MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Good news for those itching to get back to watching live music and theatre. With loosened restrictions, venues are rushing to book shows.

On Monday afternoon, Target Center added a September show with the “93X Family Reunion” featuring Shinedown. Guns N’ Roses will play to full crowd at Target Fieid in July, and comedian Jim Gaffigan has two shows at the State Theatre in October.

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Whether it’s Beyoncé, Kenny Chesney or Jerry Seinfeld, the Twin Cities has hosted a slew of top-tier shows the past five years, according to concert booker Patricia McLean.

“We used to be kind of a ‘flyover’ market, but now we’re one of the major music cities that attract artists,” McLean said.

(credit: CBS)

COVID-19 silenced the shows last summer, but the sudden loosening of restrictions means some artists are ready to rock.

“Everyone’s working fast and furious to try and book the best acts and artists that they can,” McLean said.

She won’t have her usual shows at the Minnesota Zoo, but Twin Cities Summer Jam in Shakopee is booked in July, with Carrie Underwood and Zach Brown.

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Lisa Krohn, the director of booking for the Orpheum, State other Hennepin Trust theatres, has also been busy.

“Yeah, it’s been quite the puzzle [laughs]!” Krohn said.

She’s busy booking, but it’s complicated.

“I could probably book acts into July, you know, and get people to come, but we just, we won’t be ready internally,” Krohn said.

Because they lost their 400-person staff, they’re trying to re-hire, and their theatres won’t open until mid-September.

First Avenue’s first show will be at their 7th Street Entry venue on July 2. Target Field’s will be July 16, and Target Center will be September 17. Tickets are already selling fast, so Twin Cities patrons won’t have to miss another beat. Target Field reps say they’re hoping to get in a few more last-minute acts.

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As for Broadway shows, those will be delayed longer. “Hamilton” –which was supposed to be in downtown Minneapolis last year — is delayed until 2023.

Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield