NOVEMBER 12-18, 2014 I VOLUME 39 I NUMBER 46
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SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
inside» November 12-18, 2014 VOLUME 39 | NUMBER 46
QUEEN OF THE GOP BY ELLIS E. CONKLIN | In the 25th
»32 Editor-in-Chief Mark Baumgarten
Food Editor Nicole Sprinkle
Arts Editor Brian Miller
account of how theft makes life on the streets a never-ending battle.
food&drink 15 SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL LIBRARY
BY NICOLE SPRINKLE | Seed sharing
helps farmers and gardeners make an end run around Big Ag. 15 | FOOD NEWS/THE WEEKLY DISH 17 | THE BAR CODE
arts&culture 19 IN THE MARKET?
BY BRIAN MILLER | Three approaches
to art at BAM. 19 | THE PICK LIST 22 | OPENING NIGHTS | Soviet satire in
Fremont and an omnibus at PNB. 24 | PERFORMANCE 25 | BOOKS 26 | VISUAL ARTS/THE FUSSY EYE
OPENING THIS WEEK | The Jon Stewart movie, the Stephen Hawking biopic, and Kristen Stewart goes to Gitmo. 29 | FILM CALENDAR
BY GWENDOLYN ELLIOTT | Joan Baez
keeps fighting the good fight. Plus: The Postal Service movie and the secrets of Gwar and Smoke. 37 | THE WEEK AHEAD
odds&ends 39 | CLASSIFIEDS
»cover credits ILLUSTRATION BY DREW BARDANA
Music Editor Gwendolyn Elliott Editorial Operations Manager Gavin Borchert Staff Writers Ellis E. Conklin, Matt Driscoll, Kelton Sears Editorial Interns Jeanny Rhee, Abby Searight
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SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
Attentive care that considers every aspect of
EDITORIAL Senior Editor Nina Shapiro
District, Melanie Stambaugh unseats an incumbent and startles Dems. Also: how Washington’s fighting ebola.
BY JOE BERNSTEIN | A first-person
We treat the whole you.
SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
The Queen of Puyallup
Three Ways the State Is Combating Ebola
Melanie Stambaugh beat an entrenched Democrat, made history, and helped the GOP move closer to evening things up in the state House. BY ELLIS E. CONKLIN
BY NINA SHAPIRO
rom the outset to the bitter end, Democrats would not take her seriously. She was too young, they said, unseasoned and unqualified—just a pretty face with a thin resume and no political experience. Then 24-year-old Melanie Stambaugh shocked them all and won going away. In doing so, the blue-eyed, blonde 2009 Daffodil Queen became the youngest woman elected to the Washington State Legislature since November 3, 1936, when Margaret Coughlin, a Seattle Democrat, captured a House seat two days after her 24th birthday. “We didn’t see this coming,” Pierce County Democratic chair Jeannine Mitchell said of Stambaugh’s victory over Dawn Morrell, a five-term incumbent in the Puyallup-area 25th District. “This really blew me away. We are all just flabbergasted. Groused Mitchell: “I don’t believe being a Daffodil Queen qualifies you to pass laws and work for your constituents in Olympia.” Mitchell’s point is debatable, but what cannot be argued is that the Daffodil Queen festival is a very big deal in Pierce County, and has been for more than 80 years. Good looks and charm are valued, of course, but no one brings home the crown without straight A’s, an ability to think on one’s feet, and impressive public-speaking skills. It was not an acrimonious campaign by any measure. Stambaugh likely won because of low turnout—meaning an older, whiter, richer, more Republican electorate—and sheer persistence and hard work. Indeed, it helps to be young. “I hit more than 17,500 doorbells since midApril,” says Stambaugh, who turned 24 on Sept. 25. “And yes, having been a Daffodil Queen was a great benefit to me. A lot of people would say, ‘Don’t I know you? You look so familiar.’ And then I would tell them I was the Daffodil Queen, and they’d say, ‘Oh, yeah. Now I remember you.’ ” On a sunny Monday morning, Stambaugh is at her office in downtown Sumner. Poised, polished, and smartly put together, the lifelong Puyallup native exudes confidence, which, fittingly enough, is exactly what she does for a living. “I am a confidence coach,” she announces. Two years ago Stambaugh opened a business with her mother and sister, You Impression, which, among a range of personal-development services, leads group workshops to teach kids manners, respect, and leadership skills. “Recently we taught etiquette lessons to some seventh and ninth graders who were on the verge of joining gangs,” recounts Stambaugh. Stambaugh says the political bug bit her during a memorable week at the state capital job-shad-
couple weeks back, Scott Lindquist had a critical decision before him. The Washington Department of Health’s communicable-disease epidemiologist was leading a meeting with the health officers of every county in the state. At that point, several other states had announced quarantines for anybody coming into the country after visiting ebola-affected countries in West Africa. The issue had blown up after a nurse who had treated ebola patients in Sierra Leone returned to the U.S. and found herself quarantined for days in an unheated tent in New Jersey, and then taken to Maine, where she was again ordered quarantined against her will. Did Washington state want to follow suit and start imposing quarantines? The resounding answer from the health officers at Lindquist’s meeting was No, according to the epidemiologist. It wasn’t exactly surprising. The scientific community has strongly urged against quarantines, concerned they would discourage health workers from volunteering in West Africa and deter the effort to stop the epidemic at its source. So what is our state doing to prevent an ebola outbreak here? Active monitoring If the DOH determines that someone is at risk of developing ebola, he or she will receive a visit from a local health official at least once a day during a 21-day monitoring period. The DOH has kept this monitoring relatively quiet, probably in part because it has not monitored that many people—under 20, according to Lindquist. He notes that he recently heard a health worker on the radio talk about coming back and holing himself up in a hunting cabin for three weeks. “I hate to tell you,” Lindquist says, “but I don’t think you are.”
by just 47 votes, but returned to the state House after her election in 2012. “I think the district leans conservative. There’s a strong Christian community here,” says Stambaugh, who “grew up Nazarene” and now attends the Puyallup Foursquare Church. Still, she considers herself a moderate Republican, pro-choice and deeply concerned about issues important to women. The most current vote count shows Stambaugh winning by a near-landslide margin of 54.75 percent to Morrell’s 45.25 percent. (Morrell left the day after the election for a prearranged vacation to New Zealand and could not be reached for comment.) If early ballot counts hold up, House Republicans will have knocked off four incumbents: Morrell; Rep. Kathy Haigh in the 35th District around Shelton; Rep. Monica Stonier in Clark County’s 17th District; and Rep. Larry Seaquist in the 26th District on the Kitsap Peninsula—meaning that the House Democrats’ majority in the 98-member chamber will be reduced to 51-47. Senate Republicans will keep their two-seat majority, and with Democratic ally Tim Sheldon in their ranks, they will control 26 of the 49 seats. “We anticipated a difficult year,” says Travis Shofner, get-out-the-vote director for the House Democratic Campaign Committee. “This district is not always friendly to Democrats, and the Daffodil Queen is pretty important to people down there. I know that because I grew up there.” E firstname.lastname@example.org
restaurant report » Adios, Paseo JEREMY DWYER-LINDGREN
The hugely popular Paseo Caribbean Restaurant, famous both for its sandwiches and the ’round-the-block lines they drew, has shut its doors. “We were put in a position where we had to close,” the restaurant’s account coordinator, Ornella Bardinelli, told Seattle Weekly. “I cannot disclose why.” Paseo has been featured in just about every Seattle publication and broadcast, and received raves in Food & Wine and Esquire, which named its Caribbean roast sandwich the Best Cuban Meat Sandwich in America. Bardinelli said a lawsuit filed by employees in September, alleging wage theft, played no role in the decision to close.
Restricting movement While it does not plan to implement quarantines, the DOH is instructing anyone who might have come into contact with the virus to stay away from public gatherings, like movies or plays. Also on the forbidden list: taking any kind of public transportation within three weeks (the virus’ incubation period). A bike ride in the woods is just fine, though, Lindquist says. Testing blood samples On November 1, a DOH lab in Shoreline first tested a blood sample of someone (from Oregon) who was suspected of having ebola. The facility is one of 13 public-health labs around the country that are doing such tests, and the staff involved had to don protective clothing and take other stringent safety measures. “It went very smoothly,” Lindquist says. The test came back negative for ebola. E
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owing former 25th District Rep. Joyce McDonald, when the would-be legislator was in junior high. “That’s where the desire began. I loved the tensions, the clash of ideas and perspectives in order to come up with the best ideas. So this was always in the back of my mind to do this and run. My parents instilled in me the value of limited government, and that’s why I am a Republican.” In February, Stambaugh made the decision to challenge Morrell. “I decided I was going to run as hard as I could, and at the end of the day it would be in God’s hands.” “Melanie was probably the hardest-working candidate we had. She doorbelled constantly,” says Pierce County GOP chair Bob Lawrence. “I think this district is looking for young, fresh faces in Olympia.” A graduate of University of Washington’s Foster School of Business, Stambaugh managed to drum up nearly $175,000 in campaign contributions, much of which went toward mailers and postcards. She and Morrell——who raised about $280,000 in contributions—participated in five campaign forums—polite affairs, for the most part, where, Stambaugh says, the most frequently asked questions concerned transportation, finishing Highway 167, and funding education. The 25th is considered a swing district, but it’s never been a cakewalk for Democrats. In fact, the 65-year-old Morrell, a critical-care nurse at Good Samaritan Hospital in Puyallup, lost her seat in 2010 to Republican Rep. Hans Zieger
DOCTORS BY SUPERATIC LABS, SYRINGE BY SCOTT LEWIS FROM THENOUNPROJECT.COM
Stambaugh on the campaign trail.
STEALING FROM THE HOMELESS When you live on the streets, nothing is safe.
SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
BY JOE BERNSTEIN • ILLUSTRATIONS BY DREW BARDANA
he first theft was the stupidest. In mid-October 2012, two months homeless, I was walking north from Seattle University to find a place to sleep when I stopped at the water fountain in Cal Anderson Park. Hardly anyone was around. I saw only a bicyclist, coming toward me from Nagle Place—a young man, maybe a teenager, with a single pack on his back; obviously a normal, upright, housed citizen. I hadn’t yet found good places to sleep, and I was bone-tired, so I took my own backpack off while drinking. And then forgot to put it back on before walking several paces away. When I returned to the water fountain, my pack was gone, as was the bicyclist. It took a few more incidents to drive the point home. Maybe a month later, I experienced my third theft after walking away from my umbrella in the basement of Half Price Books. I had only left it for 10 minutes, but it was gone. The kind folks there blunted that lesson by finding me an abandoned umbrella right away, and not much later practically gave me a backpack, too. So all I’d really lost were things that had been in the old pack: a can opener and a pair of scissors made valuable by age and inheritance; a portable kite; maps and such. But in between, the second theft was the costliest. Rain had finally come, and on November 4 I’d just started sleeping in the doorway of American Apparel on Broadway. Normally I stashed my laptop in my storage locker each
night, but, behind on library due dates, I’d kept it with me to watch one more DVD, a charming Vietnamese orphan story. In my laptop satchel’s pocket were a few other library discs, as well as some CD-ROMs, a flash drive, and my phone charger. I’d slept with my laptop a few times before, off Broadway, and thought nothing of simply placing the satchel between me and the door. That night daylight saving time ended. I woke repeatedly, as usual. At the first 2 a.m., my laptop and satchel were beside me; when I woke at 2:30 a.m., an hour and a half later, they were gone. The tiles between me and the rainy sidewalk showed a single watery footprint for a small high-heeled shoe. Months of sleeping there would teach me footprints like that last less than half an hour. My laptop was stolen at bar time of the longest drinking night of the year.
and lows), and homelessness actually helps with my particular mental issues (depression, mostly). So I was able to hold a seasonal job this past winter, and thus have today a laptop to write this story on. I also have the incredible good fortune to have become homeless at a time when, thanks to the recession, Washington’s food-stamp program didn’t have a time limit, and the continued good fortune that, so far, one hasn’t been reimposed. All in all, I’m extremely wealthy in both money and other resources, as unemployed homeless men go. I’m also probably less sociable with my peers than the average solo homeless person. Why am I homeless? Several theories exist. One notes that the recession destroyed my livelihood built on temp work; another credits my depression; a third has it that I’m just lazy. Take your pick.
What you need to know about me: Thanks largely to my siblings, I’ve kept that rented storage unit since becoming homeless, and so was able to keep most of my property when I lost my housing. My only addiction is to sugar (not a joke: hypoglycæmia supplies both highs
No matter how I ended up here, I still live within two basic stories about the homeless in America that go back a century, one public, one personal. The public one: We are a threat. This is why no city wants its homeless citizens
NO MATTER HOW I ENDED UP HERE, I STILL LIVE WITHIN TWO BASIC STORIES ABOUT HOMELESSNESS: WE ARE A THREAT, AND WE ARE THREATENED.
» CONTINUED ON PAGE 8
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Stealing From the Homeless » FROM PAGE 6
to stay. The personal one: We are threatened. This is why no mother wants her son (let alone daughter) to become homeless. We’ve been identified with thievery just as long, and the explanation seems obvious: We’re such inveterate thieves, we steal from each other too; we’re only threatened because our threats extend even to our fellow homeless. That isn’t necessarily true. None of my first three thieves—or at least those I suspect—seems likely to have been homeless: a bicyclist with a single backpack? A Half Price Books customer? Someone in high heels at bar time? The people who took the backpack and umbrella may have imagined they weren’t really stealing, and probably didn’t know they were taking from a homeless man, but the woman or drag queen who left that footprint— she knew what she was doing. Dozens of studies have investigated the “criminal victimization” of the “new homeless.” For many reasons, those studies’ numbers veer all over the place. But nearly all of them are far higher than those reported by the general public to the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) or its international equivalents. Over the period covered by these studies—1983 to 2013, so far—NCVS’s annual rates for theft and for robbery (which is simply theft by force) have fallen dramatically. But for us, the homeless? Of 54 homeless people in Anchorage who were interviewed in 1983, 30 percent had been victims of robbery in the previous six months; in that year’s NCVS, .6 percent—yes, point six—of respondents had experienced violent theft. In a 2013 survey, 57.3 percent of 150 homeless women in Fort Worth had had something stolen in the previous year; in that year’s NCVS, less than 11 percent of those questioned had lost anything to theft or robbery. The only Seattle numbers available concern homeless youth, aged 13 to 21, in three studies run in the mid-1990s by Ana Mari Cauce, now University of Washington Provost, with YouthCare. The lowest theft number these studies produced is from the last survey, in 1997–1998: 25 percent of the 372 people interviewed had been robbed at least once since becoming homeless, on average less than four years. It takes some contortions to compare this number to NCVS’s annual numbers, especially since younger people in general suffer more crimes. But if you do the comparison, making assumptions at every step that minimize the difference between homeless and housed, you still end up with this: In Seattle in the late
1990s, teens were maybe six times as likely to be mugged if they were homeless. Few studies ask further about theft; scholars care more about the violence we also suffer disproportionately. But two studies do ask about the identity of the thieves. In that 2013 study of mostly sheltered homeless women, run by Emily Spence-Almaguer, 56.6 percent of the theft victims could identify a culprit who was also homeless; just 6 percent—two of those interviewed— could identify a housed thief. However, in a 2004 study in London, Oxford, and Cambridge, 67 percent of the 305 interviewed, many of whom slept on the streets, had been stolen from in the previous year, and the culprits they could identify included 90 street homeless, versus 72 “members of the public.” We are not the only threat. Did you know that when a Seattle Public
Library item is stolen, they bill the victim? Fact. I spent my first winter on the streets paying off those DVDs. My brother replaced my phone charger within weeks; I hope over the next year to finally finish reconstructing, as best as possible, my disrupted catalogues of my property—ha!—as well as my book log; I may never regain the trove of database and systemsanalysis texts on those CD-ROMs.
MANY OF US HAVE NOTHING A HOUSED PERSON WANTS. THANKS TO MY STORAGE, I DO.
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Stealing From the Homeless » FROM PAGE 8
So yes, the standard account is partly true: Just
as the studies I’ve cited say, homeless people do steal from each other, lots. And although all three of these thefts I suspect my fellow homeless of were for food, it isn’t limited to that. Early on, I used to spend some time in places where homeless people gather by day—the Urban Rest Stop, Connections—and heard several complaints about cell phones stolen while borrowed or charging. And yes, we steal from others too. Study after study of homeless youth mentions shoplifting as a major survival strategy, but it isn’t just the kids. In Seattle Municipal Court, where misdemeanor theft is tried, two specialized courts track housing status. The numbers for April through June of this year are telling. In Community Court, 51 percent of the 70 who agreed to participate said they had been homeless, for, on average, more than three years; and 74 percent of the 142 who were invited to participate were up for theft. Meanwhile in Mental Health Court, at least 62 percent of 167 participants were assessed as homeless; and while assault was this group’s leading charge, theft, at 19 percent, was next in line. Frankly, this just makes sense. Serious scholars agree homelessness results from a game of musical chairs—more and more poor people pursuing less and less affordable housing. So we’re poor, and if people rob banks “ ’cause that’s where the money is,” then we, who need the money, logically should be the robbers. And then many of us do use drugs. Addictions not served by food stamps or soup kitchens can be expensive—even a pack-a-day cigarette habit costs more than the storage unit that holds all my property in Seattle, and only alcohol, of the addictive drugs, is cheaper. So addictions can spur addicts to steal, as in the recent high-profile car prowler spree chronicled by Seattle Times columnist Danny Westneat, who was the victim of three homeless addicts allegedly smashing car windows and running off with purses, wallets, and other valuables. All that said, here’s the sad thing: My three thefts at the hands of my fellow homeless were about food. But most homeless people in Washington qualify for food stamps, which since 2009 and until early 2016, have, in Washington, no time limit. Also, the thieves were on Broadway, near scads of the free meals that Patrick Hutchison wrote about in Seattle Weekly last year (“Hunger Games,” Nov. 27, 2013). And most of us—yes, even antisocial me—will share food if asked. So food is the last thing a homeless person in Seattle should need to steal.
My protections worked! For a year, nobody
stole anything from me. I started sleeping fur-
ther north on Broadway after a tagger included a picture of a sleeper—me?—in his treatment of American Apparel. A charity event replaced my broken glasses, without which I can’t see much, since my eyes focus less than half a foot from my face. I got back into an old occupation for a while, though not at the rarefied levels that in 2011 got me my first laptop as a signing bonus: This past winter, I did some of your taxes in West Seattle. I even managed to work full-time for the final weeks of tax season; but while this paid for a new laptop, it exhausted me. So I was too
MY THREE THEFTS WERE ABOUT FOOD. BUT MOST HOMELESS PEOPLE IN WASHINGTON QUALIFY FOR FOOD STAMPS.
slow when money ran low; plans to make storage rent as a guinea pig for research studies went nowhere; and come July 7, 2014, I was locked out. Now I needed to extend my protections, since I had little room to store more than my laptop in my pack. I started shoving my water bottle and umbrella right up against the wall, and used the space created between them and the backpack to hold a stack of books that I covered with plastic bags (noisy and opaque), weighing them down with my glasses case. Things got even more complicated when I found, for only the second time, all three parts of the best Korean TV drama the Seattle libraries own, available at once. K-dramas had become such a comfort to me, filling so many hours, and depicting the world of work, increasingly alien to me, so much better than Hollywood. I checked them out. That set the scene for my seventh theft, the worst of all. It was 1 a.m. on Friday, July 18, when I went to sleep wrapped around my laptop, protected by nothing more than a jacket on top to hide it, while the K-drama boxed sets, worth twice as much as the computer, sat in my backpack. And with all this wealth to choose from, what did the latest thief take? My glasses, of course. My glasses, exposed alone on that stack. My high-prescription glasses. My “glasses case,”
that noisy cake container, finally proved itself, if unhelpfully, waking me by scraping on the tiles as the wind blew it around, newly light with my glasses removed, at 2:30 a.m. Obamacare replaced the prescription, which was inaccessible in my locked storage unit; Sound Eye and Laser and its lensmaker generously replaced my glasses, not covered by Medicaid. During my three-week wait, I had to watch that excellent drama from half a foot away, and missed the season’s outdoor plays and movies. But most of the burden of this theft fell on taxpayers—um, you—and on two private companies. Who would steal high-prescription glasses? Three theories: 1) Some homeless guy who also couldn’t pay for glasses wanted the frames. 2) Some homeless guy saw the cake box, thought he’d found food, and punished me for raising false hopes. 3) Some housed guy didn’t get any, drank too much, and got mean. See, it was bar time. Again. And most people on Broadway at bar time are not homeless. So that’s my story: seven thefts in two years. I
think homeless people took all the food, and I think housed people took everything else. Even
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You could say that the first spate of thefts made me a little defensive. Seattle writer Matt Ruff, in his (pre-Seattle) novel Sewer, Gas & Electric, has one formerly homeless woman character tease another: “You still guard your food when you eat, don’t you? Hunker over it, so no one else can grab the plate. Must be embarrassing for you at big company luncheons, acting like a homeless woman.” But though some postures for eating without furniture do require hunkering, that’s not how I normally see the homeless eat. Indeed, we, or at least I, treasure the freedom to walk away from my stuff, whether in storage or at a library desk. But if we are overprotective—if, in my first year on the street, I learned precisely how to “guard” everything, every night—can you blame us? So that first winter, no longer able to lose myself in dramas on DVD, I studied protection. I’d first used books as pillows, but this proved hard on the books—and, hey, a backpack pillow is a backpack guarded! Not long after the laptop theft, I got my first sleeping bag, and for a small guy like me, a sleeping bag provides tons of space that thieves don’t want to enter. (Summer’s blankets help much less.) Things too wet, or big, for a backpack or bag—my umbrella and water bottle—could go next to the wall. I’d been wearing my glasses as I slept, but around that time accidentally swept them off an Urban Rest Stop counter, breaking the frame. So I started putting them into a QFC plastic container meant for two slices of cake—the right size, and noisy under pressure (say, if I rolled onto it while sleeping); I put it on top of the bottle and umbrella. At first I kept my food bag next to the backpack, on the sidewalk side, exposed. Who would steal food from a homeless man? Mind, I was then making friends with another Broadway guy, an old hand there; he warned me about that food bag, and of course, soon enough, he was proven right. The poor schmuck of a thief had absurdly bad timing: I’d been ill, so theft number 4 cost me an infected water bottle and some bagels from a days-ago food bank, gone moldy. But lesson learned: I took to keeping nothing but a large plastic pastry container there, to hold any trash I might find as I reorganized my stuff or generate cleaning the doorway or eating a last bite. Once I had a food bag again, I had to make sure, every night, it wasn’t too full to unload into the backpack; the bag itself, plus the one holding my blanket or sleeping bag, could go under the backpack, folded. I had been sleeping at American Apparel for some time; people started to notice me. One waitress from up the street took to leaving me food from Dick’s Drive-In. I know this because one rainy night I was up late, waiting for the doorway to dry out, and she came by and told me. I had to confess I’d never seen, much less eaten, a single one of those burgers. She bought me one that night, the only one I’ve had while homeless. I tried to reassure her—“Surely some homeless person got them”—but I’m pretty sure she stopped leaving the food. How many thefts did I miss in my sleep? Someone else noticed me too. One night that winter I woke around 3 a.m. to a loud discus-
sion among several guys who were lately out of prison. I got pretty scared. Eventually they headed north looking for food, and saw me. Their burly leader wanted to buy my food from me. I actually had extra food that night, but I was cranky from their keeping me up, irked by his assumption I wouldn’t freely share, and more irked when he said he knew I slept there every night. So I refused. He started to leave, but after a few paces north, he came back, snuck his hand in, and took what he’d actually been negotiating over the whole time—my garbage can!
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SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
Stealing From the Homeless » FROM PAGE 11
if true, that’s probably an uncommon ratio. I think so many thefts from the homeless are perpetrated by other homeless because many of us have nothing a housed person wants. Thanks to my storage, I do have some of those things, and I became fair game. Still, since that glasses theft inspired me to write this story, I’ve heard a lot from my peers. The guy in the doorway next to me a couple nights later? His backpack had been stolen the same night, somewhere else. The courteous veteran, a Seattle native back visiting (not normally homeless), who slept in a doorway this summer? Four times when he’d walked away briefly, he found his few possessions rifled. On August 6, I found a guy sleeping at the corner of Broadway and Harrison whose luggage was too big to use as a pillow. Oops; it lay beside him open and ransacked. And my friend, the Broadway oldtimer who first warned me to protect my food? One time he walked away from his stuff, maybe half a block, and some guys pulled up in a van, took it all, and drove away again. Don’t believe him? Well, Mike Johnson, who runs the Union Gospel Mission’s men’s shelter, told me they get guys on a regular basis who have had everything stolen. Call him a liar too. So what can we do about it? Some become property-carefree; maybe not easy come, but anyway easy go. Problem is, that approach cripples borrowing from libraries, and hardly encourages re-integration into normal American society. But it’s got to be less stressful than the way I live. Otherwise? In the 2012 book Invisible Victims: Homeless and the Growing Security Gap— the first ever published about the criminal victimization of the homeless—sociologist Laura Huey discusses ways to prevent those crimes, in three categories. One category is “State-Based Security”: the police. Many homeless people have to avoid this option. “Hello, officer. Yeah, you have outstanding drug warrants on me, and you’ll find my cocaine when you search me, and yeah, I’ve been excluded from this block, but my latest customer, over there with a red backpack and the two big mean-looking friends? He just stole all my money, and I want you to arrest him.” Also, lots of homeless people are outright hostile to police; heck, as a mentally ill homeless man, I give thanks daily that I haven’t found myself in law enforcement’s gunsights. Nevertheless I reported the bar-time thefts, laptop and glasses, to the Seattle Police Department. Calling on a weekend night, I got nothing but lost sleep, and finally reported the laptop theft at the precinct in the morning. I submitted the serial number three times over the course of seven weeks before it was finally put into the stolen-laptop database. And when I called the robbery and burglary detectives for some handholding, I got instead a half-hour harangue from their secretary. “If you sleep outside, of course your stuff will be stolen,” she yelled. So calling the glasses theft in on a weekday night, I expected little, and was satisfied that an officer came to me. I thought the thief had probably thrown the glasses away soon after
WITH ALL THIS WEALTH TO CHOOSE FROM, WHAT DID THE LATEST THIEF TAKE? MY GLASSES, OF COURSE.
taking them, and that they might be in one of the nearby garbage cans. I couldn’t look without my glasses, so I asked the officer to, not hoping for much. Months later, my old friend on Broadway told me he’d been mystified to see her going down the block opening trash cans and peering inside. She’d actually done as I asked. No, that isn’t heroism, but it’s certainly above and beyond. SPD spokesman Detective Patrick Michaud proudly told me SPD doesn’t track the housing status of people they deal with: “Everyone should expect the same high standard of police work when they call the police.” Um, maybe. In my limited experience, that “high standard” was met half the time. I’d like to think the police do better with violent crimes, whose victims are more traumatized. But SPD is a human institution, and we’ve recently been hearing that for theft, they really are less reliable for everyone, and not just homeless me. How much good does reporting thefts do? If we were energetic about it, we’d clog the 911 line with what are mostly non-emergencies. And police departments focus on violence, just as scholars do. Between 2007 and 2011, the police cleared 25.9 percent to 28.7 percent of reported robberies and 18.6 percent to 21.5 percent of thefts nationally. That’s actually an impressive achievement—about a million thefts solved per year—but it’s still not much comfort to most individual victims. Reporting thefts to the police might prevent other thefts, but does little to reverse them. Another of Huey’s categories, “Security Through Others,” includes protection from shelters and other agencies, as well as the safety provided by romantic or other companions. Shelters are, in fact, safer than the street, and some of the high-tech improvements Huey
» CONTINUED ON PAGE 14
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Stealing From the Homeless » FROM PAGE 12
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discusses could be real protections from theft, as she acknowledges. But shelters aren’t foolproof. Remember Emily Spence-Almaguer, the latest to report on theft from homeless people? Well, over 50 percent of the thefts in her study took place at shelters. While shelters are safer than the street, both Huey and I doubt they do a good job of guarding against theft. Huey and I also agree that companions tend to be ineffective as guardians. I rarely see homeless couples or groups setting watches, for example, and as Huey points out, and as the conversations I overhear often suggest, these people can steal from each other too. Huey’s remaining category is “Self-Protection Strategies.” Keeping a dog; sleeping by day; hiding one’s sleeping place or storage place; keeping one’s possessions disgusting. (This last doesn’t work. Scholars haven’t looked into it, but I hear nasty shopping carts get ransacked too.) I’ve discussed my own protections throughout this story, and I think they’re a main reason why I’ve gone from six or more thefts in my first year to just one in my second. Huey, considering crime in general and not just theft, has no faith in any self-protections, and I have to concede her point on this larger scale. What will the next angry drunk do when he sees no glasses to steal? None of my protections protect from violence. The one solution Huey really backs is the same old scholarly plaint: We need housing. Well, duh. But in my 47 years of life, the trend has always been in the other direction. King County’s Ten-Year Plan to End Homelessness expires in a few months. If I’m still here the day after, will you pardon me for wanting some sort of answer in the meantime? Actually, as regards theft, the plan sort of is on the right track. We do need “doors to lock,” but need they be apartment doors? My storage unit is much of what makes me rich. It didn’t prevent any of my thefts, and wouldn’t prevent some of those I’ve mentioned, but at least if there were widespread storage for us, fewer guys would reach the Union Gospel Mission wholly destitute. For the employed or otherwise funded, paid storage is the obvious answer. For everyone else? Well, lucky us in Seattle: SHARE runs, besides its shelters and tent cities, a storage facility, near downtown. It isn’t big units like rental storage, rather 90 Greyhound-style lockers, of which you can get no more than two. And for reasons beyond SHARE’s control, the facility is open for only two morning hours per day, which means you can’t pick up work tools or clothes in the morning and then stash them in the evening. Also, in lieu of
rent, you have to work one morning a month at the storage facility, and attend one Sunday meeting per month. (At minimum wage, given the conditions, that seems a reasonable rent.) It isn’t a solution for everyone, but if you need a place to stow an interview suit for that far-off day, or identification and such, it’s something. Last February, Seattle City Council Members Sally Bagshaw and Bruce Harrell pitched an expansion of Seattle’s lockers for the homeless, arguing that sleeping bags are uncool at job interviews. After plenty of research, Bagshaw wanted to start with an unfunded pilot project. So in mid-October, as I was finishing this story, Union Gospel Mission’s men’s shelter took delivery of 24 lockers. They plan to make them accessible twice per day (for that sleepingbag-free job interview)—but they’re limited to residents of the men’s shelter, and not even available to all of them—there is currently one locker for every 10 beds UGM offers. It’s a start, but only a start. I hope much more follows, and I hope it isn’t all tightly tied to other services, requiring us to follow rules for the privilege of securing some of our belongings. I’d hate to see any more rifled luggage. I’d love to see the shopping-cart guys set free. But it won’t change the big picture. Through theft, yes, we are a threat and you are threatened. But also, yes, we are threatened and you are a threat. Thieves have always focused on the poor, and we have to learn to live with it. In the 1990s, some sociologists thought we might do so, before they closed ranks clucking about our traumas; one set, though embarrassed ever since, actually called crime “another momentary hassle” to us. I’ve spent three months researching and writing about that momentary hassle, not because I think it can be fixed, and certainly not because I think it’s our biggest problem, but because it’s our most oxymoronic. “Well, I robs bums ’cause that’s where the money ain’t.” It’s at once a preposterous joke and a study in human nature. Which is now finished, so you should turn the page, and I should go back to watching Korean dramas and reading want ads, through my new glasses, on my new laptop. E
BY JASON PRICE
Bay scallops at
Seed libraries offer sustainability and diversity—and a community for gardeners and farmers.
The long-anticipated Bitter/Raw move of chef John Sundstrom’s Lark is about to happen. Gone will be the old digs on 12th Avenue as of November 26; the restaurant will open in the Central Agency Building (952 E. Seneca St.) in early December. The menu will feature classics as well as a few new dishes, including the Lark Burger (made with onion jam and smoked mayonnaise on a housemade duck-cracklin’ bun) and truffle-salted sunchoke chips. With the reopening of Lark comes a sibling restaurant from Sundstrom, Bitter/Raw, which will offer foods suggested by its name: Spanish mackerel tartare, charcuterie, and a raw bar.
BY NICOLE SPRINKLE
attempting to create a community for seed-sharing. At the time, seed libraries were extremely rare, with only a few in the entire country. Moore waited for the seed-savers to come. But nothing happened. “Despite the discussion of organic and local
TheWeeklyDish Caitlin Moore, co-director of the King County Seed LIbrary.
foods, people weren’t talking about seeds yet. People didn’t know how to save seeds. I realized that was the huge barrier. It wasn’t time yet.” Moore started teaching classes in and around Olympia under the moniker Urban Food Warrior, educating garden clubs and classes about the importance and methods of seed-saving until she had enough interest to start a real seed exchange. Still active, the Olympia Seed Exchange was one of the first in the country when it formed in 2008. Beyond fighting the consolidation of our global seed market, there are a lot of reasons to encourage the use of seed libraries. First, seeds that come from productive local plants have characteristics that suit them to their particular environment. Seeds from a dinosaur kale that grows well in the dry heat of Dallas probably won’t grow as well in Seattle’s wet weather. Saving seeds enables selection methods that favor natural plant genetics, and encourages a more direct connection with our food and our community.
» CONTINUED ON PAGE 16
Maple Mousse Trifle at Delancey BY NICOLE SPRINKLE Besides having my favorite pizza in Seattle, Delancey always seems to deliver excellent, surprising seasonal desserts too. The maple mousse trifle is no exception. A spin on a dessert that co-owner Brandon Pettit had at a B&B in Vermont, its luscious maple-flavored mousse is studded throughout with hunks of walnut cake and candied walnuts. A little maple syrup and Admiralty salt top it off. I’m a walnut-lovin’ fool, so this sweet was particularly notable—that musky, woodsy nut is a beautiful foil to sweet maple, making it autumnal but not cloying, unlike all those pumpkin-spice-laden desserts we see this time of year. The play of the cake, the nuts, and the cream makes it texturally interesting as well. But since Delancey changes up its desserts often to stay truly seasonal, get in this week if you want to try it. Next week, it’ll be replaced by one of their very delicious staples: lemon budino. E
SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
In 2007, Moore started a website in Olympia
Who says the French are immune to marketing? Case in point: the Beaujolais Nouveau release, which arrives every year on the third Thursday of November at the stroke of midnight. And since no wine really goes with turkey, why not try something new and head to Hommage for chef Nico Borzee’s French take on dim sum on November 20? How about rabbit terrine and cassoulet being wheeled around you on carts of culinary joy? I can’t imagine anything better. For tickets you can go to sosh.com or call Hommage directly at 283-2665. E
ity and pricing, leaving small farmers with shrinking profit margins and fewer options. Industry consolidation is so rampant that in 2010 it triggered a Department of Justice investigation into the possibility that seed-giant Monsanto was involved in anticompetitive business practices. But after two years the DOJ dropped the case, citing “marketplace developments that occurred during the pendency of the investigation” as reasons why it “closed its investigation into possible anticompetitive practices in the seed industry.” In other words, “We’re done looking. Don’t ask why.” Despite requests from various media outlets for more information, the DOJ kept quiet. According to an article in The Wall Street Journal, the only vague indication of why it closed came from a cryptic statement saying “in making its decision, the Antitrust Division took into account marketplace developments that occurred during the pendency of the investigation.”
Fans of La Bête and Aleks Dimitrijevich will be happy to learn that the Bellevue Avenue space re-opened as Spaghetti Western, which will serve barbecue classics out of its custom meat smoker, in addition to standard sides such as slaw, collards, and potato salad. In an interesting culinary twist, Dimitrijevich will also offer several types of spaghetti and lasagna Bolognese.
Boxes of seed packets.
Seeds next to mature plants.
n a bookshelf in a community building in the Hillman City neighborhood, Caitlin Moore, codirector of the King County Seed Library, is showing me a few cluttered boxes of seed packets and explaining how she plans to change the world. “We need to make a change in the food system, which, at its root, depends almost entirely on seeds. If we want a healthy food system, we need a healthy seed system.” At their most basic, and they don’t get too complicated, seed libraries are a place for the community to share seeds of all types, both edible and aesthetic. The seeds’ origins are varied; some are from commercial companies, but the majority are from small, independent, and usually organic local seed companies or from community gardens. Hobbyists enjoy collecting seeds from rare, hard-to-find species. Others, like local author and master gardener Bill Thorness, trade seeds with gardening friends. Thorness, who writes books on heirloom plant varieties like his beloved black Spanish radish, told me, “When you give seeds to someone, you’re automatically sharing an interest. You can talk about the methods of growing, what the flowers like, and then also talk about the food.” Sharing mature plants and vegetables, you only get a part of that process. Sharing seeds in this way, as part of a community, used to be commonplace among farmers. But with the advent of agricultural biotechnology in the ’80s, hybrid and genetically modified seeds produced by larger companies began to offer farmers a deal they couldn’t refuse: pest-resistant seeds and plants that offered higher profit margins. As the big companies grew and began to patent seeds, smaller companies couldn’t compete, and were quickly bought up by increasingly massive seed companies. Moore explains with a statistic that sounds scary. “There are 10 major companies that control almost 80 percent of the global seed market.” Extrapolating, she explained that this means that 10 companies, essentially, have an effect on nearly all the world’s food, from the vegetables and fruits we eat to the grains and feed we give our cows, pigs, chickens, and goats. At some point, it all starts from a seed. And that seed is usually from the same mega-corporations. Four major players are in the U.S.: Monsanto, DuPont, Dow, and Syngenta. According to Dr. Philip Howard, an associate professor of food and agriculture at Michigan State University, these four companies alone—in addition to owning a majority of the global market—own more than half the U.S. seed market, and are gobbling more and more of it every day. Between 2008 and 2013, more than 70 seed companies were acquired by one of these big seed firms. The overwhelming majority of these firms push GMO and hybrid seeds to farmers desperate to maintain high-enough yields to make a profit. As more small seed companies get swallowed up, farmers become more dependent on those seeds and more vulnerable to their availabil-
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food&drink» Seed-Savers » FROM PAGE 15 Moore tells me, “Anytime someone can engage with producing their food or saving their seeds, it keeps them engaged and keeps them thinking about their food system.” Plus, according to her, it helps preserve native species of plants that aren’t common or profitable enough to have a voice in the commercial market, encouraging diversity and allowing us to enjoy a far more interesting selection of plants, both edible and aesthetic. She adds, “Organic food doesn’t have to be grown from organic seeds to be certified.” This I had a hard time believing, but a quick look at everyone’s favorite page-turner, the Code of Federal Regulations, Title 7, Subtitle B, Chapter I, Subchapter M, Part 205, Subpart C, Article 204 confirms that “Nonorganically produced, untreated seeds and planting stock may be used to produce an organic crop when an equivalent organically produced variety is not commercially available.” In other words, you must use organic seeds unless they’re, like, so totally hard to find. While some organic seed companies are available to farmers and gardeners, they cannot offer the same diversity of seeds, or the same quality of regionally specific seeds, that seed libraries can. But slowly, independent local seed companies are rising to meet that demand. Places like Adaptive Seeds in Oregon and Uprising Seeds in Bellingham produce organic, typically regionally grown seeds. Moore herself plans to add her own business to the mix by opening a local organic seed company, Root and Radicle, and releasing a book on seed-saving, both early next year.
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In some places, though, the attention seed libraries are getting isn’t the kind Moore is hoping to attract. In June, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture cracked down on a seed exchange run out of a public library in Mechanicsburg. State laws regarding the distribution of seeds, aimed at ensuring that farmers are protected from getting bunk seeds and that invasive species are kept in check, allowed the DOA to shut down the small exchange unless exchangers had their seeds tested for species identification and germination rates—a service that runs about $25 and requires a sample of at least 400 seeds, far more than the backyard gardener is able to produce or share. We have similar laws here. In a statement released via e-mail, Kathy Davis of the Washington State DOA said, “At this time, the department has no indication that seed libraries present a problem for our state, and we are not currently regulating them.” In other words, the laws are on the books, but possible violations aren’t seen as problematic enough to warrant enforcement. Currently there are more than 300 seed libraries in the U.S., with two in King County: one housed by Pickering Garden in Issaquah and the main one hosted by Seattle Farm Co-op. Because the Co-op recently lost its lease on its home on Jackson Street in the Central District, a makeshift library now resides at the Hillman City Collaboratory, where I met Moore, until the Farm Co-op confirms its next location. When it does, Moore is hopeful that seed saving will continue to grow. She tells me, “It’s finally becoming part of the conversation—people are starting to talk about what seed libraries are, but more importantly, why it’s important.” E
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SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
he world of wine is full of classic dualities: red/white, Old World/ New, cheap/expensive. One of them is incredibly important, even if it’s often neglected by wine lovers: wines meant to be paired with food versus those that are drinkable on their own. I was reminded of this recently when my editor told me about a wine she’d purchased. I won’t reveal the specifics, but it was a high-acid sauvignon blanc from here in Washington, and despite the rather impressive price tag, BY ZACH GEBALLE she didn’t much care for it. However, that’s largely because she tried to drink it on its own; and while many Washington winemakers have been making whites and reds that don’t particularly need food to be enjoyable, there’s been a pretty strong trend towards “Euro-style” whites in recent years. While many of these are delicious, they generally do need to be paired with food to be at their best. The primary determinant of whether a white pairs with food is acidity. Wines with higher acidity, like vinho verde, sauvignon blanc, albarino, and grüner veltliner, are often hard to enjoy on their own, especially the younger, inexpensive versions. They tend to lack the body and texture to match their acidity, and thus can quickly fatigue the palate. This goes back to a core distinction in wine-drinking cultures. In much of the rest of the world, particularly Europe, wine is rarely enjoyed without food. You could write a book about why that’s happened (hmm, there’s an idea), but for now it’s enough to say that in some cultures, wine and food became essentially inseparable. As a result, most European whites are relatively high in acid, which makes them an excellent counterpoint to salty or creamy foods, like cheese or briny seafood, but can be tiring to drink on their own. So how do you know? Well, to some extent it’s a guessing game, but here are a few hints. The varietal is the biggest clue: generally speaking, sauvignon blancs have higher acidity levels than chardonnays, say. Similarly, language can be an indicator: Some bottles will flat-out say that their wine is European in style, and while trusting wineries to be totally truthful on their labels is a bit naive (hmm, more book ideas), that’s generally a good tip-off. Similarly, French names for either the winery or the wine itself generally indicate pretentions of Europeanstyle (read: high-acid) wines. In the end, though, there’s no substitute for actual knowledge. While the Internet can be a good source of information, an experienced wine steward is still an invaluable resource. Find a wine shop or a local grocery store with a good selection, and ask questions. Think about when you want to enjoy that bottle of wine, and whether or not you’ll be eating at the same time. Providing that bit of information will help a steward guide you to a bottle that hopefully won’t feel like a letdown or a rip-off. E
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In the Market?
Two new shows at BAM embrace commerce. The third resists. BY BRIAN MILLER
in the U.S., there are about three dozen glass creations in Nick Mount’s The Fabric of Work
Samuel Beckett’s admonition to “fail better” seems like a perfect fit for the kinetic artists of UMO Ensemble, whose physical practice is full of risk and challenge. Says the company, “Beckett’s writings speak directly to physical enterprise: walking, balancing, throwing, eating, hanging, and spinning.” For its contribution to the Seattle Beckett Festival, UMO is translating seven of the playwright’s philosophical conundrums into a kind of circus program. There, juggling, teetertotters, and trapezes are the tools used to explore his existential imperatives. Elizabeth Klob directs a cast of four. (Through Nov. 23.) ACT Theatre, 700 Union St., 292–7676, acttheatre.org. $15– $25. 8 p.m. SANDRA KURTZ
Cinema Italian Style
Mount’s Reclining Bob #SB060512.
February 1), which contains a small selection of the woodwork of Portland’s John Economaki. Examples from the ’70s and ’80s are quite impressive—pure joinery (meaning no nails or screws), dovetails and elegant corners, interesting selections of grain, and completely one-off, handmade creations. Then comes the cruel turn: Economaki the woodworker somehow became allergic to wood dust, effectively ending his career behind the saw. In response—and this is the show’s main focus—Economaki started a new business called Bridge City Tool Works, which sells high-end planes, mallets, hand drills, jigs, chisels, and the like. So if you (or your dad) enjoy expensive tool porn, this is like a tour through the showroom. And that, of course, is the problem here. Though I gasped in recognition at several tools my late father had in his woodshop (tools I’d used with my own hands), the exhibit feels like a tradeshow booth. There aren’t any prices—which you will correctly guess are very high—though you can peruse catalog pages and brochures. Sketches for prototypes bear Economaki’s own hand, but these are not Leonardo’s notebooks. Bridge City Tool Works has grown into a premium enterprise that uses 3-D printers to realize its prototypes. It’s a business like any other, albeit one that serves a well-heeled clientele that might also collect Mount’s glass work. E
Planes from Bridge City Tool Works.
BELLEVUE ARTS MUSEUM 510 Bellevue Way N.E., 425-519-0770, bellevuearts.org. $8–$10. 11 a.m–6 p.m. Tues.–Sun.
More consonant with the biennial wood show upstairs is Quality Is Contagious (through
Traveling from Australia, making its first stop
Walker’s Cage Free Capitalism.
THURSDAY, NOV. 13
(on view through February 1). He’s been practicing his art for more than 40 years and even trained at Pilchuck, but this is a more recent selection. Certainly he has his craft well-honed. The control of color and shape is formidable in his bulbs, orbs, vases, and pendants. Some have delicate flowering stamens; others are intricate bottles with ornate stoppers. It’s all strictly decorative work, completely uninteresting to me, but suited to posh waiting rooms at dentists’ offices or on the mantels of gas fireplaces in new Bellevue highrises. There’s nothing massive on the scale of Chihuly here, but Mount appeals to the same collector’s market. (He’s represented locally by Traver Gallery.) Organic forms are easily traced; you see suggestions of horns and seeds, shells and pine cones. It’s all potpourri, only more expensive. Yet Mount is something of a magpie who occasionally incorporates odd materials with his polished work. Old fishing rods suspend some of his plumb-bobs, and a metal shoehorn is used as a flasher on one of these fanciful tabletop angling rigs. Apparently he’ll use anything he finds in the shop; one wishes for more such improvisation, a trace of the humble, even whimsical, that one sees in Walker’s adjacent gallery.
The Conformist, at SIFF.
Depending on your appetite (for Italian food and wine, natch, served at the Sorrento), you can opt in or out for tonight’s festival opening gala after the first movie. Director Francesco Bruni will attend the screening of his family drama Noi 4 (that’s essentially “us four” in English), about a separated Roman couple trying to keep track of their kids—one in his errant teens, the other in her wild 20s. Other highlights among 20 titles during the eight-day fest include a new print of Bernardo Bertolucci’s 1970 The Conformist; the black comedy I Can Quit Whenever I Want, about an academic who somehow turns to drug dealing (rather like Breaking Bad, no?); and the well-reviewed and very class-conscious Human Capital, Italy’s official Oscar submission this year, about the unexpected consequences of a traffic accident that sends wealthy families near Milan into upheaval. (Through Nov. 20.) SIFF Cinema Uptown, 511 Queen Anne Ave.
N., 324-9996, siff.net. $7–$25. 7 p.m. BRIAN MILLER
Anthony de Mare
It sounds ridiculous to say Stephen Sondheim’s music hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves; he’s the most admired and honored showtune-maker of the past half-century. But I mean his music as music, without all those distracting lyrics. The harmonic subtleties even of a song as familiar as
SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
The ceramics of Bellingham artist Jason Walker are equally whimsical and political. In his first solo museum show, On the River, Down the Road (a nod to Kerouac, his hero), the built and the natural realms vie for the same contested turf. In eight painted porcelain works created for the show, we see wolves, salmon, deer, and ravens uneasily coexisting with our roads, cities, and oil derricks. A kind of symbiosis or mutation has taken place here. A chicken pumps out coins instead of eggs. Pavement is transmogrified into a stream. Birds build their nests out of pipe fittings. Money is the new pollution, and Walker surrounds one wall-mounted work with coins of his own minting. Instead of e pluribus unum, their slogans read “United States of Petro,” “Borrow, Buy, Drive,” and “Debt Nonsense.” Walker is clearly opposed to the guns, skyscrapers, and cars that capitalism has brought, but his creatures have perhaps adapted faster than he has. (Maybe this is evolution at work.) Trained in commercial art, Walker is an excellent draftsman, and the inlaid painted scenes on his ceramic tableaux (almost like altars) have a crisp graphic clarity. Somehow his linework reminds me of that of cartoonist Gary Larson, whose animals also often rebuked their supposedly civilized owners. The gently satirical component here feels a bit dated, as if sprung from the bad old days of Dubya and Cheney, but the recent midterm elections give the show a newly prophetic power. Walker’s ideas aren’t complicated, but they’re certainly compatible with our region’s politics (more so in Seattle than Bellevue). One of the subtler notions you see in several works is that of flow: pipes and distributor caps and rivers and freeways. Nature is not static; it keeps moving through, around, and beneath what we build. Permanence is but a human delusion; and time—always moving, always flowing—will eventually erase our cities and restore the natural order. You get the feeling Walker will be fine with that. (The show runs through March 1.)
DAVID SCHERRER PHOTOGRAPHY
ack when BAM relaunched itself as the Bellevue Arts (plural, not singular, though people still get it wrong) Museum, I wondered why they didn’t go all the way and add crafts. But that would have meant more letters on the stationery and museum façade, and it would’ve spoiled the clean acronym: BACM or BMAC instead of BAM. Still, three current shows tend toward that silent C (as does the new wood-focused biennial; more on that in the weeks ahead), featuring two disparate artists and one Portland woodworkerturned-toolmaker. The trio has little in common, but what other Northwest museum would feature them at the same time? They certainly wouldn’t fit into the old singular-A notion of art.
» CONTINUED ON PAGE 21 19
Go All in Up to Your Elbows. SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
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John Hockenberry (11/13) King County Mental Health and Substance Abuse Legislative Forum
A rendering of the new Haub expansion.
OLSON KUNDIG ARCHITECTS
» FROM PAGE 19 “Send in the Clowns” can get lost coming from a theater pit. So probably it’ll be revelatory for even the most devoted Sondheimians to hear his songs as pianist de Mare presents them: He commissioned 36 composers—among them Steve Reich, William Bolcom, Wynton Marsalis, and ex-Bainbridge Islander Jherek Bischoff—to, as he calls it, “re-imagine” (rather than merely arrange) Sondheim favorites as solo concert pieces. The selection de Mare will perform tonight includes not only “Clowns,” but gems from Sweeney Todd, Sunday in the Park With George, Follies, and more. Cornish Playhouse at
Seattle Center, cornish.edu. $20–$32. 8 p.m. GAVIN BORCHERT
FRIDAY, NOV. 14
All the Way
800 Lake Washington Blvd., 325-4161, spectrum dance.org. $20–$30. 8 p.m. SANDRA KURTZ
SATURDAY, NOV. 15
Hall, 153 14th Ave., shortrun.org. Donations encouraged (RSVP via Facebook). 11 a.m.– 6 p.m. (Also: 3:30 p.m. Sun. at Elliott Bay Book Co.) KELTON SEARS
Tacoma Art Museum, 1701 Pacific Ave., 253-2724258, tacomaartmuseum.org. Free. 9:30 a.m.– 5 p.m. BRIAN MILLER
According to the Public Religion Research Institute, 22 percent of Americans identify as “unaffiliated”—a huge jump from the 8 percent surveyed in 2003. The trend is especially strong in the 18–29-year-old bracket: 32 percent of
(11/14) America Scores Seattle: Turn it Up! 12th Annual Poetry Slam (11/14) David Ignatius with Robert Merry Examining American Foreign Policy (11/15) Saturday Family Concerts Play Date (11/15) EMG presents Constantinople ‘Metamorfosi Musicali’ (11/16) Short Stories Live ‘Radio Benjamin’ (11/17) Matt Parker Math to Make You Laugh (11/17) Howard Schultz and Rajiv Chandrasekaran Bridging the Gap Between Veterans, Civilians (11/18) STG presents An Evening with Amanda Palmer ‘The Art of Asking’ (11/18) Don Stuart: ‘Why Farmers and Environmentalists Need Each Other’ (11/19) Environmental Perspectives The Nature-Health Connection TOWN HALL
ARTS & CULTURE
(11/20) Shane Harris Cyber War, The Military’s Future WWW.TOWNHALLSEATTLE.ORG (11/20) Seattle Arts & Lectures: An Evening with Ruth Ozeki
(11/21) GambiaHELP presents West Africa Live
Go West Grand Opening Day
Nearly four years after the German billionaire Erivan Haub and family announced their gift of some 300 works to TAM, plus most of the funding for a $15.5 million museum expansion (adding one-third more space), we can see both the art and the architecture (by Seattle’s Tom Kundig) unveiled today. Haub, a grocery-chain magnate, spent considerable time in the U.S. and Tacoma (where his sons were born); representatives of his family will be on hand for today’s ceremonies. In addition to the opening of Art of the American West: The Haub Family Collection, new works from Northwest artists Julie Speidel and Marie Watt go on view. TAM has a curator talk, music, craft-making, and family activities planned to help celebrate. (There’ll even be a stagecoach ride for the kids.) Inside the new wing, you can appreciate about half the Haub bequest (the collection will rotate), including landscapes by Albert Bierstadt, nature studies by Georgia O’Keeffe, and bronze cowboy sculptures by Charles M. Russell. A new catalog has been written for the Haub collection; and because every museum needs a mascot, as SAM’s Hammering Man can attest, today also marks the gift-shop debut of Cody the toy stuffed bison.
This event is naturally sold out, but I suspect many SW readers already have their tickets—and book, So, Anyway . . . , ticket included with purchase— to see this Monty Python member in a Seattle appearance so rare that no graybeard I’ve asked can even remember the man visiting our city before. Could this be Cleese’s first and likely only sojourn to the Pacific Northwest? He and his four surviving fellow Pythons played some hugely profitable live comedy dates in London this past summer, which many called a swan song for the group. (All are into their 70s now; Cleese is 75.) Cleese’s new memoir is actually a pre-Python account of his humble youth and comedy coming-of-age, which began at Cambridge with fellow student Graham Chapman. After graduating, he became a writer for David Frost at the BBC. Through the latter’s sponsorship, he and Chapman created something called At Last the 1948 Show (this being the mid-’60s), which led to a fateful meeting with the Oxford triumvirate of Palin/Idle/Jones. And the rest, as you know, is comedy history. University Temple United Methodist Church, 1415 N.E. 43rd St., 634-3400, bookstore. washington.edu. $28. 7 p.m. BRIAN MILLER E
(11/22) Seattle Public Library: Clay Jenkinson and the Saint Michael Trio An Afternoon of Chamber Music (11/22) Puget Sound Symphony Orchestra presents The Fall Concert (11/23) Thalia Symphony Orchestra: ‘Pines of Rome’ (11/24) Carine McCandless ‘Into the Wild,’ The Hidden Truth (11/24) Early Music Guild presents Ebola Relief Concert A Musical Response (12/1) Marc Solomon ‘Winning Marriage’ Equality
LOCALLY SOURCED, CHEFINSPIRED | 3 COURSES | $33
SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
St. (Seattle Center), 443-2224, seattlerep.org. $17–$150. 7:30 p.m. BRIAN MILLER
The upstairs studio at Madrona Dance Center is more than spacious enough for classes, but when it’s transformed into a performing space, the dancers are right on top of the audience. This can lead to some extreme experiences, and that’s likely just fine with Spectrum Dance Theater director Donald Byrd. In this fall program, Byrd is reviving his high-tension Interrupted Narratives/WAR from 2006, and adding three more works, including a premiere to Arnold Schoenberg’s iconic Verklärte Nacht (Transfigured Night). Since its 1899 premiere, the score for string sextet has attracted choreographers who want to grapple with its emotional intensity, which should be right up Byrd’s alley. (Through Sun.) Madrona Dance Center,
ANDY GOTTS/CROWN PUBLISHING
Seattle playwright Robert Schenkkan’s acclaimed drama about LBJ’s passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 earned Tony Awards for Best Drama and its star, Breaking Bad ’s Bryan Cranston, after reaching Broadway last year. Now Seattle audiences can finally see the work, with Jack Willis assuming the title role. (Kenajuan Bentley plays MLK, who lobbies for speedier progress on civil rights; Richard Elmore potrays J. Edgar Hoover—and we know which side he’s on.) In this, the 50th-anniversary year of the Civil Rights Act, with an African-American president in the White House, All the Way is automatically the biggest stage event of the season. Not only is All the Way historical, it’s painfully topical: A half-century’s seeming progress toward racial equality has now stumbled in ways that LBJ partly anticipated. The South has flipped to solid Republican (his prediction), and its ossified white leaders (abetted by FOX News) have thwarted, belittled, and demonized the president as an ineffectual other. Voter-ID laws and restricted voting hours are resurgent in red states. GOP-controlled state legislatures have drawn electoral maps that herd blacks into homogenous, gerrymandered districts that dilute their voice in Congress. No surprise that many forums and discussions, at the Rep and elsewhere, are scheduled in the coming weeks. Bill Rauch directs both this play and Schenkkan’s new companion piece about LBJ’s struggles from 1965–68 (chiefly Vietnam), The Great Society, which opens December 5 and alternates with All the Way (sharing the same cast) through January 4. Seattle Repertory Theatre, 155 Mercer
Spectrum Dance Theater
us godless, heathen millennials don’t claim any religious affiliation at all, and we’ve got the awesome legal weed and hot gay wedding parties to prove it. Despite all that, to the ire of old white clergymen, an increasing number of us seemingly hedonistic youths are confoundingly identifying as “spiritual, but not religious.” (Evidence: the pantheon of mystical symbols splayed on a trendy Actual Pain T-shirt. Further evidence: the popularity of Neil deGrasse Tyson.) Thus Sakugawa’s Your Illustrated Guide to Becoming One With the Universe (Adams, $14.99)—a beautiful, funny, and genuinely inspiring spiritual handbook for the Cosmos age you didn’t know you were waiting for. The California comic artist manages to talk about connectedness, intentionality, and exploring “your inner cosmos” with a breeziness and wit that puts ancient religious tomes to shame. (Her gorgeous drawings certainly help.) Scientifically speaking, we are all made of the universe (Sagan’s famous “star stuff,”) and Sakugawa’s quiet truisms, deceptively simple exercises, and surreal ink-wash mandalas effortlessly engage you in the profound consequences of that simple realization. Sakugawa appears today as part of the Short Run Comix & Arts Festival, with work by 200 artists, food, roaming poet Elissa Ball, live artmaking by Clyde Petersen and Amy Kuttab, games, and swag bags; an after-party follows from 8–11 p.m. ($5, 21 and over). Washington
**STANDBY ONLY** (11/13) John Richards Death and Music CIVICS SCIENCE ARTS & CULTURE
of bubbling duets and ensembles. The slower middle section, an extended duet, is the most poignant, as two dancers surge and retreat several times; we’re not sure until the end if they’ll form a lasting connection. Recently named choreographer in residence at New York City Ballet, Peck is in everyone’s sights right now. It’s easy to see why. His facility with ballet technique and ability to create kinetic excitement without a complex narrative make him a rare bird indeed. SANDRA KURTZ
PDirector’s Choice MCCAW HALL, 321 MERCER ST. (SEATTLE CENTER), 441-2424, PNB.ORG. $28 AND UP. 7:30 P.M. THURS.–SAT., 1 P.M. SUN. ENDS NOV. 16.
I Never Betrayed the Revolution
SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
According to program notes, Christopher Danowski first showed his communism-satirizing script to A.J. Epstein 25 years ago, long before Epstein came to own the West of Lenin theater. Perhaps Russia’s recent totalitarian revival inspired Epstein to excavate it from the proverbial drawer for this belated debut. Excellent performers do their darnedest to bring the hazy parable to life, but the underlying material is thinner than the peasants’ taped-together scraps of shoe leather. The “pan-Slavic” story revolves around two women, Daleka (Laurie Jerger) and Henryka (Susanna Burney), who, hungry and angry, journey to their unnamed nation’s capital to wrangle promised funds from a craven functionary named General Chuchelow (side-splitting physical comedian K. Brian Neel, in full glory). Their many nano-scene misadventures are introduced by unhelpful placards wielded by mirthless assistant Polina (Kate Kraay)—e.g., “A Room. Later.” All this wasted furniture rearrangement/ setup time merely yields scenes that fizzle out arbitrarily (like so many headlines), instead of following any purposeful progression. Point conveyed, irritating elements persist.
Carla Körbes and Jerome Tisserand in Debonair.
If this Pacific Northwest Ballet program is designed to showcase the future of the art form, it looks like it’s going in at least a couple of directions. The evening opens and closes with pieces that explore the possibilities of classical ballet, bookending works that borrow some of their vocabulary from modern dance. Nacho Duato’s Rassemblement and David Dawson’s A Million Kisses to My Skin are both company revivals. The Dawson is just as exhilarating as it was two years ago. It’s a neoclassical endurance test set to Bach, twisting and extending familiar material, setting virtuosic new levels for choreography and performance. Sarah Ricard Orza has a confident swagger while striding downstage; Carrie Imler and Jonathan Porretta bring trademark zest to their duet. The Duato has a more grounded physicality, and its score (by Toto Bissainthe) evokes the African roots of Haitian culture. Long-legged Lindsi Dec carves through the space like some kind of mother/ priestess figure. Batkhurel Bold is more forceful—literally throwing himself to the floor for complex tumbling work. Annabelle Lopez Ochoa is a young choreographer with a long resume in Europe and the U.S. PNB performed her Cylindrical Shadows in 2012, and is now adding her 2002 duet Before After to the repertory. This view of a dissolving relationship is full of missed connections and carefully crafted indifference. A lift that might once have been tender feels perfunctory when Raphaël Bouchard sets Angelica Generosa down without looking where he’s putting her. The two drop hands and walk past each other without passion or remorse. The title of Justin Peck’s new Debonair makes you think of Fred Astaire musicals, and the ballet does evoke some of that bygone glamour. Seemingly set at a party where young couples pursue romance, it opens and closes with a stream
Daleka (Jerger) meets the general (Neel). © ANGELA STERLING
© ANGELA STERLING
WEST OF LENIN, 203 N. 36TH ST., 352-1777, WESTOFLENIN.COM. $15–$20. 8 P.M. THURS.–SAT., 2 P.M. SUN. ENDS NOV. 23.
Daleka gets embroiled in the movement against the corrupt Chuchelow and winds up trussed in a general’s uniform (adorned with butterfly wings) as the next leader. Other well-portrayed characters include an insane couple who fetishize a cow doll (Ty Bonneville and Andy Buffelen); a deposed former leader (Chris Dietz) who now dresses in a pink tutu; and a young military bugler (Matt Aguayo) so hungry or drunk or consumptive that he staggers vertiginously, like gravity’s love slave. Richard Lorig’s set is simple and effective; though again, too much time is spent rearranging it in the dark before each brief episode. If you really love absurdist theater, given the castcrafted humor and even pathos here, it’s possible to forgive the choppiness, the repetitions, the meandering and predictability. Twenty-five years after the Berlin Wall came down, Danowski’s script (directed by Epstein) offers sophomoric truths that are no less true for being tedious, even today. MARGARET FRIEDMAN E
KING LEAR by WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE starring JOSEPH MARCELL directed by BILL BUCKHURST designed by JONATHAN FENSOM composed by ALEX SILVERMAN
NOVEMBER 25 & 26 at THE MOORE THEATRE
“This is how Shakespeare was meant to be done.” –Ben Brantley, The New York Times
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“Teatro Zinzanni knows how to deliver a festive night out on the town and Hacienda Holiday is a grand example of its work.”
a&c» Performance & Literary Village Theatre’s Production of
Disney and Cameron Mackintosh’s
Stage OPENINGS & EVENTS
ALL THE WAY SEE THE PICK LIST, PAGE 21. • DICK WHITTINGTON AND HIS CAT An orphan finds
himself in London, where he meets a remarkable cat. Seattle Children’s Theatre, Seattle Center, 441-3322. $20 and up. Preview Nov. 13, opens Nov. 14. Runs Thurs.– Sat.; see sct.org for exact schedule. Ends Dec. 21. FAIL BETTER SEE THE PICK LIST, PAGE 19. FANGS The premiere of Jim Moran’s dark comedy about an anti-abortion senator. Eclectic Theater, 1214 10th Ave., eclectictheatercompany.org. $20–$25. Opens Nov. 13. 8 p.m. Thurs.–Sat., 2 p.m. Sun. Ends Dec. 6. FAMILY AFFAIR Jennifer Jasper’s “hilarious, twisted, and ultimately relatable” cabaret on the theme of family. JewelBox Theater at the Rendezvous, 2322 Second Ave., jenniferjasperperforms.com. $10. 7:30 p.m. Wed., Nov. 19. FUNNY WORLD The Northwest Playwrights Alliance reads Al Frank’s new comedy. Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Center, northwestplaywrights.org. Free. 7 p.m. Tues., Nov. 11. THE HABIT 14 The sketch-comedy quintet’s new show. Bathhouse Theater on Greenlake, 7312 W. Green Lake Dr. N., 800-838-3006. $19. Opens Nov. 14. Runs Fri.–Sun.; see thehabitcomedy.com for exact schedule. Ends Nov. 30. MARY POPPINS The Disney classic comes to life. You won’t see better musical-comedy performers in Seattle than this production’s leads, Cayman Ilika and Greg McCormick Allen. Village Theatre, 303 Front St. N., Issaquah, 425-392-2202. $40–$72. Opens Nov. 13. Runs Tues.–Sun.; see villagetheatre.org for exact schedule. Ends Jan 4. (Runs at the Everett PAC Jan. 9–Feb. 8.) SWEET CHARITY A taxi dancer finds and loses love in this 1966 musical. Meany Studio Theater, UW campus, 543-4880, drama.washington.edu. $10–$25. Opens Nov. 14. 7:30 p.m. Wed.–Sat., 2 p.m. Sun. Ends Nov. 23.
A Musical Based On The Stories of P.L. Travers and the Walt Disney Film
Box Office: (425) 392-2202 • Nov 13, 2014 - Jan 4, 2015 • VillageTheatre.org
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AFTERLIFE An improv look at The Big Question.
Unexpected Productions’ Market Theater, 1428 Post Alley, unexpectedproductions.org. $12–$15. 8:30 p.m. Fri.–Sat. Ends Nov. 22.
ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY Judith Viorst herself wrote
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the book and lyrics for this musical adaptation of her popular kids’ book. SecondStory Repertory, 16587 N.E. 74th St., 425-881-6777, secondstoryrep.org. $10. 1 & 3 p.m. Sat.–Sun. Ends Nov. 23. BLOOD COUNTESS Back at the turn of the 16th century, Hungarian countess Elizabeth Bathory allegedly took to drinking virgins’ blood. In Kelleen Conway Blanchard’s stage version of Bathory’s life, the countess first starts killing as a means to sexual arousal, then later to stay young and beautiful, like a Dorian Gray vampire. As the countess, Terri Weagant’s unconventional looks and excellent expressive range are riveting—until you realize that she’s just not that scary. Director Bret Fetzer has her focus more on the black comedy than on freezing your blood. Indeed, two other characters in her entourage are far more freaky: a deranged, id-like provocateur named Fitzco, played with nearly boundless perversity by Erin Stewart; and a priest, played with chilling, sexualized placidity (and heavy eye makeup) by Martyn G. Krouse. MARGARET FRIEDMAN Annex Theatre, 1110 Pike St., 728-0933, annextheatre.org. $5–$20. 8 p.m. Thurs.–Sat. Ends Nov. 22. CLUES Jet City’s board-game-based improv murder mystery. Jet City Improv, 5510 University Way N.E., 352-8291, jetcity improv.org. $12–$15. 8 p.m. Thurs.–Fri. Ends Nov. 21. DISASTER MOVIE An improv take on one of Hollywood’s most spoofable genres. Unexpected Productions’ Market Theater, 1428 Post Alley, unexpected productions.org. $7. 8:30 p.m. Sun. Ends Nov. 23. DOGFIGHT The title of this musical—based on the affecting 1991 movie—refers to a hideous sort of competition among a group of Vietnam-bound Marines the night before they ship out of San Francisco in 1963: Whoever brings the ugliest woman to a party wins. But Eddie (Kody Bringman) ends up falling for Rose (Devon Busswood), the shy aspiring singer/songwriter he’d intended to humiliate, and they spend an increasingly tender night together. The show sounds promising enough, but it’s doomed by the misogynist party scene, which is played for laughs, broad ones at the women’s expense, and it got them. I’ve never seen a more staggeringly misguided, profoundly offensive misreading of artistic intent. Dogfight’s overall problem is that it evokes next to nothing of the film’s peculiar bleak bittersweetness. Eddie, Rose, and Vietnam all deserve a deeper treatment than what is basically a Very Special Episode of Glee. GAVIN BORCHERT ArtsWest, 4711 California Ave. S.W., 938-0339, artswest.org. $5–$37. 7:30 p.m. Wed.–Sat., 3 p.m. Sun. Ends Nov. 22.
ENDGAME/NDGM Beckett’s theater-of-the-absurd
classic is paired with Blood Ensemble’s reimagining of Beckett’s themes. Ballard Underground, 2220 N.W. Market St., ghostlighttheatricals.org. $18–$20. 7:30 p.m. Fri.–Sat. plus Thurs., Nov. 13 & 20. Ends Nov. 22. FAST COMPANY “Meet the Kwans: a Chinese-American family of expert con artists” in Carla Ching’s comic crime caper. Theatre Off Jackson, 409 Seventh Ave. S., 800-838-3006, porkfilled.com. $12–$18. 8 p.m. Thurs.–Sat., plus 2 p.m. Sun., Nov. 16. Ends Nov. 22. FIDDLER ON THE ROOF The musical tale of Tevye, Golde, Tzeitel, Hodel, Chava, Bielke, Shprintze, Yenta, the tailor Motel Kamzoil, and many others. Seattle Musical Theatre at Magnuson Park, 7120 62nd Ave. N.E., Building 47, 800-838-3006, seattlemusicaltheatre.org. $20–$35. 7:30 p.m. Fri.–Sat., 2 p.m. Sun. Ends Nov. 23. THE FIERCE URGENCY OF NOW Arouet premieres Doug DeVita’s play about the advertising world. Stone Soup Downstage Theatre, 4029 Stone Way N., 800-8383006, arouet.us. $12–$40. 7:30 p.m. Thurs.–Sat., plus 2 p.m. Sun., Nov. 9 and 7:30 p.m. Mon., Nov. 17. Ends Nov. 22. HAMLET Mary Ewald stars as young Hamlet, shedding decades off her impressive odometer with astutely formulated adolescent smoldering. Under the unambiguous direction of John Kazanjian, the play’s twists and shadows have never been more comprehensible to me. There are also many gems among the supporting performances. A svelte Peter Crook scrumptiously deadpans Polonius’ insouciant hot air. Tim Gouran’s Laertes self-detonates as only Gouran can. And the various lesser characters played by Brandon Simmons and Scott Ward Abernethy manifest more secret personality than many a principal character in other productions. I found myself riveted by this tiny yet immersive production, where Nina Moser’s set evokes a compact, creepy Elsinore with candlelight and brick. MARGARET FRIEDMAN New City Theater, 1406 18th Ave., brownpapertickets.com. $15–$20. 7:30 p.m. Thurs.–Sat. Ends Nov. 15. HORSE GIRLS Did you go through a horse phase growing up? The ladies in Jenny Rachel Weiner’s play did. Annex Theatre, 1100 E. Pike St., annextheatre.org. $5–$10. 8 p.m. Tues.–Wed. Ends Nov. 19. I NEVER BETRAYED THE REVOLUTION SEE REVIEW, PAGE 22. OR, THE WHALE A call-center employee shares Moby-Dick over the phone in this extrapolation of Melville. Stage One Theater, North Seattle College, 9600 College Way N., ponyworld.org. $16. 8 p.m. Thurs.–Sat. Ends Nov. 15. SATURDAY MORNING CARTOONS Fond recollections of our pajamas-and-cereal youth inspired these new plays. Pocket Theater, 8312 Greenwood Ave. N., the1448projects.org. $5–$14. 10:30 a.m. Sat. Ends Nov. 22.
SEATTLE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY COMPETITION
34 aspiring stand-ups go into a comedy club; one comes out. Various area venues through Nov. 30; see seattle comedycompetition.org for full info. SPLIT SECOND IMPROV Second Story’s improv competition. SecondStory Repertory, 16587 N.E. 74th St., Redmond, 425-881-6777, secondstoryrep.org. $20. Two shows each Sat.: 7 p.m. for families, 8 p.m. could get naughtier. Ends Dec. 13. SUPRALIMINAL Seattle Immersive Theatre’s interactive tale about the paranormal, both set in and staged at the Georgetown Steam Plant. Meet at South Seattle College, 6000 16th Ave. S.W., and you’ll be bused there. seattleimmersivetheatre.org. $50. 7:30 p.m. Fri.–Sat. Ends Nov. 15. TEATRO ZINZANNI: HACIENDA HOLIDAY TZZ’s new show keeps its dinner-cabaret formula fresh with acts that mash up entertainment skills in pairs: aerial plus dance en pointe by PNB alumna Ariana Lallone; trapeze plus contortion with Duo Rose; juggling plus the speed and aesthetic of thrash metal by Gamal David Garcia; and ballroom dance plus pole work by the astounding Vertical Tango. All this is organized by just the lightest spritz of storyline: Vivian Beaumount and Clifton Caswell (Christine Deaver and Kevin Kent) return to a swanky hotel to renew their vows. GAVIN BORCHERT Teatro ZinZanni, 222 Mercer St., 802-0015. $99 and up. Runs Thurs.–Sun. plus some Wed.; see zinzanni.com/ seattle for exact schedule. Ends Jan. 31. TICK, TICK . . . BOOM! Jonathan Larson’s semimemoirish precursor to Rent tells of a young composer of musicals. SecondStory Repertory, 16587 N.E. 74th St., Redmond, 425-881-6777, secondstoryrep.org. $27. 8 p.m. Thurs.–Sat. Ends Nov. 22. TWELFTH NIGHT The surrealists’ fusion of dream and reality via startling, illogical juxtapositions, tinged with notions of Freud and the fractured self, is the milieu for Seattle Shakespeare Co.’s Twelfth Night, where twins Viola (Allie Pratt) and Sebastian (Christopher Morson) are separated by shipwreck and pine for reunion like cleaved halves of one being. The clowning of Sir Toby Belch (Mike Dooly) and his buddies—George Mount’s
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PEOPLE. MAKE. AWESOME. SEE THE WEEK AHEAD,
BALLET: DIRECTOR’S • PACIFIC NORTHWEST CHOICE SEE REVIEW, PAGE 22. • SPECTRUM DANCE THEATER SEE THE PICK LIST,
Classical, Etc. DE MARE SEE THE PICK LIST, PAGE 19. • ADNTHONY • XARTS New work from UW’s Center for Digital Arts and
Experimental Media. Meany Hall, UW campus, 543-4880, dxarts.washington.edu. $12–$20. 7:30 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. SEATTLE SYMPHONY A musical voice new to Seattle: Colors of the Southern Cross by Argentine composer Esteban Benzecry, plus favorites by Mendelsohn and Mussorgsky. Benaroya Hall, Third Ave. & Union St., 2154747, seattlesymphony.org. $20–$120. 7:30 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13; 8 p.m. Sat., Nov. 15; 2 p.m. Sun., Nov. 16. THE SYMPHONY GUILD Mateo Messina’s 17th annual benefit concert for Children’s Hospital. Benaroya Hall, Third Ave. & Union St., 215-4747, thesymphonyguild.org. $44–$202. 7:30 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. NORTHWEST SINFONIETTA Julian Schwarz plays the cello concerto written for him by Seattle composer Samuel Jones. Benaroya Recital Hall, Third Ave. & Union St., nwsinfonietta.org. $20–$40. 7:30 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. JON KIMURA PARKER Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata, plus piano fantasies based on Hitchcock scores and The Wizard of Oz. Meany Hall, UW campus, 543-4880, uwworldseries.org. $10–$45. 7:30 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14.
• • •
• SEATTLE METROPOLITAN CHAMBER ORCHESTRA
ALAN DOYLE His memoir of growing up Canadian is
Where I Belong: Small Town to Great Big Sea. Elliott Bay Book Co., 1521 10th Ave., 624-6600, elliottbaybook.com. 7 p.m. Wed., Nov. 12. KELSANG JINDUK The Buddhist nun considers How to Understand the Mind by Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. Third Place Books, 17171 Bothell Way N.E., 366-3333, thirdplacebooks.com. 7 p.m. Wed., Nov. 12. SCOTT MAGNER Homefront is his new sci-fi thriller. Also reading will be Mark Teppo, with his holidaythemed Rudolph! University Book Store, 4326 University Way N.E., 634-3400, bookstore.washington.edu. 7 p.m. Wed., Nov. 12. FUMINORI NAKAMURA A journalist has doubts about a killer’s guilt in Last Winter We Parted. Seattle Mystery Bookshop, 117 Cherry St., 587-5737, seattlemystery.com. Noon. Wed., Nov. 12. ZACK DAVISSON Davinder Bhowmik joins the author of Yurei: The Japanese Ghost. University Book Store, 7 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. ELIZABETH DIMARCO Her company has published Apps for Book Lovers & Bibliophiles. University Book Store, Noon. Thurs., Nov. 13. GREG PALMER MEMORIAL READING Local actor Jeff Steitzer reads from the reissued memoir Cheese Deluxe, in which the late local humorist Palmer (who died in 2009) recalls his ’60s youth on Mercer Island. There are no antiwar demonstrations, no secret abortions, no declarations of “I love you, man” or catastrophic car crashes. In a short series of well-told anecdotes, modesty is Palmer’s prevailing tone-one that TV viewers will recall from his days at KING 5 and PBS. Eagle Harbor Books, 157 Winslow Way E. (Bainbridge Island), 842-5332, eagleharborbooks. com. 7:30 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. PATRICIA CORNWELL The bestselling crime writer returns with Flesh and Blood: A Scarpetta Novel. University Temple United Methodist Church, 1415 N.E. 43rd St., 634-3400, bookstore.washington.edu. 7 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. DAVID IGNATIUS The journalist’s new novel is The Director, which he’ll discuss with historian Robert W. Merry. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., 652-4255, townhallseattle.org. $5. 7:30 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. MARATHON II: A SHORT RUN ART SHOW Music from DJ Missie Mac and DJ Lit Field is part of an evening featuring artists MariNaomi, Tom Neely, Josh Simmons, Pam Wishbow, John Porcellino, and Ed Piskor. Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery, 1201 S. Vale St., 658-0110, fantagraphics.com. 6 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. DIANE VON FURSTENBERG Yes, you read that name correctly, as in DVF. The fashion legend will discuss her The Woman I Wanted to Be with Chiyo Ishikawa of SAM and erstwhile SW writer Laura Cassidy. Elliott Bay, 5:30 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. MAIA CHANCE Snow White Red-Handed has an American actress caught up in European intrigue during the late 1860s. Seattle Mystery Bookshop, Noon, Sat., Nov. 15. LITSA DREMOUSIS Love and mountain climbing combine in her novel Altitude Sickness. Cairo, 507 E. Mercer St., templeofcairo.com. 7 p.m. Sat., Nov. 15. SHORT RUN COMIX & ARTS FESTIVAL Dozens of writers and artists are scheduled to attend. Washington Hall, 153 14th Ave., shortrun.org. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat., Nov. 15. CAT WINTERS Her Gothic historical thriller, The Cure for Dreaming, features feminism and mesmerism. University Book Store, 4 p.m. Sat., Nov. 15. JOE GUPPY His memoir of mental illness is My Fluorescent God. Eagle Harbor, 3 p.m. Sun., Nov. 16. SHORT STORIES LIVE ACT’s Kurt Beattie directs local stage talent in a reading based on the radio essays of Walter Benjamin. Town Hall, $13-$15. 2 p.m. Sun., Nov. 16. RORY FANNING Soon after Veteran’s Day, he shares from Worth Fighting For: An Army Ranger’s Journey Out of the Military and Across America. Elliott Bay, 7 p.m. Mon., Nov. 17. MATT PARKER He uses math and comedy to explain the notions in his Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension. Town Hall, $5. 7:30 p.m. Mon., Nov. 17. DAVID SEDARIS Always a Seattle favorite, he’ll share stories of life in France, read from his own works, and discuss Ann Patchetts’s This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage. Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., seattlesymphony.org. 8 p.m. Mon., Nov. 17.
… a journey … a love story … with a teeter totter … and ropes.
See it with an ACTPass or purchase tickets today (206) 292-7676 • acttheatre.org
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Directed by Elizabeth Klob Text from The Unnamable by Samuel Beckett
BY B R IA N M I LLE R
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SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
Bach, Elgar, Mozart, and a piece by Seattle composer Angelique Poteat. First Free Methodist Church, 3200 Third Ave. W., 800-838-3006, seattlemetropolitanchamber orchestra.com. $10–$15. 8 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. SEATTLE WIND SYMPHONY Light classics for band. First Free Methodist Church, 3200 Third Ave. W., 800-838-3006, seattlewindsymphony.org. $5–$20. 7:30 p.m. Sat., Nov. 15. SEATTLE MODERN ORCHESTRA Music by UW faculty composer Huck Hodge, plus Boulez and Murail. Chapel Performance Space, 4649 Sunnyside Ave. N., seattle modernorchestra.org. $10–$20. 8 p.m. Sat., Nov. 15. SUZIE LEBLANC From this soprano, with instrumental ensemble Constantinople, music by pioneering 17thcentury woman composer Barbara Strozzi. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., 325-7066. earlymusicguild.org. $27–$45. 8 p.m. Sat., Nov. 15. CORNISH EARLY MUSIC FACULTY Baroque sonatas and opera arias. PONCHO Concert Hall, Cornish College, 710 E. Roy St., cornish.edu. $10–$32. 7 p.m. Sun., Nov. 16. GORDON MUMMA A lecture/demo from this electronic-music pioneer and Merce Cunningham collaborator. PONCHO Concert Hall, Cornish College, 710 E. Roy St., cornish.edu. Free. 1 p.m. Tues., Nov. 18. MIRÓ QUARTET Haydn and Beethoven, plus a new piece by American composer Gunther Schuller. Meany Hall, UW campus, 543-4880, uwworldseries.org. $10– $43. 7:30 p.m. Tues., Nov. 18.
© Michelle Bates
Sir Andrew is particularly good—relies on swami garb and prop gags, but gets stale rather quickly. In theory, this is an inspired setting for Shakespeare’s durable comedy, full of cross-dressing and mistaken identity, yet my watch ran slower than one of Dalí’s dripping timepieces. MARGARET FRIEDMAN Center House Theatre (Seattle Center), 733-8222. $30–$39. See seattle shakespeare.org for schedule. Ends Nov. 16. VANYA AND SONIA AND MASHA AND SPIKE Vanya (R. Hamilton Wright) and Sonia (Marianne Owen) are unmarried 50-something siblings who cared for their dying parents and still live in their childhood home. Their sister Masha (Pamela Reed), an aging starlet, funds their bleak lives; then she arrives for a visit, towing her boy-toy Spike (the excessively bare-chested William Poole) with the intent of selling the house, a misfortune foretold by Cassandra the housekeeper (the gregarious Cynthia Jones). The specter of Chekhov hangs over Christopher Durang’s Tony-winning comedy, though you sometimes feel you’re watching a clever yet contrived sitcom. His characters can seem flat, though his themes are resoundingly heartfelt. IRFAN SHARIFF ACT Theatre, 700 Union St., 292-7676. $55 and up. Runs Tues.–Sun; see acttheatre.org for exact schedule. Ends Nov. 16. WONDERLAND The Can Can’s fantastical winter cabaret. The Can Can, 94 Pike St. $40–$100. Runs Wed.–Sun.; see thecancan.com for exact schedule. Ends Dec. 28.
LIVE @ BENAROYA HALL A DEPARTURE FROM THE EXPECTED
arts&culture» Visual Arts Openings & Events inspired by a chance encounter with a truck canopy in Spokane. Bent takes that structural form and adopts it into a “monolithic chamber of secrets.” Opening reception 7 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. Jack Straw New Media Gallery, 4261 Roosevelt Way N.E., 634-0919, jackstraw.org. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Fri. Ends Feb. 6. COCA 24-HOUR ART MARATHON Twenty artists of varying disciplines all get together for an art-making extravaganza that will result in 100 creations. CoCA at The Summit, 420 E. Pike St., cocaseattle.org. Noon, Thurs., Nov. 13 to Noon, Fri., Nov. 14. FAMILY: IT’S COMPLICATED A group show exploring the difficulties and joys of coming together as a family. Opening reception 6-9 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. Gay City Health Project, 517 E. Pike St., 860-6969, gaycity.org. 3-8 p.m. Mon.-Sat. Ends Dec. 7. FROM THE TOY BOX Forty artists present work based on their favorite childhood toys. Opening reception 6-10 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. Ltd. Art Gallery, 501 E. Pine St., 457-2970, ltdartgallery.com. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Tues.Sat. Ends Dec. 7. MISFITS & MUTANTS Krissy Downing, Claudio Duran, Eli Wolff, Rhodora Jacob, and Kate Tesch show their paintings of freaky creatures in alien worlds. Opening reception 6-10 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. True Love Art Gallery, 1525 Summit Ave., 227-3572, trueloveart. com. 1-8 p.m. Tues.-Sun. Ends Dec. 7. MICHAEL OTTERSEN Gage’s newest professor showcases his highly geometric work. Opening reception 5-8 p.m. Thurs, Nov. 13. Gage Academy of Art, 1501 10th Ave. E., 323-4243, gageacademy.org. 8 a.m.10:30 p.m. Mon.-Sun. Ends Jan. 23.
WITH THE SEATTLE SYMPHONY S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium
TICKETS GOING FAST! Singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile returns to Benaroya Hall for three highly anticipated concerts with her hometown Seattle Symphony over Thanksgiving weekend.
SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall
FLAMENCO(S) OF LEAD AND COPPER
Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall
206.215.4747 | BENAROYAHALL.ORG
• AHTSIK’NUK (GOOD WITH THE HANDS) A col-
lection of “rare and unusual” carvings from the Nuucha-nulth Nations of BC and Washington. Steinbrueck Native Gallery, 2030 Western Ave., 441-3821, steinbruecknativegallery.com. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sun. Through Dec. JULIE BLACKMON She stages small children in ominous suburban scenes, full of innocent energy and implied menace. G. Gibson Gallery, 300 S. Washington St. (Tashiro Kaplan Building), 587-4033, ggibsongallery.com. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Wed.-Sat. Ends Nov. 29. BORDERLANDS Julie Alpert, Susanna Bluhm, Cynthia Camlin, Elise Richman, and Katy Stone unite for a group show exploring the concept of borders and boundaries, both conceptually and formally. SOIL Gallery, 112 Third Ave. S. (Tashiro Kaplan Building), 264-8061, soilart.org. Noon-5 p.m. Thu.-Sun. Ends Nov. 29. CITY DWELLERS Scenes and icons from Mumbai to New Delhi are represented via photography and sculpture, from an all-native perspective. Photographer Dhruv Malhotra takes large color images of people sleeping in public places—some because they’re poor, others because they simply feel like taking a nap. Nandini Valli Muthiah opts for more stage-managed scenes, posing a costumed actor as the blue-skinned Hindu god Krishna in contemporary settings; in one shot I love, he sits in a hotel suite, like a tired business traveler awaiting a conference call on Skype. Sculptor Debanjan Roby even dares to appropriate the revered figure of Gandhi. Apple never made such an ad, of course, but this impudent figure tweaks both India’s postcolonial history and the relentless consumerism that now links us all, from Seattle to Srinagar. BRIAN MILLER Seattle Art Museum, 1300 First Ave., 654-3121, seattleartmuseum.org. $12–$19. Weds.-Sun. Ends Feb. 15.
tures these three local painters. Opening reception 6-9 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. Blindfold Gallery, 1718 E. Olive Way, 328-5100, blindfoldgallery.com. 1-5 p.m. Thurs.-Sat. Ends Dec. 11. SLAVE TO THE NEEDLEPOINT Erin Frost, Joey Veltkamp, Kurt B. Reighley, Mark Mitchell and Paul Komada stitch it up. Opening reception 5-9 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. Ghost Gallery, 504 E. Denny Way, ghostgalleryart.com. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Sun. Ends Dec. 8. KELLIE TALBOT Photorealistic paintings of American landscapes, roadside signs, and rusting machinery. Opening reception 6-9 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. Vermillion, 1508 11th Ave., 709-9797, vermillionseattle.com. 4:30 p.m.-1:30 a.m. Tues.-Sun. Ends Dec. 6.
Of the Grid In German photographer Michael Wolf’s series Architecture of Density, we see severely cropped frontal views of generic new high-rise façades in Hong Kong, where he lives. Some are BY BRIAN MILLER commercial, some are residential, with sky and ground always omitted. They’re crowded together, our perspective foreshortened as if through a very long lens. At first these images look like Photoshop jobs: a basic building unit, curtain-wall, tiled and replicated ad infinitum—a monotonous urban collage. Then you’re not so sure. Isn’t that what all skyscrapers and soulless apartment buildings look like without human or terrestrial context? Peer closer into the large photos (affixed to a glossy acrylic surface), and look at the dangling laundry or office detritus within—are they repeated or unique? The same could be asked of us, if some stranger were scrutinizing us with binoculars (or a telephoto lens) from across the block. The balconies and windows are almost like Mondrian grids—pure geometry, though with less color. The impersonal abstraction puts you in mind of a hive; we by extension become the unseen worker bees.
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(Wolf is a veteran photojournalist with plenty of experience shooting people and human-interest stories.) Ugly, bland, and hypnotic, these buildings nonetheless suggest a kind of expansiveness or transcendence. Wolf says that “by eliminating sky and horizon, you give the feeling of unlimited size.” This booming metropolis, like other megacities around the world, almost seems to be growing without human control or intervention. We built it, yet it dwarfs us. Foster/White Gallery, 220 Third Ave. S., 622-2833, fosterwhite.com. 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Tues.–Sat. Ends Nov. 29.
© MICHAEL WOLF
November 21 & 22
PETER SCHERRER, SARA LONG & LEANNE GRIMES The gallery’s final show before closing fea-
evoke “moments of calm.” Opening reception 6-8 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13. Broadcast Gallery, 1623 Bellevue Ave., 467-4717, broadcastcoffee.com. 6:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Daily. Ends Dec. 10.
• ZACK BENT Lean-out, Lean-to is an installation
NOVEMBER 28, 29 & 30
KARI WESTPHAL A selection of paintings means to
The Better Angels OPENS FRI., NOV. 14 AT VARSITY. RATED PG. 94 MINUTES.
Camp X-Ray OPENS FRI., NOV. 14 AT SUNDANCE CINEMAS. RATED R. 117 MINUTES.
Is irony a saving grace? Jon Stewart surely thinks so. He uses irony to channel his cleareyed political fury on The Daily Show, and he’s directed a feature film that suggests irony is the only thing standing between us and madness. Rosewater is the reason Stewart disappeared from his late-night gig in the summer of 2013: He was in Jordan, directing a true story that has a stranger-than-fiction connection to The Daily Show. The movie is about the Iranian-Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari, played by Mexican star Gael García Bernal. In 2009 Bahari was arrested by Iranian authorities while covering the disputed elections in Tehran; included in the “evidence” against him was a Daily Show segment in which he joked with comedian Jason Jones about being a spy. Obviously, this was proof of espionage.
everyone in Washington, D.C., seems eager to ignore. The lame-duck Obama won’t be able to close Guantánamo Bay, as he promised six years ago, and the next administration won’t likely have more success (particularly with a GOP-run Congress). Camp X-Ray avoids the big picture, yet we suspect that detainees like Ali—and those those much worse than he—will probably grow old and die in Cuba, guarded by two more generations of young soldiers like Cole. BRIAN MILLER
The interrogator (Bodnia) and his quarry (García Bernal).
Stewart, who also wrote the Rosewater screenplay (from Bahari’s book Then They Came for Me), smartly eases into the ordeal, first depicting Bahari’s home life in Toronto and his journalistic work in Tehran. His mother (Shohreh Aghdashloo) still lives in Iran, and he meets anti-government resisters as part of his reporting duties for Newsweek. Once in prison, his main tormentor (Kim Bodnia) obsesses over whether Bahari’s arthouse DVDs are actually pornography and the question of just how many Jews are running the world. Stewart relishes these absurdities, as you would expect. He presents Bahari’s turning point—the journalist was physically abused, as well as kept in solitary confinement—as the moment when he gives up sincerity and simply begins using comically exaggerated riffs to bewilder his captors. And there you see how Stewart connects to the material. Rosewater too frequently has a dutiful quality, careful always to balance the negatives of the Iranian authorities with the positives of Iranian culture. The movie doesn’t announce the arrival of a born filmmaker, but it’s much better than a dilettante project—Stewart keeps a difficult storytelling subject moving right along. And there are sequences, like García Bernal’s exhilarating solo dance at a crucial point in his imprisonment, that convey a real appreciation for the human element that survives amid political horror. Rosewater isn’t The Great Dictator, but it’s good enough. Stewart should keep his day job—in an era of timorous national journalism, his shtick is indispensable—but if he can somehow make a movie now and then, even better. ROBERT HORTON
SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
No country will take Ali (Maadi) back from Gitmo.
Again, Kristen Stewart is in an impossible relationship. Instead of being in love with a vampire, her U.S. Army Private Cole has been deployed to Guantánamo Bay in 2010, where one particular detainee is determined to gain her affections. Cole, we’ll later learn, is a small-town girl from Florida. A few Skype chats with her mother indicate how she’s both running away from and seeking to expand her narrow horizons. She’s not a reader, not long out of high school, and
OPENS FRI., NOV. 14 AT SUNDANCE AND OTHER THEATERS. RATED R. 103 MINUTES.
BETH DUBBER/IFC FILMS/SUNDANCE SELECTS
Lincoln and the log cabin—such is the foundational mythology of 19th-century politics that you can forget how, yes, our 16th and greatest president actually grew up barefoot and poor in frontier conditions that would now be described as Third World. No water but the stream (possibly flowing with typhoid fever), no doctors, no books but the Bible; famine, disease, and howling wolves right outside your door (if you had a door). Kids today complain about spotty Wi-Fi connections and gluten allergies, while the 8-year-old Abe (Braydon Denney) soon suffers the loss of his mother (Brit Marling) and has to survive a harsh Indiana winter while stranded with his young sister and teenage cousin. His father ( Jason Clarke) has gone east to find work, maybe, and the kids cower in the cold by the hearth, eating moldy corn they’ve mashed into gruel. Close to starving, here is the future statesman who’ll 40 years later save the union. In 1817, that prospect hardly seems likely. Filming in muted black-and-white, A.J. Edwards based his coming-of-age tale on period interviews with those who knew Lincoln in his day. It’s not a Greatest Man biopic like those crafted by Steven Spielberg or John Ford; the focus here is on the primal seasons and influences that shape this mostly silent, passive child. His mother is illiterate, loving, and deeply spiritual. His father is a strong, practical woodsman not given to praise. Young Abe sees death up close, meets untamed Indians, and encounters a shackled slave gang. His life experiences are, by today’s broadband standards, incredibly narrow. Yet those, the film implies, are all he will need to lead us. Edwards’ own name on this somber, worthwhile debut is much smaller than that of his producer, Terrence Malick, for whom he’s worked on past projects (and who initiated this one). The influence is inescapable: long voiceover passages, long silences, characters wandering in the grass, bare trees grasping at the sky, passages of classical music, a woozy sense of plot or momentum, and a God’s-eye view of human foibles. There is humanity here, but it’s studied and seldom passionate. When Abe’s fam-
ily is blended to include new siblings and mother (Diane Kruger), the notion of reconciliation is implanted with grave, deliberate sincerity—a mood that characterizes the entire movie. Spielberg and Ford leavened their Lincoln lessons with corny jokes and earthy humor. The Better Angels is by comparison solemn, muddy, and ethereal. Tom teaches his son to wrestle and swing an axe, but it’s the example of Abe’s two mothers—patient, peaceful, attuned to human need—that the filmmakers are quietly celebrating. These women are the “better angels” of Lincoln’s first inaugural address. We know what lies ahead, of course; yet during this long, poetic prelude, it’s a jolt to hear the future predicted so plainly. “He won’t be a backwoodsman for long,” says Abe’s teacher (Wes Bentley). “He’ll make his mark.” BRIAN MILLER
Tom Lincoln (Clarke) sees a big future for his son.
when detainee No. 471 asks her for a library copy of The Prisoner of Azkaban, she says they don’t have those Arab books. Ali (the fine IranianAmerican actor Payman Maadi, of A Separation) laughs in her face. Fluent in English, speaking through armored glass, he’ll do other things to insult Cole. But after eight years in Gitmo, he mainly wants a friend—and Cole is the only sympathetic ear he’s got. Ali was living in Germany after 9/11, and Camp X-Ray leaves his political leanings vague. Whatever his jihadist sympathies, the film’s opening minutes show, he’s swiftly nabbed and subjected to extraordinary rendition—orange jumpsuit, bag over his head, then a chain-link home on a Caribbean island where he may be gradually going mad. Cole’s military comrades are a mostly rowdy, boorish sort. She’s called a “freshman,” and their off-duty recreation scenes are like spring break in Cuba. It’s no wonder that the reserved Cole, her hair so tightly coiled in a bun, is slowly drawn to an educated adult like Ali. He appeals to her conscience, while her colleagues pretend they have none. Of the detainees’ force feedings and sleep deprivation, says Cole, “It’s not as black and white as they said it’d be. It makes you feel guilty.” Stewart makes Cole’s discomfort evident, though her character remains something of a cipher. She’s shrewd enough to know why prisoners are called detainees (to circumvent the Geneva Convention, she explains to a fellow guard), yet she shows no Snowden-esque willingness to question the broader system. Frustratingly, the script doesn’t give either Cole or Ali much depth beyond their conversational stalemate; still, that may be fittingly symbolic for the purgatory of Gitmo. Though hardly trenchant, and perhaps better suited to the stage, Peter Sattler’s debut film nonetheless raises an important topic that
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It is easier to deny God than Hollywood—just ask Stephen Hawking. Everybody’s favorite theoretical physicist now has a biopic devoted to his singular life; not surprisingly, it concentrates less on the information-paradox problem in black holes than on the love life of a man stricken with a debilitating illness. The Theory of Everything opens with Hawking (played by Les Miz star Eddie Redmayne) as a young nerd at university, where his geeky manner doesn’t entirely derail his ability to woo future wife Jane Wilde (Felicity Jones) or impress supervisor Dennis Sciama (David Thewlis). Hawking is diagnosed with motor neuron disease at age 21 and given a two-year prognosis for survival—one of the film’s sharpest ideas is to allow time to pass, and pass, without pointing out that Hawking is demolishing the expectations for someone with his condition. No wonder “time” is a central concept for Hawking’s work (his bestseller was puckishly titled A Brief History of Time). The movie is directed by James Marsh, whose offbeat career includes the documentaries Man on Wire and Wisconsin Death Trip as well as fiction films. Perhaps more important, the movie is officially adapted from (now exwife) Jane Hawking’s memoir, so the love story has its share of ups and downs. This is where Theory manages to distinguish itself from the usual Oscar bait. Whether dealing with Jane’s closeness to a widowed choirmaster (Charlie Cox) who becomes part of the Hawking family, or Stephen’s chemistry with his speech therapist (Maxine Peake), the film catches a frank, worldly view of the way things happen sometimes. No special villains here—you might say it’s just the way the universe unfolds. Alas, there is music, and dewy photography, and a few purple passages of dialogue. I suppose a movie can’t be a Designated Academy Award Contender without them. Redmayne’s performance is a fine piece of physical acting, and does suggest some of the playfulness in Hawking’s personality (the man did do a guest voice on The Simpsons, after all). From now until Oscar night, you will not be able to get away from it. Jones, whose 2014 also includes The Amazing SpiderMan 2, is equally good, as she must suggest the loyalty of a heroically patient person but also the weariness of tending the disabled, demanding genius. Especially in the late reels, the two convey a seen-it-all intimacy that suggests the film’s quietist observation: The puzzle of the Big Bang is one thing, but the riddle of marriage is another challenge entirely. ROBERT HORTON E firstname.lastname@example.org
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• BIRDMAN A movie star in a career skid since he
stopped playing a masked superhero named Birdman back in the ’90s, Riggan Thomson (Michael Keaton) is preparing his big comeback in a Broadway adaptation of Raymond Carver stories, funded and directed by himself. Obstacles abound: Riggan’s co-star (Andrea Riseborough) announces she’s pregnant with his child; his grown daughter (Emma Stone) is his assistant, and not his biggest fan; a critic plans to destroy the play. And, in the movie’s funniest headache, Riggan must endure a popular but insufferable stage actor (Edward Norton, doing a wonderful self-parody) who’s involved with the play’s other actress (Naomi Watts). This is all going on while Riggan maintains a tenuous hold on his own sanity—he hears Birdman’s voice in his head, for one thing. To create Riggan’s world, director Alejandro González Iñárritu and Gravity cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki present the film as a continuous unbroken shot (disguised with artful digital seams). Birdman serves so many heady moments it qualifies as a bona fide happening. It has a few stumbles, but the result is truly fun to watch. And Keaton—the former Batman, of course—is a splendidly weathered, human presence. Ironically or not, he keeps the film grounded. (R) ROBERT HORTON Guild 45th, Pacific Place, Lincoln Square, Kirkland, Lynwood (Bainbridge), others CITIZENFOUR Fugitive leaker Edward Snowden has invited documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras (The Oath) and The Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald into his Hong Kong hotel room. In this absorbing character study, they debate how and when to spill the information he took from his job at the National Security Agency. Clicking the SEND button carries as much weight as Bob Woodward meeting Deep Throat in All the President’s Men. This straightforward documentary may be smaller-scaled than a political thriller, but it has similar suspense: Everybody in the room realizes the stakes—and the dangers—of exposing a whistleblower to public scrutiny. One man’s whistleblower is another man’s traitor, a debate that Poitras doesn’t pause to consider, so confident is she of Snowden’s cause. Having this access to Snowden in the exact hours he went from being a nonentity with top-secret clearance to a hero/ pariah is a rare chance to see a now-historical character in the moment of truth. By the end of the film, we get a scene that suggests that Snowden is not alone in his whistleblowing status—a tantalizing hint (scribbled by Greenwald on pieces of paper) of another story to come. (NR) R.H. SIFF Cinema Uptown DEAR WHITE PEOPLE Justin Simien’s smart new college satire forthrightly addresses race, and it feels like a follow-up—though not a rebuttal—to Spike Lee’s School Daze, made a generation ago. Like Lee, though with a lighter comic touch, Simien is interested in the stereotypes that black and mixed-race kids apply to themselves. The movie’s title comes from the provocative campus radio show hosted by Sam (Tessa Thompson), who calls out all races for their shallow assumptions. In her orbit are a seemingly perfect high achiever, a savvy, sexy social-media queen, and the nappy-haired freshman nerd Lionel (Tyler James Williams, from Everybody Hates Chris) who’s trying to navigate his way among cliques and not-so-coded expectations of What It Means to Be Black. In his debut feature, Simien stuffs the plot with rather more stock elements than needed (a venal dean, racist frats, etc.). But as with his characters, everything typical here gets comically upended. Dear White People reminds you how lazy most American comedies are. (R) B.R.M. Sundance, Ark Lodge, others
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Furry Animals) will introduce this documentary about his efforts to retrace the footsteps of an 18th-century ancestor in the U.S. He’s also playing a gig at Barboza after the screening. (NR) Northwest Film Forum, 1515 12th Ave., 267-5380, nwfilmforum.org. $6-$11. 6:30 p.m. Fri. BAD TURN WORSE William Devane, who pops up in Interstellar, is the name in this Texas-set crime tale about three teenagers whose robbery goes very, very wrong. (NR) Grand Illusion, 1403 N.E. 50th St., 5233935, grandillusioncinema.org. $5–$9. 5 p.m. Sat., 9 p.m. Mon. & Tues. CRIME WAVE Screened on 16mm film, this is a little-known 1985 tale of a screenwriter trying to write a traditional crime flick. Made by Canadian director John Paizs, it sounds like a very self-reflexive parable of filmmaking. (NR) Grand Illusion, $5–$9. 7 p.m. Fri. & Sat. FARGO Yah, sure, you betcha. The Coen brothers’ 1996 double Oscar winner (for script and star Frances McDormand) is always a good occasion for a drink and meal (just finish your supper before the wood chipper scene). The Coens imparted “a gentle touch on a vicious story,” William H. Macy later said, still grateful for the career-making “role I was born to play.” Macy’s dim but persistent Minnesota blackmailer is still a marvel of comic-malevolent invention, a perfect rival for McDormand’s cheery moral steel as the pregnant sheriff who tracks him down. (R) BRIAN MILLER Central Cinema, 1411 21st Ave., 686-6684, central-cinema. com. $6-$8. 9:30 p.m. Fri.-Tues. HANDMADE PUPPET DREAMS More films about puppets, selected by Heather Henson. Portland puppeteer Toby Froud will also introduce one his shorts. (NR) Grand Illusion, $5-$9. 6 p.m. Sun. HANNAH AND HER SISTERS This movie marks a sweet spot in Woody Allen’s long career. The sterling 1986 family ensemble comedy won Oscars for his script, for Michael Caine (as a guilt-ridden philandering husband), and for Diane Wiest (the artistic, unfulfilled middle sister who wants to sing, and does so memorably with “I’m Old Fashioned”). Barbara Hershey plays the crazy younger sister, and Mia Farrow the stable one, though all three women are revealed to be more complicated than the labels society might give them. Hannah is perhaps Allen’s richest, warmest, most generous movie as it surveys, through several changing seasons, these flighty sisters and their even more flawed men (the director foremost among them, playing a selfish hypochondriac). It’s the best adaptation of Chekhov, not actually written by Chekhov, ever put to film. (PG-13) B.R.M. Central Cinema, $6-$8. 7 p.m. Fri.-Tues. LABYRINTH Before she was an Oscar winner and sex symbol for the Hubert Selby Jr. set, Jennifer Connelly was a 16-year-old ingénue starring opposite Kabukistyle, feathered-hair-metal goblin king David Bowie in Muppet master Jim Henson’s 1986 one-of-a-kind fantasy flick. The film is a loony artifact from the pre-CG era when the rights to Lord of the Rings were apparently still tied up. (Henson uses puppets instead of computers, of course.) It’s a fairy-tale take on pubescence, as reluctant babysitter Connelly rashly wishes her wee crying brother would be taken by goblins— which naturally occurs. To retrieve the infant requires various tests and transformations in a journey through a Brothers Grimm carnival, with Sendak and Escher booths just off the midway. (The script was written by Monty Python’s erudite medievalist Terry Jones.) Connelly must also endure the amorous attentions (and songs) of Bowie—and, yes, there’s some sexual subtext as Connelly nears womanhood. Another enduring oddity of the film: Though Connelly now looks quite different, Bowie seems eerily unchanged. Because goblin kings never age. You decide whether the same holds true for the film. (PG) B.R.M. Grand Illusion, $5-$9. 9 p.m. Fri., 3 & 9 p.m. Sat., 8 p.m. Sun. NORTE, THE END OF HISTORY This is a four-hour crime movie from Filipino director Lav Diaz. Among its episodes and characters, a privileged law student commits murder, but a poor Filipino man gets framed for the killing. (NR) Northwest Film Forum, $6-$11. Fri.-Thurs. SEATTLE SHORTS FILM FESTIVAL This is an all-day presentation of 17 shorts, presented in blocks, with topics including an artist in Mongolia, kids who take Star Wars way too seriously, and pre-Civil War slavery tale. Filmmaker talks and socials are also planned. See website for full details. (NR) SIFF Film Center (Seattle Center), seattleshort.org. $7-$24. 10 a.m. Sat. TOUCH OF EVIL Orson Welles’ great and sleazy border-town crime tale from 1958 is screened, followed by a daylong seminar taught by SW contributor Sean Axmaker, who knows the film comprehensively.
The movie’s reputation gradually grew over the four decades following its release, and several different edits and restoration now exist. The movie, which began as a pulp fiction novel about corruption in a border town, was originally to feature Welles as a mere heavy-for-hire. The guy hadn’t worked in the U.S. for a decade; and this, his low-budget return to Hollywood, would be his last American movie. Janet Leigh stars as the innocent American wife of a Mexican lawman (Charlton Heston). It was his idea, says Heston, to hire Welles as director. Welles rewrote the script on the fly, restaged scenes in the public restrooms of Venice, California (a decrepit Moorish-style resort town then undergoing an oil boom), and collapsed days of shooting into single, long-take sequences like the famous opening shot, set to cantina music and a ticking time bomb. With Marlene Dietrich. (NR) B.R.M. SIFF Film Center (Seattle Center), 324-9996, siff.net. $15-$20. 11 a.m. Sat. WE THE OWNERS Co-ops and employee rights are among the topics in this new advocacy doc, followed by discussion. (NR) Keystone Church, 5019 Keystone Pl. N., 6326021, meaningfulmovies.org. Free. 7 p.m. Fri.
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Sgt. Don Collier (Pitt) gives no indication of his life before the war. Nor is there any depth to his typical crew—Shia LaBeouf the pious Bible-thumper, Michael Peña the steadfast Mexican-American, Jon Bernthal the volatile hick—and their regional accents. Because every WWII movie demands one, the greenhorn here is Ellison (Logan Lerman), a typist recruited to man the machine gun where his predecessor perished in a bloody puddle. Fury covers 24 hours in April 1945, as Allied forces roll through Germany in the war’s endgame. Collier’s most lethal enemies are the few remaining Tiger tanks, much better armored than our flimsy Shermans. Though victory is, to us, preordained, the mood here is all mud and exhaustion. Collier and crew have been fighting for years, from North Africa to Europe, to the point where he says of his tank, “This is my home.” (German troops say the same thing during the finale—not that it saves them; Nazis die by the score.) Ayer creates a strange, overlong interlude at Fury’s midpoint, as two German women host Collier and Ellison, though this is hardly a date movie. In an otherwise predictable, patriotic flick, here Collier seems to yearn for a calm, cultured oasis amid the chaos of war. (R) B.R.M. Sundance, Pacific Place, Cinebarre, Thornton Place, Lincoln Square, others GONE GIRL What’s exceptional about Gillian Flynn’s adaptation of her 2012 novel, directed with acid fidelity by David Fincher, is that Gone Girl doesn’t like most of its characters. Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) soon falls under suspicion of murdering his missing wife Amy (Rosamund Pike). The small-town Missouri police investigation (led by Kim Dickens) goes entirely against Nick for the first hour. He behaves like an oaf and does most everything to make himself the prime suspect, despite wise counsel from his sister (Carrie Coon) and lawyer (a surprisingly effective, enjoyable Tyler Perry). Second hour, still no body, but flashbacks turn us against the absent Amy. As we slowly investigate the Dunnes’ very flawed marriage, funny little kernels of bile begin to explode underfoot. How the hell did these two end up together? Flynn’s foundational joke answers that question with a satire of marriage. The movie poster and tabloid-TV plot suggest a standard I-didn’t-kill-my-wife tale, but matrimony is what’s being murdered here. Amid the media circus, Nick becomes the scorned sap because of his untruths; but what really damns him in the movie’s intricate plot is his credulity—he believed in Amy too much. Gone Girl is all about manipulation—Fincher’s stock in trade, really, which helps make the film such cynical, mean-spirited fun. (R) B.R.M. Sundance, Majestic Bay, Big Picture, others INTERSTELLAR Reaching about 90 years forward from its start in a near-future dystopia, Christopher Nolan’s solemn space epic commits itself both to a father/daughter reunion and the salvation of mankind. Matthew McConaughey’s Cooper is sent on a mission to plunge into a wormhole near Saturn because Michael Caine tells him to. And no one in a Chris Nolan movie can say no to Michael Caine, here playing a professor named Brand who also sends along his scientist daughter Amelia (Anne Hathaway) with Cooper and two others. Before leaving, Cooper tells his daughter—played by three actresses at different ages—that maybe they’ll be the same age when he returns home, because of Einstein and other stuff we slept through in AP physics. The two ceremoniously synchronize their watches, sure to figure later—two hours for us, rather more for them—in the story. Cooper and company must investigate possible planets for colonization (scouted in advance by other astronauts). One is water, the other ice, and both prove quite lethal. There’s some action (though none so elegant as in the much superior Gravity), but what Nolan really wants Cooper’s team to do is discuss relativity, gravity, the fifth dimension, and quantum data (the latter requiring a visit to a black hole). There’s talk of ghosts and a cosmic “they” who chose Cooper for his long mission. But with the frequent recitations of Dylan Thomas poetry and the grown Murph (Jessica Chastain) stabbing chalky equations on a blackboard, the movie feels like an undergraduate seminar in space—one that’s three hours long. (PG-13) B.R.M. Pacific Science Center IMAX, SIFF Cinema Uptown, SIFF Cinema Egyptian, Thornton Place, Majestic Bay, Ark Lodge, Varsity, Admiral, others MAGIC IN THE MOONLIGHT Set during the interwar period in the South of France, Magic in the Moonlight isn’t Woody Allen’s worst picture (my vote: The Curse of the Jade Scorpion), but it’s close. Colin Firth plays a cynical magician, who keeps repeating Allen’s dull ideas over and over and fucking over again. Emma Stone, in her first career misstep (Allen’s fault, not
hers), plays a shyster mentalist seeking to dupe a rich family out of its fortune (chiefly by marrying its gullible, ukulele-playing son, Hamish Linklater). The recreations of this posh ’20s milieu seem curiously literal, like magazine spreads, so soon after seeing Wes Anderson’s smartly inflected period detail in The Grand Budapest Hotel, which both revered and ridiculed the past. Magic feels like Allen’s re-rendering of a thin prewar British stage comedy he saw at a matinee during his youth, now peppered with references to Nietzsche and atheism. It’s dated, then updated, which only seems to date it the more. Period aside, no one wants to see Firth, 53, and Stone, 25, as a couple. The math doesn’t work. It’s icky. (PG-13) B.R.M. Admiral MY OLD LADY Set mostly in a fabulous Paris apartment, tis film is based on a play by Israel Horovitz, and no wonder Horovitz (making his feature-film directing debut—at age 75) chose not to open up the stage work; that’s one great pad. A failed-at-everything 57-year-old blowhard named Mathias Gold (Kevin Kline) has arrived in Paris to claim the place, but there’s just one problem. It was purchased by his father, some 40 years earlier, in the French contract called viager, which means the seller gets to live in it until she dies, as the buyer pays a monthly stipend in the interim. And she—in this case 92-year-old Madame Girard (Maggie Smith)—is still very alertly alive. So is her daughter Chloé (Kristin Scott Thomas), and so are various ghosts from the past, many of which come staggering to life as Mathias moves into an empty room and schemes a way to undercut these entrenched ladies. The pace is rocky here, and everybody speaks as though they’re in a play. This is partially mitigated by the fact that if you’re going to have people running off at the mouth, you could do worse than this hyper-eloquent trio. (PG-13) R.H. Kirkland NIGHTCRAWLER Titled and released as if it were a Halloween horror flick, Dan Gilroy’s dark media fable has more in common with Network than Nosferatu. Lou (the politely creepy Jake Gyllenhaal) is identified as an earnest, calculating criminal in the opening minutes; he’s never less than transparent about his motives, most of which appear to have been gleaned from self-help books and inspirational Internet sites. He’s an amoral American hustler, a type descended from Dale Carnegie and Sammy Glick. A career in stolen scrap metal soon gives way to freelance videography at L.A. car wrecks and crime scenes, and Lou’s basest impulses are naturally encouraged by a ratings-starved TV station. (Rene Russo is amusingly aroused as the station’s “vampire shift” manager—a venal Mrs. Robinson who mentors eager Lou.) Nightcrawler is more a parable of unfettered capitalism—there’s your horror—than realistic media satire. Lou’s swift progress in TMZ-land brings him a rival (Bill Paxton) and a naïve protégée (English actor Riz Ahmed), but no one here has—or needs—much depth. Lou has no history, no family, only his hollow aphorisms of success. Nightcrawler never quite settles on a satisfactory tone between squeamish laughter and a smarter, Chayefskian disgust, but Lou you remember—a creature for these craven times, prospering from our need to see the worst. (R) B.R.M. Sundance, Bainbridge, Thornton Place, Lincoln Square, Pacific Place, Cinebarre, others ST. VINCENT Bill Murray is pretty much the sole draw for the movie, and given his unique screen presence, it’s something. St. Vincent is all about the Murray persona: a deeply sarcastic man struggling to find his way to sincerity. That struggle is why Murray looks so melancholy in so much of his work. But it’s not a good movie. Murray’s slovenly Brooklyn misanthrope is Vincent, who reluctantly agrees to babysit the 12-year-old son (Jaeden Lieberher) of his new next-door neighbor (Melissa McCarthy). This will take time away from drinking, gambling at the racetrack, or visiting his Russian prostitute (Naomi Watts). We are also cued to the reasons Vincent is curmudgeonly, none of which will come as much of a surprise. Writer/director Theodore Melfi tries hard to convince us that Vincent is capable of great nastiness, but even these efforts seem rigged to ultimately show the soft, gooey center of both character and movie. As much pleasure as I took from watching Murray stretch out, I didn’t believe a minute of it. But do stick around for the end credits, when Murray sings along to Bob Dylan’s “Shelter From the Storm.” It’s the movie’s one great sequence. (PG-13) R.H. Kirkland, Bainbridge, others
The Song Goes On
+ SAVES THE DAY
After five decades, the voice of Joan Baez still rings true.
with special guests
ON SALE THIS WEEK at AXS.COM!
MOTION CITY SOUNDTRACK
REGGIE AND THE FULL EFFECT
BY GWENDOLYN ELLIOTT
hough she’s best known for interpreting the songs of others, Joan Baez’s career is unquestionably her own. It spans more than 50 years, from humble beginnings on the Cambridge, Mass. coffee-shop scene to playing world stages as a highly visible social and political activist and proponent of nonviolence. It’s studded with distinctions—like the Recording Academy’s Lifetime Achievement Award and peace and humanitarian honors too numerous to mention—and unforgettable moments: rallying with Nelson Mandela and Cesar Chavez, introducing the world to Bob Dylan, and surviving the U.S. Christmas bombing of Hanoi while she was in the region visiting American prisoners of war. These days, at 73, the noted soprano is still singing and sharing her story. She called Seattle Weekly herself from her San Francisco–area home a few weeks ago and spoke about her life, issues close to her heart, and returning to South America, where now-toppled dictatorships banned her from performing.
SHOWBOX AND STG PRESENT
NEW YEAR’S EVE!
AN EVENING WITH
REIGNWOLF with special guest s
12/31 – ON SALE FRIDAY @ NOON
1/2 & 1/3
A TRIBUTE TO NEIL DIAMOND
MONETA AUGUST with special guest s HIRIE, LEILANI WOLFGRAMM
with special guest s MISS MAY I
+ NORTHLANE + ERRA
2/16 6:30 PM
SHOWBOX AND MIKE THRASHER PRESENT PUNK ROCK BUT KINDA NOT TOUR 2014
with special guest s ORANGE GOBLIN
+ BL’AST + KING PARROT
SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
COLD WAR KIDS with special guest
ELLIOT MOSS 2/20
THE NICK & KNIGHT TOUR
JORDAN KNIGHT & NICK CARTER
11/20 THIS SUNDAY!
SHOWBOX & FORZA 2 HORIZON PRESENT
CAPITAL CITIES with special guests CHERUB +
NIGHT TERRORS OF 1927
MOORE THEATRE GENESIS EXTENDED 2014 WORLD TOUR 12/10 – 7:30 PM
And a Voice to Sing With: Joan Baez. SW: What was it like returning to South America? It’s been 30 years since you played there.
Baez: Not only that, but when I did go last time, I was not allowed to sing, which is very flattering, you know. But I hadn’t really sung there in forever, so that was exciting. There, some musicians I’ve listened to and some I’ve never met shared the stage with me, and that was exciting for me as well as the public. How were the crowds?
The crowds were stunning—it’s an interesting time period for them. Even the young people who didn’t live under the dictatorships know, it’s almost cellular, they know about those times and what happens. Those times are remembered just when I walk out onstage, and people get very emotional about it, as they should, really. What social issues are most compelling to you today?
There are many that are compelling, but what [I’m most concerned about is] global warming. That’s an important issue. It’s the hardest to tackle. We don’t believe we’re going down, and it’s too hideous to think about: the species of animals we’re losing, the environment we’re losing, the songbirds we’re losing. We kind of live in a denial, which you kind of have to, to some degree. If I weren’t in denial part of the time, it would be too sorrowful to go on. What I do now with my life is spend a lot of
time at home, which I didn’t do for all the ’60s and ’70s—I was gone and not near my family. The other day, what I realized is that I go and sing out on the road, I do that about a third of the year. And I seem to remind people of things. The most common response backstage afterwards is, “Thanks for reminding me. Reminding me of what I’d forgotten.” People really did get so not willing to take risks, and not willing to sacrifice. [The post–Civil Rights era] became an era of a lot of greed. So I think just to be out there and to talk about that, to remind people of the beauty of song—right now I’m in a period of my life [when] that’s what I’m doing a lot of. What are your thoughts about the role of protest music today, in the digital age?
I think people are searching for songs that have some deeper meaning. What’s missing at the moment, I think, is an anthem. We need to have at least the feeling of a movement. There was that feeling for quite a while with Occupy, and when Obama ran for president. When he got into office, it was nearly impossible to maintain any of that. But that feeling—at least young people knew that we had each other, a feeling that we could make a change, literally, with each other. Maybe out of that some songs would have come; I don’t think they had the time. Also, you have to recognize the time period of the mid- and early ’60s were years of some outlandishly extravagant talent. Tremendous talent that is not going to be repeated, in that sense. So now it’s like, “What do we do with what we have?” I think there are a lot of good songs being written, a lot of good songwriters. Another issue is, what’s the platform for that? For us way back then, it went from the underground to the cultural. And it hasn’t done that, and I don’t know what the ingredients are, to make that possible and necessary. How have you gauged the artist’s, and the public’s, response to Ferguson?
It’s really interesting. I think the people who organized in Ferguson really set a good role model for issues that are bound to come that are like that. They managed to sit on their rage and do something more intelligent than be angry. And organize and continue in the path of a nonviolent organizer like [Dr. Martin Luther] King. People who worked with King went there to help. Those are the only ways we’re going to get through, if we manage to maintain caring and not let the revenge take over. I remember once I was with King, in Birmingham, in a church, and some Ku Klux Klan [members] started picketing outside. Someone in our group started shouting, “Oh, they’re out there, the fucking Klan!” And he said, “If we can’t love those white brothers, we don’t have a movement.” Pretty radical. At least in Ferguson, some of the rhetoric and some of the honest feeling and prayers were genuine about that sentiment. Has anyone, any artist, participating there stood out in your mind as a potential anthem-maker?
I think it would depend on how the stars lined up. And how inspired and how talented [the artist is]. An anthem is probably the most difficult thing to write. I would never attempt it—it would be so self-defeating I’d be exhausted. I don’t know who can do it, what it has to come out of. “We Shall Overcome” came out of deep politics and
deep organizing, and Seeger and another very gifted man, Guy Carawan. When I picture that song in my mind, there’s so much action around it. So much activity and togetherness. Is anything like that even possible now?
Well, nothing’s possible until it’s done. But you know, I think that’s part of what we do during what I call “the meantime.” We lay down the path towards whatever comes next. Maybe we’re making a pathway or living a life when the next moment arrives; the nature of it will depend on what we’ve been doing in the meantime.
You mentioned Pete Seeger. What are your reflections in light of his passing and the legacy his gift of music has given the world?
It was huge, what he gave the world. All these places that I have traveled, his name comes up: He’s sung there, he’s had his translators there. He was my first role model I had for [the question] “How do we put the music and politics together?” He not only showed me but inspired me, to the point that I abandoned my rhythm-and-blues career on the ukulele and started playing folk songs. In what ways do you see the old folk canon influencing today’s musicians?
I think there’s no way to pretend that we don’t come out of what we’ve heard. I’m fortunate enough to have people say to me, “Because of you, I picked up the guitar.” That’s all encouraging, and that’s how it’s supposed to happen. You get inspired and you pick up the guitar and you start playing. What comes to mind when you reflect on what you’ve accomplished and how your work has been embraced by later generations?
I know what the experience was like for your parents, but I don’t know what it’s like for a young person. When I was in Belgrade, I was astounded—there were so many young people, and there it’s clear: It’s still the remnant s of the politics and the suffering their parents went through. There were many people still feeling the effects of the war?
What advice do you have for all-female rock groups, like Kashmir’s Pragaash or Russia’s Pussy Riot, who have been threatened, jailed, and tortured for speaking out against their governments by playing music?
Those are the risk-takers. I’m always amazed and thrilled to see that that goes on. The key is: Who’s doing what they sing about? That’s always been a question. I think there were more people [relying] on safety in numbers, and there was more comfort in numbers back [in the ’60s]. Today, there’s not much you can rely on in numbers. I mean, when the Dixie Chicks made that [2003 anti-Iraq War] comment, they didn’t have much support from other people in the industry.
They did from you. Yeah, you bet. E firstname.lastname@example.org
mainstage WED/NOVEMBER 12 • 7PM & 10PM
southern soul assembly
w/ jj grey, marc broussard, anders osborne, and luther dickinson FRI/NOVEMBER 14 • 8PM
hypnotikon two w/ martin rev,
bitchin bajas, food pyramid, midday veil
SAT/NOVEMBER 15 • 8PM
hypnotikon two w/ rain parade,
master musicians of bukkake, tjutjuna, residual echoes
SUN/NOVEMBER 16 • 7:30PM - 91.3 KBCS WELCOMES
martin hayes and dennis cahill MON/NOVEMBER 17 • 7:30PM
keola beamer w/ geoffrey keezer TUE/NOVEMBER 18 • 7:30PM
w/ daniel champagne WED/NOVEMBER 19 • 7PM & 10PM
thanksgiving vs christmas w/ molly lewis
next • 11/21 & 22 the atomic bombshells in cake! a decade of decadent dazzle • 11/26 the buckaroos thanksgiving eve special • 11/28 & 29 the paperboys 8th annual thanksgiving weekend meltdown • 11/30 tony furtado w/ casey neill • 12/1 arts aftercare benefit • 12/2 kate lynne & the ghost runners • 12/3 goapele • 12/4 john roderick • 12/5 fremont abbey winter round • 12/7 gypsy soul • 12/8 charlie hunter and scott amendola • 12/9 a winged victory for the sullen • 12/11 - 12/27 land of the sweets: the burlesque nutcracker • 12/28 & 29 the bobs after christmas show!
happy hour every day • 11/12 jd hobson • 11/13 the sunshine junkies • 11/14 hypnotikon two: new weather / corum • 11/15 hypnotikon two: newaxeyes / kingdom of the holy sun • 11/16 hwy 99 blues presents jean harnett • 11/17 crossrhythm sessions • 11/18 freddy & francine, alicia healy and katie kuffel • 11/19 200 trio TO ENSURE THE BEST EXPERIENCE · PLEASE ARRIVE EARLY DOORS OPEN 1.5 HOURS PRIOR TO FIRST SHOW · ALL-AGES (BEFORE 9:30PM)
JOAN BAEZ The Moore, 1932 Second Ave., 877-STG-4TIX, stgpresents.org/moore. $32.50–$57. 7:30 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14.
216 UNION STREET, SEATTLE · 206.838.4333
SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
What I was amazed and so happy about was it was the only place where ticket prices were an issue. They had to be high for us to do it, to go there and pay for it, and we thought it wasn’t going to sell out. But then it filled up, completely, and [tour officials] said the pay is so little there that [citizens] wait until the end of the month to figure out what they’re going to do with that extra money, and the place was filled with, say, 30-year-old kids. Not filled, but way more than other places.
dinner & show
QN I G H T C L U B U P C O M I N G
E V E N T S
Gwar’s Drummer Wants to Shove the Space Needle Up Your Ass
S A T U R D A Y, N O V E M B E R 1 5 T H
The band’s latest tour finds the barbaric interplanetary warriors searching for their departed singer. BY DAVE LAKE
TH URSD AYS
11/20/14 12/04/14 12/11/14 12/18/14
LES SINS WUKI R AV E O F T H R O N E S T O U R
SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
W ED N ESD AYS
SLINK K ASTLE & AMTRAC
TICKETS AVAIL ABLE AT W W W.QNIGHTCLUB.COM 1426 Broadway - Seattle, WA
J. ESPINOZ A PHASE S TE V E1DER
TORO Y MOI DJ PROJECT
MANIK CL AUDE VONSTROKE L ANE 8 CA JMERE
t’s never easy for a band to replace a longtime singer—even if your band dresses in elaborate latex costumes while cartoonishly murdering audience members, as is the case for Gwar. Going strong for over three decades, the Richmond, Virginia thrash metal outfit suffered a loss when singer Dave Brockie, aka Oderus Urungus, passed away in March. Its latest tour finds the group searching for Oderus, who has gone missing, and features a new pair of co-lead singers, Blothar and Vulvatron. The members of Gwar don’t chat with the press outside of character, but drummer Jizmak Da Gusha did volunteer a few details about their recent Seattle stop.
ram it up someone’s ass! We’ve been ransacking Seattle for years. That grunge, though, that stuff almost ruined Gwar. Thank God it’s gone. Recreational marijuana is legal here. I know you guys like crack, but how do you feel about weed?
It doesn’t do anything for Gwar. Gwar is busy in their minds, busy in their day, busy trying to ransack this mudball planet, and that stuff just slows you down.
What about politics? Oderus used to be the interplanetary correspondent for FOX News. Did Gwar support anyone in the recent elections?
I’ll decline to comment on any candidate for any office because they’re all worthless. They’re all criminals, SW: This tour is dedithey’re all liars, and cated to finding out what “I’m not even sure where they all hurt other happened to Oderus I am right now, but I know people to get where Urungus. Are there any are, which is particular places in Seattle it’s filthy and it smells, so it they why Gwar actually you guys will be looking? likes politicians, Jizmak Da Gusha: Every must be California.” because they’re evil city in America has its own section of town where the drugs are prevalent. So we try and they will stop at nothing to get what they there, and then, of course, where the hookers might be. want! If they weren’t human, they might have made good scumdogs. Have you uncovered any clues yet? I know you’ve searched much of the country already.
He’s not in the southwest part of the country. Maybe he’s in the Northwest. I’m not even sure where I am right now, but I know it’s filthy and it smells, so it must be California. Has Ebola hindered your travels at all?
We put it out into the market, but it doesn’t seem to be working quickly enough. We were hoping it would kill more of you before we actually got to Seattle. That’s a shame. We were hoping to find heaps of bodies as we rolled into town. Do you like Seattle? Do you have coffee or grunge or rain on your home planet?
I would like to take the Space Needle and
Unlike some of your bandmates, you don’t get to gush blood on the audience since you’re busy behind the drums. Does this make you sad?
My bloodlust ended eons ago on my home planet of The Wide World of Sports. I like beating on things more. I beat the skins, I beat people. When you hit a human being, it makes a sound—and that sound is music to my ears. E
GWAR With Decapitated, American Sharks. The Showbox, 1700 First Ave. S., 628-3151, showboxpresents.com. $20 adv./$25 DOS. 8 p.m. Wed., Nov. 12.
SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
a&c» Music Love Rap Revolution How Matt “Smoke” Smokovich recast K Records’ storied past.
front Line assembLy 1426 1st Ave · seAttle, ttle, WA · 8:00pm Doors · All Ages Full BAr With proper iD tickets 1-888-927-7849 · online At WWW.Axs.com xs.com
haujobb & youth code
monday december 15 showbox sodo
1426 1st Ave · seAttle, WA · 6:30pm Doors · All Ages Full BAr With proper iD tickets 1-888-927-7849 · online At WWW.Axs.com
Join us in the Trophy Room for Happy Hour: Thursday Bartender Special 8-Close Fridays: 5-8pm RESERVE THE TROPHY ROOM FOR YOUR NEXT EVENT! on sALE
& joe Pug
& matt costsa
saturday feb 7 Paramount theater
friday january 30 the showbox
1426 1st Ave · seAttle, WA · 8:00pm Doors · 21 AnD over tickets 1-888-927-7849 · online At WWW.Axs.com
911 pine st · seAttle, WA · 7:00pm Doors · All Ages Full BAr With proper iD tickets At tickets.com · chArge By phone 1-800-225-2277
coming soon: melAnie mArtinez · lights · the Bots · the ghost insiDe · emery · issues · circA survive · rAchel tAylor · DoWn Asking AlexAnDriA · suiciDe girls · stick to your guns · silverstein · mAyhem · periphery · pierce the veil · DeciBel tour
COCKTAILS • TASTY HOT DOGS • LOTSA PINBALL
2222 2ND AVENUE • SEATTLE
SW: Did you know which K artists you were going to pull from going into this project?
Smokovich: Quite honestly, I really didn’t know too much about K before I went into this. I knew maybe three or four of their acts. How did you select the samples, then?
El Corazon 109 Eastlake Ave East • Seattle, WA 98109 Booking and Info: 206.262.0482
They didn’t give me everything. I know there were a couple things missing, and they gave me a few guidelines, like you can’t sample certain artists because the rights were no longer K’s and it could be messy. But quite honestly I wouldn’t have gone for Modest Mouse anyway.
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 12TH
LAGWAGON with Swingin’ Utters, This Legend, Success! Doors at 7:00PM / Show at 7:15
ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $20 ADV / $22 DOS The Lagwagon After Show Party featuring live music from:
HURRY UP AND DIE FREE 21+. Music begins at the conclusion of the Lagwagon show in the main room.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 13TH with Jared & The Mill, Patrick Droney, Plus Guests Lounge Show. Doors at 7:00PM / Show at 7:30 ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $13 ADV / $15 DOS
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 14TH
DYLAN JAKOBSEN Record Release Party with Lybecker, Alex Enger and The Mayors, Blackburn, Sincerely Soul Doors at 6:30PM / Show at 7:00 ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $12 ADV / $15 DOS
MIKE THRASHER PRESENTS:
with The Goodnight, Sleepwalker, Joyfield, Lost New York, Moments, All In Favor Doors at 6:30PM / Show at 7:00 ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $8 ADV / $10 DOS
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 16TH
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 14TH
Did you actually listen to the entire catalog?
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 15TH
MIKE THRASHER PRESENTS:
SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
hile Matt “Smoke” Smokovich was producing the second fulllength release by his friend and K Records artist Eprhyme, an idea emerged: Why not ask the legendary indie label if he could mine their catalog for beats? The result is All Your Friend’s Friends, an effusive 18-track compilation that features performances from 30-some MCs set to beats that Smoke meticulously crafted from fragments of K’s catalog. The album is an unexpected, and undeniable, bright spot in the label’s uneven hip-hop history. We wanted to know more about how it happened.
They opened the vaults to me and said, “Here you go, take all these albums.” I put everything on a hard drive and started going through it without any knowledge of what it was. That allowed me to work without having any context about what it was and just picking stuff I liked.
COURTESY OF THE ARTIST
friday december 12 showbox at the market
BY MARK BAUMGARTEN
TH OL AN D O KY U OU T !
with Mike Squillante Lounge Show. Doors at 8:00PM / Show at 9:00 ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $15 ADV / $18 DOS / $35 VIP
SELF DEFENSE FAMILY
with Creative Adult, Wild Moth, Where My Bones Rest Easy Lounge Show. Doors at 7:00PM / Show at 7:30 ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $12 ADV / $14 DOS
MONDAY, NOVEMBER 17TH MIKE THRASHER PRESENTS:
with Little Hearts, Shiver Twins, Plus Guests LOUNGE SHOW. Doors at 7:30PM / Show at 8:00 21+. $10 ADV / $12 DOS
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 18TH
with Luke Kaufman, Crossroads Exchange, Plus Guests Lounge Show. Doors at 7:30PM / Show at 8:00 ALL AGES/BAR W/ID. $8 ADV / $10 DOS
JUST ANNOUNCED 11/29 - RACHEL TAYLOR 12/12 LOUNGE - THE DREAD CREW OF ODDWOOD 1/6 LOUNGE - THE FRAIDIES 1/17 LOUNGE - CONVEYER 1/20 LOUNGE - THE
RAMONAS 1/22 LOUNGE - GRAYSON ERHARD 1/29 - THE TOASTERS 1/31 LOUNGE - BOATS! 2/3 LOUNGE - SCOTT KELLY (OF NEUROSIS) AND THE ROAD HOME 2/10 - BEHEMOTH / CANNIBAL CORPSE UP & COMING 11/19 - THE GHOST INSIDE / EVERY TIME I DIE 11/20 LOUNGE - THE DECOYS 11/21 - EMERY 11/21 LOUNGE - FOXING 11/22 - ISSUES 11/23 LOUNGE - THE PETEBOX 11/25 LOUNGE - LORD DYING 11/26 - WALK OF SHAME COMEDY TOUR 11/28 LOUNGE - THREE SIX OHH 11/29 LOUNGE - VESSELS 12/3 - THE ATARIS 12/4 LOUNGE - KURT TRAVIS 12/5 - THE ICARUS LINE 12/5 LOUNGE - PAGEANTRY 12/6 - LEMURIA / INTO IT. OVER IT. 12/7 LOUNGE - COURAGE MY LOVE
Tickets now available at cascadetickets.com - No per order fees for online purchases. Our on-site Box Office is open 1pm-5pm weekdays in our office and all nights we are open in the club - $2 service charge per ticket Charge by Phone at 1.800.514.3849. Online at www.cascadetickets.com - Tickets are subject to service charge
The EL CORAZON VIP PROGRAM: see details at www.elcorazon.com/vip.html and for an application email us at email@example.com
Holiday Editions 6 WEEKS of HOLIDAY COVERAGE
FOR SPACE RESERVATIONS call 206.467.4341 or email us at
There are a few artists that you return to multiple times throughout the 18 tracks. Jeremy Jay in particular shows up a lot. Why?
Jeremy Jay’s stuff is really poppy and really punchy, and it’s very sample-able. I didn’t know who Jeremy Jay was before I started working on this project, but I definitely have all of his albums on my phone now; I listen to them a lot. What about the Microphones?
A lot of their music was really cool and ambient and had, like, a streamline going through it. It was kind of an open canvas for me to do whatever I wanted to with it. NOV 26 DEC 3, 10, 17, 24 & 31
How did you select the artists who were going to rap over these tracks?
When I make a beat, I can hear someone over it. As the beats unfolded, I automatically thought, I can hear Onry Ozzborn, or I hear Candidt on this. The beats kind of selected them. E
ALBUM RELEASE PARTY With Onry Ozzborn, Xperience, Calvin Johnson, and others. Rendezvous, 2322 Second Ave., 441-5823, jewelboxtheater.com. 21 and over. $8. 8 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 13.
TheWeekAhead Wednesday, Nov. 12 THE WHITE BUFFALO, the stage name of California-
based singer/songwriter Jake Smith, is known for his deep rumble of a voice and lyrics that often touch on darker subjects. It’s no different on his latest full-length, Shadows, Greys & Evil Ways. But this time, Smith uses the story of a young couple, Joe and Jolene, to explore themes of spirituality, love, war, and redemption. Shadows chronicles the pair’s meeting; Joe’s decision to fight overseas to support their growing family; his struggle to adjust to life after war; and Jolene’s redemptive love as they grow older. The album is an emotional rollercoaster, but it’s one you’ll find yourself returning to again and again. With Jonny Two Bags. The Crocodile, 2200 Second Ave., 441-4618, thecrocodile.com. 8 p.m. $18. 21 and over. AZARIA C. PODPLESKY Hang, LAGWAGON’s first album in nine years, finds the long-running California punks in fine form. The group is more pissed than usual, taking aim at classic punk targets—religion, politicians, hypocrisy—but it’s nice to hear it’s still fired up after so many years. With Swingin’ Utters, This Legend, Success. El Corazon, 109 Eastlake Ave. E., 262-0482, elcorazon.com. 7:15 p.m. $20 adv./$22 DOS. DAVE LAKE The women of local supergroup THUNDERPUSSY—Leah Julius (Cumulus, Sundries), Whitney Petty (Deerhunter, The Grizzled Mighty), Molly Sides (This Bitch Don’t Fall Off), and Lena Simon (La Luz, Kairos)—should teach a class on stage presence. Whether performing highenergy originals or covering songs like Elvis Presley’s “Trouble,” the rock-&-roll quartet struts around the stage with enough sultry power to command the attention of everyone in the room. There’s hair-whipping, hip-shaking, and foot-stomping galore. Petty’s heavy riffs coupled with Sides’ impressive roar, especially on the band’s theme song “Thunderpussy,” will render you helpless against the aural assault. With Moondog Matinee, the Mama Rags. Sunset Tavern, 5433 Ballard Ave. N.W., 784-4880, sunsettavern.com. 9 p.m. $8. 21 and over. ACP
Thursday, Nov. 13
37500 S.E. North Bend Way, Snoqualmie, 425-888-1234, snocasino.com. 8 p.m. $15 and up. 21 and over. ACP After fronting folk-rock quintet Fruit Bats, touring with the Shins and Califone, and collaborating with Vetiver’s Andy Cabic, Eric D. Johnson is taking the solo route with his latest project, EDJ. His self-titled debut finds the singer/multi-instrumentalist more musically melancholic than fans may be used to hearing as he sings about leaving Los Angeles, regret, love, and perseverance. But Johnson’s familiar croon is still present. A few instrumental tracks add to the album’s cinematic feel—something Johnson, also a film composer, understands well. With Grant Olsen, Tom Eddy. Sunset Tavern. 8 p.m. $10. 21 and over. ACP
JAZZ ALLEY IS A SUPPER CLUB
Friday, Nov. 14
OMAHA DINER WITH CHARLIE HUNTER, BOBBY PREVITE, SKERIK & STEVE BERNSTEIN
WED, NOV 12
Welsh alt-rock musician and Super Furry Animals vocalist GRUFF RHYS made sure to incorporate every possible medium when releasing his fourth solo album, American Interior. Based on the life of Welsh explorer (and Rhys’ distant relative) John Evans, who helped map the Missouri River, the album is accompanied by a film and book, in which Rhys retraces Evans’ steps while playing shows in the Midwest, and a cellphone app that lets users learn even more about both men’s journeys through artwork, animation, and film clips. It’s an engaging and thorough collection that highlights the relationships among different cultures, epochs, and experiences. With Willis Earl Beal. Barboza, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9951, thebarboza.com. 7 p.m. $13. 21 and over. ACP At A TRIBUTE TO NIRVANA, Sandrider, Grenades, Caligula, Brain Port, Smells Like Teen K KOST Will Have Her Revenge on Seattle (yes, that’s the actual band name), and more will perform in honor one of the Pacific Northwest’s most influential bands. Also with Monogamy Party, Same-Sex Dictator, Sioux City Pete and the Beggars, Big Trughk, Mercy Ties. Chop Suey, 1325 E. Madison St., 324-8005, chopsuey.com. 9 p.m. $5 adv./$10 DOS. 21 and over. ACP MUDHONEY is one of the most beloved bands ever to come out of Seattle. The quartet’s latest album, Vanishing Point, finds it in peak shape, a quarter-century after it blasted onto the scene; the riffs are just as heavy and the percussion just as pulsing—and vocalist Mark Arm is as pissed as ever. With Tom Price Desert Classic, the Fucking Eagles. Neumos, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9442, neumos.com. 8 p.m. $15. 21 and over. ACP The latest cathedral concert, CATHEDRALS IX, features alt-pop singer Mirah, dream-pop singer Lemolo (aka Meagan Grandall), and singer/violist/violinist L. Alex Guy, who performs as Led to Sea. St. Mark’s Cathedral, 1245 10th Ave. E., 414-8325, fremontabbey.org. 8 p.m. $13 and up. All ages. ACP
Four storied musicians attempting to re-define TOP 40!
HERB ALPERT AND LANI HALL
THURS, NOV 13 - SUN, NOV 16
Legendary Grammy-winning music icons!
JECONTE AND THE MALI ALLSTARS
MON, NOV 17
Soulful blend of traditional Malian blues and NorCal/ New Orleans harmonica-based blues rock.
TUES, NOV 18 - THURS, NOV 20
Acoustic contemporary folk guitar virtuoso known for his unique fingerpicking style
TAJ MAHAL TRIO
NOV 21 - 23, 25 - 26, 28 - 30
One of the most influential American blues and roots artists of the past half-century!
in This Bring T And ge n o p Cou Tizer e p p A one 2 oFF! For 1/
TUES, DEC 2 - WED, DEC 3
“A good time romp. Raucous blues ...delivered with unflagging enthusiasm and wit.” - Rolling Stone
all ages | free parking | full schedule at jazzalley.com
Saturday, Nov. 15
First Aid Kit Swedish duo FIRST AID KIT is featured on the soundtrack to the film Wild, based on Cheryl Strayed’s bestselling novel. Sisters Johanna and Klara Söderberg cover R.E.M’s “Walk Unafraid,” reworking it in a way that features their undeniable folk sound while preserving the original’s haunting tone. With Samantha Crain. The Moore, 1932 Second Ave., 467-5510, stgpresents. org/moore. 8 p.m. $22.50. All ages. ABBY SEARIGHT Though her latest album, the gorgeous Wilderness, came out last month, indie-folk singer/songwriter and Postal Service collaborator JEN WOOD is celebrating its release tonight, supported by Jason Dodson & Friends. Barboza. 7 p.m. $10. 21 and over. ACP Malian singer/guitarist Vieux Farka Touré (son of renowned musician Ali Farka Touré) and Israeli singer/ pianist Idan Raichel—aka THE TOURÉ-RAICHEL COLLECTIVE—met by chance at the Berlin airport, an encounter that fits the unscripted way the duo makes music. The band’s sophomore album, The Paris Session, which includes a cover of the elder
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SE ATTLE WEEKLY • N OVEMBER 12 — 18, 2014
Peter Hanks and Jordan Evans, aka dark electro-rock duo MURDER VIBES, celebrate the release of their selftitled debut album with the help of Jigsaw Puzzle Glue, DJ Cory Alfano, and artist Jenny Rodenhouse. Fred Wildlife Refuge, 127 Boylston Ave. E., 588-6959, fredwildliferefuge.com. 8 p.m. $10. 21 and over. ACP PEOPLE. MAKE. AWESOME., a show curated by Beth Fleenor of Crystal Beth & The Boom Boom Band, pairs multidisciplinary artists for one performance. The second in a three-part series, this show will match musicians and dancers for an event based on sound and movement. Ezra Dickinson, Karin Stevens, and Paris Hurley will handle the moves, while Chris Credit, Michael Owcharuk, and Hanna Benn provide the music. Chapel Performance Space, 4649 Sunnyside Ave. N., 547-8127, peoplemakeawesome.wordpress. com. 8 p.m. $5–$15 donation. All ages. ACP For years Caleb Klauder has been a staple in the Pacific Northwest country scene, performing with folkrock septet Calobo and Americana quartet Foghorn Stringband. That experience is evident in his latest project, the CALEB KLAUDER COUNTRY BAND. The group’s most recent release, Just a Little, is only three songs, but that’s more than enough time for the sextet to show just how well it understands classic country. Klauder and crew address love and a fellow down on his luck with such authentic spirit, they could get a packed bar on its feet in no time. Klauder, an Orcas Island native who now calls Portland home, is the real deal. With Petunia and the Vipers. The Royal Room, 5000 Rainier Ave. S., 906-9920, theroyalroomseattle.com. 8 p.m. $12 adv./$15 DOS. All ages until 10 p.m. ACP JULIAN CASABLANCAS & THE VOIDZ has taken the saying “Go big or go home” to heart. First of all, the sextet, fronted by the Strokes’ Casablancas, released the 11-minute “Human Sadness” as the lead single from its debut album, Tyranny. The song finds Casablancas alternating between an affected, soulful croon and an art-rock howl over layers of distorted riffs and synthesizer. Second, the band released a limited-edition lighter sleeve that contained the album on a built-in USB drive. How cool is that? (FYI, opener Mac DeMarco is playing a headlining set of his own at Chop Suey after this show. And it’s sold out too.) Also with Connan Mockasin. The Showbox, 1426 First Ave., 628-3151, showboxpresents. com. 9 p.m. SOLD OUT. All ages. ACP Country/swing group ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL, fronted by original vocalist/guitarist Ray Benson, will perform hits from its impressive 44-year career. Snoqualmie Casino,
2033 6th Avenue (206) 441-9729 jazzalley.com
arts&culture» Music » FROM PAGE 37
Monday, Nov. 17
Touré’s “Diaraby,” has more structure than the entirely improvised The Tel Aviv Session, but it doesn’t lose the collaborative spirit. Touré and Raichel take turns in the spotlight while also weaving together the musical influences of their home countries. Meany Hall, UW campus, 543-4880, meany.org. 8 p.m. $40 and up. All ages. ACP
A founding member of the influential hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan, GZA, né Gary Grice, is using music—including his upcoming solo album, Dark Matter, and a program he co-created called Science Genius, which motivates highschool students to learn more about science by writing science-themed raps—as a teaching tool. In preparation for the album, GZA has been chatting with the likes of astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson and multiple MIT professors. No wonder GZA’s peers call him “the Genius.” The Neptune, 1303 N.E. 45th St. 682-1414, stgpresents.org/ neptune. 9 p.m. $21.50 adv./$25 DOS. All ages. ACP
Tuesday, Nov. 18
Austin’s Alejandro Rose-Garcia, who performs as SHAKEY GRAVES, is known for the one-man-band aspect of his live shows, often singing and playing guitar while playing a handmade kick drum with his feet. But for his sophomore album, And the War Came, Graves called on other musicians to create different arrangements of each song. Elements of blues, altcountry, folk, and indie-pop all suit Graves’ effortlessly engaging voice. Most notably, he collaborated with Paper Bird singer Esmé Patterson, who will open this show, on three tracks. Also with Rayland Baxter. Neumos. 8 p.m. SOLD OUT. All ages. ACP Indie roots/rock quintet SMOKEY BRIGHTS celebrates the release of its debut album, the somewhat dark and brooding Taste for Blood, with Ravenna Woods and Kelli Schaefer. Tractor Tavern, 5213 Ballard Ave. N.W., 789-3599, tractortavern.com. 9 p.m. $10. 21 and over. ACP Though sweater weather is upon us, you can still hold onto summer with a show from Portland surf-rockers THE SHIVAS, who recently released their fourth album, You Know What to Do. The band closes the Short Run Comix & Arts Festival with La Luz. Washington Hall, 153 14th Ave., 316-7613, washington hall.org. 8 p.m. $5. 21 and over. ACP
Same as It Ever Was
A new doc about The Postal Service reveals little we don’t already know.
SEATTLE WEEKLY • NOVEM BER 12 — 18, 2014
BY DUSTY HENRY
hough Everything Will Change is billed as a documentary about The Postal Service, that’s not an entirely accurate description. It’s a concert film, first and foremost, with brief interspersed interviews with each band member—Death Cab for Cutie’s Ben Gibbard, Dntel’s Jimmy Tamborello, and Rilo Kiley’s Jenny Lewis—after they reunited to tour in celebration of the 10th anniversary of their only album, Give Up (which, ironically, eventually went platinum after the band did just that). Filmed over two days last July at Berkeley’s Greek Theater, director Justin Mitchell has a good eye for the music doc, and his movie covers all the spectacle that went into organizing the show, homing in on the excited crowd and the band’s chemistry. Both are palpable and authentic; Gibbard and Lewis dance together as though they’ve been doing this routine for years. Yet aside from a scene that takes viewers to Tamborello’s studio, where he shows some of the gear he used on the record, there are scant details concerning the making of the seminal album beyond those easily found on the web. Gibbard and Tamborello’ s collaboration by
After two tours playing Joy Division material and one in support of New Order albums, PETER HOOK & THE LIGHT is bringing two more New Order albums, Low Life and Brotherhood, to North American stages for the first time. Vocalist/bassist Hook, a former member of both seminal British groups, will also lead the band in a set of Joy Division tunes to open the show. Neumos. 8 p.m. $25. 21 and over. ACP Trip-hopper FKA TWIGS, the stage name of British singer Tahliah Barnett, sounds nearly weightless when she sings. Her barely-there voice effortlessly floats over sparse beats, and yet her debut full-length, the appropriately titled LP1 (shortlisted for the prestigious Mercury Prize), is hypnotically engaging. Her vogueheavy live show promises to follow suit. With Boots. The Showbox. 9 p.m. SOLD OUT. All ages. ACP When the crowdfunding campaign she launched for her new album received nearly $1.2 million, the world was abuzz about AMANDA PALMER. But shortly afterward, the Dresden Dolls vocalist and front woman of The Grand Theft Orchestra came under fire after writing a blog post asking musicians to perform for free at her shows. Out of that praise and criticism came a TED talk and a recently released book, both called The Art of Asking, which Palmer will discuss tonight. Love or hate her methods, you can’t deny she’s getting results. With Ksenia Anske. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., 6524255, townhallseattle.org. 7:30 p.m. $15. All ages. ACP Send events to firstname.lastname@example.org. See seattleweekly.com for more listings.
mail, exchanging CD-Rs of album tracks in progress, is part of Give Up’s lore, but there’s no exploration of that story. At one point Lewis alludes to “secret stories” in the songs, and that only Gibbard knows what they are. The camera then cuts to Gibbard talking about how he wrote “Such Great Heights” about a girl he was trying to impress, and leaves it at that. Also missing is any mention of what the three members have been doing the past 10 years. Death Cab and Rilo Kiley became stalwarts of indie rock, yet those accomplishments are only briefly referenced. For fans looking to unravel the mystery of, or better understand, The Postal Service, there are no answers here. Instead, by focusing on the here and now, the film is a lovely document of a few singular performances, just before the group again creeps back into the shadows. E
EVERYTHING WILL CHANGE AMC Pacific Place, 600 Pine St., 652-8908, amctheatres.com. $10. 8 p.m. Fri., Nov. 14. Soundtrack out Nov. 24 on Sub Pop, subpop. com. Ben Gibbard performs at the Neptune, 1303 N.E. 45th St., 877-STG-4TIX, stgpresents. org. $25. 9 p.m. Sat., Nov. 15.
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MY FRIENDS & MORE Holiday Bazaar! Join us to Celebrate our 15th Anniversary of Community Fun with Fabulous Local Artisans! Saturday, November 15th, 10am to 5pm, one block North of Home Depot (18701 120th Ave NE). Santa arrives at 1pm! Parents bring your Camera for Free Photos with Santa! Pets Welcome! Free Admission, Free Parking, Free Refreshments and Free Children’s Craft and Play Area Provided! Tour Buses Welcome. Full Wheelchair and Stroller Access. www.craftybug.com RENTON, 98056
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November 12, 2014 edition of the Seattle Weekly