Halloween, 'Stranger Things,' and TC Horror Fest: A-List 10.25-31

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Darin Kamnetz

This week in A-List we have a ton of Halloween happenings, bar fun, and festivals. Come take a look.

WEDNESDAY 10.25

Tim Slagle
Acme Comedy Co.

It seems with the way the presidential election turned out, Tim Slagle’s brand of political satire would be in high demand. “You would think,” he laughs. “But no, it’s more divisive than it’s ever been.” There are two forces at play, he explains. “There used to be left, right, and a small middle. Now there’s visceral hatred between the two sides of the political discussion,” he says. “Where before you might not amuse half the audience, now you’re actually going to upset half the audience.” Another interesting development is the emergence of, for lack of a better word, hack political comics. “They’re suddenly political because they can re-work a joke into a Trump bit,” Slagle says. “If you’ve got a ‘stupid’ joke, or a racist joke, or a Nazi joke, all you have to do is insert Donald Trump’s name and suddenly you’re a political comedian.” Slagle recalls the same thing happening during the Clinton administration when the Lewinsky scandal broke. “Every dick joke was a political reference.” Not that he didn’t have a few. “But,” he points out, “mine were very clever.” Slagle also hosts the Rule of Three podcast with standup (and City Pages contributer) Bryan Miller. 18+. 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday; 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. $15-$18. 708 N. First St., Minneapolis; 612-338-6393. Through Saturday —P.F. Wilson

The Dream Channel-Episode 3
Open Eye Figure Theatre

After dancing as a core member of Minneapolis’ Ballet of the Dolls for more than a decade and performing in Punchdrunk Theater’s immersive Sleep No More in New York for several years, Zhauna Franks has returned to the Twin Cities to craft her own version of immersive theater. In the first two episodes of this ongoing series—which blends sublime, poignant, and noir stagecraft with dance and music—Frank explored unconscious impulses in a performance that swirled around the audience with surrealistic intensity. An impressive cast of former Dolls (including Julia Tehven-Sutton, Stephanie Fellner, and Robert Skafte) and local superstars (Christine Maginnis, Kevin McCormick) perform in the work, which has four channels. Choose your path, and embrace your experience. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. $23; $10 Wednesday preview show. 506 E. 24th St., Minneapolis; 612-874-6338. Through Sunday —Camille LeFevre 

Ms. Pat
Rick Bronson’s House of Comedy

The inspiration for Ms. Pat’s comedy comes mostly from her family, and they continue to give her more material than she can handle. “I’m a grandmother,” she says when reached by phone at her home in Indianapolis. “My son has a set of twins I’m keeping.” Babysitting doesn’t cut into her standup career, though. “I help when I can help; nothing is going to impact me being on the road even if my feet fall off,” she says with a laugh. “But I talk about being a grandma now. A little political stuff too, but I don’t like to go hard in on politics because it separates the room. I just give my point of view on things. I don’t ever tell somebody how to vote or what to think.” She also talks about her approach to life and how it’s been shaped by her life experiences. “I constantly tell people onstage, ‘You’d never be able to tell I went through the stuff I went through.’ Don’t be too quick to judge, open your mind and step outside of your box. Talk to someone who doesn’t look like you and hold a conversation. That’s the only way we’re going to solve these issues in the world.” 18+; 21+ later shows. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Friday; 9:45 p.m. Friday; 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; 9:30 p.m. Saturday. $13-$22. 408 E. Broadway, Mall of America, Bloomington; 952-858-8558.Through Sunday —P.F. Wilson

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L-R: 'Skin,' 'Harold,' 'Sadie Mae'

THURSDAY 10.26

Twin Cities Horror Festival
The Southern Theater

Twin Cities Horror Festival is returning this week for its sixth season of performances delving into the dark side. The dramatic Skin traces the insidious motivations of a surgeon offering black women the questionable opportunity to change the color of their skin. Race also ranks among the numerous self-identity anxieties that arise during a leadership camping expedition for young women in the dark comedy Hand-Picked. Fantasy creatures become horrifying realities in The Fae, Ingmar Bergman’s unnerving 1966 film Persona is given a chilling multimedia twist via Animus, and cultural nightmares of past and present collide in two works, Intuition and the Mantis and Sadie Mae, 1969. Evocatively macabre dancing takes center stage for the mortality-defying choreography of After the Party, while returning favorite Harold takes the tale of a scarecrow to disturbing depths of vengeance. Gothic musical duo the Coldharts offers a second tribute to Edgar Allan Poe with Eddie Poe, and a series of celluloid scares is screened during the Short Film Festival. Lest the onslaught of frights become overwhelming, comical creepiness can be explored with Rev. Matt’s Monster Science and A Terrifyingly Intimate Evening with Fotis. Showtimes vary; for tickets and a complete schedule visit www.tchorrorfestival.com. Daily. $15 single tickets; $56 four-show pass; $160 all-access. 1420 S. Washington Ave., Minneapolis; 612-326-1811. Through November 5 —Brad Richason

Victorian Ghost Stories
James J. Hill House

Seen in the reassuring light of day, the James J. Hill House is one of the most impressive landmarks in St. Paul, its imposing stone facade a tribute to the railroad magnate known as the Empire Builder. Viewing the site at dusk, however, particularly during the autumn months, can evoke thoughts of a more unnerving nature. Recognizing the home’s potential for Halloween fun, the Minnesota Historical Society will once again host evenings of spooky tales told in the darkened parlor. The program features a range of spine-tingling 19th-century selections from the likes of Edgar Allan Poe, Edith Wharton, and the Brothers Grimm, as well as works from several lesser-known authors of the period, read aloud with ominous gravitas by costumed actors. Favoring creepy suspense over grisly shocks, the dramatic readings embrace the age-old art of the ghost story, allowing listeners to entertain the phantoms summoned from the darkest corners of their own minds. Warm cider will be served, helping to restore nerves before participants embark on a post-storytelling tour of the house wherein every shadowy corridor and creak of the floorboards is bound to be infused with eerie suggestion. 6 and 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Saturday, Sunday, and Halloween; 7 and 8:30 p.m. Friday. $12. 240 Summit Ave., St. Paul; 651-297-2555. Through Tuesday —Brad Richason

Spout Press’ Out of Pocket
East Side Freedom Library

Since 1989, Spout Press has been the indie literary publisher that could. It began as a quarterly journal, which ran for 23 years. Eventually, the volunteer-run press switched to printing a series of books and chapbooks, called Out of Pocket. Like its magazine, Out of Pocket has focused on experimental writing, showcasing new voices examining current issues. This Thursday, Spout will host readings of the first four books of the series: Epilogue by Juliet Patterson, Encyclopedia by Rachel Jendrzejewski, Waiting for a Spaceship by J. Otis Powell, and The Axe Lectures by Brianna Johnson. The works of Powell, who died earlier this year, will be read by Keno Evol and Louis Alemayehu. 7 p.m. Free. 1105 Greenbrier St., St. Paul; 651-230-3294. —Sheila Regan

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Mike Madison

FRIDAY 10.27

Halloween Bar Crawl
Downtown Minneapolis

Before kids roam the neighborhoods trick-or-treating this Halloween, adults will make their way through the bars of downtown Minneapolis. This Friday, ghosts, superheroes, and the minimally dressed will take to the streets, hitting up pubs, clubs, and restaurants for booze. They’ll find what they are looking for at First Avenue, the Gay 90’s, and Kieran’s, among others, as this crawl scores people specials ranging from $3 Stoli shots to $5 Summit beers to $10 pizzas. Tickets get you free admission and deals at participating bars, and a costume contest will rain $500 down on the winner. 21+. 8 p.m. to 2 p.m. $15. Find tickets at eventbrite.com; check in is at the Pourhouse (10 S. Fifth St., Minneapolis).—Jessica Armbruster

Minnesota Dance Theater
The Cowles Center for Dance & the Performing Arts

Those dancers you’ve loved for their exquisite, expressive movement? They’re now choreographers as well. While Penelope Freeh has been dance-making for a while now, Elayna Waxse and Darwin Black are comparatively new to the process. All three have premieres on Minnesota Dance Theatre’s fall program. Black (you’ve seen him with MDT and TU Dance) has made a highly physical work that examines the spaces between serene solitude and nonstop mind chatter. Sage Award recipient and two-time McKnight Choreographer Fellow Freeh (James Sewell Ballet) has taken as her inspiration Michelangelo’s unfinished “prisoner” sculptures for her new work. Waxse (MDT, TU Dance) explores myriad emotional states in her piece, including attachment and loss. 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. $24-$36. 528 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-206-3636. Through Sunday —Camille LeFevre

Pen Pals: Jennifer Egan
Hopkins Center for the Arts

Novelist Jennifer Egan seems to get exponentially better with each new work. Her fine debut, The Invisible Circus, was an intimate reexamination of ’60s radicalism through a feminist lens. Her subsequent books edged into territory often claimed by postmodernism, but without the stylistic indulgences and chilly detachment that usually entails. Thus 2010’s A Visit From the Goon Squad shouldn’t have been a shock, but it’s impossible not to be surprised by a novel so formally daring and emotionally resonant. The Pulitzer Prize selection committee certainly approved. So it is with tremendous anticipation that Egan this October releases her follow-up novel, Manhattan Beach, which will be the topic of conversation when she makes back-to-back appearances as part of the Hennepin County Library’s Pen Pals series. 7:30 p.m. Thursday (currently sold out); 11 a.m. Friday. $40-$50. 1111 Mainstreet, Hopkins; 612-543-8112. —Bryan Miller

Stranger Things Viewing Party
Wanderlust Vintage Market

Last fall, Stranger Things inspired many a Halloween costume. This year shouldn’t be much different, as season two of the popular Netflix series debuts this weekend. On Friday, Northeast shop Wanderlust is hosting a party in honor of the show. There’ll be vintage and retro finds for your shopping pleasure during regular store hours. At 7 p.m., folks will be invited to board the caravan, a wooden school bus-type vehicle with a posh interior, to enjoy a screening of the first new episode. Do it for Barb, RIP. 6 to 10 p.m. Free. 349 13th Ave. NE, Minneapolis; 612-466-0785. —Jessica Armbruster

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Susan Du

SATURDAY 10.28

Transmission Presents: Halloween 1984
Psycho Suzi’s Motor Lounge

Transmission is once again taking over Psycho Suzi’s for an epic night of Halloween fun, ’80s-style. Don’t expect a cheesy take on the decade, however; this was a time when brutal horror movies thrived and MTV videos sometimes felt like an acid trip. Some of those videos will screen as you dance to pop, New Wave, punk, rock, and R&B jams. Come in costume, as prizes—including a framed severed arm and a $250 gift card—will be awarded to those with the best looks. 21+. 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. Free. 1900 Marshall St. NE, Minneapolis; 612-788-9069. —Jessica Armbruster

Lake Monster Bash: Halloween Music Fest
Lake Monster Brewing

While the freaks will be in fine form tonight, this party at Lake Monster is for those who prefer to celebrate All Hallows Eve in broad daylight. Starting at noon on the patio, the St. Paul brew pub will revel in music, food, and beer. In addition to the regular menu, there will be unusual options just for party-goers. That includes Muddle Imperial Milk Stout, the Buddy Check Session IPA with blood orange, the Murmur Milk Stout with coffee, the Golden Oat Belgian Ale WIT-style, the Empty Rowboat IPA, and the Noir Belgian Black Ale with raspberry and black currants. Onstage will be a mix of rock, funk, and Americana, including sets from Haley, Chastity Brown, Actual Wolf, Farewell Milwaukee, and Them Coulee Boys. Food trucks will keep crowds well fed, and the lucky may find themselves winning prizes like free beer during costume contests. Your ticket scores you a beer to get started, as well as a round trip on MetroTransit. 21+. Tickets and more info can be found at getknitevents.com/monsterbash. 1 to 9 p.m. $15. 550 Vandalia St., St. Paul; 612-964-6288. —Jessica Armbruster

Strange Things: A Halloween Dance Party
First Avenue

DJ Shannon Blowtorch and Flip Phone have come together to host this awesome Halloween dance party and drag show. Strange Things will be headlined by AJA, familiar to many from season nine of RuPaul’s Drag Race. The performance roster also includes Vincent the Destroyer, Sasha Cassadine, Julia Starr, and Martina Marraccino. You should come in costume, obviously. However, this is a forward-thinking kind of event, so get your non-sexist, non-homophobic, non-transphobic, non-culturally appropriative—yet fabulous—outfit in order to win the $500 cash prize and erotic goodies from the Smitten Kitten. Looks from last year’s raucous party included Bender from Futurama, the Scooby-Doogang, Wonder Woman, and a sparkly unicorn. 18+. 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. $13-$15. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. —Sheila Regan

New York City Ballet
Northrop

Even in part, the New York City Ballet adds up to a whole lot of excellence as 16 dancers from that extraordinary company perform works ranging from classical to experimental. NYCB’s vitality, physicality, and sophisticated musicality go way beyond stimulating into the realm of the sublime. Then there’s the range of the repertory on this program. NYCB founder George Balanchine’s spellbinding 1975 duet “Sonatine,” set to music by Ravel, is followed by Christopher Wheeldon’s exquisite “After the Rain,” created 30 years later. Wunderkind Justin Peck’s “In Creases,” his first ballet for the company, captures the individuality and youthfulness of NYCB dancers. Peck has been compared to Balanchine in terms of the complexity and elegance of his choreography, while French choreographer Angelin Preljocaj goes for all-out emotive power in his “La Stravagaza.” Finally, Jerome Robbins’ “In the Night” shapes Chopin’s nocturnes into a drama for three contrasting sets of lovers. And anyone who has seen his dances for West Side Story or Fiddler on the Roof knows that this guy can tell a moving story. Live music makes this evening an embarrassment of riches. 7:30 p.m. $32-$74. 84 Church St. SE, Minneapolis; 612-624-2345. —Linda Shapiro

Halloween dog parties
Various locations

While the Zombie Pub Crawl continues to attract hordes of undead, there is a newer, cuter trend emerging in the Twin Cities this Halloween: zombie pup crawls. These happenings are more chill, and allow you to celebrate the holiday sitting down with a beer and your dog. This weekend, you’ll have three different options. Stanley’s Northeast Bar Room (2500 University Ave. NE, Minneapolis; 612-788-2529) will be hosting a shindig on the “paw-tio” with a special dog-friendly menu and Finnegan’s beer deals for humans from 3 to 7 p.m. Saturday. There will be a variety of opportunities for your pup to shine, with a costume contest, a short parade at 5:30 p.m., and a “play dead” contest. If you’re a fan of pit bulls, you might consider stopping by Northgate Brewing (783 Harding St. NE, Minneapolis; 612-354-2858) for the Canine Carnival on Saturday. Here Sidewalk Dog will be hosting a party featuring animal vendors, a costume contest, food trucks, and adoptable dogs from noon to 5 p.m. And visit Lakes and Legends Brewing Company (1368 LaSalle Ave., Minneapolis; 612-999-6020) on Sunday for Howl-o-ween. In addition to a costume contest, there will be dog photography, treats from Finley’s Barkery, and prizes from 2 to 5 p.m. Pups will be welcome both inside and outside. All events are all ages and free, though there is a $5 suggested donation for the Canine Carnival (proceeds will benefit pitbull-related charities and causes). —Jessica Armbruster

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TUESDAY 10.31

First Avenue’s Halloween Party and Costume Contest
First Avenue

First Avenue’s Halloween party always takes place on the holiday itself, and it’s always epic. This is a party for grownups who prefer showing off awesome costumes over getting sloppy drunk (though that happens here, too). This evening offers some of the best people-watching of the year, as folks rock getups with amazing horror makeup, up-to-the-minute pop-culture references, and technological feats of costumery. Bring your A-game here. Ian Rans will host a costume contest, where the audience will help vote for the top looks of the night. In between spooky fun, take to the dance floor with sets from DJs Tiiiiiiip, Espada, Mike 2600, Keezy, Smitty, and Roy Freedom. 18+. 8 p.m. $5-$10/$15 at the door. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. —Jessica Armbruster


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