The Kabaret's modern design housed in the historic beauty of the Grand Hotel redefines what it means to be German-themed, with an atmosphere that is both interesting and fun, yet comfortably relaxed - making it the perfect place for a night out with family or friends.
The Grand was recently rated "Best in the Midwest" by Midwest Living. The Grand also was featured in Minnesota Monthly. Click here to read more.
"The Grand Kabaret Live Arts Entertainment Series" has been made possible in part by the Grand Center for Arts & Culture of New Ulm and their 2011 grant award from Prairie Lakes Regional Art Council and the Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund.
This activity is made possible by a grant provided to the Grand Center for Arts & Culture by Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council from the Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund as appropriated by the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008.
Though the event calendar currently lists primarily live music performers, The Grand Kabaret is committed to the continued development and expansion of its performance art offerings.
Possible event ideas include drama, spoken word performances, literature/poetry readings, and more. Stay tuned for event calendar additions and updates! Or email us with your suggestions for improving the performing arts entertainment at The Grand Kabaret.
Music begins at 8PM each Friday and Saturday night.
For over 30 years the Fabulous Minnesota Barking Ducks have brought a driving, diverse, blues-based music to the Twin Cities and all points between. Two members of the band have enjoyed the trip for the entire time: David "Burnie" Benson has steady laid down his distinctive, back-of-the-beat feel on drums; and Mic McCormick has forever silenced crowds with his phenomenal, oh-so-tasty guitar. Mic tells stories with that thing, and most people listen.
The "new" members have been Ducks for a little less than a decade. Ed Dunn plays bass and sings. Ed is intense, and plays deep in the pocket with Burnie, the two of them laying down a regular roadmap. Kit Kildahl sings and plays guitar and occasional harp. Kit has known Mic and Burnie since '75, when he was playing with the Dust Bowl Blues Band and Ace in the Whole.
These guys have a lot of music to draw on, so the result is a wide-ranging songlist--blues of course; but also rock, R & B, and jazz standards like "Fly Me to the Moon".
Ethan Keller is a singer-songwriter from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He was voted Best Solo Artist in the 2011 Milwaukee Music Awards, and Best Pop Artist in the 2011 Wisconsin Area Music Industry (WAMI) Awards.
The founder and former front man of the eclectic funk-rock outfit, Greenscene (voted Best Rock Band in Jim Beam’s 2001 National Band Search), Ethan has always been known for originality, diversity, and depth. Musically and professionally, Keller wears many hats. He has been promoting and performing since 1993, made appearances at prestigious venues and showcases in over 30 states, and has sold over 10,000 records.
Chicago-born jazz/punk/barrelhouse musician Stephanie Nilles has been doin' Kesey proud one bar at a time since 2008, hustling around the United States, Europe, and Canada (except from 2009-2010 for legal reasons), averaging 150 gigs a year, and captivating unsuspecting listeners with a voice that would make Jelly Roll Morton look orthodox and Ma Rainey look sober.
Having studied piano and cello since the age of six, she was a finalist at the Young Concert Artists' International Competition, a gold medalist at the Fischoff Competition, and had performed on NPR on three separate occasions by the age of seventeen. At twenty-two, she had graduated from the Cleveland Institute of Music with a degree in classical piano performance and temporarily relocated to New York City, where she began writing songs and performed regularly on the east village anti-folk scene.
She has since sung with Bobby McFerrin in Carnegie Hall, directed the musical program of a Brooklyn burlesque series, covered Busta Rhymes' "Break Ya Neck" in the skeletal remains of a bombed-out cathedral in Nuremberg, been invited to perform official showcases at SXSW and International Folk Alliance, and self-released 4 full-length albums, two of which were picked up for European release by German roots/blues label Tradition und Moderne (Taj Mahal, John Fahey).
When Stephanie's not sleeping in her car, she lives in New Orleans, which might not be the best idea.
The Bockfest Boys return to the Grand. The Bockfest Boys from New Ulm Minnesota, perform a raucous show of upper mid-west style music which includes a number of delightfully unique original compositions as well as popular music from the past 50 years and beyond. Three of the 7 members have been playing together for 43 years and have toured and performed in Europe as well as all through the upper mid-west. Arrangements include overtones of ethnic polka, German folk music, country, rock and roll, American folk, blues and bluegrass all combined to make a delicious Minnesota hotdish of music. Their unique style and contagious audience engagement makes for one truly fun filled experience every single time they perform. Vocals, Trombone, Trumpets, Baritone, Lead, Rhythm, and Bass Guitars, Concertinas, Button Accordion, Keyboards and Percussion are their tools of the trade. Band members include Scott Sparlin, Randy Domeier, Allan “Smiley” Wiltscheck, Anton “Tony” Berg, Bob Beussman, Steve Moran and Jeff Braegelmann. Expect anything.
Singer and guitarist Jeff Braegelmann plays authentic story songs from the vault. His performance is direct, simple, and heart-felt, delivered with respect for the songs and his listeners. Jeff sings classic folk, country and other American tunes by Axton, Tubb, Cash, Dylan, Prine, Waller, Ives, Husky, Pierce, Miller and others. Jeff's strongest musical influence has been Johnny Cash, and Jeff performs regularly with Bob Wootton, Cash's lead guitarist of 30 years. Jeff doesn't sing what you hear on the radio. He'll introduce you to beautiful tunes you haven't heard and reintroduce you to beautiful tunes you may have forgotten you love.
Minneapolis-St. Paul ensemble Sidewalk Café plays the music popularized by guitarist Django Reinhart and legendary jazz violinist Stephane Grappelli of the Hot Club of France in 1930s Paris. This swinging music is a favorite of all ages and is making a major comeback. The three members of Sidewalk Cafe include Prairie Home Companion veteran Gary Schulte, one of this country’s top jazz violinists; jazz guitar virtuoso Reynold Philipsek, a favorite of jazz great Pat Martino; and bassist Jeff Brueske, who is in great demand playing with Gypsy jazz groups as well as modern jazz, fusion, and swing ensembles in the Twin Cities.
Jeremy Walker of the Dakota says, “Sidewalk Cafe is a hard-swinging group that plays with bravado and passion that transcends the genre and captures its fundamental appeal and excitement.”
You've also heard members of Sidewalk Cafe with Twin Cities Hot Club, Parisota, Gypsy Jazz guitarist legend Dorado Schmidt, and more.
An original stage presentation by Joe Tougas, performed by The Frye (Joe Tougas and Ann Rosenquist Fee) and Dan Vierck
The Best of Hank and Rita is a real-time concert performance taking place long after this fictional singing-songwriting duo’s brief moment in the Top Ten. The show opens with audio of Rita’s breakup letter written earlier that day and left behind at the hotel for Hank to find after the show. The scene cuts to house comedian “Danny Vee,” finishing up his opening act with wisecracks about microwaves, confusing trends and the tabloid follies of tonight’s headliners, Hank and Rita.
The duo takes the stage upbeat and polished per usual, Rita resolved to have one last good time together, Hank oblivious to the real state of their relationship. When a fan makes an unexpected request, the show veers off the safe set list and into deeper cuts — requested by each other — from the duo’s past, songs chronicling of pain, lust, revenge, and hope.
The story and songs are written by Joe Tougas, who draws on two decades as a regional arts and entertainment journalist and editor who regularly covered bands like Hank and Rita, bands whose popularity peaked long ago but who carry on and find audiences in secondary markets.
Tougas performs as Hank along with Ann Rosenquist Fee as Rita. Tougas and Fee are real-life performers and songwriters in the acoustic duo and Grand Kabaret favorites The Frye. The show also features Madison, Wis. standup comedian Dan Vierck as Danny Vee, Hank and Ri-ta’s opening act.
“The Best of Hank and Rita” being performed in summer and fall of 2015 in Mankato, Minneapolis, Duluth and, on Aug. 22, New Ulm. Musician or fan or both, you’ll enjoy this original and unforgettable evening.
Tickets: $10 Members/$15 Nonmembers
DD & Rosco is a two-piece band that incorporates acoustic guitar, banjo, and vocals in cover songs and original music. Music includes a combination of ghostly folk and raw country. Danielle and Ross Deopere are a sibling pair from Cambria, Minnesota. DD & Rosco was formed in October of 2014, although the two have played music together for many years before that.
Ace in the Whole plays American music and original tunes that range from bluegrass, blues, jazz, folk and western. Members include Tim Waters on guitar/banjo/pedal steel, Mike Pengra on percussion, Dave Pengra on bass, and Kit Kildahl on guitar/harmonica.
Sleepy Eye residents Chris Steffen and Chris Ames have been playing music and recording for fun since May, 2012. Initially Chris A. asked Chris S. to do harmonies on a song he was recording. After sharing of musical interests the two started re-learning old favorites and some new songs off the radio. The two have played for and enjoyed listening to all the acts that have performed for The Grand's "Open Mic Night" and requested a booking. They look forward to sharing their music. Chris A. said that Chris S., "never did do the harmonies on that song."
Veteran performer and triple hall-of-famer, Dick Kimmel, takes center stage with this 5-piece bluegrass ensemble from New Ulm, Minnesota. Dick Kimmel, “The Ambassador of Bluegrass,” has played, recorded, and promoted bluegrass internationally for more than 50 years with such artists as Del McCoury, Hazel Dickens, and his ‘&-Co’ band configurations. He was inducted into the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame in 2010. The band features singer/songwriter/guitarist - Tony Rook, ace banjo man – Graham Sones, upright bassist – Terry Johnson, and Dick’s 17-year-old phenom son, Ian Kimmel, playing dobro, guitar, and mandolin. Ian was named SPBGMA’s Mandolin Player of the Year for 2014. Ian likes to point out that his dad, ‘just got a SPBGMA nomination for entertainer of the year.’ All the band members sing utilizing duo, trio, and quartet harmonies. Dick plays mandolin, clawhammer banjo, and guitar and has released more than 2-dozen bluegrass recordings. Dick’s &-Co bands have entertained throughout North America and Europe.
This group hails from Mankato and St. Peter and the members play in a number of other bands, including Pengra & Arsenault, City Mouse and the Blitz Boys. The Lost Walleye Orchestra plays a mix of good-time, classic rock, americana, blues and folk. Members include Billy Steiner, Ron Arsenault, Dale Haefner, and Dave Pengra.
Purveying an infectious mix of ska, reggae, jazz, and soul, The Skruffians are a Minneapolis-based instrumental collective that celebrates the classic sounds of 60’s Jamaica. Inspired by The Skatalites, the legendary group that backed Bob Marley, The Maytals, Jimmy Cliff, and countless other early Jamaican artists, The Skruffians’ joyful island grooves, jazzy horns, and soulful Hammond organ brings to mind balmy evenings with a cold drink and good friends. It's the musical equivalent of sunshine.