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Minneapolis/St. Paul Spotlight: October 2010

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Margaret Cho
(© Austin Young)
Provocative comedian and Dancing With the Stars contestant Margaret Cho brings her Cho Dependent tour to the State Theatre for one night only (October 15). The evening features Cho's signature acerbic standup along with a sampling from her brand new comedy music album, Cho Dependent, which includes collaborations with Tegan & Sara, Ani DiFranco, and Andrew Bird among others. Between her tour, Dancing with the Stars, and the second season of her television series Drop Dead Diva, Cho is one of the most in-demand comedy stars in America today.

Comedy troupe Brave New Workshop offers a unique collaboration with The History Theatre in Dudley: Rigged for Comedy (The History Theatre, October 2 - 24). Part biography and part sketch comedy, the piece recounts the story of local comedy impresario Dudley Riggs, founder of Brave New Workshop. Meanwhile, the Guthrie puts on the delightfully theatrical whodunit, The 39 Steps (October 30 - December 19). Adapted from the eponymous Alfred Hitchcock film, four actors portray over 150 characters in this fast-paced and hilarious whirlwind of a play, which is still enjoying an extended run Off-Broadway.

Theater Latte Da brings their new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's musical extravaganza, Evita to the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts (through October 31). Starring Zoe Pappas and Jared Oxborough as Eva and Che, Evita tells the story of Argentinean first lady Eva Peron. Patti LuPone, who played Eva in the original Broadway production, recently released her memoirs, Patti LuPone: A Memoir

which devotes several chapters to her experience in the iconic role. Minnesota Opera continues their season at the Ordway with Gioachino Rossini's Cinderella (October 30 - November 7). This production will feature Romanian mezzo-soprano Roxana Constantinescu, making her debut on the American opera stage.

As we head into election season, political junkies and culture warriors alike will not want to miss FUnauthorized Productions meta-musical Michele! The Musical Bachumanntary (September 30 - October 30, Minneapolis Theater Garage). Focusing in on the life and times of Minnesota's very own congressperson/tea partier, Michele Bachmann, Michele! promises to shed a "wholly (an holy) irreverent" new light on the sixth district's most famous Republican phenom.

The Twenty Percent Theatre Company presents the regional premiere of Kate Robin's Anon (Gremlin Theatre, October 15 - 30). Disguised as a classic romantic comedy, Anon explores the issues of sexual addiction and dysfunction. Elyzabeth Gregory Wilder's Gee's Bend also receives its area premiere this month at Park Square Theatre (October 15 - November 7). This uplifting story follows the Pettway women of Gee's Bend, Alabama as they express the turmoil of the twentieth century through quilting.

Ten Thousand Things opens their new season with Pedro Calderon de la Barca's allegorical exploration of fate, Life Is A Dream (October 29 - November 21, at various locations). As usual, Ten Thousand Things will actual begin a series of non-public performances at area prisons, housing projects, and homeless shelters on October 14.

Children will certainly enjoy SteppingStone Theatre's Stone Soup Feeds the World (October 22 - November 7). Set in a small town ravaged by war and famine, this musical play infuses Celtic melodies with African rhythms to tell the story of three mysterious strangers who cook a pot of "Stone soup" to bring the town back together.

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