Top Things to Do This Weekend: May 22-25

Hugh Laurie serenades you, Lizzy: The Musical and Macbeth cover you in blood, and James Broughton incites you to "follow your own weird" (long before it was a Portland tagline), plus plenty more to fill a Memorial Weekend spent in town.

Edited by Aaron Scott By Portland Monthly Staff and Danielle Klenak May 22, 2014


Hugh Laurie
Thursday, Arlene Schnitzer
While other screen stars like to play at being musicians (we’re looking at you, Russell Crowe), Laurie is the real deal. You might know him as the title doctor on TV’s House, but he’s been singing the blues since 2011 with his Copper Bottom Band to great acclaim.

First Aid Kit
Thursday, Wonder Ballroom
From a lo-fi YouTube video covering Fleet Foxes’ “Tiger Mountain Peasant Song,” these young Swedish sisters have gone on to play alongside Fleet Foxes, Bright Eyes, and others, not to mention win myriad Nordic music awards, with their haunting, soulful, and sometime playful blend of folk, bluegrass, and a touch of country twang.

Ticket Alert

The Both, the new supergroup consisting of Aimee Mann and Ted Leo (and some terrific banter), will debut in Portland at the Aladdin on August 28. Tickets on sale Friday at 10 am.


Opens Friday, Shoebox Theater

Prophesies, witches, ambition, betrayal, murder: must be Shakespeare. Directed by company member Butch Flowers, Northwest Classical Theatre Company presents its third staging of the often bloody (and occasionally cursed) “Scottish play.”

Lizzie: The Musical
Opens Saturday, Portland Center Stage
We can’t believe there hasn’t already been a macabre rock musical about Ms. Borden, the infamous, ax-yielding poster child for ungrateful youth. Catch the West Coast premiere before it takes a whack at Broadway. Read more about it in our PoMo Picks.

Sunday's 7:30 pm show is "pay what you will." Tickets on sale Sunday at noon at the box office window only.

Private Lives
Thursday–Sunday, Venetian Theater

Passions reignite between a divorced couple during a chance meeting on a hotel balcony—while honeymooning with their new spouses—in this witty 1930s Noël Coward comedy about sex, love, adultery, and violence (the funny kind).


Dan Attoe
Opens Friday,
Attoe’s paintings, drawings, and neon sculptures explore working-class America—rural settings, Trans Ams, strippers—with lyrical, tongue-in-cheek empathy worthy of the best country songs. It’s all the more surprising, then, to learn that his biggest audiences are in Europe, where he’s shown across the continent. Despite being included in the 2007 Northwest Biennial at the Tacoma Art Museum, the 2008 Contemporary Northwest Art Awards at the Portland Art Museum, and a number of regional group shows, he has never had a solo show in the Northwest—until now. The opening night reception is Friday from 6-8 pm.

Watch a short noirish film about how Attoe makes a painting (and drives his chopper and wrestles Sasquatch) in our 5 Portland Artists with Global Followings story.

Memorial Weekend Gallery Grazing
Thursday–Sunday, Downtown
Staying in town this weekend? Head downtown to take in some of May's great gallery shows: wild fashion at the Art Institute, tourism gone wild at Upfor, aura paintings at Elizabeth Leach Gallery, a pilgrimage to Apparation Hill at Charles Hartmen Fine Art, and more.


Big Joy: The Adventures of James Broughton
Saturday, Hollywood Theatre
You might not know the name James Broughton, but chances are he's influenced many names that you do know. The pan-sexual poet/filmmaker was at the forefront of the counter culture movement and sexual revolution of the 1960s and 70s with movies that relished in the human body and sexuality and promoted the message to "follow your own weird" (long before it was a Portland tagline).

"I learned and stole a lot from James Broughton—see this movie," says Portland's own auteur Gus Van Sant.


Books & Talks

Joshua Ferris
Sunday, Powell’s

It’s a modern existential nightmare: someone sets up fake social media pages in your name, and then they turn out to be a much better version of you than you are. Such is the tale in this National Book Award finalist’s To Rise Again at a Decent Hour.

Classical Music

New Ideas in Music Competition
Friday, Alberta Rose Theatre
The only parameter in this national competition is to stretch the traditional form of string quartets. Members of the Oregon Symphony will perform works by the six finalists before a panel of judges to choose the winner.

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