Top Things to Do This Weekend: Nov 9–12
Books & Talks
9 a.m.–6 p.m. Sat, various venues, $15–18
More than 100 authors and several thousand readers coalesce around the South Park Blocks again for Portland’s one-day literary festival, with local authors such as Omar El Akkad and Lidia Yuknavitch slated alongside their acclaimed national counterparts—Pulitzer-winning novelist Jeffrey Eugenides, New Yorker staff writer Adam Gopnik, poet Morgan Parker, and National Book Award winner Ta-Nehisi Coates, among others. We asked a few participating authors who they're most excited to see—peep their picks here.
8 p.m. Thu–Sun, Performance Works NorthWest, $12–15
Portlander Allie Hankins and San Franciscan Rachael Dichter collaborate on a new dance piece, which Hankins—known for canny, charismatic performance art as well as avant-garde aerobics—promises will be “crude, tense, funny, surreal.”
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, Polaris Dance Theatre, $17.50–25
Polaris Dance Theatre artistic director Robert Guitron choreographs a tribute to three late greats—Prince, David Bowie, and Leonard Cohen—that reflects on storytelling and the power of art.
Hump Film Festival
Various times thru Sat, Revolution Hall, $20–25
The sex-positive film festival returns for its 13th year, with amateur porn—all films are five minutes or less—celebrating sexuality in all shades, shapes, and sizes.
8 p.m. Thu, Wonder Ballroom, SOLD OUT
Independence is the name of this Righteous Babe’s game: the folk star builds on more than 20 years (and as many albums) of self-produced success.
Glass Within Reach
7:30 p.m. Fri–Sat, Design Within Reach, $10–35
Third Angle New Music celebrates composer Philip Glass’s 80th birthday with a concert dedicated to Glass’s music for strings, to be performed in mod furniture store Design Within Reach.
7 p.m. Sat, Mississippi Studios, $8–10
Rebecca Marie Miller and Joy Pearson of local folk duo Lenore make sweet, fierce harmonies—simultaneously tender and gut-wrenching. We chatted with the two in July.
OPENING Mojada: A Medea in Los Angeles
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sun, Gerding Theater, $25–65
Playwright Luis Alfaro transplants Euripides’ drama to Los Angeles, with Medea—wronged wife turned vengeful murderer—now an undocumented Mexican immigrant working as a seamstress. After a six-month stint at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, where Alfaro is currently resident playwright, the production arrives at Portland Center Stage.
7:30 p.m. Fri–Sat, 2 p.m. Sun (family-friendly), Triangle Productions, $8–50
Do you dig bicycles, music, and poetry? Then pedal on over to Spin, a show created by Canadian theater artist, songwriter, and poet Evalyn Parry that stars the bicycle as muse, musical instrument, and agent of social change. Plus, get into the mood by biking to the show with groups organized by the Street Trust and Gladys Bikes.
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sun, Back Door Theater, $20 suggested
Defunkt presents Terry Johnson’s 1982 play, which imagines a collision between four characters—they’re not named explicitly, but they’re basically Albert Einstein, Marilyn Monroe, Joe DiMaggio, and Joseph McCarthy—in a hotel room in 1953. Discussions on the universe and the meaning of life ensue.
11 a.m.–6 p.m. Thu–Sat, 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Sun, Ampersand Gallery, FREE
When Ellen McFadden first started working as a freelance graphic designer, precision was everything. “You had to be a walking line,” she recalls of the pre-computer need for accuracy, when designers worked without digital grids and drawing a straight line was a physical process. Born in 1928, the Portlander—a “creative” who predates the title—has followed a pioneering graphic design career with a new one in painting, her exactitude visible in meticulously arranged, brightly hued compositions. For more, check out our Q&A with McFadden.
Animating Life: The Art, Science, and Wonder of Laika
10 a.m.–8 p.m. Thu–Fri, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Sat–Sun, Portland Art Museum, $19.99
The pioneers of stop-motion animation—responsible for Coraline, ParaNorman, and Kubo and the Two Strings—get a star turn in this major Portland Art Museum exhibit. Expect puppets and props, plus behind-the-scenes photos, film clips, and a slew of screenings.
Siren Nation Festival
Various times thru Nov 13, various venues, prices vary
From musicians to comedians to painters, women in the arts take the spotlight in this 11th annual festival. Musical performers include powerhouse hip-hop star Lizzo and folk duo Jolie Holland and Sam Parton. Also on: a stacked comedy showcase, an art and craft sale, and a variety of workshops and panels. Check the website for full schedule and ticketing info.