Portland Playhouse What I Learned In Paris Portland Oregon
April 2018

‘Israel in Egypt’ review: full-blooded Handel

by BRUCE BROWNE It’s a plague, it’s a pestilence, it’s a flood, a conflagration. Is it a Camus play, a new video game or first run science fiction flick? No, it’s the dramatic unfolding of the Old Testament of the Bible and

Diversity dances: Rejoice! Diaspora Dance Theater

In what place in America could it be more necessary to express the black and brown perspective than right here in our organic-kale-kombucha-Subaru-loving, second-generation hippie town of Portland, also known as the city with the fifth highest percentage of white residents in

Growing up, up, and away

This is probably not the first time you have heard of Peter Pan, the boy who refused to grow up. It might not be the first time you will see his tale on stage. In fact, it might not be the first

Dance Week Diary, Part Five: Punjabi folk dance

Editor’s Note: With a last Punjabi folk dance class at Viscount Dance Studio, Heather Wisner completes her five-day, five-dance class sashay through Portland dance studios. We’re hoping her celebration of National Dance Week will inspire you to make it National Dance Year.

‘Albert Herring’ review: keeping it fresh

by ANGELA ALLEN British composer Benjamin Britten’s Albert Herring is a challenging opera for both performers and audiences accustomed to the usual Romantic classics. Though funny, it proved a serious undertaking for the Portland State University Opera this week at Lincoln Performance

Dance Week Diary, Part Four: Vogue femme

Editor’s note: We’ve reached Day Four of Heather Wisner’s five-day course through Portland dance classes in honor of National Dance Week, and, of course, that means Vogue Femme! Previously in the series, we’ve encountered Laura Haney’s BeMoved class, Latya Wilkins’ hip-hop class and

DanceWatch Weekly: Erik Kaiel comes home

Choreographer Erik Kaiel and his dance company Arch8, now based in the Netherlands, will be performing in his hometown of Portland for the first time since Kaiel graduated from Jefferson High School’s dance program in 1990. After leaving Jeff, he spent a

MusicWatch Weekly: musical collisions

While some want to keep cultures/races/music “pure” and keep others out, history shows that the greatest accomplishment emerges from the collision of diverse influences, often originating where cultures cohabit. Cappella Romana’s performances of Renaissance music from the Greek islands Saturday night at

A ‘Major’ deal with the Devil

We’ve seen her type before: the Iron Matron. Imperious, but so impeccably mannered that you almost wouldn’t notice. So cunning that she’d never admit to her own cleverness. Intent on everyone doing things her way because, by god, that’s the way good

DramaWatch Weekly: ‘Are you ready?’

“Are you ready?” As showtime approached for the Portland Center Stage production of Major Barbara on opening night, artistic director Chris Coleman left his aisle seat in row L and strode to the lip of the stage. Even to fairly casual followers

Dance Week Diary, Part Three: Jazz hands

I wake up sore from the previous day, so I’d like to think I was doing something right. [Editor’s note: In yesterday’s installment of Dance Week Diary, hip-hop instructor Katya Wilkins had said that if you aren’t a little sore after class,

Surviving the Baby Wars

There is a moment in CoHo’s astounding new production of Rebecca Gilman’s Luna Gale when a mother learns a stomach-churning secret about her daughter. Yet she doesn’t scream, shake her first or exclaim that it can’t be true. She simply freezes as

Dance Week Diary, Part Two: Hip-hop class at Vega Dance Lab

You can dance, even if you think you can’t. You don’t have to have experience. You don’t have to be young and pliable. You don’t even need to buy special clothes or shoes (most of the time). To prove it—and to alert

push/FOLD: The many faces of Adam

As the audience entered the dimly lit AWOL Warehouse for push/FOLD’s world premiere of Samuel Hobbs’s Early, our first exposure was Hobbs himself, standing completely nude and still in the space. He remained in his stillness until the audience’s bustle of picking

Dance Week Diary, Part One: Be moved

You can dance if you want to. No, seriously: I’m not just singing Men Without Hats lyrics here. You can dance, even if you think you can’t. You don’t have to have experience. You don’t have to be young and pliable. You

Out & About: ACMA Elevated

PHOTOGRAPHS BY JOE CANTRELL One of the happier open secrets in the Oregon cultural world is the high-quality incubator of talent that is ACMA, the Arts & Communication Magnet Academy. Part of the Beaverton School District, it’s a rigorous public school for

Friday Night Flute Fight

By MARIA CHOBAN I went to the Friday night fights and a flute recital broke out. Julien Beaudiment, on the left, wielding tone and dynamics with roundhouse and rabbit punches. As light on his feet as Muhammad Ali, the renowned French flutist

Grownup stories; Mercury rising

By ANGELA ALLEN Something poignant resonated from the one-woman musicals Don’t Stop Me Now and Drama of the Gifted Grownup that appeared recently in Portland. The shows’ stars—Courtney Freed in Don’t Stop Me Now and Rosalinde Block of Drama of the Gifted

Out & About: voices rising

In 2016 I was commissioned by the North Coast Chorale to create piece-specific art to be projected in the concert hall during their performance of Karl Jenkin’s The Armed Man – A Mass for Peace – 13 montages in total, one for each movement.

Stephen Hayes: A Guggenheim will fuel ‘In the Hour Before’

A few days ago, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation named the recipients of its 173 Guggenheim Fellowships in the areas of scholarship, art, and science. Among 24 other painters from around the country who received this year’s honor was the Portland

FilmWatch Weekly: Cinematic obsessions spring onto the screen

Obsession can take many forms, and at least a few of them are on display in films opening this week in Portland. An obsession with justice, if not revenge, drives Joe, the haunted, brutal character played by Joaquin Phoenix in director Lynne

The Quiet Men, ready to explode

The power of Owen McCafferty’s Quietly, Corrib Theatre’s latest production, takes you by surprise. It starts slowly and, naturally, quietly. In fact, when it begins, it’s just a lone barman, Robert (Murri Lazaroff-Babin), sending texts to his love – or loves? The

New World to Real World

By ANGELA ALLEN In February, I joined several other members of the Music Critics Association of North America at the New World Symphony in South Miami Beach, Fla. For three days we heard concerts and rehearsals, wandered around the building designed by

DramaWatch Weekly: ‘Major’ news

She is the very model of a modern Major Barbara. Sorry, wrong Brit classic. Let’s try again. Major Barbara, by the legendary British wit and armchair socialist George Bernard Shaw (not by Gilbert & Sullivan), is a play of ideas – big

MusicWatch Weekly: new sounds from Oregon

Big Horn Brass, a baker’s dozen of brass players and two percussionists, feature brassy new music by Cascadia Composers Greg Steinke, Jan Mittelstaedt, John Billota, Greg Bartholomew, and fellow Northwest composer Anthony DiLorenzo at their Saturday night concert at Beaverton’s St. Matthew Lutheran Church.

To Ursula, with love

A tribute to Portland literary great Ursula K. Le Guin has been set for Wednesday, June 13, at 7:30 p.m., at Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. Fittingly, Literary Arts, with whom Ursula had a long association, has the honor of hosting, and you

DanceWatch Weekly: Nine-dance week

There are nine dance performances this week beginning with the Original Bad Unkl Sistas (a performing duo made up of Anastazia Aranaga and Mizu Desierto, at the Headwaters Theatre) and ending with Degenerate Art Ensemble (from Seattle next Wednesday, also appearing at

Sweet Dreams: It’s Patsy Cline time

You could do far worse in life than to spend an afternoon or evening with Patsy Cline. And for the couple of hours that singer/actor Sara Catherine Wheatley impersonates the great country singer onstage in the musical Always, Patsy Cline at Broadway

Rogue Valley Symphony preview: season of renewal

by GARY FERRINGTON Oregon arts outside Portland “don’t get,” as the late comedian Rodney Dangerfield might say, “no respect.” Or, at least the press coverage they should. Having grown up in Portland, it took me some time, actually until I moved to Eugene,

Dance review: The gender dynamics in OBT’s Man/Woman

By HEATHER WISNER Questioning gender politics in the tradition-minded and competitive world of ballet “can feel particularly risky—both emotionally and career wise,” former New York City Ballet principal dancer Wendy Whelan told The New York Times in January. She was speaking after

Imani Winds preview: celebrating the differences

Classical music has a diversity problem. So it marked a turning point when the Portland classical music presenter Chamber Music Northwest announced that its next annual artists-in-residence — following the 2015-16 tenure of the storied Emerson Quartet, composed entirely of older white

Delgani String Quartet preview: crimes of passion

by GARY FERRINGTON “True! — nervous — very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am; but why will you say that I am mad? Those words from Edgar Allan Poe’s famous short story, The Tell-Tale Heart, grabbed Paul Safar when the

Film Review: A Bosnian War epic emerges from “Underground”

One of the most fascinating films of the 1990s returns to the big screen this week in Portland when Cinema 21 hosts a restored version of director Emir Kusturica’s 1995 historical fantasia “Underground.” The movie was a cinematic event when it won

MusicWatch Weekly: out of the past

We sometimes imagine the past as a frozen portrait, but the early music movement that began accelerating a couple generations ago has revealed that our understanding of how music was performed and perceived in centuries past is ever evolving, thanks to the

DanceWatch Weekly: Kevin Irving on Man/Woman

Man/Woman, Oregon Ballet Theatre’s program of five ballets that juxtapose all-female ballets and all-male ballets to explore gender stereotypes, opens tonight. The program includes The Dying Swan, a solo for a female dancer by Michel Fokine; a new commissioned work called Fluidity

Third Angle/Hand2Mouth, Bright Moments previews: pop goes classical

Portlanders of a certain vintage still swoon over the music of singer-songwriter Elliott Smith, a leader of Portland’s ‘90s indie-pop insurgency before he moved to LA and died too young just after achieving national fame, not least because of his whispery 1998

The other history, laughter included

Holidays, especially those steeped in notions of national identity, breed all manner of rituals. For instance, in The Thanksgiving Play by Larissa FastHorse, getting its world premiere at Artists Repertory Theatre, the character Alicia recalls the family tradition that “came from my

DramaWatch Weekly: Pop-up City

Pop-up restaurants. Pop-up bars. Pop-up nightclubs, galleries, boutiques, publishing houses, concerts. We’re living in a pop-up world, so why not pop-up theater? The traditional method of producing is to start a theater company, announce a season, and run a half-dozen shows for

About that turkey of a play …

Going into The Thanksgiving Play at Artists Rep I was prepared for a little laughing and a lot of uncomfortable cringing. I’ve come to expect this from modern satires touching on the traumatic legacies of racism in America. They often punch you in the

Flower(s) in Concrete at Fourteen30: Why we write about art

Recently, I’ve had conversations with writers of other disciplines who’ve questioned the point of writing about art. As an activity in an atmosphere of limited nerves and resources and an overabundance of literature, images, noise, and every reason to seek what’s “fact-based,”

Eugene Ballet preview: dance of the mountain king

By GARY FERRINGTON When Eugene Ballet  artistic director Toni Pimble decided to stage Peer Gynt, she faced a daunting challenge: transforming poetry into dance. The company had already proven it could dream big when it comes to creating major new works for the professional stage. Last

Stephen Petronio: Past and present

Stephen Petronio returned to Portland’s Newmark Theatre four years after his company danced the haunting, longform piece Like Lazarus Did. This time, his company performed a concert that included both a recent, original work and a set of iconic and influential pieces

‘Caterpillar’: No play, lots of play

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show at Oregon Children’s Theatre is tough for an adult to review fairly. It’s for the very youngest OCT audiences, after all, and it can be difficult for a lifelong theatergoer to look at a show through that

A visit with: Shalonda Menefee

Shalonda Menefee, creator and talent behind SISTAS Dolled Up, finds herself between events on a recent Saturday afternoon. She’s just come home from hosting a brunch for women in the community and has a couple of weeks (and a whole lot of

ACDA Conference: choral camaraderie

by BRUCE BROWNE Think of it as March Madness. No rankings, no betting on outcomes, but this (approximately) “Sweet 16” of choirs from all over the Northwest who converged in Portland last month for the Northwest Regional American Choral Directors conference was

Aaron Katz on his new thriller “Gemini” and popcorn problematics

“Gemini” is a sleek, entertaining new thriller set in the glamorous world of Hollywood and drenched in celebrity culture. It’s also directed by Portland-raised Aaron Katz, and for anyone familiar with Katz’s previous work, that synopsis might come as a shock. “Sleek,”

Portland Chamber Orchestra Valentines Day The Reser Beaverton Oregon
Portland Playhouse What I Learned In Paris Portland Oregon
Portland Center Stage Young Americans Portland Oregon
Boom Arts Okinum Hampton Opera Center Portland Oregon
Tualatin Valley Symphony Family Concert Featuring Star Wars NW Christian Church Tigard Oregon
White Bird Dance Trinity Irish The Reser Beaverton Oregon
Portland Piano International Solo Piano Series Portland Oregon
White Bird Dance Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall Portland Oregon
Profile Theatre Welcome to Arroyo's at Imago Theatre Portland Oregon
High Desert Museum Creations of Spirit Bend Oregon
push/FOLD at the Reser Beaverton Oregon
Triangle Productions Me & Tammy Portland Oregon
Eugene Ballet Petrushka with Orchestra Next Hult Center Eugene Oregon
Oregon Children's Theatre Dragons Love Tacos Newmark Theatre Portland Oregon
Northwest Dance Project Portland Oregon
Portland State University College of the Arts
Future Prairie Artist Collective Portland Oregon