The Weekly Wire: The Week's Recommended Events

WEDNESDAY 7/7Classical: Oh, Bwünnhiwde, You'we So WovewyWhat's really striking about those brilliant Warner Bros. classical-music sendup cartoons—What's Opera, Doc?, The Rabbit of Seville, and the ultimate deconstruction of the conductor mystique, Long-Haired Hare—is not only the wit and animation, but the fact that the studio could assume the average moviegoer knew enough about Wagner and Leopold Stokowski to get the jokes. See those cartoons with conductor George Daugherty and the Seattle Symphony recreating the soundtracks live in Bugs Bunny on Broadway, a popular touring show. Afterward, you can try to explain both Leonard Bernstein and Elmer Fudd to your kids. Benaroya Hall, Third Ave. and Union St., 215-4747, seattlesymphony.org. $20–$65. 7:30 p.m. (Repeats Thurs.) GAVIN BORCHERTTHURSDAY 7/8Film: The One That We WantIf there are any people left on the planet who haven't heard of 1978's most popular film, the marketing folks behind the sing-along version of Grease appear to have an idea who they might be. The flick that cemented John Travolta's movie superstardom, and gave Olivia Newton-John her only taste of it, is now cannily being tagged "the original high school musical." It's being rereleased in select theaters with the lyrics splashed every which way across the screen, like the doodles from some 12-year-old girl's Pee-Chee. The words to "Greased Lightnin'" have the O's done up to resemble car tires—as if Travolta swiveling in full-tilt Elvis homage weren't engaging enough. Hey, whatever gets 'em to the classics, right? And make no mistake, Grease—despite the fact that everyone in the cast is obviously old enough to be running the P.T.A.—still looks like the stuff of which legends are made. (The print is newly restored.) When the T-Bird gang first calls out "Hey, Zuko!" and the camera zooms in to capture Travolta's magnificent mug, you know you're in the presence of a god. Zac Efron? As if. (Through Sat., rated PG-13.) Pacific Place, 600 Pine St., 652-2404, greasemovie.com. $10. 7 and 9:45 p.m. STEVE WIECKINGVisual Arts: Festival '10, Anyone?Wait—Bumbershoot wasn't always on Labor Day Weekend? That's one of the small surprises in the poster exhibition Umbrella for the Arts: 40 Years of Bumbershoot Artwork. Another, to those who were also young when the fest was founded in 1971: The city originated and ran the thing until One Reel took over in 1980. And the roster of artists who've contributed posters includes Jacob Lawrence, Dawn Cerny, and Claes Oldenburg. Given that Flatstock, Bumbershoot's poster show, is always extremely popular with the music-and-comix crowd, it makes sense that graphic arts should remain a strong component of the event. And a bit of Bumber-trivia: If you take the elevator down to the hard-to-find Anne Focke Gallery, it's named for the woman who in 1973 gave the fest its official name; before then, it was called Festival '71 and Festival '72. Fortunately the posters were more imaginative. (Through Sept. 7.) City Hall (Lobby Gallery and Anne Focke Gallery), 600 Fourth Ave., 684-7171, seattle.gov/arts. Free. Reception 5–7 p.m. BRIAN MILLERFilm: Strike It RichSAM's summer salute to Preston Sturges begins with Christmas in July, actually released in October 1940. Dick Powell plays a hapless, avid slogan writer and contest entrant who's fooled into thinking he's won $25,000 (a lot of money back then). Powell and his fiancée (Ellen Drew) then go on a buying spree, which must've been mighty attractive to viewers still haunted by the Great Depression. Then, naturally, the truth comes out with disastrous consequences for our duo. Like all Sturges comedies, Christmas is fast, frenetic, full of wordplay, and stuffed with wonderful supporting roles (filled by William Demarest and others from the Sturges stock company). On following Thursdays are The Lady Eve, Sullivan's Travels, The Palm Beach Story, The Miracle of Morgan's Creek, and Hail the Conquering Hero. (Through Aug. 12.) Seattle Art Museum, 1300 First Ave., 654-3121, seattleartmuseum.org. $35–$39 (series), $7 (individual). 7:30 p.m. BRIAN MILLERSATURDAY 7/10Visual Arts: Cold WorldsAfter the Klondike gold rush, Seattle began booming. The Frye-Bruhn Meat Packing Co. was one such local beneficiary, and it opened branch operations in the lower Alaska panhandle—helping create the fortune that established the Frye Art Museum in 1952. Through paintings and historical photos, Northern Latitudes: The Frye and Alaska explores that link. (Its companion show, On Arctic Ice, celebrates Alaska artist Fred Machetanz.) With the exception of some painted church glass by Eustace Paul Ziegler, the historical materials are more noteworthy; the best thing on view is a six-minute silent newsreel made in Skagway in 1918. The old nitrate was decayed and splotchy when transferred to tape, making pre-statehood events seem more historically distant than they are. Big dogs, oversized strawberries, and cute kids are paraded before the camera. Members of the Elks Club march to celebrate Independence Day—even in a territory, patriotism runs high. And in one artful touch, director Burton Holmes illustrates the artistic process in a series of dissolves from an artist's sketch board to a nature scene and back: It's a special effect achieved in-camera, with the film rewound twice and exposed thrice, pioneer filmmaking on the frontier. Also be sure to examine the old Frye-Bruhn photos and product labels on the way out. Anyone care to sample the Sugar-Cured Loin Backs? (Through Sept. 19.) Frye Art Museum, 704 Terry Ave., 622-9250, fryeart.org. Free. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. BRIAN MILLERArts & Crafts: Touch My Sock Monkey!Seattle is a city of whimsy. Concrete trolls guard our bridges. We build museums in the shape of smashed guitars. Our most iconic landmark is essentially a UFO on a stick. So it should come as no surprise that this weekend's Urban Craft Uprising, Seattle's largest indie craft fair, is so darn popular. Just the names of the retailers—Wooly Bison, Mugwump, Thug Fairy Designs—are cute enough to charm even those with bristling pincushions for hearts. Other wares, including sock-monkey kits, plush pickles, and bright-red bellbottoms inspired by Japanese street fashion, raise the quirk factor further still. Should you find yourself inspired to make your own plaster cupcakes or felt tea cozies, yet aren't sure how to start, the show also provides hourly demos. (Through Sun.) Seattle Center Exhibition Hall, 305 Harrison St., urbancraftuprising.com. Free. 11 a.m.–5 p.m. REBECCA COHENSUNDAY 7/11Soccer: Hope May Be HereThis should be a memorable day in soccer history, for reasons that have nothing to do with tonight's clash between FC Dallas and the Sounders.The World Cup final (a rematch of the 1974 Netherlands vs. Germany classic?) airs at 11:30 a.m., so you can hit Kells or Fado before walking to Qwest for this revenge match. Back in April, the Sounders had a 2–1 road victory nearly in hand when Dallas forward Jason Yeisley took a dive in front of the Seattle goal. The ref bought the flop, resulting in a penalty-kick equalizer. After last year's success, the Sounders are flailing through a difficult second season, with just four victories in 15 matches and a mere 16 goals to date. But there's some second-half hope. Late June saw the return, from an abdominal injury, of 6'3" target man Nate Jaqua,who scored a career-high nine goals in 2009. And on July 15, Blaise Nkufo, a starter for Switzerland in the World Cup, becomes eligible for Seattle. At 35, he's a big (6'2", 185), strong veteran with a proven international record, having tallied more than 200 goals in 17 seasons with quality Swiss, German, and Dutch sides. So the Sounders offense should show some improvement over the remaining 14 regular-season games, six at home (through Oct. 23)—and next Sunday's friendly against Glasgow's Celtic Football Club. Qwest Field, 800 Occidental Ave. S., 877-657-4625, soundersfc.com. $25–$95. 7:30 p.m. MICHAEL MAHONEYTUESDAY 7/13Books: Testimonies of HarmSuzanne Rivecca sticks by that age-old adage, write what you know. The protagonists in her excellent debut story collection, Death Is Not an Option (Norton, $23.95), generally share certain defining traits—a stifling Catholic upbringing, an uncertain early adulthood, a wavering faith, and a budding sense of self. One can easily imagine Rivecca as a Catholic schoolgirl pondering the same questions that, years later, her young female characters would also confront. There's an intimacy to her stories that rings true—even if you weren't a Catholic schoolgirl yourself. In Death, we meet a young woman facing an uncle who molested her as a child, a girl bizarrely harassed by a man she barely knows, and a high-school senior who can't stop crying at the thought of leaving the town she thought she hated. The San Francisco–based Rivecca renders these figures with searing empathy and authority. In "Look, Ma, I'm Breathing," she writes, "[Isabel] knew that nothing would ever come out of her more purely or clearly than things like this: these distilled episodes, these illuminated lamentations, sculpted in all the right places, these testimonies of harm." Reading these stories, you can't help but feel a bond with these women, to wish them out of their troubles and into better straits. Elliott Bay Book Co., 1521 10th Ave., 624-6600, elliottbaybook.com. Free. 7 p.m. (Also: Eagle Harbor Book Co., 7:30 p.m. Thurs., July 15.) ERIN K. THOMPSON

 
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