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Who to Watch in 2015 Arts and Entertainment

With 2014 in the history books, done and over with, we can look back and see who hit the top in entertainment.

Meghan Trainor. Luke Bryan. Dare I say, Taylor Swift.

It’s better to look ahead now that we’re in the midst of January, and there are many entertainers and artists to keep an eye on, even here in Fargo and North Dakota.

Here’s a breakdown of those who stepped up in 2014 to take the cake in 2015.

FX’s “Fargo”
FX’s small town crime drama “Fargo” won over a heckuva lotta critics last spring with its first season starring Billy Bob Thornton and Martin Freeman. Now the murderous, Minnesota-based series is revving up for Season 2, taking its viewers to Sioux Falls, S.D., to a fictional incident in 1979 that ended with “bodies stacked two stories high.”

An all-star cast is lined up for Season 2, which begins filming Jan. 19 in Calgary, Alberta. Kirsten Dunst, Ted Danson, Nick Offerman and Jeffrey Donovan are some of the names on the roster for the upcoming season, which concerns a local crime gang and a mob syndicate in Luverne, Minn., and Sioux Falls.

Season 2 is set to air in the fall, with the same arc of Season 1 as being a 10-hour movie over 10 episodes on FX.

Fargo-Moorhead Opera
After 46 seasons, the Fargo-Moorhead Opera produced its first world premiere co-production last March, and is now in a season with two shows never done before in F-M.

These are entirely new moves by the opera company, who premiered “The Poe Project” with the help of artists from New York, Oklahoma, Texas and Switzerland. F-M audiences saw “The Merry Wives of Windsor” for the first time ever last November, and in April, they’ll get to see “The Daughter of the Regiment” for the first time.

It’s without a doubt the F-M Opera has more tricks up its sleeve for 2015, though what those may be is unknown. Opera is an intriguing form of theater often mistaken for large-breasted women in horned helmets singing at impossible ranges, but the F-M Opera has provided productions that shatter that stereotype. Check out this company in the new year, and save a seat for “The Daughter of the Regiment” in April.

Tigirlily
Two teenage sisters from Hazen, N.D., made a lot of noise this year. Kendra and Krista Slaubaugh, the girls of country pop duo Tigirlily, released their “Victory” EP in August, raking up some acclaim with songs like “A Little Fun” and “Song of Us.”

Their hit song “North Dakota” turned a year old with over 300,000 views on YouTube, and the sisters toured the state in the summertime, hitting small towns, music festivals and even the move-in weekend street dance at North Dakota State in August.

If their past success and determination are any indication, the new year is a bright one indeed for Tigirlily. They released another music video on Monday, will be performing at Minot State on Jan. 31 and a have a slew of nominations in the North Dakota Music Awards on Feb. 19. Keep your eye on the twosome as 2015 ticks by, and find their music on iTunes and tigirlily.com.

Public art in Fargo
The approval of an Arts and Culture Commission by the Fargo City Commission this past fall was an unprecedented move for any city in North Dakota. Public art is on the way, a much-talked-about need in Fargo these past few years, and a topic of platforms in the 2014 Fargo mayoral race.

Only time will tell what we can expect for public art, and hopefully local artists will be the ones to provide it. A “Made in Fargo” label would be nice to see on any artful additions to the city’s landscape.

Meanwhile, one piece of prominent public art suffered vandalism on Dec. 14. The painted bison statue at the corner of Main Avenue and Broadway by Wimmer’s Diamonds was pushed off its base in the night, breaking its legs. Through a fund set up by the Arts Partnership, donated dollars will help send the broken bison back to its artist, Pat Krueger, to repaint and reinstall in downtown Fargo.

It’s a sad occurrence for public art, but with this Arts and Culture Commission, Fargo can explore what it can do for its citizens on an artful level.

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