with trippy video effects. On this particular evening, the duo will showcase two of their latest works: Double Expose, a raucously sensual journey into the psyche's surreal mindscapes, and Under the Skin, an aesthetic adventure that viscerally challenges ideas of identity as images of the dancers multiply to fill the stage. To deepen the multi-sensory immediacy of each work, the dancers will be integrated with video projections, including animation, live camerawork, and prerecorded footage.
Located in the Dayton’s Bluff area, historic Mounds Theatre is a great spot to experience live theatre, movies, and occasional paranormal encounters. Knotareel Getaway Cruise is an interactive dinner-theater production written by Greg Eiden that features musical comedy and a gaggle of mimicking pirate parrots all named Polly. You’ll ward off scurvy thanks to the show’s dinner menu, which offers roasted chicken with herb vinaigrette, fettuccine or linguine (tossed with olive oil, fresh basil, and garlic), vegetable medley, field green salad, and chef’s choice dessert. You’ll also be supporting a good cause since the theater is home to the Portage for Youth, a nonprofit organization serving disadvantaged youth that collaborates with arts and cultural groups.
To maintain tip-top technique, opera singers communicate only by song, which can lead to awkward exchanges when they’re pulled over for speeding or visiting a dentist. Witness the fruit of all that labor with today’s Groupon. For $50, you get level-B seats to The Minnesota Opera’s production of La bohème at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts in St. Paul. The Minnesota Opera is considered one of the most exciting opera companies in the country and specializes in staging works from the bel canto era, rather than the less popular yell canto era. Seats are in the B section (excellent acoustics and sightlines, a $110 value), so you’ll be able to comfortably look on in awe as high-pitched voices shatter monocles in even the loftiest board-game tycoon's balcony.