Posted at 1:05 PM on November 15, 2010
by Marianne Combs
Filed under: Funding
Starting at midnight tonight, Minnesota non-profits are urging you to be very, very generous.
One year after its premiere launch, "Give to the Max" day is back, hosted by the website GiveMN.org.
Here are the facts you need to know:
Last year GiveMN inspired 38,000 Minnesotans to give more than $14 million to 3,434 Minnesota nonprofits in just 24 hours.
This year GiveMN is asking Minnesotans to set a new record, but is only focusing on the number of people giving. This year's goal is to increase the number of contributors to 40,000.
Last year GiveMN said it would "match" contributions made in the 24-hour period; many people thought that meant a dollar-for-dollar match. It ended up being only cents on the dollar.
This year GiveMN has instead encouraged non-profits to seek out their own matching grants. Currently the site states $3,477,798 has been raised by various non-profits for the purpose of matching donations.
In addition, throughout the event, GiveMN will randomly choose an individual donor every hour, and give an additional $1,000 to the charity that received the donor's original donation.
Last year, your entire donation went to your non-profit of choice.
This year, donations will be charged a 2.9% processing fee.
Last year, the fundraising event was from 8am Nov 17 to 8am Nov 18.
This year the event begins at 12:01AM November 16 and runs until midnight.
While some non-profits have embraced GiveMN wholeheartedly as their main channel for fundraising, others may have other end-of-year plans. Best practice is to check with your favorite non-profits to make sure this is how they want you to donate, otherwise you may miss out on a matching grant they have set up for another time.
Posted at 9:01 AM on November 15, 2010
by Marianne Combs
Filed under: News and reviews
Mondays are in general pretty paltry, but there are still a few good stories to be had...
Public gets a say on Peavey Plaza
- MaryAbbe, Star Tribune
Landscape architect candidates will do public interviews Tuesday.
Dances with elephants, seeking truth
- Caroline Palmer, Star Tribune
This appealing but odd work at the Southern Theater attempts to show that truth is something that blooms in our minds.
Kuerti plumbs depths of Beethoven
- Rob Hubbard, Pioneer Press
Ludwig van Beethoven didn't think small. Although the composer's intimate works for solo piano may seem sonic worlds apart from his stormy symphonies, they often sound like they're tackling similar big issues -- the nature of life, love, God and the universe -- but on a micro rather than macro level.
"Cowboy Versus Samurai" by Mu Performing Arts at the Guthrie Theater: Tofu con queso
- Jay Gabler, TC Daily Planet
I've seen many productions in the Guthrie Theater's Dowling Studio, but never has the crowd there sounded so much like a studio audience.
'Favre' fondue even funnier than last year's holiday revue
- Rohan Preston, Star Tribune
The Brave New Workshop serves up a deliciously funny offering.
Heid E. Erdrich has authored three poetry collections including National Monuments from Michigan State University Press and Fishing for Myth from New Rivers Press. She also authored The Mother's Tongue, Salt Publishing's Earthworks series, and co-edited Sister Nations: Native American Women on Community, Minnesota Historical Society Press.
A member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibway, Heid grew up in Wahpeton, North Dakota. She earned degrees from Dartmouth College and The Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars. She and her sister Louise Erdrich recently co-founded a non-profit clearinghouse for indigenous language-centered literature called Birchbark House.
The Way To
In the dimly lit cosmos of the body
one egg turns planet-like, its gravity
draws currents through a woman
like tide pull in caves by the sea.
Try to keep such images revolving
when even benevolent passion
seems too close, ironic, unnatural.
Not one of your girlfriends will ever
describe the actual moment:
How her eyes might have wavered,
tilted to his, her chin a perfect emblem,
sweet offering of someone wholly else,
and a bondage gone to willingly.
Certainly no one mentions
the little fear cries. Aloud or silent,
who knows for sure.
Some women hear both at once
Not me! And the twin call let me!
The risk of stage fright's greater
the bigger the production.
Forget what it is you mean to do.
Make dinner. Pay bills. Wash the car.
The moment will come upon you.
He closes your eyes with kisses,
Aims his love and you pray he misses,
then you unpray for days.
- "The Way To" by Heid Erdrich, as it appears in her book of poems The Mother's Tongue, published by Salt Publishing. Reprinted here with permission from the author.
Posted at 3:07 PM on November 15, 2010
by Marianne Combs
Filed under: Criticism
The 39 Steps, directed by Joel Sass, runs through December 19 at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis
The 39 Steps, a farce based on Alfred Hitchcock's spy thriller movie, is getting mixed reviews from critics. They all seem to agree that the performers are really what make the show sing, and that there are a couple of scenes that drag (particularly a bedroom scene in the second half of the show). What varies is how much the occasional flaws effect their enjoyment of the rest of the show. Read on for the details...
It's the kind of show that depends on establishing a level of absurdity that seems almost spontaneous, yet choreographed to the split second. There are no idle gestures, no throwaway moments, and the physical stuff -- there's plenty of it -- has to involve intense precision by all hands...It's probably no surprise that three of the four cast members -- Agnew, Lichtscheidl and Seifert -- have past associations with Theatre de la Jeune Lune, because the former company's signature movement specialties are all over the performances. These are comedy clowns of the first order and they are perfectly complemented by Berdahl, who is the grounded center of the performance and the only actor who has a single role.
Joel Sass's staging of "The 39 Steps" at the Guthrie Theater gets the formula right, with crisp acting and whimsical stagecraft. Robert O. Berdahl, Jim Lichtscheidl, Luverne Seifert and Sarah Agnew act with the focused commitment necessary for burlesque. A perfect example is Agnew and Berdahl, their characters on the lam and handcuffed together, tangle on a fence rail for what seems hours. Ridiculous situation, played for keeps. Perfect.
Sass demands breakneck action that falters only when the plot turns ordinary (the second-act bedroom scene), but the script generally delights...It can tire you out, all this action. But it's a good tired, one that rekindles our faith in theater's capacity to squeeze new life from old forms.
...It's probably director Joel Sass who is at fault for turning what was bright and effortless on Broadway into a comedy that feels strenuous and broad...He's an inventive director, even working in the Hitchcock appearance that was a signature of his classic films (actually, there are two Hitchcock "appearances" -- an impersonator does the cell phone speech before the play). But Hitchcock was known for his editing virtuosity, and Sass could use some editing.
Some stuff -- like a boisterous parade, somehow brought to life by just three people, and Lichtscheidl's riotous Scottish farmer, who's a wry spin on Groundskeeper Willie from "The Simpsons" -- works beautifully, but many gags are allowed to go on too long.
...As in any sketch-comedy show, some bits work better than others. The high point comes early on, with Agnew's portrayal of the lusty, consonant-choking German spy Annabella Schmidt; that bit gets the kind of mileage out of schtoop that Beaverdance got out of beaver jokes. The show steadily loses momentum, though, as it becomes clear that it's just going to be one sketch after another. The production outright stumbles in the second act, as Berdahl and Agnew are allowed to develop a little genuine chemistry and there are suggestions that we should consider caring about the plot. By contrast, the Sass-helmed Mystery of Irma Vep barrelled through the evening with an exciting sense of mounting absurdity, and that conviction made it a more successful show than 39 Steps.
Have you seen The 39 Steps? If so, let us know what you thought!
Peavey Plaza was named a "marvel of modernism" by the Cultural Landscape Foundation in 2008. Now it's getting a makeover.
Peavey Plaza, that tiered, sunken courtyard next to Orchestra Hall in downtown Minneapolis, is getting a facelift as part of the Hall's renovation and expansion.
Tomorrow, city officials and representatives of the Minnesota Orchestra will interview the four Minneapolis firms and their design teams chosen to interview for the revitalization project. The firms are Close Landscape Architecture, Coen & Partners, Damon Farber Associates, and Oslund and Associates (FYI, Tim Oslund is most recently known for his work on both Gold Medal Park and his design of the I-35 Bridge Memorial).
Rather than hold the interviews in private, the City of Minneapolis is inviting the public to attend. While members of the public won't have a final say in the decision, they will have a chance to see the various proposals and get excited about Peavey Plaza's new potential.
Interviews, each 45 minutes in length, begin at 11:30am Tuesday at the Minneapolis Convention Center in Auditorium 2. They will be preceded by a "meet and greet" session with the firms from 9:30 - 11:00am.
Interested in learning more about the history of Peavey Plaza and the intentions behind its original design? Check out Mary Abbe's fine article in the Star Tribune.(3 Comments)