Quantum leap

Updated: April 26, 2007 - 2:11 pm

Downtown Journal staff writer

Get two Draculas for the price of one in this neoclassical ballet

presented by the Metropolitan Ballet in collaboration with

other dancers titled, \”Dracula: A Ballet of Passion, Life and

Death.\”

Here\’s a lesson in both history and English literature: The

primary character in Bram Stoker\’s famed 1897 novel, \”Dracula\”

and Prince Dracula who ruled over Romania in the 1400s

(a.k.a. Vlad Tepes and Vlad the Impaler) are combined in the

same role.

In the first part, travel to Middle Ages Romania where Prince

Dracula\’s wife Sylveta commits suicide after she receives a

phony letter detailing her husband\’s death.

A depressed prince soon succumbs to the \”perils of darkness,\”

taking a quantum leap (like Scott Bakula), turning into a

creepy, centuries-old vampire – Stoker\’s mythic Dracula.

Against a London backdrop, Dracula takes Renfield, whom

he nicknames the \”eater of bugs,\” for his servant.

Now enter the lovely Mina, a heavenly vision of the long-lost

Sylveta. Dracula, crazed by the memory of his long-dead wife,

mistakes Mina for the object of his affection.

The vampire tries to impress her with a regimen of blood

from both her fianc and best friend.

Will he win Mina\’s heart or ever see his wife again? Find out

in the last dance.

As a sideshow, elaborate pumpkin carvings from local artists

will be exhibited in the plaza.

Last, but not least, there will be a blood drive by Memorial

Blood Center with the chance to win airline tickets from Sun

Country Airlines.

F Oct. 27, Ballet: 8 p.m., Blood drive: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.,

Project Pumpkin: 7 a.m.-6 p.m.

State Theatre, 805 Hennepin Ave. S.

$25-$45 (half-price tickets available for children,

students, seniors. $75 for red tie pre-show). 651-989-5151,

www.hennepintheatredistrict.com.

\’Earth from Above\’

Inspired by the extensive Google maps offering aerial views

of your neighborhood, street and even your house, \”Earth

from Above\” places the Soap Factory in the larger context of

the world, according to Executive Director Ben Heywood.

The show features over 20 Soap Factory artists doubling as

gallery volunteers.

There are contemporary paintings, video, installations, and

live performances for an aural and visual experience. Highlights

include a yurt, or a felt tent from Kaitlin Busse-Wolfgram,

ambient sound installation in the elevator shaft (capturing

building noises electronically) by Eric Joas, a wall painting

of ordinary angels and local heroes by Andy Sturdevant, and a

live performance from radio show host Fiona McNeill.

As a special on opening night, the basement will be outfitted

with Chris Pennington\’s nightmarish zoo of strange sounds and

other touches (more of an art project than your typical haunted

house).

Reception and Halloween Basement: Sa Oct. 28, 7 p.m.-midnight.

Gallery: Th-Su Oct. 28-Nov. 19; Th-F 2-8 p.m., Sa-Su noon-5 p.m.

Soap Factory, 110 5th Ave. SE Free. 623-9176, www.soapfactory.org.

Quench your thirst

While YouTube makes headlines in the virtual realm with

people posting their moment-by-moment videos, sound bites

and other extras on the Web, the thespians of Thirst Theater are

still live in the offline world (although they do have a new blog

and podcast).

Thirst Theater is a 200-person-plus network of familiar faces

from the local theater scene (and beyond) presenting barely

rehearsed, in-progress plays they wrote like two months ago.

They\’re not lazy or unmotivated: They want to reveal the nitty

gritty process of producing a show, before any of the directors

and producers get in the way and without the hoopla of a theater,

set and costumes. They come as they are, so you can, too.

In their third season, they\’ve added musicals, period pieces,

adventure serials and dance.

Mondays, 7:30 p.m.

Jitters, 205 E. Hennepin Ave.

$8-$15. 617-1111, www.fringefestival.org/thirst.cfm.