Slurp some briny bivalves at Shellfish Showcase—the seafood counterpart to Restaurant Week—starting this Sunday. Dine Around Seattle via Facebook
Our music critics have already chosen the 15 best music shows this week, but now it's our arts critics' turn. Here are their picks for the best events in every genre—from the closing of Group Therapy to a poetry performance by Mary Lambert, and from Sing-a-Long Sound of Music to 14/48: The World's Quickest Theatre Festival. See them all below, and find even more events on our complete Things To Do calendar.

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WEDNESDAY

READINGS & TALKS

Silent Reading Party
The Silent Reading Party is one of the weirdest, most wonderful parties you’ll ever go to, because no one talks to you and you can get some reading done. You curl up on a couch or in a wingback chair with a book or magazine or whatever you feel like reading, while Paul Moore plays piano and waiters bring you things. Whenever Paul starts playing Erik Satie, I find myself staring into the fireplace or closing my eyes and melting into the couch. The reading party, which turns 10 years old in 2019, is so popular that there is often a line out the door just to get a seat. The people who know what they’re doing get there an hour before it starts. CHRISTOPHER FRIZZELLE

SPORTS & RECREATION

Queer Skate
LGBTQ+ folks and friends are invited to swirl around an ice rink in the good company of fabulous local queens Cookie Couture and Betty Wetter.

WEDNESDAY-FRIDAY

VISUAL ART

Meghan Elizabeth Trainhor: Witancraeftlic
Witchcraft and electricity unite in Trainhor's sculptural portrayal of folk healing, magic, and technology, an eerie installation of bones, jars, sigils, and "familiars." The result is an unsettling yet weirdly optimistic vision of hidden feminine occult power.
Opening Wednesday

WEDNESDAY-SATURDAY

VISUAL ART

Laura Hamje: 53 Views of the Alaskan Way Viaduct
When the Alaskan Way Viaduct closes next year, the city’s most accessible elevated westward view goes with it. I’ve been practicing nostalgia for that loss over the past couple of years, not minding when traffic slows and I’m stuck staring at Elliott Bay and the Olympic Mountains in the distance. Seattle artist Laura Hamje’s paintings in various mediums—from oil on linen to gouache on paper—are snapshots of all the different swoops, curves, and pillars of the 65-year-old roadway. Based in part on Japanese artist Hiroshige Ando’s early-19th-century woodblock series 53 Stations of the Tokaido, the series captures the structure in its many moods—from the darkened and rainy, to the bright flashes of light puncturing shadows. All of the views are from the perspective of how we will remember the viaduct the most: through a windshield. KATIE KURTZ
Closing Saturday

WINTER HOLIDAYS

WildLights
The zoo will light up with more than 700,000 (energy-efficient) LED lights that recreate wild scenes and creatures at the annual WildLights display.

WEDNESDAY-SUNDAY

PERFORMANCE

Disney's The Lion King
Julie Taymor's jaw-dropping, puppet-filled production of The Lion King will visit Seattle in its Circle of Life. Elton John music, Tony-winning direction, treachery, youth, and revenge...the works.

Wonderland
There are few cuter Seattle nights than those spent at the Can Can. Divided into three short acts that make up a brisk 90-minute show, each part of the Can Can’s wintertime cabaret Wonderland gets progressively naughtier, although the most scandalous thing you’ll see is a jock-strapped ass and bare tits covered by pasties. The show has danger, but it’s often found in the cancan lines that occur mere feet from audience members’ dinner salads. I once saw an athletic duet at Wonderland nearly knock over a birthday girl’s wine glass. But it didn’t. Everyone whooped. Pro tip: Get the beignets. CHASE BURNS

VISUAL ART

D. Allan Drummond: Curiosity
I remember when I first watched The Mummy as a child, I was completely terrified by the scenes of bewitched scarabs crawling under some unfortunate person’s skin and eating them alive from the inside. Yuck. And even though I know scarabs and prehistoric trilobites have basically nothing to do with each other, looking at D. Allan Drummond’s bronze-cast rendering of the now extinct marine creature brings up a lot of childhood body horror for me—and fascination. In the University of Chicago professor’s first show, Drummond will be presenting a mounted installation of his 3-D printed trilobite sculptures, which visitors are encouraged to inspect (without touching) for themselves. Careful they don’t crawl under your skin, though. JASMYNE KEIMIG
Closing Sunday

Endangered Species: Artists on the Front Line of Biodiversity
With 80 works by 52 artists, this exhibition explores the full spectrum of our natural environment with art that addresses everything from anthropogenic climate disruption to habitat restoration projects. Pieces in the show date back as far as the early 1800s (George Catlin’s striking and strange 1832 oil painting Buffalo Bull, Grazing on the Prairie has a contemporary feel to it), on through to the present (Michael Felber’s colored pencil Arctic Father from 2017 provides the requisite polar bear image). Also included is Andy Warhol’s Endangered Species series, 10 silk-screen prints from 1983, with each featuring a different endangered animal, like the bald eagle that was on the list 40 years ago due to habitat destruction. The bald eagle is now in the "Least Concern" column of the endangered species list maintained by the EPA, but with the EPA itself now in "Threatened" status, that could easily change. KATIE KURTZ
Closing Sunday

Fast Forward: Skateboards and Paddles
At first glance, skateboards and paddles seem worlds apart. The former is a symbol of teenage rebellion, while the latter, one of the most ancient human tools. One travels over asphalt, the other water. But upon closer inspection, these two modes of transportation share a lot of similarities. Not only do they take us where we need to be, fast, but they can also act as a canvas for personal expression. In this giant group show, Stonington Gallery brings together more than 35 artists to decorate longboards, traditional skateboards, and paddles in whatever way they see fit. The results are sure to be intriguing—and pretty sick! JASMYNE KEIMIG
Closing Sunday

Group Therapy
Group Therapy features a roster of international artists addressing themes of healing and self-care through a range of media. With its proximity to Harborview Medical Center (the region’s largest trauma care hospital) and several other hospitals, the museum will also function as a community “free clinic” with immersive installations and participatory projects. By including racism, sexism, and political tribalism as social pathologies, the show reframes what it means to be ill in the 21st century and offers community building as one possible curative. Artists include Wynne Greenwood, Maryam Jafri, Joachim Koester, Liz Magic Laser, Leigh Ledare, Marcos Lutyens, Cindy Mochizuki, Shana Moulton, Pedro Reyes, Ann Leda Shapiro, Kandis Williams, and Lauryn Youden. KATIE KURTZ
Closing Sunday

THURSDAY

VISUAL ART

Pioneer Square Art Walk
Once a month, Seattleites flock to the streets in Pioneer Square for a chance to stroll, sip on booze, and attend as many art openings as possible at First Thursday. It's the city's central and oldest art walk, and takes place in a historic neighborhood known for its abundance of galleries. Wine and hobnobbing will steal the scene for some, but at its core, it's an impressive communal unveiling of new artwork. In January, check out opening receptions for Katie Miller: EdificeAndrew Wapinski's ice-melted canvases, Anthony White: Smoke and MirrorsBrian Sanchez: Idle Urge, an exhibition of East European PrintmakersHenry Jackson-Spieker: Sight LinesJoe Rudko: Same as it ever wasKamryn Tulare: 100 HeadsKara Mia Fenoglietto: Wallflower, the local artist-composed Escapism from LA, and porcelain objects by Sylwia Tur and Nicholas Nyland

THURSDAY-SATURDAY

VISUAL ART

Artifacts from the Multiverse
Filmed partly in the Hoh Rain Forest and partly in Seattle, sci-fi flick Prospect transformed the luscious Pacific Northwest into an alien landscape. Following a father and daughter hunting for valuable gems on a distant moon, the duo encounter danger and the threat of total isolation as they scavenge for these precious objects. Glassbox Gallery will be exhibiting props, costumes, and “alternate realities” from the award-winning film. Let your imagination run wild and picture yourself walking through Cal Anderson Park in a futuristic space suit, digging under the plastic turf looking for gems that will fetch a high price at any intergalactic market of your fancy in some reality parallel to this one. JASMYNE KEIMIG
Closing Saturday

THURSDAY-SUNDAY

PERFORMANCE

Hollywood & Vine
Enjoy a vintage and magic-filled tribute to Tinseltown with the 20-year-old circus troupe Teatro ZinZanni as they perform in their new Woodinville space.

VISUAL ART

Sarah Norsworthy: Green Fuse
Sara Norsworthy brings impressions of "her chosen glen" over the changing seasons into the studio with paintings on repurposed-wood panels, building up layers to reproduce the "sparse chartreuse of spring, glowing haze of summer, pandemonium of autumn, and long shadows of winter." The paintings, with their thick, textural strokes, capture the chaos of warm and cold tones in nature. 
Opening Thursday

FRIDAY

COMEDY

Safeword
Watch kinkster and vanilla comics incorporate random perversions into their routines in this sexy comedy game show, a brainchild of Claire Webber and Bobby Higley. As you might guess from the title, the audience enters into a "verbal contract" with the performers to ensure everyone's fun and safety. If the safeword is used, Claire and Bobby get spanked by a comic someone who's shelled out to be in the "SplashZone"—these lucky folks also get to interact kinkily with the comics. Don't bring the kids, obviously, but there will be no nudity and no actual sex. Adam Pasi, Allison Lizotte, Derek Sheen, and Alyssa Yeoman will be among tonight's comics.

Zinescene / Gargoyle / We Point Out the Exits
Katy Nuttman and Ian Schempp will give you a "reversal of traditional improv shows" wherein you, the audience, must create a drawing, doodle, poem, or another visual art piece inspired by the theme of the performance. Once collected, the art will serve as inspiration for the performers. 

FOOD & DRINK

PNW Crab Feast
This class at the Pike Place Market Atrium Kitchen provides a primer on the notoriously sweet and succulent Dungeness crab. You’ll learn everything you need to know about the celebrated crustacean, from choosing it to breaking it down to cleaning it, and how to prepare a luxurious meal with it. You’ll get to tuck into a crab feast with nonalcoholic beverages for lunch, too. JULIANNE BELL

PERFORMANCE

Boudoir Messoir
Angela Visalia and Baby Guuurl will bring back their quarterly show Opposites-Attract, starting with a saucy burlesque interpretation of "Boudoir" and wrapping up with a "messy" set that will "gross you out and shock you" (in a good way) with Angela Visalia.

READINGS & TALKS

Mary Lambert: Shame Is an Ocean I Swim Across
You probably know Mary Lambert for her vocals on Macklemore and Ryan Lewis's "Same Love," which she then spun into her own song, "She Keeps Me Warm," and then into her own album, Welcome to the Age of My Body. But she's also a fine poet! While some of Lambert's work in Shame Is an Ocean I Swim Across feels as overdetermined as the title of her collection sounds, her plainspoken style and straightforward approach to body-image issues and sexual assault can be disarming and back-straightening. These effects are greatly amplified in Lambert's performances of the poems, which are indisputably moving. RICH SMITH

FRIDAY-SATURDAY

PERFORMANCE

14/48: The World's Quickest Theatre Festival
True to its name, the 14/48 Festival turns around 14 brand-new, theme-based, 10-minute plays in two days. The high-pressure nature of the event produces an evening of surprising theater for audience members, who arrive in their seats charged with expectation and anxiety for the performers. Though there are always a few experiments that don't quite come together, it's endlessly fascinating to see the way one theme filters through the minds of several very different theater artists. Expect shit to get weird. RICH SMITH

FRIDAY-SUNDAY

FOOD & DRINK

Little Fish Takeover
Little Fish, the highly anticipated forthcoming Pike Place restaurant and seafood craft microcannery from chef Zoi Antonitsas and Bryan Jarr, will take over Vashon Island restaurant Gravy each weekend this January while owners Dre Neeley and Pepa Brower vacation in Italy. Diners will get the chance to preview brunch and dinner dishes from the Little Fish menu, including oysters with grapefruit mignonette, Dinah's Cheese from Kurt Timmermeister's Vashon-based Kurtwood Farms with grilled persimmon and chicories, Neah Bay sea urchin risotto, salt cod brandade croquettes, and tinned seafood, which will be available for purchase from Little Fish's microcannery when it opens.

PERFORMANCE

Sing-a-Long Sound of Music
Watch a former nun go sloppy for a hard-hearted Austrian captain—and join your voice with hers—at this Sing-a-Long-a Sound of Music. The screening of the musical film will feature subtitles in case you're shaky with the words. A costume contest will be judged before the screening.

SATURDAY

COMEDY

Stoner Chicks / Cloud Cover
Improv trio Stoner Chicks (Phoebe Richards, Stephani Thompson, and Kayla Teel) will exhibit their affinity for weed, pizza, and "just trying to keep their shit together" before another set by Cloud Cover, aka "angel buddies" Gabby and Lucy, who will allegedly descend onto the stage from heaven to tell you what it's like up there in the clouds. 

TBD / Anthony & Ethan
Funny people Tamara Hoerth, Nate Welker, Katie Randall, Michael Pirkle, Dhira Brown, and Conor Mclean will strike up improvised scenes, followed by another cheery on-the-spot set by Anthony & Ethan. 

FOOD & DRINK

Bigwig Donuts Pop-Up
This is your chance to catch Oregon-based pop-up Bigwig Donuts, who will bring their made-to-order gluten-free, vegan, and GMO-free doughnut holes to KEXP’s La Marzocco Cafe. Choose from three different types of fluffy-crisp, sugar-dusted doughnut holes, including maple, chocolate, and cinnamon sugar. JULIANNE BELL

Butchering and Curing Workshop
Located at the site of the first European settlement on Puget Sound, Tacoma’s Fort Nisqually Living History Museum re-creates life in the 1850s with staff and volunteers who don period clothing, speak in historically accurate dialogue, and demonstrate crafts of the era. This daylong heritage skills workshop from Farmstead Meatsmith, an old-school butcher based on Vashon Island, will school attendees in traditional seam butchery, which uses only knives and cleavers to preserve muscle groups and wastes as little of the animal as possible. Participants will also learn about traditional curing methods for bacon, prosciutto, and guanciale. This is a rare opportunity to learn about butchering and curing methods from the 19th century—if you’re interested in learning to prepare your own meat, don’t miss it. JULIANNE BELL

Truffle Making 2019
If your New Year’s resolution involves learning new skills, consider this class from indi chocolate, which will school you in how to create your own decadent chocolate truffles so you can live out your Chocolat fantasy. You’ll learn about the process of making bean-to-bar chocolate, ganache, and truffles, then craft some hand-rolled, dairy-free truffles made with coconut milk while experimenting with your own flavor combinations. When it’s over, you’ll go home with cacao creations and bragging rights. JULIANNE BELL

Vegetarian Cooking Class in Pike Place
Eat Seattle and Rated-V will lead a cooking class that starts with a tour through Pike Place, where you'll pick up fresh ingredients, and ends with a class on how to prepare a tasty and healthy four-course meal. If you're looking to eat more greens in 2019, this is a good place to get inspired.

SUNDAY

FOOD & DRINK

Pop-Up Mimosa Bar
Spend your Sunday mornings sipping mimosas with Chateau bubbles and your choice of juice. 

Shellfish Showcase
Shellfish Showcase is the seafood counterpart to Restaurant Week, organized by Dine Around Seattle. The organization has rounded up a host of restaurants to devise exclusive menus with four items highlighting fresh local shellfish, at least two of them entrées. It’s a great opportunity to slurp some briny bivalves and scope out some hidden gems you wouldn’t otherwise try.