9 p.m. Fri, Doug Fir Lounge, $17–20
The 78-year-old Ural Thomas leads a seven-man soul and funk band that seamlessly blends his own decades-old songs with new material in famously emotional, dance-packed live shows. This fall, they released their first full-length album after six years together. Neo-soul singer Blossom, a star in her own right, opens. For more on both artists, check out our (very stylish) feature.
9 p.m. Fri, Mississippi Studios, $18–20
If you’ve caught this high-energy soul funk phenomenon live before, you already get it: Sarah Clarke’s swooping, textured vocals, backed by six full-time band members, including a saxophonist, trumpeter, and guitarist/MC; and the jazzy-rocking-hip-hop genre mash-up that ensues.
7:30 p.m. Thu–Fri, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sat–Sun, Artists Repertory Theatre, $30–60
Last season, Artists Rep staged Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’s An Octoroon, which riffed on an antebellum melodrama. The company returns with another show by the wildly talented writer, this one inspired by a 15th-century morality play about death and Christian salvation, with roles at each performance assigned by a lottery (oh, the suspense!).
CLOSING A Christmas Memory/Winter Song
7:30 p.m. Fri, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sat, 2 p.m. Sun, The Armory, $25–62
It’s fruitcake weather, so Truman Capote’s classic tale seems an apt addition to the holiday calendar. Portland Center Stage pairs it with a cycle of seasonal songs created by Merideth Kay Clark (a.k.a. Elphaba in the first touring production of Wicked) and PCS production associate Brandon Woolley.
CLOSING A Christmas Carol
7 p.m. Thu–Sat, Portland Playhouse, $19–30
For the sixth year running, Portland Playhouse brings back its kicky, song-filled take on the Dickens classic.
CLOSING In Transit
Noon–5 p.m. Thu–Sun, Blue Sky Gallery, FREE
Curated by Peggy Sue Amison, In Transit explores the challenges of identity and citizenship through the lens of mass migration. The exhibit reflects on both the physiological and psychological aspects of forced migration, and features work from George Awde, Daniel Castro Garcia, Gohar Dashti, Tanya Habjouqa, and Stefanie Zofia Schulz.
CLOSING Ty Ennis
Noon–6 p.m. Thu–Sun, Nationale, FREE
For his third solo exhibition at Nationale, The Marble Fountain, the Portland artist reflects on nostalgia and aging via mostly black-and-white paintings, characterized by loose brushwork and a distinct sense of melancholy.
10 a.m.–8 p.m. Thu–Fri, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Sat–Sun, Portland Art Museum, $20
Curated by PAM’s Maribeth Graybill, this exhibit showcases Japanese poetry and the visual form it’s taken throughout the centuries. Expect to see a rare fragment of a Buddhist sutra, a painting of an immortal summoning his dragon, and countless meditations on nature.
New Year's Eve
Yes, this isn't strictly the weekend, but if you're looking for some sweet sounds to see off 2018, we've rounded up the hottest musical tickets in one place right here. Auld lang syne, anyone?