Arts Calendar

by Gabriel Shapiro

The Evidence of Silence Broken” 7:30 p.m. through Saturday, Pillsbury House Theatre, (612) 825-0459, $15.

A rusted-out old Volkswagen Bug filled with books stands among discarded tires and miscellaneous electronic gear. The graffiti-tagged set fuses with the other elements of the production, illuminating the theme. Poet, performer and playwright Zell Miller III recounts his life story under multicolored light bulbs that hang from strings above him. He tells stories about his toddler son, refusing a seat on a bus to a white man and his fear of kissing his first date. “The Evidence of Silence Broken” reveals the trials of life that eventually work their way into moments of peace. Miller blends DJing, poetry, scripted narrative, rap and movement, fashioning his show as hip-hop theater. (Amy Danielson)

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Art In Bloom 2003: Wildflowers / Wild Flowers! Today through Sunday, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, (612) 870-3131, prices vary.

That old adage boasts April showers bring May flowers. Well, this April hasn’t exactly been the soggiest on record, but the flowers have arrived regardless of drought-like conditions. Today the Minneapolis Institute of Arts kicks off its celebration of spring with Art In Bloom, a series of lectures, exhibits and events devoted entirely to flowers. If you can’t afford the special lectures on exotic flower arrangements or garden planning but still want to celebrate the most glorious of seasons, fear not – The MIA is offering plenty of activities for absolutely free. Become a bridal bouquet expert by attending a clinic in the Sculpture Garden. Take a guided tour of inspired floral arrangements specially designed to complement artwork in the museum. Or visit special floral exhibits in the textile, photo or print and drawing galleries. Whatever you decide to do, you won’t be able to dispute the fact that there’s no more brilliant an artist than Mother Nature herself. (Jennifer Schneider)

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Cam Waters
8 p.m. Friday, Ginkgo Coffeehouse,
(651) 645-2647, all ages, free.

Friday nights usually mean one of two things: You’re ready for a stress-relieving night on the town or you’re ready to crash. If cramming for finals has you too exhausted to even think about heading to the clubs this weekend, St. Paul’s Ginkgo Coffeehouse offers a mellow alternative. For the price of a cup of coffee or tea, you can enjoy the laidback tunes of Cam Waters, fifth-grade substitute teacher by day, bluesy-folk artist by night. Waters’ own bluesy compositions (such as last year’s “Meeting at the Crossroads” and “Met a Gal on Sunday”) fit right in with traditional songs like “Duncan and Brady,” a chilling but jaunty tale that has been covered by everyone from Leadbelly to Bob Dylan (How many murder accounts start off with the nursery rhyme “Well, it’s twinkle twinkle little star”?) Waters recently added to his repertoire a cover of Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs’ 1966 hit “Little Red Riding Hood” – and although his jug band version sadly lacks the novelty song’s infamous howls (“to facilitate repeated listenings,” according to Waters’ Web site), perhaps he’ll humor us in the spirit of a Friday night. (Jennifer Schneider)

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7:15 p.m. Friday through May 8, Bell Auditorium, $6 general, $5 students and seniors, $4 MFA members.

Roman Polanski’s win at the Oscars this year for Best Director for his film “The Pianist” was not unexpected. Now, Polanski comes around to the other side of the camera for director Andrzej Wajda, one of Poland’s most renowned and internationally acclaimed talents. Polanski is no stranger to acting, and performed in several movies before signing on as Wajda’s leading man. His most notable role was opposite Gerard Depardieu in “A Pure Formality,” directed by Giuseppe Tornatore of “Cinema Paradiso” fame. Polanski now returns to a starring role in this adaptation of a classical Polish story set in the eighteenth century. Polanski takes a comic turn in this hilarious tale of feuding families under the same, deteriorating roof and the lengths they will go just to get a leg up. (Gabriel Shapiro)

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Johnny Marr and the Healers with Paloalto
6 p.m. Wednesday, First Avenue, 21+, $20.

Johnny Marr has led a lower-profile life in music since the breakup of his legendary group The Smiths, than his former comrade, a certain blonde crooner named Morrissey. But while the latter has been out touring and recording under his own moniker, Marr has been in a number of projects in which his name might have been less central. Arguably the all-time king of the shimmering treble lead/rhythm style, Marr has chops to rock an amazing solo or strum through the subtle moments, too. Look for a heavier sound, more moody and distorted late Brit-pop (e.g. Oasis meets earlier Radiohead, but still played with Johnny’s distinctive strumming style). If you hear a lot of different influences in Marr’s music, it might be less that he is copping anyone’s style than that he is reclaiming it in his name off those who have aped him for the past 20 years. Paloalto, the terrifically derivative California fashion boys who all but advertise themselves as a Radiohead tribute band, open the show.