Chamber Music Northwest Summer Festival Portland Oregon

March 2018

Tudor Choir review: wall of sound

by BRUCE BROWNE and DARYL BROWNE The Tudor Choir re-opened for business this month. On hiatus since 2015, the ensemble presented one concert in their hometown of Seattle and two more in the Portland Metro area, at St. Mary’s Cathedral and in

Crazy good on Riverside

An apartment on Riverside Drive in Manhattan is the setting and in some ways the crux of Stephen Adly Guirgis’ 2015 Pulitzer-winning play Between Riverside and Crazy, currently getting a crackling Adriana Baer-helmed production at Artists Rep. That geographical marker is important.

DramaWatch Weekly: Hamilton-plus

Don’t look now, but the two-ton elephant’s about to plop down in the living room. That’s right: Hamilton, the touring version of the Broadway mega-hit, opens on Tuesday, March 20, in Portland’s Keller Auditorium for 24 performances through April 8, and if

MusicWatch Weekly: Pacific voices

Portland Gay Men’s Chorus is hosting the Beijing Queer Chorus — China’s first LGBTQ choir — in a week-long community residency that culminates in a pair of public concerts. Friday and Saturday’s Pacific Voices shows at Reed College’s Kaul Auditorium feature both

DanceWatch Weekly: Sarah Slipper choreographs ‘Hedda’

It’s all about liars these days. Recognizing them, calling them out, keeping them in check. It’s the new reality. What truth is, has shifted for some, but truth is fact, it doesn’t shift. Only the shifty shift. And, this week’s two premieres

‘The Mermaid Hour’ rolls around

When David Valdes Greenwood was workshopping The Mermaid Hour back in 2014 one piece of feedback he got was that the play would be “impossible to cast” because it was “too diverse.” The show centers on a 12-year-old transgender girl and features

Portland Mini Musical Festival review: brief encounters

It’s hard enough to produce believable character relationships in a full length musical, what with the characters breaking into song and dance in the midst of their encounters. Yet even in under 15 minutes each, most of the six short works in

Oregon Shakespeare Festival: Changing the social order

By DANIEL POLLACK-PELZNER “We’re here to change the social order. So deal with it.” That’s the cheery, cheeky ensemble announcement that begins Karen Zacarías’s wildly entertaining Destiny of Desire—a deliciously theatrical homage to the mistaken identities, thwarted romances, and swooning pageantry that

Painting the town ‘Scarlet’

Portland Playhouse’s new musical, Scarlet, is no dry historical retelling of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s 1850 novel The Scarlet Letter. While that popular 19th-century novel was the source material for playwright Michelle Horgen’s retelling, and it is set in the same puritanical time, this

Jessica Lang Dance: Classically modern

This weekend, Jessica Lang Dance, which Lang founded in 2011, visited Portland for the first time. A Juilliard graduate, Lang is a former member of Twyla Tharp’s company, THARP!, and is widely recognized as one of the most talented choreographers of her

A kiss is still a kiss, a sigh is …

The drama at the heart of Stage Kiss, the Sarah Ruhl comedy at Twilight Theater Company, can be summed up with a simple question She asks He near the middle of the play: When we kissed, did it feel like “an actor

Tom Prochaska: Painting in the round

Tom Prochaska, who turns 73 this month, began his career with an intense involvement in printmaking, both as an artist and as a professional fine art printer. During the last two decades his main focus has become painting—paintings in which scenes and

The Oscars are dying: So what?

The Oscars are dying. So what?On March 4, the Motion Picture Association of America held the 90th Academy Awards ceremony. You may not have heard about it, since reportedly nobody really cares about the Oscars anymore. As someone who religiously watches, and

Zakir Hussain & Rakesh Chaurasia preview: a conversation in concert

In my thirty-odd years as a lover of all kinds of music, I have seen Zakir Hussain perform live four times: twice with Remember Shakti, and twice with Masters of Percussion. On every occasion, the California-based tabla titan has astounded me with

‘The Holler Sessions’ preview: jazz rant

Podcast interview by DOUGLAS DETRICK Editor’s note: Staged as a live jazz radio broadcast, Seattle-based actor/writer Frank Boyd’s one-maniac show The Holler Sessions is a portrait of a jazz-head(case) / radio DJ who evangelizes for the music in uproarious, often profane riffs. The show originated at Seattle’s

Death and the Maiden: still true

By MICHAEL SPROLES It’s been nearly 30 years since the Argentinian-Chilean playwright Ariel Dorfman wrote his groundbreaking political masterpiece, Death and the Maiden. But there are always lessons to be learned from history, and many of the themes and warnings in the

Two Trains, hambone not included

“I want my ham!” a fellow named Hambone shouts as he stands near the entrance of Memphis Lee’s diner in the Hill District of Pittsburgh. He pauses, gathers energy, then shouts again, louder and more intense this time, in a voice that

Stars rising: Clay and Ellis

It’s pretty incredible to witness a star in the making – and that’s exactly what you’ll see at Oregon Children’s Theatre’s latest, And in this Corner: Cassius Clay – The Making of Muhammad Ali. You wouldn’t be foolish to assume I am

MusicWatch Weekly: celebrations and appreciations

The adventurous Portland/Seattle ensemble Sound of Late premieres Book of the Dark by American composer Alan Shockley at their Saturday night informal, hour-long show at Portland’s New Expressive Works. The chamber music score incorporates references to James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake, moody English

DanceWatch Weekly: Jessica Lang and Jesús Carmona

Two White Bird shows—New York-based Jessica Lang Dance Company and Compañia Jesús Carmona from Barcelona—bookend this week’s performance schedule. Both choreographers defy categorization, and their hybrid choreographies draw heavily on lighting and visual elements to craft their story. Jessica Lang, artistic director