Morgan Parker and Jane Wong Discuss You Get What You Pay For

(BOOKS) Renowned poet Morgan Parker's National Book Critics Circle-winning poetry book Magical Negro pulled its title from the Spike Lee-coined term for Black characters with quasi-magical powers. It's an incredible testament to 21st-century Black femininity, and I read it in one sitting. Pick it up if you haven't, then head to this talk with Parker and local poet Jane Wong in celebration of Parker's memoir-in-essays, You Get What You Pay For. Wong's recent memoir, Meet Me Tonight in Atlantic City, traces her upbringing in a Chinese takeout restaurant on the Jersey shore. (Seattle Public Library - Central Library, 1000 Fourth Ave, 7 pm, free) LINDSAY COSTELLO


Make Believe Seattle Film Festival

(FILM) What the hell even is a genre film festival? Is it just for the weirdos (a compliment!) among us who like horror and sci-fi? Isn’t every film festival technically a genre film festival, since every film fits into some kind of definable category? To hear it from Billy Ray Brewton, the creative director of Seattle’s genre film festival Make Believe Seattle, genre film festivals leave room for unpredictability or surprises. “We’re not a traditional genre festival intentionally,” Brewton said. “The bigger genre festivals like Fantastic Fest or Beyond Fest or Fantasia or Sitges—we’re very different from festivals like those. They really focus hardcore on horror, sci-fi, fantasy, and we go so far outside of that. Our definition of genre, it does meet all of those criteria, but it’s also just anything that deals in a heightened imagination." Read the rest of the interview with Brewton here and find out which six films you simply cannot miss here! (Northwest Film Forum, the Erickson Theatre, and the Grand Illusion, various showtimes, March 21-26, see the full lineup and schedule at CHASE HUTCHINSON

FRIDAY 3/22 


(MUSIC) CMAT (aka Ciara Mary-Alice Thompson) is the pop cowgirl that we deserve. Hailing from Dublin, she spins her Irish heritage, self-deprecating thoughts, and interest in pop culture into soulful country bops. Plus, her vocal chops are a whole other flex—she kind of sounds like Adele, if Adele went country. She will support her sophomore album, Crazymad, For Me, after an opening set from kindred pop vocalist Morgana. (Sunset Tavern, 5433 Ballard Ave NW, 8 pm, $30.90, 21+) AUDREY VANN


Anida Yoeu Ali: The Buddhist Bug

(VISUAL ART/PERFORMANCE) In my recent interview with Tacoma-based performance artist-activist Anida Yoeu Ali, the artist described her performance installation The Buddhist Bug as "an entity that is trying to figure out why and how their body fits into the space...The bug makes a realistic image surreal—another paradox I’m setting up. What is going on in this picture? What is it that the bug is trying to mediate at this moment? What am I looking at, and why?" As part of her debut solo exhibition at the Seattle Asian Art Museum, Hybrid Skin, Mythical Presence, Ali will bring the bug to life in two performances at 11:30 am and 1 pm. The event will open with Khmer Language Arts & Culture Academy dancers alongside Wat Changtarangsey pagoda monks, who will perform a sacred Cambodian blessing ceremony. Visitors can participate in a drop-in art-making activity with teaching artist Nina Vichayapai, and browse fam-friendly reads from the Asian American bookstore mam's books. (Seattle Asian Art Museum, 1400 E Prospect St, 11:30 and 1 pm, free-$14.99, all ages) LINDSAY COSTELLO

SUNDAY 3/24 

Sanctuary City

The Seattle Rep presents 'Sanctuary City' at Leo K. Theater every Thursday-Sunday through March 31. Bronwen Houck

(THEATER) The newest production by Polish-born playwright Martyna Majok, whose play Cost of Living received the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, was a New York Times Critic's Pick. Sanctuary City is staged in post-9/11 Newark, where two pre-DACA "Dreamers" meet up on a fire escape to share their worries and hopes as undocumented teens. They plan to marry, but time shifts their relationship and brings up questions about sacrifice, love, and belonging. (Leo K. Theater, 305 Harrison St, $37-$85, multiple performances through March 31) LINDSAY COSTELLO

MONDAY 3/25 

U District Cherry Blossom Festival

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Sweet Alchemy Ice Creamery (@sweetalchemyseattle)

(FOOD & DRINK) It's spring, which can only mean one thing: It's time once again to admire gently wafting pink cherry blossoms in full bloom at the University of Washington Quad. To celebrate, more than 80 U District businesses have come together to offer cherry blossom-themed food and drink specials and discounts on retail items. Before or after your petal-gazing excursion, stop by and enjoy treats like cherry blossom lattes from Cafe Canuc, cherry glazed ring doughnuts from Donut Factory, sakura ice cream from Sweet Alchemy, and pink custard croissant taiyaki at Oh Bear Cafe & Teahouse. (Various locations in the University District through April 1, see a full list of participants at JULIANNE BELL


Nordic Utopia? African Americans in the 20th Century

Duke Jordan, Mads Vinding, and Ed Thigpen for SteepleChase, Flight to Denmark, 1973, vinyl record. Jim Bennett/Photo Bakery for the National Nordic Museum

(VISUAL ART) Shirking trendier art locales like Paris, African American visual and performing artists (Doug Crutchfield, Herb Gentry, Dexter Gordon, William Henry Johnson, Howard Smith, and others) sought new opportunities in Nordic countries, but their work—and stories—have often been overlooked. ("Life in the Nordic countries could appear idyllic, but upon examining [the artists'] stories more begin to see hints of elements of the African American past, like cotton fields and a shanty," National Nordic Museum explains.) Curated by Dr. Ethelene Whitmire and Leslie Anne Anderson, Nordic Utopia? African Americans in the 20th Century examines the complicated experiences these artists had in Nordic countries. (National Nordic Museum, 2655 NW Market St, free-$20, every Tues-Sun through July 21) LINDSAY COSTELLO

:zap: Prizefight! :zap:

Win tickets to rad upcoming events!*

Trevor Noah
March 22 or March 24, Paramount Theatre


Contest ends 3/21 at 3 pm

*Entering PRIZE FIGHT contests by submitting your email address signs you up to receive the Stranger Suggests newsletter. You can unsubscribe at any time.