Three dots, nine items, no waiting

Olga Sanchez departs, Third Rail moves, Center Stage goes Off-Broadway, Belluschi Pavilion opens, more!

Ah, the THREE DOT column, perfect for days when the news has accumulated, overfilling a very large bin on a desk and most of a brain pan. You simply pour it out as quickly as possible, maybe with just a tiny bit of editorializing, in as jaunty a way as you can muster. Of course, there’s more to be said about every single item!

Olga Sanchez, the artistic director of Milagro for the past 12 very productive and accomplished years, has given her notice and will drive down I-5 in the fall to take up the rigors of the University of Oregon’s Ph.D. program in theater. The Break won’t be complete: Expect her back to direct the world premiere of Beautiful North by Karen Zacarías  next season…The other top-of-the-fold (while we’re using old newspaper jargon like “three dot column”) item: Third Rail Repertory Theatre has found a new home for its 10th anniversary season at Imago, just south of Burnside on Eighth Avenue, another example of creative house-sharing in the city…And Third Rail announced its new season, four plays (The Angry Brigade, Or, Mr. Kolpert, and The New Electric Ballroom) that sound eminently Third Railish—darkly comic, off-kilter, even “titillating,” as the press release suggests. A fifth Wild Card play will be directed by Imago’s Jerry Mouawad, about which more later.

Dominic Rains as Rashid and Alia Attallah as Leila in the world premiere of "Threesome," through March 8, 2015 at Portland Center Stage. Dominic Rains as Rashid and Alia Attallah as Leila in the world premiere of "Threesome," through March 8, 2015 at Portland Center Stage.  Photo: Patrick Weishampel/BLANKEYE.

Dominic Rains and Ali Attallah in “Threesome”/Photo Patrick Weishampel

I loved Molly Gloss‘s poetic response to the Elias Quartet performance of Mozart’s String Quartet No. 19 in C Major at Friends of Chamber Music, a poem that responds to Mozart’s very modern dissonance. Here’s a little taste: “a strange wailing disarray even to my modern ear/that heavy tread of cello, insistent yowl of violin, nothingness/unfolding into tortured shifting meaninglessness”…In January, Chris Coleman directed the Portland Center Stage/ACT world premiere production of  Yussef El Guindi’s Threesomeand that play, with the original cast intact (Alia Attallah (Leila), Dominic Rains (Rashid) and Quinn Franzen (Doug)) moves right along to old Off-Broadway in New York, opening at the 59E59 Theaters in July, which would deserve a heart congratulations to all, if we were that sort of three dot column…Just in case you forgot, earlier this month, Center Stage received a massive ($770,000 now, topping out at more than a million later, most likely) grant from The Wallace Foundation to fund a new audiences initiative, including a new play series, Northwest Stories, created to bring stories about the Northwest and/or by Northwest writers to the stage.

The Belluschi Pavilion at Marylhurst University.

The Belluschi Pavilion at Marylhurst University.

ArtsWatch friend and contributor Dmae Roberts has launched Theatre Diaspora, the city’s first Asian America/Pacific Islander theater company, building on the success of a reading of an early David Henry Hwang play at Portland Center Stage last year, The Dance and the Railroad. She writes about it at the Asian Reporter…My very favorite national music critic/historian these days is the essential New Yorker writer Alex “The Rest Is Noise” Ross, so I’ve been looking forward to his “lecture-demo” with Third Angle, “Hearing Voices,” with the greatest anticipation: It starts at 7:30 pm Friday, May 1, at the Alberta Rose, 3000 NE Alberta, and it will deliver words and music around such great modern and contemporary composers as  Harry Partch, John Cage, Steve Reich, Henry Cowell, Lou Harrison, and 2014 Pulitzer Prize winner John Luther Adams (you can hear Ross on OPB’s Think Out Loud, noon Friday)…The Belluschi Pavilion, a 911 square foot home in the coolest possible modernist vein designed by Pietro Belluschi, was moved to the campus of Marylhurst University a few years ago, reassembled, and from 10 am-3 pm Saturday, May 2, will be open to the public for the first time. Maybe drop in before the Kentucky Derby!


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