There's so much good art to see right now!

Last night I went to the opening night of the first production of a brand new theatre company, New Dawn Theatre — and it did not disappoint! Regina Taylor's CROWNS was the perfect show to kick off this company with a bang!

Everything works together perfectly. The performance is held in a corner church on Summit Avenue, now used as a performance center. It was great to see the people streaming in (and stream they did, there's no nearby parking, so they came from all over!) When we got in, we were thrilled to see Robin Hickman with her Celebration of Soulful Dolls, all in amazing hats!

When Austene Van, the founder of New Dawn, gave her curtain speech, though, I got chills, especially when she thanked all of us for being there and being part of live theater, especially this company which is SO needed in the Twin Cities theater ecosystem right now.

And then, when the show started, when the perfectly curated projection began and young Valencia Proctor stepped out and began rapping as her character Yolanda, and the other incredible performers — Jamecia Bennett, Aimee Bryant, Shirley Graham, Thomasina Petrus, Jevetta Steele, and T. Michael Rambo came out, it was nothing short of electrifying!

For those of you who don't know it, CROWNS is a play about black women, their church, their relationships, and especially about their hats. It's dialogue, and monologue, and especially music (and movement, here augmented, as I said before, by simple but effective projection). It could not be a more perfect way for this company to start out. You NEED to go see it!


So, I have your night planned:

-  Stop by Highland Park just before 7pm and see David Dimitri do his public outdoor wirewalk — it's FREE to see that part (while you're there, buy tickets for the full show another night soon).

-  Run up to Summit (just west of Snelling, just a couple of miles away) and see CROWNS at 7:30. If you go this weekend to both of these things, you'll still be able to get tickets, but don't wait, I expect them to both start selling very well!)

-  The show is only 90 minutes long, so grab a drink afterwards (May I suggest Lawless, whose new "Darkness" menu is super-fun!


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