This week, The Stranger's arts critics have recommended the best events for you in every discipline: From Seattle Human Rights Day with Kimberlé Crenshaw and Black Lives Matter to Seattle Aquavit Week to Capitol Hill Art Walk. See them all below, and, if you still want more, check out our complete Things To Do calendar.
Rose Gold Winter Pop Up
Don't miss this 10-day pop up from the stellar Glass Box Gallery, featuring visual art and live performance, plus workshops on a variety of subjects like tincture and incense making, music, and yoga. (Through Saturday)
FOOD & DRINK
Seattle Aquavit Week
"If you don’t reside in Ballard, or spend a lot of time at nerdy craft cocktail bars, you may not be familiar with the spirit—which is a shame. Now is your chance." -Tobias Coughlin-Bogue (Through Saturday)
Hanukkah Menu at Golden Beetle
If you're not familiar with traditional Jewish food, Hanukkah is the perfect time to dive in with delicious fried goodies like latkes and donuts (celebrate the oil!) and stellar sweet/savory pairings. Golden Beetle offers a selection of kosher wines alongside various other dishes. (Through Dec 14)
"Hadag Nahash craft a combustible and occasionally goofy mix of tongue-twisted flows, Eurotrash beats, and dubious rap-rock moves, which amount to a surreally addictive blend, as long as you’ve got a healthy sense of humor." -Kyle Fleck
READINGS & TALKS
Dock St. Salon: Paul Constant & Martin McClennan
Did you know that there's now a Seattle Review of Books, and it's fantastic? The founders, Paul Constant (our former books editor) and novelist Martin McClellan will come by Phinney Books to read, and (hopefully) talk about visions for the future, their exciting new venture, and Seattle as a major city of literature.
Come From Away
"During the events of 9/11, the United States closed its airspace and diverted 38 planes to the airport near Gander, Newfoundland. There, 7,000 people from all over the world converged on a town of 7,000 Newfies. What happened when these kind island people who lived in the poorest province in Canada realized they had to play host to a bunch of irritated and scared and stranded "plane people"? They helped. This is the strong, uplifting premise of the musical Come from Away." -Rich Smith
NT Live: Jane Eyre
The National Theatre in London presents a live broadcast of Jane Eyre from director Sally Cookson.
Deck the Hall Ball
"Deck the Hall Ball is a standing tradition in Seattle that either serves as a great way to see established bands share the spotlight with locals and up-and-comers, or kind of a cheese fest." -Kathleen Tarrant
#Shoutyourabortion Benefit Show
"The social media campaign “where women share their abortion experiences online without sadness, shame or regret” for the purpose of “destigmatization, normalization, and putting an end to shame” is becoming a full-blown movement. Tonight, six excellent bands will play for your $10 donation at the door." -Kelly O
HEALTH and Pictureplane
"[HEALTH] have re-directed the focus of their noisier tendencies in service of jittery, Depeche Mode-worshipping goth-club anthems, to excellent effect." -Kyle Fleck
Kinski and Heron Oblivion
"Heron Oblivion feature heavy cats who’ve played in Comets on Fire, Sic Alps, Espers, Assemble Head in Sunburst Sound, and other outfits with a track record for mind expansion." -Dave Segal
"If you don't recognize the name Patterson Hood, let me toss a few more syllables out there: Drive-By Truckers. If you don't recognize Drive-By Truckers, maybe you're just not interested in balls-to-the-wall Southern rock paired with affecting and novelistic lyrics." -Joseph Schafer
Comedy Womb Open Mic
The rules of this pro-lady stand-up night are refreshing in their simplicity: no misogyny and no heckling. This week's shows feature Cameron Mazzuca and Shannon Koyano.
Jinkx Monsoon and Major Scales: Unwrapped
"There are no words for how brain-explodingly brilliant Jinkx Monsoon is. You think she was funny on RuPaul’s Drag Race? You don’t know the half of it. This is a holiday show, so expect really fucked-up Christmas songs—or maybe Hanukkah songs. Jinkx is half Jewish, as every die-hard Jinkx fan worth their salt knows." -Christopher Frizzelle
The likeliness of an appearance
New work by Seattle multimedia artist Dave Kennedy that curiously and subversively investigates whether things are always as they seem. Today's the only day it will be open to the public without a prior appointment.
Beacon Bards Poetry Reading Series
A monthly poetry reading series featuring talented local poets. This month: Drew Dillhunt (who was a finalist in the National Poetry Series) and Emily Johnston.
Budget Matters 2015 Summit
Patrisse Cullors, co-founder of #BlackLivesMatter, will deliver the keynote speech at the Budget Matters 2015 Summit. Acknowledging the interconnected nature of our economic and social future, this summit will explore the potential trajectory of Washington state in the coming years.
Tess Gallagher gives a talk about the reissued and new version of the novel Beginners, written by her late husband Raymond Carver.
The Seattle Process with Brett Hamil
Described as "Seattle's only intentionally funny talk show" and "a mudpie lobbed into the halls of power," the local Stewart-like presence of Brett Hamil is one of exasperation, information, and comedy. December's edition at Northwest Film Forum will feature Lindy West, Ahamefule J. Oluo, Nick Licata, an update from Seattle Tunnel Partners on Bertha and "the Viaduct Doom Portal," and awards for Hamil-endorsed candidates who ran in the November election.
"Brush out your beards, tie back your hair, and shine your tanker boots, bros, cause Netherlands are bringing their sludgy, long-haired, hesher-metal weirdness front and center!" -Mike Nipper
The Dandy Warhols
"The Dandy Warhols feel like a relic from another era (the early 2000s), in a music scene where detached coolness was valued over vulnerability and 'hipster' was a socially acceptable insult to throw around." -Robin Edwards
Holiday Gay People in Seattle Mixer
Mingle with Gay People in Seattle at Poco Wine + Spirits.
Scarecrow Video screens this 1960 film about a yes-man who stupidly lets his apartment out to an amorous boss.
Capitol Hill Art Walk
The monthly art walk on Capitol Hill, the best chance you'll have all month to see a bunch of excellent new art.
An Evening with Auntie Mame
"While in the middle of my college years, I received from my roommate David something of an education in what I can only describe as gay cinema. It’s not that the films I was shown had gay people in them, but that they were held in high regard by a class of gay men. The very best of these films was the 1958 classic Auntie Mame. To this day, I still regard Auntie Mame as one of the highest of achievements of that very American decade." -Charles Mudede
Seattle Human Rights Day with Kimberlé Crenshaw and Black Lives Matter
"Ever heard of the word 'intersectionality'? Kimberlé Crenshaw, professor of law at UCLA and Columbia, coined the term in the 1980s, initially as a way to describe the failure of antidiscrimination laws, which at the time treated race and gender discrimination differently. Activists, academics, and bloggers have since used the term to guide their thinking about systemic oppression, partially in an effort to avoid trampling one set of people in the process of championing their own causes. In her keynote speech for Town Hall's celebration of Human Rights Day, Crenshaw will discuss her more recent scholarship, as well as the impact of the Black Lives Matter movement." -Rich Smith
David Shields: War is Beautiful Launch Party
David Shields stops by Hugo House to read from and discuss his latest book, War is Beautiful: The New York Times Pictorial Guide to the Glamour of Armed Conflict. Shields has been painstakingly examining the cultural impact of photography on our understanding of war, and combines his dependable social criticism with a visual analysis of the contemporary media.
Homo for the Holidays 2015
"This drag and burlesque gigglefest features a bunch of wacky little holiday-themed skits that our own Dan Savage once called "FUCKING GREAT....FUCKING HILARIOUS!" Now its seventh year, Waxie Moon joins the likes and liknessess of the great BenDeLaCreme and Cherdonna. You should get plastered before you go, if only to help make your yuletide gayer." -Rich Smith
Taylor Mac: A 24-Decade History of Popular Music: Songs of the American Right
This show is Taylor Mac's political and funny introduction to what will eventually be a 24-hour-long performance work. There will also be a studio supper with Chef Derek Bugge of Frank's Oyster House on opening night. (Through Sat)
After retiring its much-loved Nutcracker last year, Pacific Northwest Ballet has unveiled a fresh one with new-to-the-company choreography by George Balanchine and a design by illustrator (and theater designer) Ian Falconer.
FOOD & DRINK
Guest Chef Night: Roy Breiman & Mark Bodinet of Copperleaf
FareStart is a fantastic organization that empowers disadvantaged and homeless men and women by training them for work in the restaurant industry. Every Thursday, they host a Guest Chef Night, featuring a three-course dinner from a notable Seattle chef for just $29.95. This week FareStart welcomes Chef Roy Breiman and Chef Mark Bodinet of Copperleaf Restaurant.
"An idiosyncratic guitarist and banjoist (and inventor of the electric rake), Chadbourne might be best known for his stint in Shockabilly, who forged a twisted-roots style of psychedelia in the first half of the ’80s. But throughout his long career, Chadbourne’s been a prodigious collaborator, working with Derek Bailey, Sun City Girls, John Zorn, Fred Frith, Jello Biafra, and many others." -Dave Segal
"Maribou State use fx’d, soulful James Blake-ian vocals (with cameos by pleasant guest singer Holly Walker) over tracks that brood yet exult, seamlessly combining electronic and organic elements. It’s a deft trick that few pull off well, but Maribou State nail that paradox with flair." -Dave Segal
The fifth iteration of SnowGlobed features five new holiday inspired plays by Nicky Davis, K. Brian Neel, Kelleen Conway Blanchard, Benjamin Benne, and Pilar O'Connell. Look out for divorce courts, miserable orphanages, bloody puppet shows, and all the usual holiday staples.
Design Lecture Series: Paula Scher with April Greiman
Paula Scher, accomplished in typography, design, and rebranding, will speak in the Design Lecture Series at the Seattle Public Library. She'll then sit down for a discussion with April Greiman, an artist considered to have pioneered both the "New Wave" design style and the use of computer technology in design. (Sold out, but standby tickets available at the door)
Emmett Montgomery, Elicia Sanchez, and Danielle K. L. Gregoire will perform some comedy, with open mic slots peppered throughout the show.
"There’s an inherent Scandinavian reserve underlying Kiasmos’ elegant dance music; it’s tech-house you can play at dinner parties without causing too much adrenaline surging or rambunctious movement." -Dave Segal
"Tonight at the Chapel, excellent local guitarists Rik Wright and Jason Goessl have put together a program of a dozen of Mingus’s choicest cuts, to be performed by a who’s-who of local jazz heavyweights, from Tim Kennedy to Mark Ostrowski." -Kyle Fleck
Hail Santa IV Night One
"If anyone out there is still bitching about Starbucks ripping the Christian spirit away from the core of the holiday season with its “fence walking” red cups, these evangelical types need to attend the oh-so-Christian (not really) annual “Hail Santa,” a wonderful two-night Northwest tradition where all that is Christmas unites with all that is metal in a celebration of drunken headbanging and brutal radness." -Kevin Diers
Georgetown Art Attack
Once a month, the art that resides in the tiny airport hamlet of Georgetown ATTACKS all passersby. In more literal terms, it's the day of art openings and street wonderment.
Opening Reception for Everyone's In
Art and artist are often so thoroughly separated that the person behind the piece is considered irrelevant. The Alice, a new gallery run by Julie Alexander and Julia Freeman, subverts this by putting community in the forefront along with artistic development. Inspired by Jayson Musson/Hennessy Youngman's Itsa Small, Small World, they open this exhibit up to the public, allowing everyone (artists, amateurs, experimenters) to display and sell their work in the gallery...including, as Youngman put it, "big ass paintings, little ass paintings, shit you painted in 1998 that's ugly as fuck."
Gallery Talk: Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker and Erika Dalya Massaquoi
The two curators of Genius/21 Century/ Seattle will give a free talk at the Frye Art Museum.
Genius/21 Century/Seattle Film Festival
Like the rest of the Genius/21 Century/Seattle exhibit at the Frye, this film festival is a demonstration of the excellent artistic talent in Seattle, and will feature work of Stranger Genius winners.
Finnegans Wake Chapter 2
Neal Kosaly-Meyer performs the dubious task of reciting Chapter 2 of James Joyce's abstract masterpiece Finnegans Wake from memory.
Margin Shift Presents: Sueyeun Juliette Lee, Joshua Ware, and EJ Koh
This event hosted by Margin Shift promises not only three stellar poets reading their work, but also wine and post-reading karaoke. Come for the literature and stay for the chill vibes.
The Crystal Palace
A free whimsical (we're talkin' blanket forts, y'all) theatrical concert featuring Whitney Lyman, Ian McCutcheon, and Kelton Sears.
Theater Anonymous Presents It's a Wonderful Life
A one-night-only performance of "It's a Wonderful Life," with a real twist: nobody knows the cast, not even the cast. The cast members have never met each other, and have taken oaths of secrecy. They will literally pop up out of the audience and start participating.
"When done poorly, this kind of fey songwriting can irritate the hell out of you. But when done well, as Tape Stacks do, it charms the heaven out of you. Guitarist/vocalist Kara McPhillips’s winsome, throaty vocals and the group’s intimate, cheerfully bookish melodies are the antithesis of machismo-heavy rock, but if you like airy tunefulness and a little hushed majesty (see “Thunder Room”), Tape Stacks will make your cardigan-draped torso shudder with muted excitement." -Dave Segal
The English Beat
"Two-Tone ska legends the English Beat (known to Brits as simply the Beat) built a particularly danceable strain of late-'70s revivalist (or "second wave") ska, separated from contemporaries like the Specials and Madness with the easy, soulful charm of new wave troubadour Dave Wakeling." -Brittnie Fuller
Hail Santa Night Two
"If you didn’t get all the presents you wanted the first time around, you’re in luck, as there’s a second round of gift giving and this time your treats are no surprise." -Kevin Diers
Pictures with Santa
"The great thing about leather-daddy Santas is this: It doesn't matter whether you've been naughty or nice—you get a present either way. In fact, naughtiness is encouraged when Santa drops by the Cuff this Saturday night. The Seattle Men in Leather cordially invite you to pose for a photo with a hunky Santa, his elves, and a reindeer at a fundraiser for Seattle Area Support Groups." -Matt Baume
Cucci's Critter Barn
Hosted by Cucci Binaca, Critter Barn has already made itself known for some wild drag from the likes of Amoania, Hellen Tragedy, Mona Real, Menorah, and Cookie Couture.
Vermillion Makers Market
Enjoy live music and a full bar while you scope out beautiful paintings and jewelry from local artists and designers.
READINGS & TALKS
Speakeasy Series: Citizen
This speakeasy event hosted by Drew Santoro and Laura Aschoff at Velocity Dance Center will ask artists what it means to be socially engaged in 2015.
"Even at this late date, Gen and PTV3 are more concerned about altering your mind, liberating your body, and setting you on the path of creative resistance to the force of oppression than doing a greatest-hits set." -Dave Segal
Mimosas with Mama
Voted "Best Theatre Group of Western Washington" for two years running, drag diva Mama Tits hosts this drag cabaret/brunch buffet with a colorful collection of her cohorts, with the titular mimosas to go along, appropriately located at the very festive/in-the-basement Narwhal.
A Kid for Two Farthings
Scarecrow Video screens Carol Reed's twisted unicorn flick from 1955.