There are lots of excellent events in Seattle this April, including theater and dance performances, art events, lectures, film festivals, comedy sets, and more. Some events (including Pastor Kaleb's Easter Service and An Evening with Anne Lamott) have already sold out, but the shows below still have tickets available—including Cherdonna's Doll's House, the Seattle Erotic Art Festival, the National Film Festival for Talented Youth, the MoPOP Pop Conference, a stoner talk about fake news featuring Stranger publisher Tim Keck, Ballet on Broadway, a stand-up set from comedian Tom Segura, and many more. For more options (including events that don't require tickets and events that are happening later than April), check out our complete Things To Do calendar, or our lists of April concerts and food & drink events to buy tickets for now.
1. 26 Miles
26 Miles is written by playwright and composer Quiara Aolegria Hudes, who wrote the book for Lin-Manuel Miranda's musical In the Heights and won a Pulitzer Prize for Drama for her play Water by the Spoonful. The plot centers on an estranged mother and daughter who take an impromptu road trip to Yellowstone, and deals with themes of Cuban-American identity, broken families, and the American landscape. Directed by Julie Beckman.
2. Moisture Festival
The Moisture Festival unites a vast kaleidoscope of burlesque and variété performers at Hale's Palladium and Broadway Performance Hall. Whomever you fancy—clowns, comedians, tightwire artists, aerialists, jugglers, singers—you can find someone who's traveled from regions as far flung as Basque France or Wallingford to perform for you. The festival promises a variety of special performances and workshops, as well as performances of shows including their Varietè spectacular (with matinee as well as late-night editions) and the Libertease Cabaret.
3. Dry Powder
Charles Isherwood's review of Dry Powder for the New York Times begins, "Calling all Bernie Sanders fans," so this was an appropriate choice by the Rep for Seattle audiences. Dry Powder, written by first-time playwright Sarah Burgess, skewers the world of high finance with humor and gusto. Directed by Marya Sea Kaminski.
There are plenty of plays about unexpected pregnancy—but this one, by George Brant (Elephant's Graveyard) shows the unique consequences for a star fighter pilot. She can no longer take to the sky, so now she sits in a trailer and operates drones. Timely and inquisitive, Grounded is an empathetic play (with slightly less political punch than you might expect). This production will be directed by Kelly Kitchens.
5. The Fog Machine Play
Alternate title: "Experientia de Apparatus Producens Nebula." (Actually, the same title, in a fancier language.) Copious Love Productions apparently felt really bad for their fog machine, purchased in 2013 and never given a starring role. So now, they're putting on 18 short plays by Brendan Mack in which their dear, neglected machine will be an essential player. Take part in a fringe theater experiment that they promise will be "unfogettable" (sadly, we can't take credit for that pun).
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6. Smash Putt
This is basically the zenith of fun in a dreary Seattle winter. You get wasted, you play bizarro-world mini golf (including a hole featuring a golf ball cannon), and you generally are reminded how fun works. Last time I went, they even had the Infernal Noise Brigade marching around the venue, sowing chaos. TOBIAS COUGHLIN-BOGUE
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7. Cirque du Soleil: Luzia
Cirque du Soleil's latest atmospheric, high-flying, fantastical production is called Luzia: A Waking Dream of Mexico, and will celebrate aspects of Mexican culture and climate from lively games of fútbol to glamorous butterflies.
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8. French Kiss
French Kiss is a sexy production that features dancers performing original choreography by Fae Pink, elaborate sets and projections, and themed food and cocktails.
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9. Murder for Two
Contemporary musical comedy Murder for Two (with book by Kellen Blair and Joe Kinosian, music by Joe Kinosian, and lyrics by Kellen Blair) is a piano-filled murder mystery that features two actors: one who attempts to solve the murder, and another that plays all the suspects.
10. Bassem Youssef: Revolution for Dummies Tour
Egyptian comedian Bassem Youssef hosted an incredibly popular—and notably controversial—satirical news show (Al Bernameg) and has been called "the Jon Stewart of the Arab world." He made international news when a warrant was issued for his arrest due to comments he made on the show. At this event, you have a chance to experience his political comedy in person at the Neptune.
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11. National Geographic Live: The Mystery of Our Human Story
Paleoanthropologist Lee Berger is known for a number of discoveries and excavations (including Australopithecus sediba, effectively a transition between australopithecines and Homo habilis, and Homo naledi, which could potentially be a previously unknown Homo species) but he's also known for his "celebrity anthropologist" status. He's a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and a regular lecturer at a variety of venues, and he has used his scientific fame to push for open-access frameworks (upholding the standard himself, making many of his projects publicly available and encouraging collaboration).
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12. Alice Notley
Alice Notley's a legendary second-generation so-called New York School poet who writes conversational and yet intensely lyric poems that will last forever, such as this one: "All my life, / since I was ten, / I've been waiting / to be in / this hell here / with you; / all I've ever / wanted, and/ still do." She's best known for At Night the States, a meditation on grief following the death of her husband, the great poet Ted Berrigan. No one knows how to talk about that book adequately because after you read it you feel like you don't have a mouth. RICH SMITH
13. Bob the Drag Queen in Legally Black
Don't even THINK of missing the hilarious SHE-nanigans of this live stage show parody of the film Legally Blonde. San Francisco's Peaches Christ has once again worked her demented magic on the original film, this time with the help of Bob the Drag Queen, and they're taking their show on the road. The cast is chock full of local magic, including the fabulous Sparkle Leigh, Isabella Extynn, Abbey Roads and many more—it's a dream cast with pitch-perfect chemistry, and we can thank our lucky stars that such giddy delights are available to us. MATT BAUME
14. Steven R. Sabat: Understanding the Experience and Selfhood of People with Alzheimer's Disease
Steven R. Sabat (Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Georgetown University) writes and speaks about people with Alzheimer's disease while placing the focus on their selfhood and relationships, rather than their biomedical status. With this approach, he writes, "we see ability where before, with the biomedical lens, we saw disability." At this event, hear about his academic research, including his 2001 book The Experience of Alzheimer’s Disease: Life Through a Tangled Veil.
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15. Hugo Literary Series: Anis Mojgani, Kaitlyn Greenidge & Rick Barot
This edition of Lit Series will feature prolific author, National Book Award nominee, and slam poet Anis Mojgani, novelist Kaitlyn Greenidge (whose debut We Love You, Charlie Freeman is about a family who lives with a chimpanzee for a scientific experiment—but is also a powerful, history-driven take on racism), and Tacoma-based poet and former Stegner fellow Rick Barot. In addition to the very promising readings, look forward to music by local electro-pop beauty Maiah Manser.
16. Youth Speaks Seattle: 2017 Grand Slam
This edition of Youth Speaks' Grand Slam, where 10 young poets will compete to move on to the International Youth Poetry Slam Festival in San Francisco, will be hosted by mayoral candidate and attorney Nikkita Oliver (known for her anti-racist activism and spoken word performances). Featuring a musical performance by Otieno Terry.
17. Seattle International Butoh Festival
Join DAIPANbutoh Collective to welcome resident Chilean butoh dance company Ruta de la Memoria for performances and workshops, along with work and teaching by Ken Mai, a Japanese artist living in Helsinki. Butoh, for those who don't know, is a type of modernist Japanese dance theater inspired by Yukio Mishima and other literary taboo-breakers, that frequently explores the grotesque, the fluid, and the subversive. In this festival DAIPANbutoh will encourage participants to explore the feminine, the "body as politics," and stories of acceptance.
18. Shen Yun
Already banned in China, Shen Yun is an absolute celebration of an entire region's magic, splendor, and creative possibility. The production aims to bring China's ancient wonders to life on stage with dance and music.
19. Kiss Me Kate
This Cole Porter favorite is about two actors cast in a production of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew. Fun fact: it was the first-ever recipient of a Tony Award for Best Musical.
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20. Here Lies Love
David Byrne’s critically adored disco musical about the life and times of Imelda Marcos, disco-obsessed wife to Ferdinand Marcos. She danced by his side (and by Richard Nixon’s—look it up on YouTube) while his dictatorial ass terrorized the country. Unlike other musicals, you don’t have to forgive this one for its melodramatic, sappy songs. The fast numbers are groovy disco bangers and the slow numbers are touching, tropically inflected twee rock/pop. Production-wise, this show will be unlike anything you’ve ever seen at the Rep. The installation of mobile dance floors will significantly change the theater’s seating situation, and the audience will be dancing (according to the demands of the dictator, of course) throughout the show. RICH SMITH
21. COLLECT: See. Appreciate. Own.
This edition of the COLLECT art tour will begin at Vermillion, where you can see Derek Erdman and Brandon Vosika's No, You Catch Us Outside How About That. Then head to the Seattle Art Museum for Jacob Lawrence's iconic 60-panel masterpiece, The Migration Series, and from there head to Bonfire Gallery to see the group show ART TRUMPS: Resistance and Action. Wrap up with collaborative sculptural installation WE at MadArt before heading back to Vermillion. Chef Tarik Abdullah (creator of the acclaimed Morning Star pop-ups) will provide bites; those nibbles and plenty of champagne are included in the ticket price.
22. Legendary Children
Experience the power of QTPOC voices in art at Legendary Children, an event presented in celebration of "the beautiful, the transgressive, and the unique." Expect performances, DJ sets, and art by some of Seattle’s most talented queer artists—and enjoy free admission to Jacob Lawrence's stunning 60-panel masterpiece, The Migration Series.
23. David Haskell
Haskell, professor of biology and environmental studies at the University of the South, will read from his new work, The Songs of Trees.
24. AMA Supercross
Champion motocrossers will race, jump, and perform feats of daring. The competition will be preceded by the Monster Energy Pit Party, where fans and bikers can mingle.
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25. Short Stories Live
This edition of Short Stories Live (which brings beloved essays and stories to life with professional actors) is presented by guest curator Suzanne Morrison. Local performers Christi Cruz, Ray Tagavilla, and Morrison will present stories of people who "wake up one day and find that the world is not what they thought it was."
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26. Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths: Algorithms to Live By
Science writer and poet Brian Christian is the author of The Most Human Human, a book that the New Yorker called "terrific" and "one of the rare successful literary offspring of 'Gödel, Escher, Bach,' where art and science meet an engaged mind and the friction produces real fire." For his latest work, Christian teamed up with cognitive scientist and professor Tom Griffiths to create an interdisciplinary take on how computer algorithms can be useful for very human problems—"from finding a spouse to finding a parking spot." Hear from both authors at this Town Hall talk, and learn about memory, computer logic, and ways to apply these strategies to your own life.
27. Silent Movie Mondays: Comedy Classics
The "Comedy Classics" series will begin with Buster Keaton's Steamboat Bill, Jr. on April 10. On April 17, they'll screen Girl Shy, and they'll finish with a selection of classic shorts (featuring stars including Laurel and Hardy, Chaplin and Marie Dressler, Lloyd, and Keaton) on April 24. Clark Wilson, Christian Elliot and Tedde Gibson will play the Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Pipe Organ and Paul Hanson will take care of Foley sound (the re-creations of the films' ambient noise).
28. Blood Diner with Director Jackie Kong
Watch a digital transfer of Blood Diner (an '80s classic about brothers capturing customers from their vegetarian diner in an effort to "sew together various body parts of immoral women" and resurrect an evil goddess) with the director, Jackie Kong. Stick around after the screening for an afterparty with Kong set to a special remix of the soundtrack.
29. T.R. Reid: A Fine Mess
Journalist, author, and political correspondent T.R. Reid (author of numerous books, including the 2010 New York Times bestseller The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care) will speak about his new book, A Fine Mess: A Global Quest for a Simpler, Fairer, and More Efficient Tax System, which is an investigation into the failures of our tax code.
30. Jen Murphy's Bad B@#$%!! Of Comedy
This event promises an evening with "some very lovely ladies who are as filthy as they are funny," including beauty queen/reality TV star/actress/singer/comedian/motivational speaker Jen Murphy (whose TLC special is titled This is Why You're Still Single).
31. Complex Exchange
The "Complex Exchange" series brings together Seattle artists, leaders, and community members to discuss themes in art exhibits currently on display. This edition will focus on two installations: Jacob Lawrence's 60 panel masterpiece, The Migration Series, currently on display at the Seattle Art Museum, and Inye Wokoma's exploration of ancestry, identity, and displacement, An Elegant Utility, at the Northwest African American Museum.
32. Conversation with Gov. Jay Inslee: Public Service and Ethical Leadership in the Era of Trump
In this Trumpian time, what does "public service" mean to politicians and the general population? Governor Jay Inslee will speak on this shift in politics and statewide/national changes for the future. Journalist and Seattle University scholar in residence Joni Balter and SU Institute of Public Service director Larry Hubbell will take part in the conversation.
33. Lawrence Krauss: The Greatest Story Ever Told—So Far
Theoretical physicist and cosmologist Lawrence Krauss (author of New York Times bestselling books A Universe from Nothing and The Physics of Star Trek) is known for making science accessible...but not too accessible, as his works still explore the complex theories behind exciting and relatable concepts. His latest work, The Greatest Story Ever Told—So Far, is billed as a "dramatic story of the discovery of the hidden world of reality." This sounds ambiguous because it is—the book addresses the science that lurks behind the world as we know it, from our developing understanding of physics and quantum mechanics to the detailed complexity of the Higgs particle.
34. Kat Larson with Negarra Kudumu: The Energy that Flows Through Everything
In December 2016, Jen Graves wrote that local artist Kat Larson "really has something—something physical, spiritual, and political—in her video, video-painting, sculpture, and performative installations. And she doesn’t show that often." Here's a chance to see inside Larson's process and perspective, and to hear her speak with Negarra Kudumu (Frye Museum Manager of Public Programs) about "her investigations into her own ancestry, mythology, and the structure of natural cycles."
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35. Dan Sharfstein: Thunder in the Mountains
Vanderbilt law and history professor Daniel Sharfstein (author of The Invisible Line: Three American Families and the Secret Journey from Black to White) writes about the legal history of race in the United States. His new book, Thunder in the Mountains, focuses on the story of Chief Joseph and Oliver Otis Howard, "recreating the Nez Perce War through the voices of its survivors."
36. Garrison Keillor
A Prairie Home Companion legend Garrison Keillor (also known for his program The Writers Almanac, his numerous books and articles, and his work editing poetry anthologies) will speak at Tacoma's Pantages Theater.
37. Seattle Kitchen Live
Tom Douglas and Thierry Rautureau are both formidable local restauranteurs and winners of the prestigious James Beard Award—and they're the hosts of the KIRO radio show Seattle Kitchen, which explores our local culinary quirks and trends. At this event, catch a live version of their program.
38. La Compagnie
Algerian French choreographer Hervé Koubi takes elements of "capoeira, martial arts, urban and contemporary dance" for his troupe of 12 male African and African French dancers. See the muscular Seattle debut of this acclaimed European innovator.
APRIL 13-16GEEK & GAMING
This science fiction and fantasy convention (with a literary emphasis) features an overwhelming number of events, including 500 hours of panel programming featuring more than 200 panelists, workshops on writing and filmmaking, gaming, concerts, dances, an art show, a masquerade, a film festival, a science fiction book awards ceremony, and, of course, lots of appearances by special guests representing the many aspects of science fiction and fantasy.
40. Deep Space Lez
Performer ilvs strauss (whose 2015 production Manifesto was either "a parody of modern dance" or "really smart and bold") is behind Deep Space Lez, a work described as "comedian lesbian theater."
41. Tom Segura
Watch Los Angeles-based comedian Tom Segura (known for his podcast Your Mom's House, and whose specials Mostly Stories and Completely Normal you can find on Netflix) tell abrasive jokes as part of his "No Teeth No Entry" tour.
42. Campout Cinema: Raiders of the Lost Ark
Campout Cinema brings the "outdoor movie experience" indoors—remember blankets, pillows, and sleeping bags, and they'll provide the food, themed drinks, and "other surprises." At this edition, they’ll screen Raiders of the Lost Ark (in which Indiana Jones follows his quest to find the Ark of the Covenant) for 21+ guests.
43. An Evening with Alec Baldwin
Your favorite gravel-voiced leading man, Alec Baldwin, will speak about his new memoir, Nevertheless (his second book, following A Promise to Ourselves: A Journey Through Fatherhood and Divorce).
44. Kevin Nealon
Kevin Nealon—recognizable for many TV and film roles, most notably his nine years as a Saturday Night Live cast member (and his memorable portrayal of goofy/deranged stoner Doug Wilson on Weeds)—will entertain for just two nights in Bellevue.
45. Brain Is a Radio
Science and multimedia art meet in this performance created by choreographer Ashleigh Miller and Faunix Media, described as like "being inside a kaleidoscopic screensaver animation." Dancers will be accompanied by "psychoacoustic" music by Floraform (Travis Corwin, Ashleigh Miller, and Ben Grieshaber), and projections and virtual reality will augment the already busy experience. Inspired by coding algorithms, neurologist Oliver Sacks, and video game design.
46. Ballet on Broadway
Broadway-inspired sing-along ballet is fun, accessible, set to recognizable music, and follows a simple plot—perfect for those passionate about musicals, ambivalent about ballet, or curious about the intersection of the two. This program will feature Carousel (A Dance) (based on the strange, slightly dark New England musical that includes an ensemble number titled "That Was a Real Nice Clambake"), Slaughter on Tenth Avenue (from the musical comedy On Your Toes), and West Side Story Suite (dancing gangsters).
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47. Dr. Ballard's Vaudeville Players
This vaudeville spectacular ("song, dance, magic and comedy") is presented by The Northwest Orca Cannery and directed by Rob Raas-Bergquist. They promise an onstage bar with root beer floats.
48. The Secret Garden
The quietly mesmerizing musical The Secret Garden (written by Pulitzer Prize winner Marsha Norman with music by Lucy Simon) comes to 5th Avenue Theatre, directed by David Armstrong.
49. Drunk High Advice
Why get advice from your dumb friends when you can benefit from the thoughtful words of "an inebriated panel" of comedians? Once you've heard the panel's council on your problem, a group of improvisers will act out the possible consequences of the advice.
50. Daniel Drezner: The Ideas Industry
Tufts international politics professor Daniel Drezner (author of All Politics Is Global: Explaining International Regulatory Regimes, Theories of International Politics and Zombies, and The System Worked: How the World Stopped Another Great Depression) will share his new book, The Ideas Industry: How Pessimists, Partisans, and Plutocrats are Transforming the Marketplace of Ideas, about the ever-elusive concept of "thought leaders."
51. Live Wire with Luke Burbank
Sean Nelson once wrote, "The homegrown radio/podcast comedy phenomenon known as Too Beautiful to Live—and its gregarious, hilarious, occasionally precarious host Luke Burbank (alas, he’s a Taurus)—are still alive and well, but THIS is Burbank’s other show, Live Wire, an NPR-friendly variety program based in Portland, Oregon." This edition's special guests will be Dan Savage, Jessi Klein, Attorney General Bob Ferguson, and musical guest Ayron Jones.
52. Science and a Movie: The Birds
The Birds hasn't held up in the same way as Psycho, but this screening of Hitchcock's horror classic offers an additional perk: a talk and Q&A by scientist John Marzluff, who will speak about the nature of crows, ravens, and jays. They've written a very persuasive description of crows' numerous abilities: "Crows gather around their dead, warn of impending doom, recognize people, commit murder of other crows, lure fish and birds to their death, drink beer, turn on lights to stay warm, design and use tools, use cars as nutcrackers, windsurf and sled to play, and work in tandem to get cheese whiz out of a can. Their marvelous brains allow them to think, plan, and reconsider their actions."
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53. Thomas Frank: Listen, Liberal: Or, What Ever Happened to the Party of the People?
Thomas Frank is a best-selling author, journalist, and historian, best known for his 2004 book What's the Matter with Kansas? How Conservatives Won the Heart of America (about the dramatic political shifts that happened in his home state). His latest work from 2016, Listen, Liberal: Or, What Ever Happened to the Party of the People?, is probably the most precise and thorough work that currently exists explaining the Democratic Party's 2016 defeat (and what led up to it), especially their failure to close or slow the widening wealth gap—which has resulted in decreased numbers of working class Democratic voters.
54. Word Works: Terrance Hayes
In this Word Works lecture, poet and educator Terrance Hayes—author of collections including How to Be Drawn, Wind in a Box, and the National Book Award-winning Lighthead—will explore recurring themes in the work of poet Lynda Hull (1954-1994) by examining pieces from three of her books: Ghost Money (1986), Star Ledger (1991), and The Only World (1995).
55. Evil Cyborg Sea Monsters
Mike Capozzola will use his lauded cartooning skills (he's published in Mad Magazine, McSweeney's, and more) to sharpen his mockery of sci-fi and superhero franchises.
56. Fail Again. Fail Better: A Conversation on Artistic Failure
Learn about artistic failure from a panel of artists known for their successes: Valerie Curtis-Newton (UW School of Drama, Founding Artistic Director of The Hansberry Project, and Stranger Genius), Sheila Klein (Rich Smith described her as a "successful sculptor who installs a lot of really whimsical public art"), novelist Peter Mountford, and musician/composer/writer/performer/Stranger Genius Ahamefule Oluo. Moderated by Artist Trust Program Director Brian McGuigan.
57. Intrepid Explorers in an Impossible World: The Amazing Drawings of Ethan Murrow
In June 2015, Jen Graves wrote, "So many questions about Boston-based artist Ethan Murrow's drawings at Winston Wächter Fine Art this month. What are those men doing? Who do they work for? Why is there a painting underground? How big is that painting? What is the man inside the painting doing? What does the number 136 (just under the arch, to the right of the light shaft) refer to? Why is this drawing called Columbia River Beehive? Looking at it, I feel like I'm in a parallel universe where all I get to see of how the world works are these ultimately mystifying details." Learn about how Murrow cultivates that poignant mystery (and "his affectionate but skeptical take on society’s faith in rationalism and the scientific method") at this talk, where he'll be joined by panelists including Seattle Times art critic Gary Faigin and Facebook computer vision scientist Dr. Michael Cohen.
58. John Scalzi
: The Collapsing Empire
John Scalzi is an acclaimed science fiction writer and author of Redshirts, which Paul Constant described as "a hell of a lot of fun," writing that it offered "a clever genre riff, a great sense of humor, some good action, and some high-concept headfuckery." Scalzi is in town to present his latest work, The Collapsing Empire, about "an extradimensional field available at certain points in space-time, which can take us to other planets around other stars."
59. Goodship Higher Education: I Am Fake News
Tim Keck, the Stranger's publisher and the founder of the Onion satirical newspaper, will tell you high-minded (heh heh) media junkies all about fake news, the Spanish-American War, independent journalism in the age of Trump, and, of course, "the thrill of fucking shit up." Please come prepared; no weed consumption on site is allowed.
60. Who Am I / Who I Am
A program of local all-stars (choreographer and dancer Markeith Wiley, playwright Nelle Tankus, painter Starheadboy, and photographer Angel O'Leary) spent 21 days collaborating on an immersive exhibition curated by Barry Johnson—and you only have two days to go experience this promising combination of live performance and visual art. They'll offer commentary on "gender, sexuality, identity, societal roles and community," as well as a full bar, live music, and a playful "pARTy" vibe.
61. Puget Soundtrack: Hair and Space Museum Presents THX 1138
Puget Soundtrack invites musicians to create a live score for a film of their own choosing. In this iteration, multimedia duo David Golightly and Emily Pothast (aka Hair and Space Museum) will create a live soundtrack for George Lucas' 1971 science fiction film THX 1138.
62. David Callahan: The Givers
David Callahan (author of books about society and politics including The Cheating Culture, The Moral Center, Dangerous Capabilities, and Unwinnable Wars) will present his most recent work, The Givers: Wealth, Power, and Philanthropy in a New Gilded Age, which deals with the way philanthropy and philanthropists influence our world—and describes the massive amount of power we may not realize that they hold.
63. Donnell Rawlings
Donnell Rawlings (also known as Ashy Larry) is known for his appearances on Chappelle's Show and his stand-up comedy, including his one-hour Comedy Central special Ashy to Classy.
64. MoPOP Pop Conference 2017
Generally if you care about something, maybe it’s good to talk about it. And with something so creatively magnanimous as music, maybe it’s good to talk about it all the time, so that every facet can be fully represented. The MoPOP Pop Con is a solid example of intellectualizing art without squashing the abilities of everyman-creation. Analysis of art does not diminish its power, and, as it stands, art remains one of the few things that gains ground as we discuss it. The theme of this year’s Pop Con is “Sign O' The Times: Music and Politics,” so naturally all conference components will focus on the dovetailing of music and politics in creative, personal, and public realms. Panels throughout the conference—some of which will be led by Ann Powers, Damon Krukowski, and Franz Nikolay, as well as a slew of other pop-culture experts and prolific music critics—attend to art-activated variables, like environmental impact or historical legacy, with discussions touching on everything from identity politics to protest music in the modern era. KIM SELLING
65. The Institute of Memory (TIMe)
This experimental theater piece by Early Morning Opera about a misanthropic cold-war operative is a warped echo of the father of the company's founder, Lars Jan. Take a story of paranoia and family, add luminescent kinetic sculpture, communist spies' letters and wiretaps, and brain scans, and you've got what promises to be one intriguing night of avant-garde theater.
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This is much darker than Disney. Bryony Lavery's Frozen focuses on the stories of three people: a researcher, a serial killer, and a grieving mother. The researcher is building a case for her thesis ("Serial Killing—A Forgivable Act?") and ends up bringing together a woman who lost her 10-year-old daughter, and that daughter's murderer. The play is said to be a bit simplistic/contrived in its psychological assertions, but offers the chance for a few actors to really show their skills, from dramatic breakdowns to the titular emotional frigidity.
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67. Lost Falls
In May, Twin Peaks will return after more than 25 years off the air—celebrate 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), Matt Manges (drums), Dave Pascal (bass), Ryan Higgins, Ayo Tushinde, Opal Peachey, Carol Thompson, Ronnie Hill, and Laura Dux.
68. The 3rd Annual Seattle Boylesque Festival
Male and genderqueer burlesque dancers from across the country (and from Yokohama and Mexico) will blast gender norms apart with the aid of titillating moves and generously bared skin. The two nights have a different lineup: Ernie Von Schmaltz will host the first, and Mexican Elvis impersonator El Vez will take over on Saturday.
69. Improvathon: 50 Hours of Improv Comedy
The Unexpected Productions players have set themselves—and the audience—a monumental task: 50 hours of improv with only five-minute breaks. If you get through the whole thing, you'll receive a lifetime pass to any Unexpected Productions show. Of course, you can leave and come back if you're not made of iron (or caffeine).
70. REPS Showcase
Radio theater may seem archaic, but listen to the right Bob and Ray skit and you'll realize that the oldies were into some avant-garde stuff. Radio Enthusiasts of Puget Sound (REPS) will pay tribute to this creative era with star appearances, live reenactments, a banquet, and more.
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Award-winning playwright Sarah Ruhl—whose best-known work is probably In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play)—adapted this production from the gender-bending, time-fucking literary history novel by Virginia Woolf. L. Zane Jones will direct. Look forward to a satiric, endearing plot stretching over more than 300 years.
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72. Elisa Chavez Scratch Night: Nerds & Nazis
Eliza Chavez, author of the post-election call-to-arms poem "Revenge" and Gamergate slam critiques, has received a lot of online troll hatred for her work. Her experience led her to ask, "What do a bunch of angry video gamers, skinhead rockers, and anti-postmodern Ovid fans have in common?" Join her for a discussion of the male-dominated festerweb.
73. The Real Housewives Live Tour
When the Paramount Theater opened in 1928, the Seattle Times called the space a "magnificent cathedral of entertainment." Now, this magnificent cathedral will push past vaudeville, theater, comedy, and music, and host a selection of "Real Housewives" (from, you guessed it, the Real Housewives TV franchise) on their "Uncensored and Unapologetic" tour. You might see some angry crying or get splashed when someone throws wine. You've leave with a difficult question to ponder: who is truly the classiest? If there's one thing we can guarantee, it's that the event probably won't be peaceful and full of camaraderie.
74. Marcus Harrison Green Scratch Night: Caucasians Anonymous
Marcus Harrison Green, columnist for the Aspiring Gentleman magazine and journalistic freelancer, has written a play called Caucasians Anonymous to help deconstruct whiteness and its weight on society. Hear a staged reading, followed by Q&A with white anti-racist activists.
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75. Elisabeth Rosenthal
Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal worked for more than 20 years as a New York Times correspondent, writing about health, science, and the environment (and political implications for all three), and now she's editor-in-chief of nonprofit Kaiser Health News. At this event she will present her first book, An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back, a terrifying story about our country's perilous health-care system.
76. Scott Simon: My Cubs - A Love Story
Scott Simon (host of "Weekend Edition" Saturday on NPR, and author of nonfiction books including Home and Away: Memoir of a Fan, Jackie Robinson and the Integration of Baseball, and Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other: In Praise of Adoption, as well as novels Pretty Birds and Windy City: A Novel of Politics) will share his latest work: My Cubs: A Love Story, a book about his hometown team that includes "club lore, memorable anecdotes, frenetic fandom and wise and adoring intimacy."
77. WWE Hall Of Famer Jake The Snake Roberts
This would be bizarre if it were anyone else, but it seems almost natural for savage prankster and WWE Hall of Famer Jake "The Snake" Roberts to go on the lecture circuit. Expect tales of blood, sweat, and loincloths, with a few pythons for good measure.
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78. Helen Oyeyemi
At 31, Helen Oyeyemi has already written five novels on major presses and two plays. Her latest book is a collection of short stories called What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours, which is full of understated, surreal stories about stories. RICH SMITH
79. Lesley Stahl with Tony Ventrella
Lesley Stahl is a reporter for CBS's 60 Minutes (among many other endeavors, she conducted that infamous post-election interview with Trump) and she's coming to Seattle to share her highly personal new book, Becoming Grandma: The Joys and Science of the New Grandparenting.
80. Stephen Tobolowsky: My Adventures with God
Stephen Tobolowsky (the infuriating insurance salesman from Groundhog Day, who since has appeared many times in film and TV, authored The Dangerous Animals Club, and created the podcast The Tobolowsky Files) will share his new short story collection, My Adventures with God.
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81. Alex Daly
Crowdfunding expert Alex Daly (who founded the crowdfunding agency Vann Alexandra, and has run some major campaigns on Kickstarter) will speak about her new book: The Crowdsourceress: Get Smart, Get Funded, and Kickstart Your Next Big Idea.
82. Through the Looking Glass: The Burlesque Alice In Wonderland
Alice is definitely not a little girl in a starched blue dress in Lily Verlaine and Jasper McCann's burlesque production, which uses "jazz, classical, Indian, and exotic music" as a backdrop for colorful clothes-dropping.
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83. Mary Lou Sanelli: A Woman Writing
Seattleite Mary Lou Sanelli is a public speaker and author of seven poetry collections and three works of nonfiction. She's coming to Town Hall to share her 2015 book A Woman Writing, described as a mixture of literary nonfiction, memoir, and women's studies that examines the act of writing itself. This event is billed as a "multidisciplinary literary performance," and will include dance performances by Cornish students Kate O'Day and Marcella Sweeney.
84. Craig Robinson
Craig Robinson (best known for his run as the deadpan but endearing Darryl Philbin on The Office, as well as his numerous movie roles including appearances in This is The End, Pineapple Express, and Hot Tub Time Machine) will perform for a weekend in Bellevue.
85. NFFTY: National Film Festival for Talented Youth
The "young filmmaker's Cannes"—Charles Mudede called it "world-class"—this festival assembles the best films made by directors under 25. See works by promising cineastes who will make you feel very old.
86. Lush Us
Celebrate the artists behind Gay City Arts' Season 4: Uncontained (featuring shows including Sweet T: The Physical Album, How I Learned To Be a Particular Kind of Lady, Deep Space Lez, and Rising Up: A Queer Social Justice Musical) at this showcase featuring headliner Sonya Renee Taylor, founder of The Body is Not An Apology.
87. Wild is the Wind: An Evening of Music and Circus
Emerald City Trapeze Arts presents this exploration of "weather and love," communicated through incredible feats of dexterity, grace, and physical stamina. Look forward to flying trapeze, aerial arts, and circus performances. The soundtrack for the performance boasts a jazz lineup that includes Grammy-award-winning (and nominated) musicians: Gregg Field, Wally Minko, Tim Kobza, Kevin Axt, and Kari Kirkland.
88. Seattle Erotic Art Festival
For the past 15 years, the Foundation for Sex-Positive Culture has gathered enthusiasts of erotic art in all its forms. See the galleries of visual and interactive art for just a tenner, party at the opening or closing soirées, or spend big bucks for a "Velvet Personal Attendant" to guide you through the experience.
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89. Cherdonna's Doll's House
The local powerhouse and "female impersonator impersonator" Cherdonna Shinatra (Jody Kuehner) deconstructs and reconstructs Henrik Ibsen’s arguably already feminist classic. Will Nora realize that her life doesn’t necessarily exist in relation to a man’s life, but for real this time? Will Cherdonna bust into the middle of scenes and sing surprisingly relevant pop songs in an operatic voice that make the play more intersectional? Kuehner work defies divining of any kind. But if she’s doing a thing, you go and you see that thing. Those are the rules. Presented by Washington Ensemble Theatre, adapted by Ali Mohamed el-Gasseir and Jody Kuehner, and directed by Ali Mohamed el-Gasseir. RICH SMITH
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90. 2017 Grand Slam
Seattle Poetry Slam's intrepid finalists will throw down at the culmination of weeks of competition, and the winner from amongst this diverse will represent Seattle in the Denver nationals.
91. Book-It's 2017-2018 Season Announcement Party
Nosh and sip on light refreshments while you attend the unveiling of the 2017-2018 season of Book-It Repertory Theatre, a Seattle-based company that specializes in generally excellent stage adaptations of literature (new and old). You can also meet the artistic directors and save 10% on season passes.
92. Fire and Ice: Dance for a Cure
Raise money for Fred Hutchinson Research Center and the Pete Gross House (housing for people undergoing cancer treatments provided by Seattle Cancer Care Alliance) at this night of performance and celebration. Young stars (ages 7-18) will take to the stage to communicate the theme "Fire & Ice" through dance, conveying both "an inspiring passion" and something that "may freeze us with fear."