Top Things to Do This Weekend: June 16–19

Avant-garde tap dance, porch music in Irvington, the funniest Canadian you've never heard of, a big-voiced baritone at Revolution Hall, and everything for Pride—the days are long and the weekend is full.

By Rebecca Jacobson, Ramona DeNies, and Lisa Dunn June 16, 2016

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On at the Risk/Reward Festival: Looking for Tiger Lily with drag clown Carla Rossi, a.k.a. Anthony Hudson.

Image: Gia Goodrich


7:30 p.m. Thursday, Zidell Yards
In a citywide celebration of Portland’s vibrant LGBTQ community, Portland Monthly takes over Zidell Yards, in the South Waterfront, for the official Pride kickoff party. 
This year, in addition to the kick-ass dance party—led by JD Samson (formally of Le Tigre) and hip-hop artist Cazwell—we’ll launch the evening with a fashion show featuring new fall styles from WildfangBryce BlackV Throngrivong, and Brady Lange. The event benefits three remarkable nonprofit organizations: Basic Rights OregonLove Wins, and the Bus Project. For more, check out our preview.

Portland Pride Festival
Various times Saturday–Sunday, various locations
In the wake of Orlando, the annual LBGTQ fest—now in its 41st year—feels more important than ever. Thursday brings a vigil at Q Center and stand-up comedy at the Siren Theater, while the always raucous parade takes over downtown streets on Sunday. Plus: trans pride and dyke marches on Saturday, followed by a long night of dancing and carousing at Gaylabration.


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Mary Roach's new books digs into caffeinated meat, stink bombs, and diarrhea.

Image: Jen Siska

Mary Roach
7:30 p.m. Thursday, Powell's City of Books, FREE
With her humorous, idiosyncratic approach to bodily subjects—including cadavers, sex, and the digestive system—Roach is the nonscientist’s science writer. Her brand-new volume is Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War.

Bill McKibben
7:30 p.m. Thursday, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
The renowned environmental activist–author of a dozen books and founder of 350.org, a group that challenges fossil fuel dependence–hits the Schnitz with a talk titled “Climate Futures: Beyond Paris.” 

Pauls Toutonghi
7:30 p.m. Friday, Powell's City of Books, FREE
The Lewis and Clark professor has a new book, Dog Gone, which tells the true story of a lost golden retriever named Gonker.

Poetry Press Week
7:30 p.m. Friday–Saturday, Disjecta
The reading event turns five, with two nights of poetry from Northwest writers. Each evening features a different lineup, with the poets—including Zachary Schomburg, Stephanie Adams-Santos, Shayla Lawson, and Trevino L. Brings Plenty—presenting new work. 

Dean Strang and Jerry Buting
8 p.m. Sunday, Newmark Theatre
The defense attorneys from that twisty little Netflix documentary series—Making a Murderer, maybe you’ve heard of it?—embark on a North American tour to discuss the Steven Avery case and the weaknesses of the criminal justice system in the US.


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Jon Dore is one funny Canadian.

Jon Dore
7:30 and 10 p.m. Friday–Saturday, Helium Comedy Club
“I’m going to get drunk tonight, because tonight is a day of the week.” So says Canadian stand-up Jon Dore, one of the funniest comedians you’ve never heard of. Dore passes through Portland every so often, and he gets better every time: his comedy borders on the absurd, but his understated style guarantees that his hyperbolic language lands every time.

The Liberators
7:30 p.m. Saturday, Siren Theater
If you haven't seen this long-running local improv troupe, you should really get on that—they're some of the funniest folks in town.


Jewish Film Festival
Various times Thursday–Sunday, NW Film Center's Whitsell Auditorium
In its 24th year, the annual showcase of Jewish cinema features a documentary about Israeli cuisine, a coming-of-age comedy about a lovelorn German-Jewish boy, and a stylish French thriller about the search for Nazi-looted paintings.


Gregory Porter
8 p.m. Thursday, Revolution Hall
With a minister for a mother, Porter grew up singing in church in Bakersfield, California. He’s now a soulful, big-voiced baritone who took home a Grammy in 2014 for best jazz vocal album.

What the Festival
Friday–Monday, Wolf Run Ranch, Dufur
The “full-immersion boutique experience” of music, art, motivational talks, and more is back with what might be the best lineup yet. Thievery Corporation and Bonobo headline, and local EDM artists will play sets throughout the four-day weekend. For more, check out our Q&A with the festival's founders.

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These two Aussies make gorgeous music together.

9 p.m. Friday, Doug Fir Lounge
The Australian-bred duo has been making achingly beautiful modern folk since 1999, but only in 2014 did they break onto the international scene with Passerby, a gentle album that resonates long after its final notes have faded.

Porch Music 4.0
3 p.m. Saturday, Irvington Neighborhood
Five porches and five previews of Third Angle New Music’s upcoming season, Porch Music 4.0 promises some of the “roguish programming” for which Third Angle is known—and a closer look at some of the beautiful homes of the Irvington neighborhood.


Risk/Reward Festival of New Performance
7:30 p.m. Friday–Saturday and 5 p.m. Sunday, Artists Repertory Theatre
The phrase “performance art” can turn off even the most seasoned culture vultures. That’s why Risk/Reward is such a good model: a handful of new, genre-blurring performances, each capped at 20 minutes, so if something’s not your bag, at least it’ll be over quickly. Up this year: avant tap dance, a “multimedia meditation session,” and Looking for Tiger Lily, an exploration of queerness, ancestral storytelling, and white appropriation by Portland drag clown Carla Rossi, a.k.a. Anthony Hudson, who will at times—gasp!—play himself.

OPENING Procedures for Saying No
8 p.m. Thursday–Saturday and 2 and 8 p.m. Sunday, Shaking the Tree
Portland Experimental Theatre Ensemble premieres a show loosely inspired by “Bartleby, the Scrivener,” Herman Melville’s short story about a law clerk who suddenly stops working—but never leaves the office.

CLOSING Francesca, Isabella & Margarita on a Cloud
7:30 p.m. Thursday–Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, Imago Theatre
In this original, semi-linear work, Imago’s Carol Triffle throws us into the weird and wobbly world of Bridget, a brilliant but adrift young woman. 

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Mermaids! Mermen! Merpeople!

Image: Brud Giles

CLOSING Peter and the Starcatcher
7:30 p.m. Thursday–Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, Portland Playhouse
Humorist Dave Barry’s take on the Lost Boys skips the stardust for a coming-of-age tale equal parts misfit and swashbuckler.

CLOSING A Streetcar Named Desire
7:30 p.m. Thursday–Friday and 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Gerding Theater
Demetrius Grosse and Deidrie Henry, both from NBC’s Game of Silence, star in Tennessee Williams’s Southern potboiler.

CLOSING The Skin of Our Teeth
7:30 p.m. Thursday–Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, Artists Repertory Theatre
Thornton Wilder’s millennium-spanning family saga starts with all-American Cain throwing rocks, then lasts a few ice ages.


Reactive Matters
10 a.m.–10:30 p.m. Thursday and 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Friday–Saturday, Newspace Center for Photography, FREE
Photographers Jeremy Bolen, Abbey Hepner, and Shimpei Takeda dig into all things nuclear: nuclear energy, nuclear weapons, nuclear disasters.

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Jemima Wyman's Drone Evasion Dome at CARPA.

CARPA: Craft Advanced Research Projects Agency
11 am–6 pm Thursday–Saturday, Museum of Contemporary Craft
This (spoofy) state agency—featuring curators/officers Sara Clugage, Carole Lung, and Otto Von Busch—is dedicated to maintaining the “technological superiority of US artisans.”

David Selleck and Mandy Stigant
11 a.m.–5 p.m. Thursday–Saturday, Blackfish Gallery, FREE
In Couch Painting, Selleck shows collage drawings, all of which he creates in 30 minutes—vivid, playful works in which he riffs on advertisements, news, and other images he consumes on an average day. In Vary Plenty, Stigant has created functional ceramics that reflect Portland’s DIY obsession: think tea sets, pickling crocks, and baskets.

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