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The Top 37 Events in Portland This Week: Mar 11–17, 2024

Cat Power, Irish Festival, and More Top Picks
March 11, 2024
Have a craic and a pint (or several) at the Irish Festival. (Courtesy of Kells)
Is your life a hot mess? One thing we can help out with is sorting out your social calendar for the week, with top event suggestions from the Irish Festival 2024 to Cat Power Sings Dylan and from White Bird Presents: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater to Tim Fest '24 - Tim Heidecker and the Very Good Band / Office Hours & On Cinema Live!

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Feminist March 2024 Past Event List
Happy Women's History Month! Hollywood Theatre's Feminist March program will once again offer up a full month of screenings celebrating women in film. Programmed by Hollywood Theatre community programmer Anthony Hudson and Hollywood staff members Destynee Norwood and Cable Wells, this year's lineup "delves unflinchingly into the dark and seedy depths of female experience" (oOoO!) with 19 films. The wide-reaching festival continues this week with a screening of the Supremes film à clef Dreamgirls. Bring It On and the Lily Gladstone-fronted flick Certain Women will follow later in the month. LC
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District)


Cat Power Sings Dylan: The 1966 Royal Albert Hall Concert Past Event List
Along with being a prolific songwriter in her own right, Cat Power (aka Chan Marshall) has the ability to transform an existing song, breathing new life into old classics (as evidenced by her wildly popular cover of Phil Phillips' "Sea of Love"). On her latest release, Cat Power Sings Dylan: The 1966 Royal Albert Hall Concert, Marshall recreates Bob Dylan's famously bootlegged Manchester Free Trade Hall performance (frequently mislabeled as the "Royal Albert Hall Concert"), complete with the exact setlist and infamous crowd heckles. Don't miss the opportunity to see this faithful tribute with songs like "She Belongs To Me," "Mr. Tamborine Man," and "Like a Rolling Stone"—lord knows you won't be hearing these at an actual Dylan concert (he's too cool, he will never give the people what they want.) AV
(Revolution Hall, Buckman)

Lil Tecca: HVN ON EARTH TOUR Past Event List
What were you doing at 21 years old? Queens-born rapper Lil Tecca is a multi-platinum-selling artist who already has three albums out, all of which were critically acclaimed for his striking wordplay and mystical melodies. The young star will support his third album, Tec, which features appearances from rap heroes Kodak Black and Ken Carson. Fellow rising rap stars SoFaygo, Tana, and Chow Lee will open. AV
(Roseland Theater, Old Town-Chinatown)



16mm Nyback Showdown Past Event List
Once described by the Mercury as "the P.T. Barnum of Cinema," the beloved Portland film archivist Dennis Nyback passed in 2022. Nyback's kooky screenings became storied over the course of his career—if there's such a thing as a "legend" in the film archivist and historian community, Dennis Nyback was that man. He screened original film programs worldwide while operating Seattle's Rosebud Movie Palace and Pike St. Cinema, and also renovated Portland’s historic Clinton Street Theater in the '90s. This 16mm tribute to a true PNW force of nature spotlights selections by two programming teams (Darkroom Associates and Astral Projections), who will "trade cinematic jabs" by screening selections from the world-famous Dennis Nyback 16mm film archive, which includes "thousands of titles assembled over 40 years of personal curation" and spans 120 years of movie history. LC
(Clinton Street Theater, Hosford-Abernethy)


Angie Mcmahon Past Event List
If you were a fan of Florence and the Machine before they really took off (I'm talking circa "Kiss With A Fist"), then perhaps Australian singer-songwriter Angie McMahon can recreate your fondness for that era. Aside from having a similar voice to Florence Welch, her songs are equally punchy, raw, and oozing with unabashed freedom. She will support her sophomore album, Light, Dark, Light Again, which tackles universal topics like heartbreak, depression, and anxiety with unrelenting catharsis and empowerment. Don't miss an opening set from folk troubadour La Ren. AV
(Star Theater, Old Town-Chinatown)


White Bird Presents: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Past Event List
Founded in 1974 as the Alvin Ailey Repertory Ensemble, the world-famous Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater evolved under the direction of Sylvia Waters and Troy Powell to become a show-stopping company that still showcases the country’s best dance talent. The company's sixth performance with White Bird will honor Alvin Ailey's pioneering spirit with renewed passion and will "culminate with Ailey's masterpiece, Revelations." LC
(Keller Auditorium, Downtown)



Elephant Gym Past Event List
Elephant Gym is the Taiwanese math rock project of siblings KT and Tell Chang with drummer Chia-Chin Tu. To be honest, I shy away from anything that calls itself "math rock" because it's typically extremely dorky. However, Elephant Gym is anything but! Their sound is loose, jangly, and cool with plenty of jazz influence (listen to their song "Feather" to see what I mean). They will play tracks from their new album, World, alongside the LA-based indie rock outfit Standards. AV
(Mississippi Studios, Boise)



Secret Aardvark Remind List
Over 30 of Portland's best improvisers will gather again for this who's who of Rose City comedy. Each Secret Aardvark event features an extra-special mystery guest (past guests have run the gamut from David Lynch to random high school theater students), and the show's so spicy that it's named after the organizers' fave local hot sauce, so it should warm your chilly bones at this time of year. LC
(Kickstand Comedy, Ladd's Addition)


Pie Day with Pi Past Event List
"Something's going on. It has to do with that number." This Pi Day screening of the demented, surreal thriller Pi will draw you right back into the grainy, high-contrast, paranoid atmosphere that Darren Aronofsky crafted 26 years ago. Attendees can snag pizza pie slices from Atlas at Tomorrow Theater's concession stand, and there'll be a special prize for whoever can recite the longest string of 𝛑. That won't be me, but I'd love to see you take a swing at it. LC
(Tomorrow Theater, Richmond)

The Short Films of Miranda July Past Event List
Miranda July, a strong candidate for the coolest person ever born in Vermont, is also a filmmaker to be reckoned with—if you're artsy at all, you've probably seen The Future, Me and You and Everyone We Know, and/or Kajillionaire, her pandemic-era film and arguably her weirdest to date. But I've learned over time that July always has the capacity to get freakier in her explorations of inclusivity, desire, fear, and fantasy. A few good examples will be found in this round-up of the artist's short films, including The Amateurist, which "slides along the edges of horror and satire to create an unsettling portrait of a woman on the brink of technologically-driven madness," and Nest of Tens, which is "linked by a quasi-academic lecturer revealing the phobias and queasy strangeness that lies behind the everyday." LC
(Clinton Street Theater, Hosford-Abernethy)


The Godfather in Concert Past Event List
Get ready y'all, because the Oregon Symphonyis makin' an offer you can't refuse. This immersive film screening of Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather will celebrate the enduring legacy of the Corleone family by playing the movie on a giant screen as the symphony performs Nino Rota’s unforgettable (and intense) score beneath. AV
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, South Park Blocks)



Ask Dr. Carla Past Event List
Preeminent drag clown Carla Rossi might not have fancy degrees, but that doesn't mean she can't dole out questionable advice from an on-stage therapy couch. Therein lies the premise of Ask Dr. Carla, an improvised drag comedy that brings new importance to the words "liability waiver." Carla will head to Tomorrow Theater with her enterprising receptionist, Svetlana Trantastic, in tow, to offer a therapy session to some special guests. This time around, Portland’s own David Saffert and Jillian Snow, aka Liberace and Liza, will be Carla's willing victims—um, I mean, therapy clients. LC
(Tomorrow Theater, Richmond)


2024 HUMP! Film Festival Past Event List
Dan Savage's pioneering erotic film fest will premiere an all-new lineup of sexy films featuring all genders and orientations at Revolution Hall this year. Since 2005, HUMP! has brought inclusive, creative, and kinky films to the big screen—scope out the sex-positive fest in person for a tantalizing treat. This year's fest features not one but two feature-length lineups—part one includes a feast of "24 brand-spanking-new films" for your eyeballs. It's worth a venture outside of your sex dungeon, but you can still wear the latex catsuit. LC
(Revolution Hall, Buckman)

Violet Hex Presents: To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar Past Event List
Our Pride era is coming, so here's a flick with bitchin' glam and wigs for the gods: To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar stars Wesley Snipes, Patrick Swayze, and John Leguizamo as three messy queens en route to a dazzling Los Angeles drag competition. The rambunctious '95 comedy also features cameos from Naomi Campbell and RuPaul—what more could a girl want?! Resident cult cinema queen Violet Hex will bring some pre-show disco to this screening, which will also feature a star-studded drag show with Lala Benét and Carmen. LC
(Clinton Street Theater, Hosford-Abernethy)


Secret Room Opening Past Event List
After a successful pop-up at Lloyd Center, Secret Room will take over Little Otsu’s lease and open a SE Division shop and gallery with a rotating RISO art gallery and a “curated selection of books, creative tools, notebooks, handmade toys, cassettes, vinyl, VHS, and more.” Stop by their opening to scope out Creature Comforts, the first RISO art show in Secret Room's new space. LC
(Secret Room, Richmond)



Asian Flavors Unite: A Potluck Celebration of Asian American Heritage Past Event List
Bring your favorite dish, be it homemade or store-bought, to share at this free outdoor celebration of culture, community, and the diversity of Asian American cuisine. The gathering will feature a traditional lion dance, a gigantic roast pig, and a potluck feast comprised of dishes brought by guests. JB
(Wilshire Park, Northeast Portland)


Lee Fields and Monophonics Past Event List
Sexagenarian soul/funk singer Lee Fields is an American treasure. In 1969 he released his first single “Bewildered/Tell Her I Love Her,” and the man is still pumping out bangers—the most recent of which are on 2022’s Sentimental Fool. The soul veteran has worked with countless legendary artists—from B.B. King to Kool and the Gang—but the younger cats appreciate Fields’ work as well; Travis Scott’s mega hit “Antidote,” for instance, samples Lee Fields and the Expressions’ “All I Need” from 2014’s Emma Jean. PORTLAND MERCURY CONTRIBUTOR JENNI MOORE
(Wonder Ballroom, Eliot)

Portland Columbia Symphony Present: In The Realm Of Nature Past Event List
Taking inspiration from the natural world, the Portland Columbia Symphony will kick the spring season into gear with an evening of pastoral classical music. The program will include Ralph Vaughan Williams' The Lark Ascending (featuring guest violinist Casey Bozell), Sara Carina Graef's Yakona (an homage to the Yaqo’n Indian Tribe of Oregon), and Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6. AV
(Patricia Reser Center for the Arts, Beaverton)

Storm Large and the Oregon Symphony with Jimmie Herrod Past Event List
Renowned singer-songwriter, Pink Martini member, and former America’s Got Talent contestant Storm Large will return to Portland with a splashy evening of jazz ballads and cabaret magic. She will be accompanied by the Oregon Symphony and former AGT competitor Jimmie Herrod. AV
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, South Park Blocks)


The Snowy Day Past Event List
This week's "thing that would heal me" is The Snowy Day, an operatic interpretation of Ezra Jack Keats’s meditative, dreamy '63 children's book. You might remember The Snowy Day like a fever dream—its central character is a star-shaped child who ventures out into the snow blanketing his neighborhood. The West Coast premiere of this kid-friendly opera features music by Joel Thompson and libretto by Andrea Davis Pinkney. LC
(Newmark Theatre, South Park Blocks)



Irish Festival 2024 Past Event List
Portland will celebrate three days of vibrant Irish culture across multiple locations: Kells Brewery, Kells Downtown, and Tom McCall Waterfront Park. You can kick off the festivities with a night of Ireland vs USA amateur boxing on Friday, or head to Saturday’s family day for live music, dancing, traditional foods, and appearances from some majestic Irish wolfhounds! Pace yourself, because the Shamrock Run (and after party) will take over the park Sunday morning. I'll admit it, I kind of love the kitsch of green-dyed beer. SL
(Various locations, Friday-Sunday)

Paddy's St. Patrick's Day Festival Past Event List
Based on its name alone, it seems like Paddy's is the place to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. Lucky for us, they back up the title with traditional music (yes, there will be bagpipers), classic foods like corned beef and cabbage, and libations including Guinness (duh) and Kilbeggan Irish whiskey. You can feel extra good about the revelry as Paddy's continues its 15-year-and-counting tradition of donating a portion of proceeds to Children’s Cancer Association. SL
(Paddy's Bar & Grill, Downtown, Saturday-Sunday)


Tim Fest '24 - Tim Heidecker and the Very Good Band / Office Hours & On Cinema Live! Past Event List
Tim Heidecker, the legendary weirdo behind Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! and On Cinema at the Cinema, is nothing if not polarizing—Vice describes his work as "failure-centric"—but if you "get" him, you're probably a huge fan. Heidecker will blend his distinctive brand of absurdist meta-humor with original music (yes, he makes music) for this extra-special, two-day "Tim Fest," where he'll be joined by fellow freak Neil Hamburger. Segments include Office Hours, in which Tim will take calls from around the world, and On Cinema Live, in which Tim and film expert Gregg Turkington will discuss the greatest movies of all time. LC
(Aladdin Theater, Brooklyn, Saturday-Sunday)


Dune: Part Two Past Event List
A sweeping sci-fi film with origins right here in the Pacific NorthwestDune: Part Two is a sequel that surpasses the first by leaps and bounds as it transports us back to the world first created by the late local author Frank Herbert. Picking up where its predecessor left off, it follows the young Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet) as he aligns himself with Chani (Zendaya) and the rest of the Fremen who have found a way to survive in the harsh desert climate of Arrakis. As they battle against the forces of the galaxy looking to mine the valuable resources that the planet holds, there is soon a growing sense that the greatest dangers are only just beginning. The film also digs into fears Herbert explored about the hazards of giving power to leaders who talk a big game even as they may be the villains of their own stories. Readers of said books know how this ends, but the film offers just as much to those who are going in blissfully unaware, and its stunning visuals deserve to be seen on the big screen. In all of 2024, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a film as immense and well-crafted as Dune: Part TwoSTRANGER CONTRIBUTOR CHASE HUTCHINSON
(Cinema 21, Nob Hill, Monday-Thursday)

Perfect Days Past Event List
New German Cinema pioneer Wim Wenders, who directed Wings of Desire and a mysterious terrain of canyons and neon in Paris, Texas, is known for his deliciously "slow" cinema and emphasis on desolation. Interestingly, this film (which was shortlisted for Best International Feature at this year's Oscars) feels a little more lighthearted, but I suspect that I will still come away feeling somehow devastated. Perfect Days follows a Tokyo toilet scrubber, Hirayama, whose days are filled with contentment, cassette tapes, books, and photos of trees. May we all be so blessed. LC
(Cinema 21, Nob Hill, Monday-Thursday)

Problemista Past Event List
If you count yourself among the ever-expanding subset of movie-goers whose ideal flick features Tilda Swinton and a side of surreal quirk, then Julio Torres's Problemista (an A24 film, obviously) has your back. The film follows a Salvadoran toy designer in NYC whose work visa runs out as he works as an assistant for an art-world weirdo. Expect something freaky and wonderful that also grapples with the broken US immigration system. LC
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, Thursday-Sunday)

Sisters with Transistors Past Event List
Directed by French American filmmaker Lisa Rovner, this 2020 documentary probes the lives of women pioneers in electronic music. The too-cool lineup of featured musicians includes Doctor Who theme composer Delia Derbyshire, "deep listener" Pauline Oliveros, theremin virtuoso Clara Rockmore, and Wendy Carlos, the first trans woman to win a Grammy. Show up to the beep-boop film for archival footage and a sense of wonder. LC
(Fifth Avenue Cinema, Downtown, Friday-Sunday)

Your Fat Friend Past Event List
Jeanie Finlay's Your Fat Friend documents the rise of writer and self-described "very fat person" Aubrey Gordon, who cut her teeth as an anonymous blogger and has since become a bestselling author. I'm a big fan of the loud-laughing, Portland-based fat acceptance activist, whose podcast Maintenance Phase pokes fun at Goop-driven garbaggio and widens my perspective on what it means to be healthy. "It is a real paradigm shift to look at someone my size and think...that person may have put in a great deal of effort, and that may have been what got them here," says Gordon in the film. LC
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, Monday-Sunday)

The Zone of Interest Past Event List
If you've been keeping up with A24's films by international directors lately, including solid entries like After Yang and Dream Scenario, you're probably already jazzed for The Zone of Interest, which is a co-production between the US, the UK, and Poland. Filmmaker Jonathan Glazer (who directed the Scarlett Johansson-as-an-extraterrestrial flick Under the Skin) tells the story of a Nazi commandant and his family, who attempt to build a happy life near the Auschwitz concentration camp. Call me presumptuous, but uh, I'm not rooting for them. The film has been nominated for Best International Feature at this year's Oscars. LC
(Cinema 21, Nob Hill, Monday-Thursday)


Quixote Nuevo Past Event List
Cervantes's hero Don Quixote gains new life in this modern, Tejano-inspired twist on the 17th-century tale, set in the fictional town of La Plancha, Texas and infused with Spanish music. Quixote Nuevo follows a professor with dementia who imagines himself as Don Quixote and embarks on a love-driven journey while encountering border patrol drones. The Seattle Times described Quixote Nuevo as "deftly and efficiently lead[ing] viewers from reality to fantasy and into the murky borderlands that lie in between." LC
(Portland Center Stage, Pearl District, Wednesday–Sunday)

Sanctuary City Past Event List
The newest production by Polish-born playwright Martyna Majok, whose play Cost of Living received the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, was a New York Times critic's pick. Sanctuary City is staged in post-9/11 Newark, where two pre-DACA "Dreamers" meet up on a fire escape to share their worries and hopes as undocumented teens. They plan to marry, but time shifts their relationship and brings up questions about sacrifice, love, and belonging. LC
(CoHo Theater, Northwest Portland, Thursday–Sunday)


Black Artists of Oregon Past Event List
The first of its kind to "consider the work of Black artists collectively in Oregon," PAM's fresh exhibition will showcase Black artists in and outside its collection, with special attention paid to underrepresented regional artists. Black Artists of Oregon thinks carefully about the African American experience in the Pacific Northwest, with pieces spanning the last 100 years by heavy hitters like Carrie Mae Weems and professional puppeteer Ralph Chessé. I'm particularly stoked for the exhibition because it was guest curated by Portland-based artist Intisar Abioto, whose own practice fills gaps in our region's history with critical context on lived Black experience. LC
(Portland Art Museum, South Park Blocks, Wednesday–Sunday; closing)

The Fullness of the Seeming Void Past Event List
What is art for if not to explore the unknown? Frankly, I'm always seeking a little bit of spiritual enlightenment when I duck into a gallery. Adams and Ollman gets it—this cross-generational group exhibition manifests the mystical through a "lineage of personal and sensory investigations" from the '60s to the present. We're talking cosmologies, voids, and world-building, people! We're diving into the magic of the mundane and the enormity of everyday minutiae. Get into it. The Fullness of the Seeming Void (which pulls its title from a Helena Blavatsky quote—sick) includes works by supernova-conjuring art pioneer Lee Bontecou, iconoclastic painter Cynthia Carlson, Heidi Lau, whose work pulls from ancient Taoist mythologies, and Bettina, who lived at the Chelsea Hotel from the '70s until her death, among several others. LC
(Adams and Ollman, Northwest Portland, Wednesday–Saturday)

Lee Materazzi: ¢a$h&¢arry Past Event List
Lee Materazzi's inaugural show at Nationale is also a traveling exhibition—it was previously presented at San Francisco's 1599fdT, and will be shown at San Diego's Quint Contemporary in the future. ¢a$h&¢arry compiles 250 archival images that chronicle the last five years of Materazzi's practice, including portraiture and reflections on the precarity of the human body. Materazzi shares her studio space and practice with her children, Mia and Brook, so the works on view in this show were "completed between the ages of 37 and 41 and 3 and 11, respectively." LC
(Nationale, Buckman, Monday/Thursday-Sunday)

MÉLANGE curated by Jeremy Okai Davis Past Event List
You might have seen Jeremy Okai Davis's work in his 2022 solo exhibition A Good Sport, which saw the painter investigate the experiences of Black Americans in traditional sportsmanship roles within the rigid confines of athleticism and academia. This time around, Davis has taken on a curatorial role—Mélange pulls together an "array of voices and creative expressions" from printmaker Rebecca Boraz, North Carolina-based artist Maria Britton (who uses used bedsheets, dry permanent markers, and newspapers as artistic material), Bronx-born collage artist Anthony R. Grant, and Chris Lael Larson, who "culls riches from the everyday absurd." LC
(Nationale, Buckman, Monday/Thursday-Sunday)

Meteorite Mama: Jessie Rosa Vala Past Event List
Jessie Rose Vala's latest installation pulls from mythic storytelling to erect a stoneware and neon "effigy" to hybridity and connectivity across the ages. The work includes glass pomegranates and is surrounded by sound and video elements that amplify Vala's focus on ancient histories and "future ways of being." Meteorite Mama also offers an opportunity to make your own talisman on March 9—effigies, beads, and string will be provided. The exhibition will conclude with a ritual event on March 30, which will include an acapella performance by devotional artist Willow Gibbons and a natural arrangement workshop led by floral designer Hilary Horvath. LC
(Well Well, Kenton, Saturday-Sunday)

Vision of Place Remind List
In celebration of 65 years of Portland's sister city relationship with Sapporo, Japan, this group exhibition brings together works by Portland photographer Sandra Chandler and Hokkaido-based photographers. Chandler's minimalist, serene works, which capture Hokkaido's winter landscapes, will be exhibited in the Jordan Schnitzer Japanese Arts Learning Center’s Calvin and Mayho Tanabe Gallery, while poetic perspectives by the Hokkaido-based group The North Finder will be displayed in the Pavilion Gallery. The North Finder aims to “raise the image of Hokkaido through photography and help people to know Hokkaido more deeply." Cool! LC
(Portland Japanese Garden, Washington Park, Saturday-Sunday; opening)

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