Editor's Picks

Top Things to Do This Weekend: Apr 16–19

It's Obama! (Ok, Tommy Davidson.) And! Nacho Duato, David Hockney, Prokofiev, and some very naughty puppets.

By Ramona DeNies April 16, 2015

Photo credit: Tommy Davidson


Tommy Davidson
Thursday at 8 pm, Friday at 7:30 pm, Saturday at 10 pm, Helium Comedy Club
In Living Color launched Davidson into the comedy stratosphere, from stand-up to Disney’s The Proud Family and Adult Swim’s current top show, Black Dynamite. Word is he’s even working on a biopic about Sammy Davis Jr., one of the impressions for which he’s famous. (You might also expect “guest appearances” by President Obama and Michael Jackson.)


OPENING David Hockney: A Rake's Progress
Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm, Portland Art Museum
In 1975, superstar Brit painter David Hockney stunned the art, music, and theater worlds with his boldly modern stage and costume design for a local production of A Rake’s Progress—Igor Stravinsky’s only full-length opera. See the evolution of Hockney’s vision from original etchings to scale models (exhibition runs through Aug 2).


Nacho Duato's Rassemblement premieres tonight. Photo Credit: OBT.

Oregon Ballet Theatre: Impact
Thursday–Saturday at 7:30 pm, Saturday & Sunday at 2 pm, Newmark Theatre
OBT turns 25 this year; to celebrate its role as an international tastemaker, the company explores notions of “impact” with work by Spanish choreographer Nacho Duato as well as a world premiere from New York “master choreographer” Darrell Grand Moultrie (who worked with Beyoncé on her Mrs. Carter tour).  


Martinu Quartet: Celebrate Svoboda!
Thursday & Friday at 7:30 pm, Lincoln Hall
This celebrated Czech quartet specializes in the music of Czech composers, including a long-term project of recording the complete quartet works of one Tomáš Svoboda, one of the country’s leading modern composers, who just so happens to now call Oregon home. They will perform his works along with those of his countrymen. 

Bey n' Bad Blood: true love?

Yasiin Bey and Bad Brains
Friday at 9 pm, Roseland Theater
In an apparently random turn of events that will no doubt prove a match made in heaven, hip-hopper Yasiin Bey (formerly known as Mos Def) joins forces on stage with reggae punks Bad Brains as part of this year’s Soul’d Out festival. 
So how did an activist rapper end up in a musical collaboration with a gang of hardcore Rastas? We've got the love story here

Neko Case
Friday & Saturday at 8 pm, Revolution Hall
Revolution Hall had a soft opening in February, but this is the concert that formally launches the former high school auditorium as a star-worthy venue. Celebrate Record Store Day (look it up!) with this show celebrating the reissue of Case’s 2006 album, Fox Confessor Brings the Flood

Death on the Downbeat
Saturday at 8 pm, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
The unpopular visiting conductor has been murdered, and people are looking over their shoulders. This special event combines murder mystery and classic film music, including selections from Shostakovich, Rózsa, Gounod, and Prokofiev, and the result will have something for music and movie lovers of all ages.

Peter and the Wolf
Sunday at 2 pm, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
The Oregon Symphony continues its Kids Series with Prokofiev’s 1936 tale, written originally for the Central Children’s Theatre in Moscow. The orchestral tale of Peter’s bravery and wit is a familiar dish, but one newly spiced by Magic Circle Mime, who perform along with the symphony. 


The original Baltimore Orioles: meet one feisty young lady. Soul Harmony opens this weekend. Photo credit: Stumptown Stages,

OPENING Soul Harmony: The Story of Deborah Chessler, Sonny Til, and The Orioles
Thursday–Saturday at 7:30 pm, Saturday & Sunday at 2 pm, Brunish Hall
This musical theater world premiere from Stumptown Stages explores the origins of American Rhythm & Blues—and how a Jewish woman and a black male vocal group from Baltimore partnered up in 1940s America to create music that challenged segregation. Read our chat with rock critic Greil Marcus on why that woman, Deborah Chessler, is worth an evening of your time.

The Price
Thursday–Sunday at 7:30 pm, Sunday at 2 pm, Artists Repertory Theatre
Arthur Miller’s 1968 play centers on that painful but necessary process of dealing with a loved one’s material belongings after they have died. Directed by Adriana Baer, the production explores diverse notions of value and assessment in a year that would mark the 100th birthday of the Pulitzer-winning New York playwright. Read our review here.

"More fun than a bag of cats"—Playtime with Pete and Randy. Image credit: Signal Light Puppet Theatre.

Signal Light Puppet Theatre: Playtime with Pete and Randy
Friday & Saturday at 8 pm, Imago Theatre
Puppet shows aren’t just for kids anymore. With a vibe that Signal Light describes as “Muppets meet Ren & Stimpy,” these manhandled characters have darkly humorous adventures involving cat bioengineering, gun wounds to the face, and the end of the world. Presented by Tears of Joy Theatre.

Thursday–Sunday at 7:30 pm, Saturday & Sunday at 2 pm, Portland Center Stage
Edmond Rostand's Cyrano de Bergerac gets a facelift (a new translation and slicked-up verse sensibilities—think slam poetry) from playwright Michael Hollinger with an assist from Aaron Posner. Seattle's Andrew McGinn plays the large-beaked lover of Roxane (Jen Taylor). Warning: according to PCS, the production "contains heart-stopping swordplay and swoon-inducing romance." Read our review here.

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