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Patt Rall Arts Column: 'Cabaret' to open Friday at BSU

"Cabaret," by Kander and Webb will open at Bemidji State University Friday, March 20, and director, Patrick Carriere reminds us that this show is intended for mature audiences because the hard question is - what will provoke and what will turn away an audience. Performance dates and times are 7:29 p.m. March 20, 21, 27 and 28, and 3 p.m. March 29 on the main stage of Bangsberg Fine and Performing Arts Complex on the campus of BSU, 14 Street and Birchmont Drive.

Most people have a sense of "Cabaret" simply as an entertaining musical, but it is really a political piece focusing on two distinct issues - the rapid rise of both anti-Semitism and homophobia. After the show on opening night, there will be a talk-back with the audience. Questions may be directed to a survivor of the Holocaust, several professors who will discuss the history and culture of that time and the use of imagery and symbols, and some representatives from the lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgendered community. There will be information from the Rural AIDS Action Network at all the performances.

The box office will be open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 a.m.-noon and 2-4 p.m. Call 755-3935 for tickets and information. Ticket prices are $8 for adults, $4 for senior citizens and students from other colleges, and free for BSU students with a valid ID.

Doll workshop

"I Love a Parade" is a workshop for artists, human relations specialists and the public as they share their autobiographies in creating a visual creation of their lives by creating dolls. All the materials will be provided for this hands-on experience, but some may wish to share their own collection. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. April 4 at the American Indian Resource Center and is sponsored by the Social Work Program at BSU, Bemidji Community Arts Center and a grant from Region 2 Arts Council. The deadline for registration is March 27, and applications are available at Bemidji Community Arts Center, 426 Bemidji Ave., or at the website

Watercolor class

Watercolor: Throwing Paint for Foliage and Flowers Workshop will be offered by Region 2 Arts Council. This three-day workshop with an instructor Kathy Kovala will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. May 26, 27 and 28 at the Mantrap Valley Conservation Clubhouse in Park Rapids. There is a $100 registration fee and the deadline to register is May 1. For questions call Dale or Arlene at 732-8327. If interested in attending, send registration fee to the Region 2 Arts Council, 426 Bemidji Ave., Bemidji 56601.

Friends of the Arts

Friends of the Arts nominations are now being accepted by BCAC. Nominees may be a living person or couple who have given generously of their time and effort to promote the arts in the greater Bemidji area. This long-standing award - the first honoree was Helen Gill in 1989 - has recognized arts advocates for the past 21 years. Nominations will be received at BCAC no later than April 15 and the selection committee will announce their honoree by May 1 at which time the tickets for the gala will go on sale. For more information, contact BCAC at 444-7570. Applications are available on the Web site The BCAC Friends of the Arts Award is sponsored in part by First National Bank Bemidji, North Country Health Services, Paul Bunyan Telephone, Dunn Bros Coffee and Kraus Anderson Construction.

Other events

-- Sister Song, a celebration of women and their music, will hold their second annual fundraiser to support the SisterSong Scholarship Fund for young women who want to study music. Well known local singers and groups will perform beginning at 6:18 p.m. March 28. Tickets will be sold at the door with a sliding ticket price of $5 to $25 (no one turned away) at the Wild Rose Theater, 501 Bemidji Ave. After the fundraiser, many of the performers will have an after-show party starting at 9:15 p.m. at Brigid's Cross in downtown Bemidji.

-- Beltrami County Historical Society is looking for antique and art vendors for its "Antique, Art and Craft Fairm," which will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 27 and 28 at the Bemidji Armory for a $15 fee. The two-day fund raising event will feature Egger's Antique Roadshow from 1-4 p.m. March 27 with a $5 fee for those items presented for appraisal and a special 2 p.m. auction of the eight original juror chairs from the 1900 Beltrami County Courthouse. Tickets at the door will be $3 and for more information call 444-3376.

-- Mask and Rose Women's Theater Collective is looking for a few more female actors to play smaller roles in their summer production of "As You Like It" during Bard in the Park, July 16-20. Contact director Cate Belleveau at if interested or for more information.

-- First City of Arts Studio Cruise 2009 is calling for all artists with studios within a 40 mile radius of Bemidji. Following up on last year's very successful studio cruise, this is another opportunity for artists to invite the public into their studios and showcase their art and craft. This interaction serves to strengthen the public awareness of the creative process while providing the artist an opportunity to learn first hand the public perception of their work as well as the potential for direct sales and commissions. Studio Cruise Dates are October 16, 17 and 18. Deadline for all applications is April 1. Fees include $10 non-refundable jury fee and $100 participation fee. Interested artists are encouraged to apply by completing the application available on-line at the Bemidji Community Art Center (BCAC) Web site or the 'Cruise' weblog at Questions may be directed to Dave Towley at 333-3547 ( or Lori Forshee-Donnay at 218-444-7570 (

-- The Bemidji Sculpture Walk is calling for artists to display their work for the 2009-2010 sculpture walk. The applicants' works will be judged by an impartial panel and the winners will be announced April 6 with installation of pieces May 15 and 16. A $300 honorarium will be awarded to each exhibitor courtesy of a local business sponsor or community member. Winners for the People's Choice Award will receive $1,000 for first place, $500 for Critic's Choice Award and $250 for Honorable Mention. Contact or to get more information or obtain an application. All applications must be postmarked by March 28

-- Beltrami County History Center in cooperation with Gallery North presents "Spring Fling" through May. The History Center is located at 130 Minnesota Ave. S.W. in the historic James J. Hill Great Northern Depot. Regular hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Saturday.

-- Bemidji Community Art Center, 426 Bemidji Ave., welcomes a new exhibit, "The Palatte: Exploring the media of painting," with works by Natalia Himmirska and her students in encaustic and other media in painting. Shop 426 has many new items for sale and all proceeds benefit BCAC programming and the artists of the shop. BCAC is open to the public noon-5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and noon-4 p.m. Saturday.

-- Bemidji Public Library has a display on the Library Art Wall of TrekNorth Advanced Placement Art students. The work is a compilation of student portfolios in preparation for their AP examination in May. 509 America Ave. NW

-- Cabin Coffeehouse and Café hosts an installation of BSU student Brian Murphy, who delights in creating art for fun and from serious topics like the environment, human conditions and global issues. There is also an on-going display of Audrey Merschman's cards and paintings. The Cabin is open seven days a week and is located at 214 Third St. N.W.

-- Dunn Bros. Coffee, 501 Paul Bunyan Drive S., announces the premiere of the digital photography work of Brandon Bjerknes, "Simply Beautiful," which will be on display for March and April. Also available for purchase is Levandowski Pottery, stoneware and Raku made with nontoxic clay and lead free glazes, and fused and slumped glassware by MaryBeth Vaudrin and Beverly Olson.

-- Gallery North featured artist of the month is wildlife and nature photographer Ashlee Morton who uses a technique where her photos are pieced together in a "Kaleidoscope." The gallery is located at 502 Third St. N.W.

Touché Gallerie welcomes Deb Krueger and her exhibit, "Everyday Miracles -Celebrating the Ordinary," a collection of photos, poetry and found objects from nature. Sponsored in part by the women's studies program at BSU. An opening reception for the show will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. on March 23. The Gallery is located in the Hobson Memorial Union.

-- Wild Hare Bistro and Coffee House, 523 Minnesota Ave. N.W., welcomes Bemidji art teacher Nina Lubarski and her installation, "Express This!" Her large scale drawings on paper show the bold colors of colored pencils and cattle markers.

-- Mask and Rose Theater welcomes local artist Mary Therese Peterson with an exhibit of mixed media, "Into the Light," to the Fleur de Lis Gallery.

-- Neilson Place, 1000 Anne St. N.W., welcomes Butch and Gege Holden and their exhibit of pottery, paintings and fabric art which is inspired by the colors and forms of nature and the season. The work, chosen by the North Country Health Services Art Committee, will be on display through the winter months for the pleasure of the residents, families, staff and the community. Selected pieces are for sale and a price list can be had at the information desk.

-- Tutto Bene, 300 Beltrami Ave. N.W., has an ongoing display of new art work by Beverlee Olson, Jane Freeman, Judy Selby Pat Shough and MaryBeth Vaudrin for viewing pleasure and sale. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and is closed on Sunday.

-- Stop at the Tourist Information Center, 300 Bemidji Ave. located by the statue of Paul Bunyan and Babe, for a map and information on the pieces included in the Sculpture Walk.

Mark your calendars now with these upcoming events:

-- A classical music concert by BSU musical faculty, 7:30 p.m. March 29, Thompson Recital Hall.

-- Blue Bird, Wild Hare Bistro, April 3.

-- "Cinderella" collaboration with Bemidji Community Theater and BSU, 7:30 p.m. April 17 and 18 and 3 p.m. April 19. School performances, April 15 and 17, for information contact Mary Knox Johnson at 755-3934.

-- "Sam and Alice" free concert at the Cabin Coffeehouse and Café, April 18.

-- Gallery North and Northern Artists are sponsoring "The Artists of Minnesota Spring Show" May 15-17. For more information, call Pat at 751-8842 or on line at

-- Pelican Railroad every Wednesday night from 8:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. at the Backyard BBQ (formerly Hard Times Saloon) in downtown Bemidji.

Announcements of arts and entertainment events may be sent to the Bemidji Pioneer, P.O. Box 455, Bemidji, MN 56619-0455 or e-mailed to