PoMo Picks

Top Things to Do This Weekend: July 28–31

From a Harry Potter midnight release party to a free Ron Funches show to a trio of brand-spankin'-new plays, July is going out with gusto.

By Rebecca Jacobson July 28, 2016

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On Thursday, onetime local Ron Funches headlines a weed website-sponsored comedy show.


Erica Westly
7:30 p.m. Thursday, Powell's Books on Hawthorne, FREE
In Fastpitch, Westly takes on the history of softball, from its invention in 1887 to its transformation as a "women's version" of baseball.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Midnight Release Party
12:01 a.m. Sunday, Powell's City of Books, Powell's Books on Hawthorne, and Powell's Cedar Hills, FREE
Break out the broomsticks and the butterbeer: the script to the play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, which just opened in London, goes on sale at midnight tonight. In the new play, Harry is a 37-year-old Ministry of Magic drudge, worn out at work and grappling with fatherhood. 


Leafly Comedy Tour: Ron Funches
8 p.m. Thursday, Wonder Ballroom, FREE
Yes, this is a free comedy show featuring the weed-loving, ever-giggly, formerly local Ron Funches, organized by weed website Leafly. (The tour's official strain is Laughing Buddha, if you were curious—or wanted to pregame properly.) 


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This, on a downtown rooftop.

Top Down Rooftop Cinema
9 p.m. Thursday, Hotel deLuxe
As far as parking garages go, Hotel deLuxe’s rooftop lot is pretty swish, and the panoramic views pair well with the NW Film Center’s eclectic alfresco selections. Tonight is Spike Lee’s groundbreaking first feature, She’s Gotta Have It, an atypical rom-com about a young Brooklynite woman juggling three male lovers.

Flicks on the Bricks
7 p.m. Friday, Pioneer Courthouse Square, FREE
Portland’s living room gets extra cozy every summer, with Friday-night flicks played on a gargantuan inflatable screen. Tonight: Disney classic Aladdin. Bring a pillow and snacks for maximum chill vibes.

48 Hour Film Project
6 p.m. Friday, Jupiter Hotel
The challenge: write, shoot, edit, and turn in your best short film in 48 hours. Winners of the Portland chapter of 48 Hour Film Project’s annual contest go on to compete in the national Filmapalooza, and from there might even earn a spot at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival. Go ahead and start picturing your life as the new Orson Welles. Things kick off Friday evening, and films are due by 7:30 p.m. Sunday. They'll be screened at the Hollywood Theatre Wednesday–Thursday, August 3–4.


CLOSING Chamber Music Northwest Summer Festival
Various times and locations Thursday–Sunday
In its 46th year, the chamber music extravaganza returns to the halls of Reed and Portland State with a celebration of Beethoven, including performances of all 16 of the composer’s string quartets. 

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Born and raised in the Windy City.

BJ the Chicago Kid
9 p.m. Thursday, Star Theater
The smooth-voiced, gospel-influenced singer has worked with Chance the Rapper, Kendrick Lamar, and Kanye West—keep your eye on this Windy City-raised kid.

Marisa Anderson
7 p.m. Friday, Revolution Hall Roof Deck
The Portland guitarist considers her new album, Into the Light, an imagined soundtrack to a sci-fi Western set in the Sonoran Desert. NPR says it's underpinned by "a celestial twang." 

Modest Mouse
7 p.m. Sunday, Moda Center
Last summer, Modest Mouse front man Isaac Brock told the Polish press that Portland is “a collection of human turds.” This summer, thank him for doing his part to stem the flow of transplants to our fair city.


Various times Friday–Sunday, Gerding Theater
The crush of open-air Shakespeare is fine, but sometimes we crave theater written sometime after the 1600s. Portland Center Stage’s annual playwriting festival delivers, with staged readings of three fresh plays by emerging playwrights. This year’s offerings: a magical realism–inflected tale of environmental activists in Mexico; an investigation of family bonds; and an unlikely encounter between a lost young woman and two missionaries.

CLOSING Weekend at Bernie’s
8 p.m. Friday–Saturday, Siren Theater
A point will come, we presume, when Portland performers will have created a stage version for every ’80s cult classic out there (Road House? Check! The Lost Boys? Check!). This adaptation of 1989′s slapstick fave—in which two numbskulls carry around their dead boss’ body, trying to convince everyone he’s still alive—first hit the stage in 2013, to gleeful reviews, and now it’s back for a summertime run.

The Italian Girl in Algiers
7:30 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Sunday, Newmark Theatre
New scenery and costumes dress up Rossini’s madcap comedy of shipwreck, puffed-up chieftains, and nimble-witted women. For more, check out our Q&A with Ashraf Sewailam, who plays narcissistic ruler Mustafa.

Hands Up
7:30 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Sunday, Artists Repertory Theatre, SOLD OUT

In 2014, the New Black Fest—a New York nonprofit that supports new work by black playwrights—organized the first performance of Hands Up in response to the police shootings of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. The presentation, which has traveled across the nation, showcases the work of emerging black playwrights from diverse backgrounds in a series of 10- to 15-minute monologues. Two years on, as the US continues to reel from the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile (as well as the tragedy in Dallas), the issues addressed in Hands Up feel more relevant than ever. Plus: we asked five of the seven playwrights for their take on why this is essential viewing.


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The Flight of the Fantail is up at Waterstone Gallery.

CLOSING R. Keaney Rathbun
11 a.m.–5:30 p.m. Thursday–Saturday and 11 a.m.–4 p.m. Sunday, Waterstone Gallery, FREE
In Memory and Stone, Rathbun draws from his time in Paris, New Zealand, and the Southern Highlands of Australia to create vibrant bas-relief carvings.

CLOSING Recent Grads
11 a.m.–5 p.m. Thursday–Saturday, Blackfish Gallery, FREE
For the 21st year, Blackfish offers a glimpse into the future of our art scene, showcasing work by 30 just-minted BFA and MFA graduates of Oregon art schools.

Converge 45
Friday–Sunday, various locations
Three days of gallery viewings, panel conversations, tours, and parties, this new event sets out to showcase both local and out-of-town work. A weekend pass will set you back a whopping $600, but some events are individually ticketed, and most gallery viewings are free.

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