What's Coming...

Spring Arts Calendar

February 28 Hello/Super Nature Is there yet more to be said about Kurt Cobain? Gretchen Bennett's "Hello" will turn digital images into hand-crafted observances. Known for her own unnatural landscapes, Bennett will also curate a show of seven NYC artists exploring ideal ones. Howard House. AG 28–March 8 Performance Memoirs If you didn't get enough motel-room exhibitionism at last fall's "art event" at the Bridge Motel, now there's Seattle artist Laura Curry's Performance Memoirs, which casts the audience as voyeurs while the dancers explore the revelatory aspects of mundane behavior. Hotel Max, www.myspace.com/performancememoirs. SK 29 The Hands Frontman John Healy looks like Jeff Daniel's mini-me, but he's got a whole band of abiding dudes behind him, kicking out fist-pumping, whiskey-fueled garage rock and roll. Tonight marks the release of their self-titled debut full-length, brimming with blazing-hot and dirty sides that explode the senses like a swig of expired milk. Only sweeter. Neumo's. AP 29–March 13 Who Is Phil Karlson? The GI salutes an overlooked, low-budget auteur of the '50s (Five Against the House, Scandal Sheet, etc.). Extra bonus: Kim Novak in all her glorious inertia. Grand Illusion. BM 29 Bruce Barcott The longtime Outside mag contributor (and former SW staffer) spent months in Belize researching his The Last Flight of the Scarlet Macaw: One Woman's Fight to Save the World's Most Beautiful Bird. Perhaps you caught the rave on the cover of last Sunday's New York Times Book Review? Elliott Bay Book Co. MDF 29 Dawn Upshaw The world's coolest soprano sings Osvaldo Golijov's song-cycle Ayre, in which the cultural crossroads that was Renaissance Spain meets electronic effects and dance beats. Benaroya Hall, www.seattlesymphony.org. GB 29 Dan Kennedy In his disappointing Rock On: An Office Power Ballad, Kennedy picks up where his hilarious memoir, Loser, left off, relating how he joined the music biz just as it began its MP3-induced collapse. Sunset Tavern, www.bookstore.washington.edu. BM March 1 Chuck Close Known for his hyperrealistic portraiture, Close shares 15 daguerreotypes of associates such as Laurie Anderson, Cindy Sherman, and Philip Glass, paired with verse by poetry-slam innovator Bob Holman. Tacoma Art Museum. RS 2 New York Dolls It's probably not as bad as that bunch passing themselves off as Lynyrd Skynyrd these days, but when the New York Dolls consist only of singer David Johansen, guitarist Sylvain Sylvain, and a bunch of poseurs who weren't in the original band, is it really the New York Dolls? I mean, really....El Corazon. BJB 2 I Heart Rummage The Croc-Suey union continues as the Chop (which has absorbed the now-closed club's former booker and head of security) plays host to the beloved indie craft market that got its start at the Crocodile. Trade the Croc's Cajun Benedict for an egg roll from the new spot's Soy Cowboy Cafe and scope the kitschy wares of independent artists. Chop Suey. AP 4 Gutter Twins To many, the appearance of the Gutter Twins in Seattle means one thing: Mark Lanegan's back! Something of a Pacific Northwest Johnny Cash (he's a native of Ellensburg), his local appearances are rare. On this stop, he'll be supporting the new album he made with his "gutter twin," former Afghan Whig Greg Dulli. The two play dark, moody music with plenty of skeletons in the closet. Showbox at the Market. BJB 6 Alden Mason: Burpee Garden Revisited A peek at the Northwest artist's best-known work, dating from 1973. Lush palettes and a generous hand give these works in oil a visceral feel. Greg Kucera Gallery; recent work at Foster/White Gallery. AG 6–13 ByDesign Attention, font queens: the documentary Helvetica will anchor this annual weeklong confab. Get ready to discuss Charles Eames, Saul Bass, and company, and to meet Pixar legend Alvy Ray Smith. Northwest Film Forum. BM 7–28 Rome on Film Rossellini, De Sica...Ridley Scott? Five titles including Umberto D. and Gladiator celebrate Italy's unruly capital, in concert with SAM's current blockbuster show. Seattle Art Museum. BM 8 The Helio Sequence These two boys next door are our neighbors to the south, and have returned with a granite-solid release, Keep Your Eyes Ahead, after triumphing over singer Brandon Summer's harrowing bout with stubbornly silent, uncooperative vocal chords. He switched out the whiskey for Throat Coat and started jogging and having band practice at 9 a.m., and lo! the universe bestowed upon him the power to churn out a gloriously lush pop/folk/electronic creation that comes close to eclipsing anything the band's done before. Let that be a lesson to you all. Ben Franklin would be proud. Neumo's. AP 8 Georgetown Art Attack! A wandering open house from the little neighborhood that could. Only in its second month. Georgetown, various locations. AG 12 The Miser More Molière? Seattle must be waking up from its long satire slumber. This masterful comedy features the eternally interesting Todd Jefferson Moore in the role of a man who loves his money so much, he's wary of stealing it from himself. Seattle Shakespeare Company. JL 13 How? How? Why? Why? Why? NPR commentator Kevin Kling veers off into a new direction for a guy who normally relates anecdotes about eccentric relatives and Midwest culture. This solo piece recounts his near-fatal motorcycle accident back in 2001, a trauma that left him partially paralyzed, and provides some reflection on what tragedy does, and doesn't, teach us. Seattle Repertory Theatre. JL 14–15 Hunger Tom Baker's new chamber opera, based on the imagined recollections of Tamsen Donner—yes, as in the ill-fated Donner Party. Good Shepherd Center, www.tombakercomposer.com. GB 16 Seattle Soundbite Not to be confused with the SW column whose name they've blatantly poached, this event includes "Seattle restaurants serving sophisticated 'street-style' food" (what does that mean? Foie gras on a stick?) and performances by Seattle bands that are more French than Grey Poupon: Born Anchors, Disjointed Isotopes, Ian McFeron Band, and more. Showbox Sodo. AP 18 Steve Earle Steve Earle is an American institution. Every song the Texas-raised Earle has done is rooted in the plain-voiced stylings of Woody Guthrie, the road-weary troubadour romanticism of Townes Van Zandt, and the blue collar pride-n-glory anthems of Bruce Springsteen. Earle's new album is called Washington Square Serenade and is reflective of his recent move from Tennessee to New York City. Moore Theatre. BJB 22 Richard Prince A favorite source novelist for the movies (Clockers will be screened before the talk), he's an inveterate picker of urban scabs and propriety. His newest, Lush Life, looks at the broken dreams in a fancy eatery where the staff serve those they once wanted to be. Henry Art Gallery, www.bookstore.washington.edu. BM 24 Justice How many hipsters does it take to fill a Justice show? More than an afterparty at the old Egg Room, to be sure, but not enough to deem the French DJ-based duo worthy of Madison Square Garden, the cavernous venue from which they were forced to move after poor ticket sales and blogosphere backlash. Here they've set their sights on a more realistically sized venue (though still a jump up from Neumo's, site of their most recent show). Showbox SoDo. AP 25 Cabaret There's a reason that this production of the Kander/Ebb musical is causing a lot of buzz—Nick Garrison. The Seattle-based actor wowed audiences in multiple runs in the title role of Hedwig and the Angry Inch a few years back at Re-bar, and the casting of him as the pansexual Emcee is enough to make most local fans of musical theater swoon. We'll see if the rest of the production can match Garrison's trademark Satyricon style. 5th Avenue Theatre. JL 25 Jens Lekman Scandinavians are known for their straightforward manner, and this Swede is no exception. In a style similar to Jonathan Richman's, Lekman's velvety delivery of stream-of-consciousness stories and love songs is often direct, but never offensive—unlike my Norwegian relatives, who see nothing rude about asking me when the last time I washed my hair was and why I'm not married with three kids by now. Neumo's. AP 26 Lang Lang This firebrand, probably today's most popular young pianist, plays Chinese music, Mozart, and Liszt. Benaroya Hall, www.seattlesymphony.org. GB 26 Phosphorescent This Brooklyn-based Dead Oceans artist might appear to be doing his best Will Oldham impression most of the time (right down to his curly mop), but it's a dang good one—and, to his benefit, far less of the snooze-fest live than Oldham offered up at the Tractor during his most recent visit to town. Nectar Lounge. AP 27 The Moisture Festival Every time we try to nail the lid shut on vaudeville, it comes jumping out again, spraying seltzer and telling corny jokes. This annual performance festival makes you wonder why we ever thought it was dead, with wonderfully offbeat musicians like Baby Gramps and Artis the Spoonman, clowns who are actually funny, neo-circus artists like Circus Contraption, and a full bill of burlesque for those who are old enough for a bit of nudge-nudge, wink-wink. The two-week festival actually makes Fremont fun again, at least briefly. Hale's Brewery and ACT Theatre, www.moisturefestival.com. JL 27 Dance Outside and Otherwise Karn Junkinsmith is the dance equivalent of the indie film—she's been steadfastly following her own curiosity for more than 20 years, making work that is sometimes tender, sometimes antic, sometimes forceful, but always true to her own interests. Lately that has included dance on film, and this program features her eccentric filmography. Northwest Film Forum. SK 27–May 7 Drew Friedman In the illustrator's More Old Jewish Comedians, the great dinosaurs of the Borscht Belt live on, in all their pockmarked, henpecked, no-respect, liver-spotted glory. Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery. BM 29 Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band Operating with an intelligence, grace, and uncompromising vision that could put him in line to inherit Johnny Cash's mantle (though he'd humbly deny such comparisons), Springsteen is both an American icon and a tireless, everyman artist who is touring in support of his best work in years, 2007's Magic. KeyArena. HL 31 Charles Lloyd The 1960s haven't aged well, but this saxophonist has. His pensive, soul-searching tone embodies the best of the hippie spiritual awakening—and with so many horn players today running down empty phrases, he sounds more relevant than ever. Triple Door. MDF April 3 Margo Quan Knight In the twisted and touching photography of this Seattle native (a veteran of Benetton's arts research center in Italy), a girl spends a day with her worm; a wine glass drips blood-red veins onto a white brocade tablecloth; digitally dismembered bodies powerfully convey the emotions surrounding the loss of love. James Harris Gallery. RS 3 Parskid New work from one of Seattle's brightest pop artists, whose paintings and plush have a melancholy visual resonance. BLVD Gallery. RS 3–5 Black Grace Maybe it's the shift in the center of gravity, maybe it's the hormones, maybe it's the centuries of cultural baggage, but men dance differently than women, and this company of Pacific Islander men takes full advantage of it. The company incorporates the aggression and machismo of traditional forms—including the Maori haka (a preparation for battle)—into contemporary choreography. It's rhythmic and powerful, and could just knock you flat. Meany Hall, www.uwworldseries.org. SK 3–June 5 French Noir at SAM If it seems like Claude Chabrol directs, and Isabelle Huppert stars in, about half of these 10 flicks, you're half right. Still, who wouldn't pay good money to see Chabrol and Huppert dispatch unfaithful husbands and other scoundrels by shotgun and poison? Seattle Art Museum. BM 4 Isabel Allende A Seattle favorite, she returns with her painful memoir of losing a child, Sum of Our Days. United Methodist Church, www.bookstore.washington.edu. BM 4 Diana Falchuk "When?" "Where?" "How?" "Who?" The local artist has posted these words, framed in hearts, on utility poles. She's also made leg warmers for USPS mailboxes and recorded the death of an octopus' tentacle. This month she sets up an installation based on the wallpaper that lines the "Parlor" and "Conservatory" rooms of this semiprivate art space. McLeod Residence. RS 4–13 Seattle Jewish Film Festival For those who thought Jewish mothers were only funny when recounted by their comedian sons, there's the documentary Making Trouble: Three Generations of Jewish Women in Comedy, among two dozen other titles. Various venues. BM 5 Acid Mothers Temple These Japanese longhairs walk a thin line between boring-as-hell zone-outs and melt-your-face-off guitar pyrotechnics. They worship at the Hendrix altar and seem to be relentless in their pursuit of cosmic enlightenment via amplifier feedback. Sunset Tavern. BJB 5 The Black Keys They say Cleveland rocks, but its stumpy sister to the south, Akron, might rock more. Sure, Cleveland birthed Rocket From the Tomb, Glenn Schwarz, and the Pagans, but it also spawned Michael Stanley and Joe Walsh. Akron is the birthplace of Devo, Chrissie Hynde, Jim Jarmusch, and Robert Quine. So, beat that, Cleve-O! More recently, however, Akron gave birth to the Black Keys, white boys who carry on the Southern Delta blues tradition. Showbox SoDo. BJB 7 Lucille Clifton First promoted by Langston Hughes, the 71-year-old Clifton is a direct, unfancy poet of heat and power. Yes, she's got 10 shelves full of academic honors, but best of all for this event, she's a dramatic reader. Intiman Theatre, www.lectures.org. MDF 10 Chris Rock After the parade of loser comedians (Dane Cook, Larry the Cable Guy) traipsing through town, finally someone funny. Paramount Theatre. MDF 14 Marjane Satrapi By virtue of her coming-of-age graphic novels, Persepolis (the basis for the Oscar-nominated film) and Persepolis 2, she may be the most recognizable Iranian woman in the West. Expect her to show samples from her work, and expound upon the power of Abba and the Ramones to undermine fundamentalist mullahs. Paramount Theatre. BM 17 Oscar Tuazon & Eli Hansen A two-man (two-brother, to be precise) show exploring "found materials...utopian architecture and temporary shelter," as gallerist Sara Callahan explains. Timed to coincide with a companion show at SAM. Howard House and Seattle Art Museum. AG 17–20 Pacific Northwest Ballet Laugh Out Loud Festival You might think that ballet is never (deliberately) funny. But PNB artistic director Peter Boal has compiled three different programs to make you smile, chuckle, and possibly even snort, including Jerome Robbins' "The Concert," a dead-eye satire of ballet conventions and traditions. McCaw Hall. SK 21 Theo Pauline Nestor The local writer placed an essay in The New York Times' "Modern Love" column, and now she's got her first book: How to Sleep Alone in a King-Size Bed. University Book Store. BM 23 Craig Sheppard This UW pianist plays Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier (Book 2), the consummate musical marriage of brains and beauty. Meany Hall, www.music.washington.edu. GB 23 Marcus Miller There's zero information about what the electric bass master (and bass clarinetist, and producer, and Miles sideman, and R&B wunderkind) is going to be up to at this show, apart from bringing along the inevitable DJ Logic. But it doesn't matter. If Midas were a funk brainiac with over-the-top chops and shrewd musicality, he'd have Marcus' touch. Triple Door. MDF 26 Jimi Hendrix: An Evolution of Sound Part II in an exhibit honoring the axman's famed guitar sound and its impact on music lovers today. Experience Music Project. RS 28 Mary Roach Prepare for highbrow smut in Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, from the author who previously brought you Stiff (sorry!) and Spook. Town Hall. BM 29 The Cure at Troy The Rep matches up Seamus Heaney's celebrated adaptation of Philoctetes with one of the best directors working in America today, Tina Landau, whose work with playwright Charles Mee has included a slew of Greek tragedies. Sophocles' play isn't actually a tragedy, exactly, but a story of redemption and hope, as the one man who can end the Trojan War must be brought back by the Greeks who abandoned him on a deserted island. Seattle Repertory Theatre. JL May 1 Ooo La La Lucia Neare's site-specific installation is a May Day "confection" celebrating art deco, surrealism in jazz, romantic love, and the act of wishing. Whimsical surprises for passers-by are promised. Harbor Steps, 1221 First Ave. RS 1 Ben Allison and Man Size Safe Named for the vault in which Dick Cheney stores all records of his service to the public (seriously), this new quintet from the ever-enterprising bassist is wry and punch-drunk, with the great Seattle-bred drummer Mike Sarin getting in some solid jabs. Fittingly, the show, at press time, is scheduled for an undisclosed location. Venue TBA, www.earshot.org. MDF 2 Living Dead in Denmark Local director/producer Lisa Glomb, a veteran of Star Drek! The Musical, Plan 9! The Musical, and other unlikely delights, joins up with Asian-American sketch group Pork Filled Players to present the sort of quirky fringe material that made her reputation. This campy new script bills itself as the "action-adventure sequel to Hamlet!" Hmm...maybe what's rotten in the state of Denmark is worm-eaten zombie flesh! Theatre Off Jackson, www.porkfilled.com. JL 3 Seattle Opera The Puritans? OK, maybe not the most mouthwatering opera title ever. But Bellini's tale (he called it I puritani) of the clash of love and duty does have a killer soprano mad scene. McCaw Hall. GB 6 Mandy Greer: Dare alla Luce The artist who awed Bumbershoot-goers with a unicorn bleeding crocheted red entrails makes an "earthly and celestial paradise" at the museum, for her largest installation to date. Bellevue Arts Museum. RS 6 Dinaw Mengestu The Ethiopian-born writer's breakthrough novel, The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears, is the subject of the annual "Seattle Reads" series. Given current events in Chad and Kenya, the African immigrant experience in America may become even more topical. Multiple venues, www.spl.org. BM 6–21 From the Vaults of UA The studio founded by Charlie Chaplin, D.W. Griffith, et al., is devalued today—and, even worse, run by Tom Cruise—but this two-week repertory showcase will dazzle with classics like The Apartment, Raging Bull, Dr. No, and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. SIFF Cinema. BM 9 Chelsea Handler For the title alone, we have to recommend Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea. Because second-tier comediennes and cable TV celebs should be able to write books, too. University Book Store. BM 10 Motor Memory Rotterdam-based Ron van der Ende could make one hell of a dollhouse from salvaged wood, but instead he creates large-scale bas-relief sculptures of early-20th-century schooners, vintage jetliners, and retro-futuristic autos. OKOK Gallery. RS 11 Jerry Douglas He's rightfully received heaps of praise and mountains of awards for his mastery of the twangy stringed instrument the dobro. A member of Alison Krauss and Union Station since 1998, he's also recorded with Ray Charles, Emmylou Harris, Paul Simon, and Bill Frisell, and was a prominent player on the O Brother, Where Art Thou? sound track. In other words, he's so goddamned perfect it's sickening. Triple Door. BJB 12 Music of Remembrance Their first commission from composer Paul Schoenfield, Camp Songs, earned a Pulitzer nomination; here's a follow-up song cycle, Ghetto Songs. Benaroya Recital Hall. GB 14 I Am My Own Wife When the Empty Space closed, it left the door open as to who was going to produce this 2005 Pulitzer Prize–winning monologue by Doug Wright about a German transvestite who survived not only life under the Nazis, but then the building of the wall and the Communists of Eastern Germany. The Rep and ArtsWest tussled for it, but ArtsWest won, and local actor Nick DeSantis will be stepping into the large but very fashionable shoes of the protagonist. ArtsWest. JL 14 UW Opera Mozart's rococo romp La finta giardiniera (The Pretend Gardener), directed by the superbly imaginative Claudia Zahn. Meany Hall, www.music.washington.edu. GB 16–18 Mark Morris Dance Group L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato is a leap beyond even Morris' usual sophisticated work. Set to Handel's pastoral ode of the same name, L'Allegro is a trove of beautiful dancing, a kind of utopian world onstage. Morris is possibly the top choreographer working today, and this is one of his best. Paramount Theatre. SK 17 Dario Robleto "Alloy of Love" is a 1997–2007 survey of the conceptual artist's work, which has included clothing made from melted Billie Holiday LPs, a smashed cassette tape made with bone dust, and other powerfully music-inspired art. Frye Art Museum. RS 21 Fareed Zakaria Yes, it is necessary that you worry about The Post-American World, and it's a task made easier by the charming and telegenic journalist, so beloved by Jon Stewart. Town Hall. BM 22 The Bad Plus As David Remnick of The New Yorker so eloquently put it, the Bad Plus are the Coen brothers of jazz. They are equal parts earnestness and irony, unashamed of their derivativeness, both chilling and silly, and ultimately lush and talented. Their fans love it all, but the critics often rake them for being very un-Coltrane-like. But at least the Bad Plus are finally providing a reason to talk about jazz. Tractor Tavern. BJB 22 Indy Turns 66 Can Harrison Ford still crack his whip? Find out in the terribly named Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, which also stars that annoying kid from that annoying movie where cars turned into robots. The good news? SIFF also starts today. Various theaters. BM 24–26 Sasquatch This annual Memorial Day Gorge blowout is back up to a whopping three days this year, and they're going to be needed, if the rumor mill's correct. The Cure leaked way back in September, but the grapevine is yielding a juicy crop of (yet to be confirmed) nuggets, including R.E.M., Modest Mouse, Flaming Lips, Death Cab for Cutie, and many, many more. Official announcement is Feb. 25. www.sasquatchfestival.com. AP 29–31 Seattle Symphony Another Chihuly collaboration: He'll provide decor for the 1944 written-by-committee Genesis Suite. (A bunch of L.A. composers, postwar exiles like Schoenberg and Stravinsky, contributed.) With narration by...Robert Wagner and Jill St. John? Benaroya Hall. GB 29–June 11 The Myth of Us Choreographer Maureen Whiting has made some of the most mysterious works the local audience has seen, filled with visual non sequiturs. The last three years she has been artist in residence at Seattle U, where her movement explorations have become even more fanciful. "The Myth of Us" is the conclusion to that experiment. Lee Theater, www.maureenwhitingco.org. SK 30 Tom Jones He may hail from the land of Hannibal himself (and be nearly as ancient), but he's also made more ladies shriek and scream—though with pleasure, not fright. Even at the age of 67, this sex bomb can still elicit a whole slew of stage offerings ranging from G-strings to Depends. Paramount Theatre. AP

 
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