Downtown Art

Share this:
September 6, 2004 // UPDATED 3:57 pm - April 25, 2007
By: Anna Pratt
Anna Pratt

'Carmina Burana'

There's a part of me that always feels compelled to destroy all rough drafts of things I've written lest they one day be discovered. I've harbored this neurotic fear since my days as an elementary diarist -- I scribbled out all the too-private entries, such as whom I had a crush on or was mad at, before tossing the confidential pages away (you know, to further elude anyone who might practice reading through the garbage).

But "Carmina Burana" only legitimizes such reservations of detection.

The choreography of this collaborative Minnesota Dance Theatre, Minnesota Chorale and Theatre de la Jeune Lune production is based on the almost-lost manuscripts of Bavarian Benedictine monks. The texts date back to the 13th century but weren't even unearthed until 1803 in a Munich, Germany abbey.

These poems and songs reflect the defrocked monks/wandering minstrels' fraternal meanderings -- touching on religion, morals, lust, love, gambling and drinking.

Expect soloists, dancers and a chorus performing 20-plus songs based on the monks' private thoughts. However, even I can admit that in this case, the discovery of these old musings is fit for the opening chorus: "O, Fortuna!"

Sept. 10-26, Thursday-Sunday various times, Theatre de la Jeune Lune, 105 N. 1st St., $17-$32. 338-0627.

Tea and wormholes

These art instructors' paintings take us out both for teatime (tea stains and all) and time-travel. While Julie Baugnet pays homage to the British tradition of tea with a sequence of welcoming fuzzy cups, Joseph Haske guides us on an introspective tour of the ephemeral.

Cream? Sugar? Enjoy a "cuppa tea" with Julie Baugnet's portrayals of sociable teacups tucked in domestic niches. Baugnet's lacy/floral teacups speak to propriety, as each sits vigilantly waiting for its respective drinker, yet these dishes also seem playful.

Perhaps they reflect the artist's experiences in London (after all, she is the leader of an international art program), or perhaps they simply recall warm memories of tea with friends. In any case, Baugnet's paintings are in keeping with the British cure-all; you can solve so many problems with a cuppa tea.

After tea, travel through time with Joseph Haske. This 40-year veteran painter doesn't need a "Back to the Future" car or Dr. Who's time machine to plumb the temporal; his wormhole machine runs pretty well on paint and marble dust.

Haske's strokes drip like a leaky faucet, foretelling of death and decay as forms flourish, fade and fossilize. His images morph between continuation and erasure, and naturalistic partings and reunions that cross a multitude of time barriers. Once a teenager enlightened by the Abstract Expressionists, Haske helps to preserve the lifetime of the abstract movement itself.

Exhibit: Thru Oct. 8, Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Reception: Friday, Sept. 10, 5-8 p.m., Circa Gallery, 1637 Hennepin Ave. S., Free. 332-2386.

Anna Pratt can be reached at