Sunday news and reviews

Here’s a look at the arts stories making headlines…

Art

The people’s choice

Through online voting, the public picked half of a new Walker show.

- Mary Abbe, Star Tribune

“The organization is safe”

Northside Arts Collective, in sudden turnaround, replaces majority of board and cancels plans to dissolve

- Sheila Regan, TC Daily Planet

Dance

Houlton’s classic ‘Nutcracker’ still fresh and charming

Sparkling performances and fine footwork distinguish this year’s production of the time-honored ballet.

- Caroline Palmer, Star Tribune

Ballet of the Dolls step out with a stylish “Cinderfella”

There’s a whole lotta partying going on and it’s only Fella who is doing the serving, clean-up, and morning-after coffee serving. Poor Fella!

- Betsy Gabler, TC Daily Planet

From dancing chitlins to rapping reindeer, Sounds of Blackness celebrate the holidays their wayThis really is a musical concert wrapped loosely around a holiday story.

- Jean Gabler, TC Daily Planet

A rich and delightful “Nutcracker Fantasy” from Minnesota Dance Theatre

Only on stage for one long weekend, Loyce Houlton’s Nutcracker Fantasy performed by Minnesota Dance Theatre continues to be a tradition that starts all young and young-at-heart hearts beating faster in anticipation of Christmas Eve.

- Betsy Gee, TC Daily Planet

Zenon Dance Company’s “Nutcracker According to Mother Goose” is good clean fun for all agesThe classic orchestral score takes on a new playful atmosphere by being paired with the Mother Goose tales.

- Kate Gallagher, TC Daily Planet

Movies

‘True Grit’s’ young star proves she’s a straight shooter

Ten months ago, Hailee Steinfeld had just a couple of sitcom episodes on her resume. Now, Steinfeld, who just turned 14, is the star of “True Grit,” a big holiday movie that’s certain to earn her an Oscar nomination.

- Chris Hewitt, Pioneer Press

Music

Soul Asylum offers a few other delights

It’s a not-so-grand tradition for the fellas of Soul Asylum to cut loose and go a little crazy at the end of their sets this time every year at First Avenue. On Friday, however, they were at their weirdest and wildest right at the start of the nearly 1¾-hour show.

- Chris Riemenschneider, Star Tribune

Pauly D, “Rhode Island’s most well-known DJ,” shuts up and doesn’t dance

Unlike his co-stars, who make similar amounts of money to just show up at a bar and get drunk and have their picture taken like they would on any given night, at least Pauly D is doing something for the money.

- Bobby Kahn, TC Daily Planet

Theater

Strong cast surmounts slow start to ‘Billy Elliot the Musical’ at Orpheum

It’s a rousing, uplifting and cynicism-melting tale of discovering and nurturing raw talent in the midst of dire times — finding a diamond in a coal mine, if you will.

- Ross Raihala, Pioneer Press

“Billy Elliot” flies high at the Orpheum Theatre

Billy Elliot, with music by Elton John and book/lyrics by Lee Hall, is by far the most hotly anticipated touring Broadway musical to come to Minnesota this year.

- Jay Gabler, TC Daily Planet

At Park Square Theatre, “2 Pianos, 4 Hands” makes for an entertaining evening of music

A play with only two actors must rely heavily on the talent and likeability of both, and 2 Pianos, 4 Hands doesn’t disappoint.

- Elizabeth Lofgren, TC Daily Planet

The Year in Theater

Graydon Royce and Rohan Preston name the five shows that most impressed them in 2010.

- Star Tribune

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