Top Things to Do This Weekend: Mar 14–17
Books & Talks
7:30 p.m. Thu, Powell's City of Books, FREE
A village near a giant shoe, talking dolls, and a community that insists on upholding financial inequality—Helen Oyeyemi combines folkloric allusions and modern storytelling in her eighth book, Gingerbread, a story of three generations of women and a passed-down gingerbread recipe.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
7:30 p.m. Thu, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, SOLD OUT
The Nigerian writer—she penned the scorching Americanah and the TedX talk-turned-book We Should All Be Feminists, among other works—brings her vital intelligence to the Schnitz for the county library’s Everybody Reads program.
7:30 p.m. Sun, Powell's City of Books, FREE
The local author of My Abandonment (which was adapted into the film Leave No Trace, about the real-life father and daughter who lived in Forest Park) presents his latest work of autobiographical fiction, The Night Swimmers, a tale of the mysterious relationship between a young man and a widow who meet in the evening to swim in Lake Michigan.
8 p.m. Sat, Keller Auditorium, $50–150
The irreverent comedic gem, who stole scenes from her high-wattage costars in 2017’s Girls Trip, brings her full-body funnies to town on her She Ready tour.
8 p.m. Thu–Sat, 5 p.m. Sun, Performance Works NW, $12–20
In the latest solo dance work by Portland mainstay Linda Austin, she asks the viewer to consider the aging body. As Austin often does, she’ll incorporate the use of everyday items in her performation, from spools of thread to rocks to a lamp she’ll wear on her body.
8:30 p.m. Thu, Crystal Ballroom, $33–36
On seventh album Art of Doubt, Canadian rock quartet Metric combines front woman Emily Haines’s shimmery vocals with the glittery-punk riffs of guitarist James Shaw. With Joshua Winstead on bass and Joules Scott-Keyon on drums, the group delivers synth-pop melodies and lyrics of protest.
Better Oblivion Community Center
9 p.m. Sat, Doug Fir Lounge, SOLD OUT
Phoebe Bridgers and Conor Oberst unite as Better Oblivion Community Center, with an eponymous debut album that mixes laidback vocals, folk-rock vibes, and dark lyrics.
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, 2 p.m. Sun, Portland Playhouse, $19–75
Playwright Regina Taylor based this musical on a photos of African American women in their church hats, transforming those dramatic images into a story of a young woman who leaves Brooklyn for South Carolina after a family tragedy. Portland Playhouse takes on the gospel-fueled show, which the New York Times called “delightfully celebratory.”
7:30 p.m. Fri–Sat, 2 p.m. Sun, CoHo Theater, $25–45
Chilean dramatist Guillermo Calderón’s first English-language work, presented here by Third Rail, is a twisty play-within-a-play about a troupe of American actors staging a Syrian soap opera—raising thorny questions about art, politics, and the limits of understanding.
CLOSING Tragedy: A Tragedy
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, Back Door Theater, pay-what-you-will
Defunkt presents Will Eno’s satire of the television news biz, which follows a team of journalists on a day when the sun doesn’t rise. Literally. (How’s that for a metaphor, folks?)
CLOSING Leonard Cohen Is Dead
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, Imago Theatre, $15–20
Apologies to fans of Leonard Cohen—Jerry Mouawad’s latest original work has nothing to do with the legendary musician. Instead, the Imago cofounder draws inspiration from sci-fi, Reservoir Dogs, and Jean Genet’s Splendid’s (a police drama that was never staged in the French writer’s lifetime). Mouawad, ever the theatrical iconoclast, promises a kinetic, visceral world in which “crime is acceptable and dead singers lead the world.”
CLOSING Made to Dance in Burning Buildings
7:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, Shaking the Tree, $10–30
Playwright and actor Anya Pearson’s Made to Dance in Burning Buildings is a vivid choreopoem that combines biting and lyrical spoken word with visceral, almost brutal contemporary dance. It’s the story of a young girl, raped by her boyfriend’s friends, who fractures into five women representing different facets of her personality to cope with posttraumatic stress. For more, check out our story on the show.
10:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m. Thu–Sat, Froelick Gallery, FREE
The Washington-raised, Brooklyn-based painter’s latest exhibit, Hand to Hand, mashes up ancient Greek and Roman imagery with modern symbols of technology and consumerism—think classical figures in togas being stormed by Pringles cans and shopping carts and plastic flamingos, or Prometheus juxtaposed with a car on fire. Says Scharbach in an artist’s statement: “I believe our intensely capitalistic techno-industrial civilization is poised on the brink of the greatest collapse in human history.”
CLOSING Think of Me
11 a.m.–5 p.m. Thu–Sat, Adams & Ollman, FREE
This group exhibition explores the meaning of keepsakes and mementos, with work from artists Anthony Campuzano, Felipe Jesus Consalvos, Paul Lee, Em Rooney, and Dennis Witkin. Expect both 2-D and 3-D pieces, ranging from abstract drawings to folk-art collages to mise-en-scène displays.