Kick off Pride at Purr with a performance from Katya from RuPaul's Drag Race. Steven Trumon Gray

Our music critics have already chosen the 30 best concerts this week, but now it's our arts critics' turn to pick the best events in their areas of expertise. Here are their picks in every genre—from a Pride party with drag queen Katya to the lavish SAM Party in the Park, and from the opening of If You Don’t They Will: no. NOT EVER. at the Henry to a stand-up set from comedian Michael Che. See them all below, and find even more events on our complete Things To Do calendar.

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MONDAY

READINGS & TALKS

Sandbox Radio presents A New Leaf
Look forward to new plays, songs, poetry, adaptations of classic literature, and appearances by special guests at this episode of Sandbox Radio, a podcast combining radio, theater, and music.

MONDAY-SATURDAY

THEATER & DANCE

Lydia
I am pleased to be one more critic acclaiming Octavio Solis's Lydia, a Mexican American border ballad about a family screaming and beating and nearly blowing itself up as everyone slowly discovers the tangled (and incestuous!) roots of their dysfunction. Lots of credit is due to the poetry of Solis's dialogue and monologues. But the incredible cast, under the direction of Sheila Daniels, deserves just as much credit. It's rare to see a cast as cohesive as this one—they could have produced this thing in a tin can, and they still would have had the audience crying weird tears. RICH SMITH
No shows on Tuesday or Wednesday.

MONDAY-SUNDAY

FOOD & DRINK

2nd Annual Dine with Pride
Pride is just over the horizon, folks, which means it's time for people to slap a rainbow flag on things they want to sell you. This lovely dining special, however, is not that. The Pride Foundation, which puts on the annual parade, has partnered with a bunch of awesome local restaurants to do a Dine Around–style prix-fixe special, with all proceeds going toward that big, crazy, festive parade we all love so much but rarely want to pay for. This two-birds-with-one-stone solution solves that problem, because we always want to eat delicious food from places like Pettirosso, Outlier, and Taylor Shellfish. Restaurants offer a $15, $25, or $35 option, depending on what fits their style, and the money goes to making sure that, come Sunday, June 25, your streets will be filled with marching drag queens, dykes on bikes, and all manner of other LGBTQ people whose loudly proclaimed existence makes stodgy Republican dudes and closeted bros go into a tizzy and start mumbling about "straight pride parades." TOBIAS COUGHLIN-BOGUE

Alaska Herring Week
Two years ago, in an article about the disappearance of the Pacific herring from Seattle's food milieu, I asked, "Why, in Seattle—one of the world's major seafood hubs—can we not get a simple fillet of herring?" Thanks to the hard work of a few local herring lovers—Lexi at the Old Ballard Liquor Co., Bruce Schactler of the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, and Warner Lew, one of the few fisherman bringing Bristol Bay herring down to Seattle—this is no longer such an issue. Before, getting any herring that wasn't pickled and flown in from the North Atlantic was pretty much impossible, as our own Puget Sound herring fishery was completely depleted, and all of Bristol Bay's herring was sent off to Japan, where the roe is a traditional New Year's Eve delicacy. Not exactly the most sustainable food system, right? And that's why Herring Week is so cool: By getting our best and brightest local dining establishments and grocers to celebrate the often overlooked fish, we get consumers interested in the fish again. This then convinces suppliers to send it our way, which involves a whole helluva lot less shipping and pollution. It's a big magical feedback loop of win. And it's a fabulous excuse to take yourself out to restaurants like the Walrus and the Carpenter, Lark, Terra Plata, Hitchcock, and so many more. TOBIAS COUGHLIN-BOGUE

THEATER & DANCE

Seattle International Dance Festival
For 16 days, dancers from around the world (and some local stars) will perform in indoor and outdoor venues. Some events will be free and all-ages. In general, the focus is on innovation and diversity; in a Stranger article from 2013, Melody Datz Hansen observed the festival's "local spotlight" show and commended its wide range of choreography and costume, from "classical moves" made "new and rad" to "upsetting" lurching by a dancer in a potato-penis suit. If your June is shaping up to lack a certain amount of excitement, this might be one way to remedy that.

TUESDAY

READINGS & TALKS

Eddie Izzard: Believe Me
Eddie Izzard earned himself a reputation as one of England's contemporary comedic geniuses largely by using his stand-up sets to rigorously interrogate life's great mysteries. How could anyone ever forget his philosophical treatise on the question of whether one would rather eat cake or die? In his new memoir, Believe Me, he uses his considerable intelligence and sharp wit to tell the story of his own life, "from the streets of London to West End theaters, to Wembley Arena, Madison Square Garden and the Hollywood Bowl." RICH SMITH

TUESDAY-SUNDAY

THEATER & DANCE

Cabaret
Cabaret is the best musical of all time, because Kander and Ebb were geniuses and because it neatly solves the problem inherent in musicals (why are these people breaking into song?). Its bawdy, funny, hedonistic songs aren't indulgent for indulgence's sake. What goes on inside the Kit Kat Klub, in Berlin in 1931, is ignorant bliss on amphetamines, a carnival of humanity not aware what's coming their way. In the U.S. of 2017, we seem to be living in the shadow of creeping autocracy, so what better time is there to go see a musical about characters living in the shadows of creeping autocracy? CHRISTOPHER FRIZZELLE

Dreamgirls
Village Theatre presents Tony- and Grammy Award-winning musical Dreamgirls (not officially about the Supremes' rise to fame, but containing many parallels) which was made extremely popular by the 2006 film starring Jennifer Hudson, Jamie Foxx, Eddie Murphy, and the inimitable Queen B. Come for Motown tunes, commentary about celebrity, dramatic ultimatums, and flashy dance numbers.

Romy and Michele's High School Reunion
Watching Romy and Michele's High School Reunion: The Musical is like eating cotton candy. It's light, stupid, colorful, and clearly not good for you, but sometimes that's exactly what you are in the mood for. I was in the mood for it. There's nothing profound about it, but nobody turns to Romy and Michele's High School Reunion for profundity. Lisa Kudrow and Mira Sorvino are not in it, but Courtney Wolfson and Stephanie Renee Wall have the airy affect down flat, they are funnier and more charming than photos suggest, and their chemistry and comic timing are unbelievably good. I can't fully explain why the show worked so well for me, except that it's glossy and exuberant in its theatricality, and it's as funny as the movie is, and it doesn't pretend to be anything it's not. CHRISTOPHER FRIZZELLE

WEDNESDAY

READINGS & TALKS

History Café: Queer Resistance and Activism in Seattle
In this edition of History Café, UW PhD candidate Kevin McKenna will explore the history of local LGBTQ activism.

Life After Death: Norm Stamper and Marti Jonjak on the Reverberations of Violent Crime
Stranger reporter Ana Sofia Knauf wrote, "On January 27, 2013, James Anderson walked into the Central District's Twilight Exit and shot two people: his 24-year-old girlfriend and bouncer Greg McCormick. Both of them survived. Anderson was later fatally shot by a police officer. Stranger contributor Marti Jonjak was at the club the night of the shooting. She and a friend sat next to the woman at the bar and later found themselves crouching next to her when Anderson came into the bar with a gun. Since then, Jonjak has chronicled the shooting through conversations with witnesses in a column for McSweeney's, with illustrations from Seattle artist Kelly Bjork." Stranger editor Eli Sanders described the series as "fascinating and important." At this event, hear from Jonjak, who will read selections from the column. She will be joined by author and former Seattle Police Chief Norm Stamper, who will share his book, To Protect and Serve: How to Fix America’s Police and Breaking Rank: A Top Cop’s Exposé of the Dark Side of American Policing.

WEDNESDAY-SUNDAY

QUEER

Purr Pride
Each year, Purr throws a doozy of a Pride party, and they won't disappoint in 2017. Start Pride Weekend early with shows by RuPaul winner Violet Chachki and, the following day, the out-there queen Katya (see below), keep up the momentum with DJ Bret Law on Friday, and bounce all weekend at the block party and Sunday recovery party.

THEATER & DANCE

Barbecue
Lambda Literary Award–winning playwright Robert O'Hara offers up two different families—one white, one black, both named O'Mallery—staging an interventions for their respective drug-addicted family members. Up-and-coming director Malika Oyetimein, who managed a wonderful production of O'Hara's Bootycandy two years ago, will likely squeeze every ounce of cringe-inducing comedy from this very strong cast. Also of note: This play kicks off Intiman's 2017 season, which was co-curated by the extremely multitalented Sara Porkalob. RICH SMITH

Lost Falls
Celebrate the return of Twin Peaks, after more than 25 years off the air, with this food- and performance-based homage to David Lynch, with all the small-town charm and creepy suspense you'll find in his work. They'll investigate the question: "Who killed Chef Nordo Lefesczki?" Enjoy a score by Annastasia Workman, script by Terry Podgorski, direction and menu design by Erin Brindley, and performances by Devin Bannon (on lead vocals—fun fact: he's a performer, director, and Stranger sales rep), Evan Mosher (trumpet, vocals, sound effects and more), Matt Manges (drums), Dave Pascal (bass), Ryan Higgins, Ayo Tushinde, Opal Peachey, Carol Thompson, Ronnie Hill, and Laura Dux.
This show closes Sunday.

Welcome to Braggsville
T. Geronimo Johnson's novel Welcome to Braggsville is an award-laden bestseller that Rich Benjamin at The New York Times described as a mixture between "a satirical The Indian Princess, James Nelson Barker's 1808 libretto about Pocahontas" and "a macabre E. T. The Extra-Terrestrial"—and this summer, it's being performed as a stage play presented by Book-It Repertory Theatre. Adapted by Josh Aaseng and Daemond Arrindell; directed by Josh Aaseng. Arrindell is mainly known as a poet, and according to former Stranger theater editor Brendan Kiley, Aaseng "found the skeleton key to Vonnegut's brilliantly tangled bowl of literary spaghetti" while directing Slaughterhouse-Five, and his production of Jesus' Son played "this sad parade of losers with glimmers of human decency."

THURSDAY

COMEDY

Arj Barker
You might remember Arj Barker as the idiotic pawnshop broker on Flight of the Conchords or from his appearance in Doug Benson's Super High Me—now he's bringing his stand-up routine to the Parlor. The Guardian writes that Barker has "an endlessly active comic imagination," and his comedy "goes down so easily it's entirely possible to miss the skill and artistry of it all."

FOOD & DRINK

Easy Polynésie Patio Party
Forget baguettes and boeuf bourguignon for the moment—the chef of French restaurant Bastille will be roasting a whole pig on the patio, while resident DJ Paces Lift will spin Polynesian tunes. Drink Plantation rum and Stoup beers and tuck into some good pig: 25% of sales will go to A Warm Current, a nonprofit ocean conservation and youth empowerment organization.

QUEER

Dragapalooza
Dragapalooza is described as "equal parts rock concert, variety show, and musical theater," and will feature local and not-at-all-local stars you'll recognize from (at the very least) RuPaul's Drag Race, including Sharon Needles, Trixie Mattel, Robbie Turner, and Derrick Barry. They'll sing with a live band led by Grammy-nominated producer Chris Cox.

Katya
Your Pride Thursday will be spent at Purr with Katya from RuPaul's Drag Race. Why? First off, there are rumors swirling that Purr is being priced out of its spot on 11th Avenue. Rumors are like drag queens in that they're usually made up of lies. Nevertheless, this may be your last Pride at Purr's current location. Secondly, Katya is a star and universally admired across drag scenes. (Yeah, straighties, there is more than one drag scene.) Her vibe is a mix of Archie McPhee, the movie Contact, and inappropriate things your stepmother told you over the holidays. Do those things not excite you? Then don't go see Katya. It won't be a safe space for you. CHASE BURNS

READINGS & TALKS

Doug Nufer: The Me Theme
Sarah Galvin wrote that in Doug Nufer's work, "pulp, noir, and pop function like clippings from familiar magazines in an elaborate collage." She also described the way he works with rules: "Nufer began writing with constraints in 1987, after meeting Oulipo writers Harry Matthews and Jacques Roubaud. His first constraint-based novel was Negativeland (Autonomedia, 2004), in which each sentence has a negative and the narrative progresses backward and forward simultaneously. In his novel Never Again (Black Square, 2004), the story of a gambler's struggle to avoid repeating his mistakes, no word is used more than once. His new novel, Lifeline Rule (Spuyten Duyvil), employs an even more severe constraint: the conovowel. At no point in the text do two vowels or two consonants appear in a row." Nufer's latest release, The Me Theme, is also shaped by a precise form—in this work, "strings of letters repeat to form different words." Celebrate its release at this book launch party.

REAL TALK: LGBTQ Conversations for Change
Seattle Pride will host a conversation highlighting queer perspectives on safety, police relations, "pride, racism, and nationalism in LGBTQ communities," with three queer performers of color—Monique Heart, Jade Sotomayor (RuPaul Season 1) and Monica Beverly Hillz (RuPaul Season 5) and moderation by Randall Jensen, an anti-violence activist and director of SocialScope Productions.

Resisting Trump's Shock Doctrine: An Evening with Naomi Klein
Naomi Klein (best known for her book The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, as well as This Changes Everything, a book—and a documentary—about why climate change requires us to give up our free-market ideals and organize a new way of living) will share her latest work, No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump's Shock Politics and Winning the World We Need. The brilliant Junot Díaz described the book as "a courageous coruscating counter-spell against the hegemonic nightmare that, if left unchecked, will devour us all.”

UW Science Now: Chang “Jake” Dou & Robert Masse
If you want to peek inside the minds of researchers at UW, the recurring event UW Science Now is your perfect chance. This time the focus is on renewable energy: Chang "Jake" Dou will speak about the environmental and energy applications of plant biomass, and Robert Masse will discuss the potential of battery technology.

THURSDAY-SUNDAY

THEATER & DANCE

(Im)pulse
The great and talented and Tony-nominated choreographer Donald Byrd has a knack for translating complex historical texts into visceral dance pieces that help us reckon with the present. Last year's A Rap on Race, a jazzy interpretation of an important conversation between Margaret Mead and James Baldwin, stands out in my memory as a tremendous testimony to that fact. This world premiere sees the mass shooting at Orlando Pulse Nightclub through the lens of the brilliant/brutal David Wojnarowicz, whose Close to the Knives: A Memoir of Disintegration should be on everyone's syllabus, and also playwright Brian Quirk. RICH SMITH

The Realistic Joneses
The Joneses have a lot in common. They both, as the title suggests, have the same last names—Pony and John Jones; Bob and Jennifer Jones. They've both moved out to the desert to work on their marriages, which are both being tested by communication issues. Bob has recently been diagnosed with "Harriman Leavey Syndrome," a fictional nerve disease that forces him to speak only in the most concrete of ways, sort of autistically, I guess. Jennifer has given up her job and is trying to be a good caregiver, but she struggles to figure out how to give care to someone whose so verbally careless with her feelings. John also plays the role of the caregiver in his relationship with Pony, who self-describes as impulsive and childlike. Go because it's cathartic to watch people wonder whether it matters to finish a sentence, or announce a feeling, or work on something as insignificant to geological history as a marriage. Go because for some reason—maybe not a very good one—it does, and plays as fresh and bizarre and linguistically inventive as this one provide some evidence of that. RICH SMITH

THEATER & DANCE

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
ArtsWest presents Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd, a musical offering murder, cannibalism, and barbershops—plus songs that are creepy, catchy, quick, and witty.

FRIDAY

COMEDY

Michael Che
Stand-up comedian, actor, and writer Michael Che is best known for his gig as co-anchor on Saturday Night Live's "Weekend Update." Come for political commentary, social/interpersonal observations, and some dark humor.

FESTIVALS

Trans Pride Seattle 2017
The Trans Pride March will assemble at 5 p.m. and step off at 6pm from Cal Anderson Park. It'll be immediately followed by a celebration back at the park, featuring speakers like Andrea Jenkins of the Transgender Oral History Project, host Adriana Torres of local non-profit Somos, and performances by Youth Speaks Seattle, Jade Dynasty of House of Luna, and Randy Ford of AU Collective from 7-10.

READINGS & TALKS

Nathan Hill: The Nix
In his review of The Nix for NPR, Jason Sheehan admiringly and almost lovingly describes the addictive nature of Nathan Hill's 620-page novel, writing that the "looping, run-on, wildly digressive pages which, somehow, in their absolute refusal to cling together and act like a book, make the perfect book for our distracted age." In the New York Times review (titled "Nathan Hill Is Compared to John Irving. Irving Compares Him to Dickens.") Alexandra Alter says that The Nix is about "politics, online gaming, academia, Norwegian mythology, social media, the Occupy Wall Street protests and the 1960s counterculture." In short, this reading looks fun.

SATURDAY

ART

Party in the Park
Kick it with artists, chefs, and Sir Mix-A-Lot in the imposing yet relaxing Olympic Sculpture Park to mark its 10th birthday. In addition to hiphop, soul by Grace Love, and DJing by KEXP's Michele Myers, you can drink your way through artist-designed pop-up lounges and eat fancy snacks and desserts.

FESTIVALS

Madaraka Festival
Madaraka is your one-stop shop for feasting your eyes on African fashion and your ears on the music of Ghanaian star Robert Dawuri, Ethiopian American singer Meklit Hadero, South Sudanese refugee turned globally recognized Ruka music founder Dynamq, and R&B artist Otieno Terry, plus backing by Big World Breaks and Madaraka house band Pyramid. There'll also be a screening of Madaraka: The Documentary, which will show you how the festival empowers locals. Proceeds from the festival go to One Vibe Africa, which runs programs for youth in Kisumu, Kenya.

PrideFest Capitol Hill 2017
The largest free Pride fest in North America welcomes kids, youth, and everybody else with a rainbow streak to party in the streets. Parades, booths, performances... it's all there at this culmination of Pride Month.

Seattle Dyke March & Rally
March through Capitol Hill to support queer womxn in Seattle, whatever your own sexuality or identity. A tradition since 1994, the Dyke March is a response to what they see as male domination of Pride: "The voices of the LGBTQ community and Pride weekend events have always been overwhelmingly male, so we reserve our stage to shine a spotlight on the experiences, pleasures, activism, and identities of queer women and dyke-identified people across the gender spectrum."

READINGS & TALKS

A Conversation with T. Geronimo Johnson
The novel Welcome to Braggsville is an award-laden bestseller that Rich Benjamin at The New York Times described as a mixture between "a satirical The Indian Princess, James Nelson Barker's 1808 libretto about Pocahontas" and "a macabre E. T. The Extra-Terrestrial"—and this summer, it's being performed as a stage play presented by the excellent Book-It Repertory Theatre. If all of that isn't good enough for you, try this—the author of the novel, T. Geronimo Johnson, is stopping by in person for a conversation with the Book-It adaptors (Josh Aaseng and Daemond Arrindell).

June Write-In: Co-presented by Write Our Democracy
Community poets and authors including afrose fatima ahmed, Catherine Bull, and Anca Szilágyi will gather for this Hugo House/Write Our Democracy event focusing on the power of the word to fight against cynicism and for liberty and justice. This new quarterly series promises readings, writing prompts, and help with getting in touch with your representatives.

THEATER & DANCE

Linda's Pride Party
Now's your chance to see free drag from the likes of Stacey Starstruck, Kaleena Markos, Lucy Tealheart Paradisco, Londyn Bradshaw, Abbey Roads, and Arson Nicki.

Unicorn Pride Show-Tunes Sing-Along
Tonight's the night to let the song in your heart burst forth, whether that song is from Hamilton or South Pacific or the musical version of Hamlet on that one episode of Gilligan's Island. Local chanteuses Isabella Extynn and Tipsy Rose Lee host a night of Broadway bawdiness, playing beloved clips and urging the ever-tipsier audience to belt along to the tunes. Relive your glory days of high-school drama club, from rehearsal to showtime to cast party all in one night. And remember—it's okay if you don't know all the lyrics to "Your Fault," because let's be honest, nobody truly does. MATT BAUME

SATURDAY-SUNDAY

ART

If You Don’t They Will: no. NOT EVER.
If You Don't They Will is a Seattle group that has a topical yet always relevant goal: to provide "creative and concrete tools for countering white nationalism through a cultural lens." See their latest work, an interview-based oral history exploration that features Pacific Northwest community organizers and highlights their experience fighting white nationalism (which exists all over the Northwest, but is especially prevalent in Eastern Washington and in the KKK hub that is our neighboring state, Idaho).
This exhibit opens Saturday.

READINGS & TALKS

Says You! presents Two Live Tapings
Before Town Hall closes for renovations, say (a temporary) goodbye to the Great Hall ceremoniously and with lighthearted word games. NPR stars will come to Seattle for a live taping of their enormously popular parlor game, Says You!.

SUNDAY

FESTIVALS

Pride Parade
Show the queer and allied community's Indivisibility—this year's theme—at Seattle's 43rd Annual Pride Parade.

Seattle PrideFest 2017
PrideFest is the largest free Pride festival in North America, now in its tenth year. Featuring performances on three different stages from local and international touring acts like Mary Lambert, this year's fest also has family-friendly activities and a "Queer Geeks & Gamers" zone.

FOOD & DRINK

Chef Dinner Series Vol. XXXII: Rich Coffey
Savor an outdoor-themed meal—with cute course designations like "Picking Flowers" and "Picnic on the Beach"—from Rich Coffey, whose resume includes stints at La Bonne Franquette, Madison Park Cafe, and Campagne. Each course will include a beer or beer cocktail from Propolis Brewing.

Get all this and more on the free Stranger Things To Do mobile app—available now on the App Store and Google Play.