Books & Talks
7:30 p.m. Sat, Powell's City of Books, FREE
Comedian and writer Phoebe Robinson, cohost of the 2 Dope Queens podcast, brings her unfiltered, real life-inspired musings to Powell’s to promote her new book, Everything’s Trash, But It’s Okay.
CLOSING BloodyVox: Deadline October
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, BodyVox Dance Center, $30–64
Fancy a dance with the dead? Dance-theater company BodyVox brings your fears to the stage with the latest iteration of this long-running, Halloween-inspired sensation, featuring new work by cofounders Jamey Hampton and Ashley Roland.
8 p.m. Thu–Sat, Lincoln Hall, $25–34
White Bird hosts acclaimed Australian choreographer Lucy Guerin, who brings her latest work, Split, to Lincoln Hall. Dance Informa magazine described the piece, which explores space and time via precise and often intense movement, as a “rare masterpiece of human struggle in less than an hour.”
2 p.m. Sun, Winningstad Theatre, $25–45
Based on Neil Gaiman’s short story “The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury,” and accompanied by Grammy-nominated pianist and composer Josh Rawlings’s original musical score, this performance by the newly formed Portland Tap Company explores memory and the task of passing down history.
8 p.m. Thu, Crystal Ballroom, $29.95–35
The seismically virtuosic saxophonist and composer is unlike anyone else in the jazz world, a superstar who’s able to move from divine collaborations with Kendrick Lamar to evocations of John Coltrane to the Coachella stage, all the while drawing raves from even the most hardened critics.
9 p.m. Thu, Mississippi Studios, $25–30
It’s been 20 years since Deserter’s Songs, an album of orchestral rock that soundtracked a late–’90s moment, as we teetered on the edge of a new century. Now the Buffalo band is back to commemorate “time, and all the long red lines.”
8:30 p.m. Fri, Polaris Hall, $10–15
The Portland quintet, known for big vocal harmonies and catchy handclaps, made a move toward synth grooves and electronic textures on their third and most recent release, Something to Ruin.
8 p.m. Sat, Mississippi Studios, $12–14
For her fourth album under the name the Weather Station, folk-pop musician Tamara Lindeman takes a spin with rock ‘n’ roll, resulting in a lyrically and sonically urgent work, described by NPR as “filled with feminist politics, kindred spirits, conversations and heartbreak, all well played as inspired gems.”
CLOSING Wakey Wakey
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, 2 p.m. Sun, Portland Playhouse, $25–39
Portland Playhouse kicks off the season with Will Eno’s tragicomedy, in which a dying, wheelchair-bound man reflects on mortality. Bleak? Possibly. But the New York Times also called it “glowingly dark, profoundly moving.”
CLOSING Fires in the Mirror
7:30 p.m. Thu–Fri, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sat–Sun, Artists Repertory Theatre, $20–38
Anna Deavere Smith was a Pulitzer finalist for this one-man play, based on a series of interviews the playwright conducted in the aftermath of the 1991 Crown Heights Riot, when tensions between the neighborhood’s African American and Jewish communities erupted into violence. Bobby Bermea directs Seth Rue in this Profile Theatre production.
7:30 p.m. Thu–Fri, 2 p.m. Sat–Sun, Brunish Theatre, $36–45
Based not-so-secretly on Diana Ross and the Supremes, this Tony- and Grammy-winning musical, presented here by Stumptown Stages, follows a trio of young, black female singers and their managers as they bring Motown into the mainstream.
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, 2 p.m. Sun, Milagro Theatre, $10–40
When a young bride’s imagination is stolen by an alebrije (fantastical creature), what's her groom to do? The answer: meld present-day San Luis Potosí, 1936 Xochimilco, and the jungly afterlife. This brand-new, bilingual show—written and directed by Georgina Escobar, with original music by Luis Guerra—is Milagro's annual Día de los Muertos production and serves as the kickoff to the theater company's 35th season.
OPENING A Map of Virtue
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, 2 p.m. Sun, Shoebox Theater, $5–20
The scrappy Theatre Vertigo takes on Erin Courtney’s experimental, Obie Award-winning mystery, which begins with a Hitchcock-worthy bird attack and only gets more terrifying from there.
OPENING TseSho?/What’s That?
7:30 p.m. Fri–Sat, Paris Theater, $15–39
Sure, you could rail against fake news on Twitter. Or, if you’re an avant-garde Ukrainian troupe Teatr-Pralnia (Laundry Theater), you could explore the phenomenon via boisterous puppet cabaret. The group unites puppetry, poetry, social media feeds, and live music to comment on our modern-day mess.
8 p.m. Sat, PICA, pay-what-you-will
Cherdonna Shinatra is the drag identity of Jody Kuehner, a female-bodied, female-identified Seattle dance artist who embraces clownishness: garish eye makeup, overdrawn lips, fumbling and bumbling movements. In Clock That Mug or Dusted, she pays homage to feminist performance art and the idea of the body as a canvas. (Birthday cake also plays a role.)
10 p.m. Sat, Artists Repertory Theatre, pay-what-you-will
Portland actor and singer-songwriter Renée Muzquiz hosts a “resistance variety show,” bringing together a slew of local artists from drag, music, and comedy for a genre-busting evening. The goal, Muzquiz says, is to “focus on the intimate humor, joys, and vulnerabilities of living on the LGBTQIA+ spectrum.”
10 a.m.–5 p.m. Sat–Sun, various locations, FREE
More than 100 local artists offer a ground-level view of their work, inviting Portlanders into their studios to see them throw pottery, hammer metal into delicate jewelry, or brush paint onto canvas.
OPENING Modern American Realism
10 a.m.–5 p.m. Sat–Sun, Portland Art Museum, $20
See the arc of the century and modern realist representations of a changing America in this wide-ranging exhibit—think Isabel Bishop, Paul Cadmus, Edward Hopper, Jacob Lawrence—on loan from the Smithsonian.