- GeekCraft Expo
- Seattle Anarchist Book Fair 2019
- Hanson, Paul McDonald, Joshua & The Holy Rollers
- Jay Park
- ScHoolboy Q, NAV
- Thievery Corporation
- Seattle Marathon
- Dreamers, Arrested Youth, American Teeth
- The Chainsmokers, 5 Seconds of Summer, Lennon Stella
- Mount Eerie, Julie Doiron
- Filipinx Lives: Ricco Siasoco and Angela Garbes
- Jim Breuer
- Repeal Day Cocktail Ball
- The GeekWire Gala: Seattle's geekiest holiday party!
- KEXP and Redhook Present Yule Benefit with Neko Case and Calexico
- YOB, Earthless, Blackwater Holylight
- David Guterson: Turn Around Time
- Eli Saslow: The Awakening of a Former White Nationalist
- A John Waters Christmas: Filthier & Merrier
- SAM Lights
- Ahamefule J. Oluo: Susan
- Leaves from a Book of Hours
- Natural History: Botanical and Naturalist Subjects
- Northwest Mystics 2019: Women of the PNW
- The Dina Martina Christmas Show
- Stonington Celebrates 40: 40th Anniversary Group Exhibition
- The Dandy Warhols, Mother Mariposa
- The Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition
- Jeff VanderMeer: Dead Astronauts
- 2019 Winter Beer Fest
- Holiday Pops
- Urban Craft Uprising 15th Annual Winter Show
- The Hard Nut
- Christmas Lighting Festival
- The Christmas Killings at Corgi Cliffs
- Jingle All the Gay!
- Clam Lights Presented by Ivar's Restaurants
- Snow Day SLU
- Andrew Schulz: The Matador Tour
- Conan Gray, Benee
- SMooCH 2019
- Theater Anonymous Presents 'It's A Wonderful Life'
- WTO Protests 20th Anniversary with Joseph Stiglitz
- Punk Rock Flea Market Holidaze Edition
- Drawing Jam
- Paranoid Data: Pre-Millennium Tension in Film
- Candy Cane Lane Holiday Lights Festival
- Samantha Scherer: These Are Their Stories
- Cookbook Social & Holiday Bazaar
- Winter Feast Food Truck Fest
- The Aquadolls
- Comethazine, Max the Demon
- SYML, EXES
- Delancey Feast of the Seven Fishes
- Mat Kearney
- Jay and Silent Bob: Reboot Roadshow with Jason Mewes and Kevin Smith
- Venus Envy Holiday Reunion Show! with Laura Love, Lisa Koch, Linda Severt, Linda Schierman
- Deck the Hall Ball
- Erika Lee: A History of Xenophobia in the US
- Angel Olsen, Vagabon
- Mary Chapin Carpenter & Shawn Colvin: Together on Stage
- Writers Under the Influence: James Baldwin
- Depression Fest
- 'Black Christmas' Opening
- Lee Fields & the Expressions
- Michael Cunningham: The Problem Is Never the Plot
- Ganja White Night, Boogie T, Jantsen, SubDocta
- Jomama Jones Black Light
- Donald Byrd's 'The Harlem Nutcracker'
- Next Fest NW 2019
- Land of the Sweets: The Burlesque Nutcracker
- Trevor Noah: Loud and Clear
- Alex Cameron
- Ryan Caraveo
- Crossdresser for Christmas
- Google Lights
- Brandi Carlile with the Seattle Symphony, The Secret Sisters
- ClayFest Northwest
- Buttcracker V...the Last Thrust!
- Live Wire! with Luke Burbank
- Equinox Studios Very Open House
- Green Lake Pathway of Lights
- Renegade Craft Fair
- Seattle SantaCon 2019
- Exceptionally Ordinary: Mingei 1920-2020
- Annual Holiday Native Gift Fair & Art Market
- Heather McMahan: The Farewell Tour
- Granger Smith, Earl Dibbles Jr
- How The Grouch Stole Christmas feat. The Grouch, Murs, Danyiel
- Building 30 West Open Studios and Holiday Small Works Show
- Inscape Holiday Bazaar 2019
- Cattle Decapitation, Atheist, Primitive Man, Author & Punisher, Vitriol
- The Joy Formidable, TWEN, Bryde
- Recent Acquisitions: Mary Henry
- 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' Opening
- Tourist + Matthew Dear
- Taylor Mac: Holiday Sauce
- 2nd Annual Winter Solstice Beer Festival
- 'Bombshell' Opening
- 'Cats' Opening
- AJJ, Amigo The Devil, Days N Daze, The Bridge City Sinners
- Benjamin Gibbard, Johnathan Rice
- Tower of Power
- Lost Kings, Martin Jensen
- Rezz, Peekaboo, Black Gummy
- All I Want for Christmas is Attention
- The Bell Ringer
- A Classic Christmas with The Classic Crime
- Christmas Ship Festival
- Miracle on 2nd
- Snowflake Lane
- 'Little Women' Opening
- 'Uncut Gems' Opening
- Seattle Festival of Trees
- Blind Boys of Alabama Holiday Show
- The Black Tones
- George Balanchine's 'The Nutcracker'
- MxPx, Amber Pacific
- Enchant Christmas
- The Polish Ambassador, Random Rab
- Straight No Chaser
- Garden d’Lights
- New Year's Eve Comedy Countdown with Guy Branum
- Resolution 2020
- New Year’s Eve Party Cruise
- Artist Home 8th Annual NYE Celebration
- New Year's Eve with the Motet
- Thunderpussy, Bear Axe, Constant Lovers, Trash Fire
- U.S.E., Aqueduct, 52Kings
- Indulgence New Year's Eve Bash
- Century Ballroom New Year's Eve 2019 Party
- Spectra: NYE 2020
- Summer: The Donna Summer Musical
- Sheraton Grand Seattle Gingerbread Village
NOVEMBER 30-DECEMBER 1SHOPPING
If Etsy and Comic Con are two of your favorite things, you won't want to miss this annual geeky craft market, which just so happens to align with holiday shopping season. Find unique gifts from local artists, or make your own crafts.
For its 11th year, the Seattle Anarchist Book Fair will gather radical authors, publishers, and workshop leaders for the intellectual anti-capitalist struggle. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the protests against the World Trade Organization in Seattle, the fair will host a special panel and workshops, plus set up an "archival exhibit." Pick up some books and make new friends to criticize the state with.
Battles have come back with Juice B Crypts, their best album since Mirrored. They proved themselves to be omnivorous collaborators on Gloss Drop, adapting their complex ideas to a wildly diverse array of artists, and that principle enhances the new album. The tracks on Juice B Crypts featuring just Williams and Stanier find ingenious ways to fuse math-rock, abstract electronica, and dance music. "Ambulance" sounds like some new strain of maximalist techno as produced by Boredoms and Magma. The insane title track carries a Squarepusher-esque air of rhythmic hysteria—mad drum & bass in a packed arcade. If Juice B Crypts proves anything, it's that rock needs to mutate and go off on surprising tangents if it wants to keep sounding vital. Battles' hybrid energy shows no signs of diminishing, even as their lineup does. DAVE SEGAL
Famous corn-fed brother trio Hanson have weathered 22 years in the music biz since their platinum album, Middle of Nowhere, dropped. They'll be celebrating their longevity on an extended tour by playing throwback tracks from this album, along with newer works.
Most notable for his tenure as one of the key bad boys behind Seoul hip-hop label AOMG, Jay Park tops mainstream music charts time and time again for his K-pop collabs and incredibly racy music videos.
One of the cornerstones of Southern California–based record label Top Dawg Entertainment, Quincy “ScHoolboy Q” Hanley has consistently provided us with tracks that showcase his versatile lyrical approach, oscillating between chilled-out and aggro. Hanley has always been up-front about his past, delving into his history of gangbanging and drug abuse. While his most salient hit has definitely been 2013’s “Collard Greens” with labelmate Kendrick Lamar, ScHoolboy Q’s CrasH Talk (the capitalized “H” in reference to his crew, the Hoover Crips) is a solid entry into his catalog, with cuts like “Numb Numb Juice” celebrating clubbing, flossing, and sexing over booming beats. JASMYNE KEIMIG
SPORTS & RECREATION
Few of Thievery Corporation's 1990s-era down-tempo electronic contemporaries have shown the durability of core members Rob Garza and Eric Hilton. What they do isn't innovative or revolutionary, but Thievery Corporation's clever amalgams of classy lounge music, buttery triphop, dub lite, boho hip-hop, chill bossa nova, and other styles from the international sonic bazaar cohere into a good time soundtrack that makes you feel much more suave and affluent than you actually are. And that's good enough to sell out the Showbox, even for two dates. Thievery Corporation will be supporting their typically eclectic and tasteful recent album, Treasures from the Temple. DAVE SEGAL
Seattle's biggest annual marathon/half marathon will celebrate its 50th anniversary this year, with upwards of 15,000 runners expected to participate.
Brooklyn band Dreamers walk the line between chasing trends and harboring genre nostalgia, as they describe their sound as "'70s punk meets power pop." They'll come to Seattle with opening support from Kentucky punks Arrested Youth and alt-pop project American Teeth.
DECEMBER 2-29SPORTS & RECREATION
The Chainsmokers make sense as a festival headliner due to their overblown, triumphantly loud type of EDM perfectly curated for giant arenas and outdoor partying. Remember to stay hydrated since you'll be dancing to this set all night, not to mention those of openers Australian pop-rockers 5 Seconds of Summer and Canadian export Lennon Stella.
READINGS & TALKS
Phil Elverum’s music under the Mount Eerie moniker has always been extremely intimate—an attribute inherent in his soft-spoken vocal delivery and largely acoustic guitar-based arrangements. But over the years, Elverum’s modest instrumentation has become increasingly majestic, with his expanding arsenal of instruments and resourceful recording techniques creating a lush world where even the lone sustained fuzzed-out bass notes on 2015’s Sauna take on a symphony of microtones. In the wake of the passing of his wife, Geneviève, Elverum channeled his anguish into A Crow Looked at Me, an album that explores death not through metaphors but through the literal details of life in the aftermath of loss. By eschewing the platitudes that often accompany the discussion of death, Elverum has made both his most deeply intimate album and a profound stand-alone examination of grief. BRIAN COOK
Celebrate two Filipinx writers: Angela Garbes, a former Stranger writer and author of the brilliant pregnancy memoir Like a Mother: A Feminist Journey Through the Science and Culture of Pregnancy, and NEA fellow Ricco Villanueva Siasoco, first-time novelist with The Foley Artist.
Eight adults bang on trash cans, swish brooms, clack poles, and more. Prepare for a rhythm to be drilled permanently into your brain, and for household objects to no longer hold quite the same (musical) meaning.
FOOD & DRINK
Stand-up comedian, actor, musician, and radio host Jim Breuer (whom you might recognize from Saturday Night Live, Chappelle's Show, and other popular programs, as well as the movie Half Baked) will share his love for "his wife, family, Metallica, and even the New York Mets."
Take in a live musical performance by the Flavr Blue, explore interactive installations, and try chocolate-themed bites and drinks at this "immersive chocolate experience" benefiting local nonprofit Northwest Harvest.
Drink perfectly legal libations from local spots like Life on Mars, Stampede, Radiator Whiskey, Screwdriver, and others in your cutest prohibition-era outfit.
GeekWire will celebrate the region's tech community with treats, festive cocktails, photo booths, and geeky mingling opportunities.
This year's big KEXP holiday fundraiser will be headlined by Northwest pride and joy (and exceptionally talented folk singer-songwriter) Neko Case, with a support set by Southwestern indie rock band Calexico.
READINGS & TALKS
If the title of “world’s heaviest band” were contested by some sort of championship bracket, Oregon's Yob would be seeded near the top. After four years of lying low, Yob have delivered a new record this summer. And we all know that season is the perfect time to blast dark, crushing doom metal. KEVIN DIERS
It's been five years since we've seen a new book from David Guterson, famed local author of New York Times best-selling novel Snow Falling on Cedars. But now he's breaking that silence with a new book-length narrative poem called Turn Around Time, which he says offers "a poetic take on the qualities of foot travel and of, among other things, birds, bats, fungi, flora, and fellow travelers." With poem titles like "Barthes and Barth," Guterson's poetry more readily appeals to academic types who are absolutely sure how to pronounce both of those writers' names. But this hiker-poet is at his best when he's writing about Washington's environs, so I have high hopes that these poems will be more grounded (ha-ha, kill me). Plus, press materials indicate that the long poem is sort of about a midlife crisis, which is always a fun time to check in on an author. And come on, people: He's the guy who wrote Snow Falling on Cedars. Show up and chant for the poem about bats. RICH SMITH
Washington Post reporter Eli Saslow's book Rising Out of Hatred explains how Derek Black, the son of the founder of the white supremacist internet site Storm Front and grandson of KKK Wizard David Duke, was forced to confront his beliefs when he was outed to his liberal college community as a racist radio host. Against the odds, Black renounced the white nationalist movement. Learn how Black came to declare independence from his family's legacy of hate—and what it means for America today.
John Waters comes every Christmastime, doesn’t he? It feels like it. The potty-mouthed, anarchist-fetishizing, original daddy of filth is putting in his time again this year, and we’re lucky to have him. If you ever wanted your face or butt or tampon to be signed by the troubled mind behind the films Hairspray, Pink Flamingos, and Female Trouble and books like Role Models and Mr. Know-It-All, he’ll do it here—as long as you buy some merch. It’s worth it. The write-up of his one-man show promises that Waters will be "delving into his love for the annual December warning list of 'Unsafe Toys to Give Your Child' and his hatred for e-mail Christmas cards, the Easter Bunny, and any kind of holiday 'food issues.'" CHASE BURNS
Fight the gloom of night in the illuminated sculpture park, featuring luminarias, art-making activities, hot drinks and sweet treats for sale, and more.
Following up on his well-received stand-up comedy show and jazz musical, Now I'm Fine, Ahamefule J. Oluo is back with a new one about his mother, Susan. Oluo's Nigerian father left his white, Midwestern mother with a couple of kids to raise. Oluo investigates that part of his past, and tells the story of his travels to Nigeria, the home his father left the family for. The New York Times praised Oluo for his "ingratiatingly self-deprecating manner," his facility with several storytelling modes, and his seemingly effortless skill as a conductor and musician. Expect all that and a little more polish in this new piece. RICH SMITH
DECEMBER 5-21VISUAL ART
Davidson Galleries displays vellum pages from a 1501 Horae, Book of Hours (a type of prayer book owned by wealthy people in the Middle Ages) printed by Jean Poitevin. Feel awed by the survival of this precious devotional artifact, illustrated with lush wood-engraved panels.
Who doesn't love botanical and faunal illustration? This exhibition presents work by the 16th-century engraver Andres Lagunas, illustrator of the Dioscorides Anazarbeo, Acerca de la materia medicinal ("the Anazarbeo Dioscorides, on medicinal matter," 1555). These are accompanied by other hand-colored engravings of natural subjects.
Twenty-two women artists working in various media, from music to sculpture to video, pay tribute to gallery owner and Northwest School maven Zoë Dusanne with performances, installations, and "lighted animatronic motion-sensitive 'flowers' that seem to speak directly to visitors."
Watching Seattle drag legend Dina Martina perform is a bit like having a Christmastime flu. You will sit there, confused and warm, your thoughts disassociating, a fever addling your brain, while the holiday cheer twinkles all around you. Truly, there’s no performer who is more like a strong dose of Nyquil than Dina Martina. She is cozy but disorienting. You will laugh without knowing why. Take her with alcohol and double the danger. CHASE BURNS
DECEMBER 5-31VISUAL ART
Celebrate 40 years of top-notch Northwest Coastal and Alaskan art with a Native focus as this excellent gallery hosts a group exhibition.
DECEMBER 5-JANUARY 5PERFORMANCE
Wonderland is divided into three short acts that make up a brisk 90-minute show. Hosted by the exceedingly charismatic JonnyBoy (Jonathan Betchtel), each act gets progressively naughtier, although the most scandalous thing an audience member sees is a jock-strapped ass and bare tits covered by pasties. The show has danger, but it's found in the cancan lines that occur mere feet from audience members' dinner salads. During the third act, two dancers perform an athletic duet that—when I saw it—nearly knocked over a birthday girl's wine glass. But it didn't. Everyone whooped. CHASE BURNS
The Dandy Warhols feel like a relic from another era (the early 2000s), in a music scene where detached coolness was valued over vulnerability and "hipster" was a socially acceptable insult to throw around. They're kind of difficult for me to listen to now, the way it's hard to look at someone you had a brief, ill-advised crush on before you got to know them and realized that they were, in fact, all wrong for you. The garage-y, sometimes psychedelic rock band has that off-putting excess-celebrating rock-star swagger (chronicled in the 2004 documentary Dig! that pits them against the Brian Jonestown Massacre), as frontman Courtney Taylor-Taylor purses his lips and croons about such deep matters as horse pills and getting off. But still. The band's hits are undeniably catchy, and while I'll cringe a little at the lyrics, I can't help feeling the sing-along power of "Bohemian Like You" and that Veronica Mars theme song whenever they come on. ROBIN EDWARDS
READINGS & TALKS
Dozens of caroling teams will once again gather downtown to sing holiday ditties in support of the Pike Market Senior Center & Food Bank, which offers free meals, free groceries, one-on-one counseling, and other services to low-income and homeless people in Seattle. The top caroling teams will compete in a very festive "sing-off" on the Figgy Pudding main stage at the end of the night.
Jeff Vandermeer novels (e.g. Annihilation, Borne) are kind of hard to describe succinctly, but here goes: In a post-apocalyptic landscape overrun with biotech, three shapeshifting quasi-human/animal/landscape hybrids—a blue fox, a giant fish, and a homeless woman—try to avoid destruction and the tyranny of the sinister Company. At this event, hear the acclaimed author talk about Dead Astronauts, his newest novel (released last year), in conversation with Paul Constant.
DECEMBER 6-7FOOD & DRINK
At this tasting event benefiting the Washington Brewers Guild, you can try unique wintry sips—ranging from “dark malty stouts” to winter warmers to pine-tinged IPAs to barrel-aged rarities and other unique seasonal wonders—from more than 50 different local breweries and nosh on food truck offerings.
Acclaimed conductor Jacomo Bairos and the University of Washington Chorale will headline a program of holiday favorites with the Seattle Symphony.
You'd be hard-pressed to find zilch for your loved ones at Urban Craft Uprising's tried-and-true indie craft show. With over 150 vendors selling a huge variety of hand-crafted goods—from jewelry to clothing to paper goods to candles to housewares—you're bound to find unique gifts for the holidays.
The brilliant ballet choreographer Mark Morris's update of The Nutcracker, now a 28-year-old classic in itself, transports E.T.A. Hoffman's story from 19th-century Germany to 1970s America. With production design inspired by the great Fantagraphics-published comics artist Charles Burns, this Broadway staging is gonna be weird, queer, and perhaps even John Waters-esque.
Holiday cheer abounds in Washington's own Bavarian-style village of Leavenworth, which celebrates the season with live Christmas music, visits from both St. Nickolaus and Santa Claus, sledding, and more—all culminating in glorious lighting ceremonies every Saturday and Sunday.
Butch Alice once again stars as Becky June Beasley-Jones in this drag-filled send-up of Agatha Christie-type whodunits.
Last year, after seeing the new revamp of the beloved institution Homo for the Holidays, Chase Burns wrote: "The new performers are the standouts in Jingle All the Gay. Kitten N' Lou brought in Markeith Wiley and Randy Ford, two breakout dancers/performance artists who've been having a great couple of years performing around Seattle. Wiley plays the mailman, an important figure in any holiday story, and he's got to deliver lots of big, uh, packages. Ford plays Lil' Fruitcake, a femme voguing fruitcake who fucks shit up in the best way possible. Ford and Wiley's duets are highlights, as are the numbers from Seattle drag artist Abbey Roads, who brings solid musical theater chops and good comic timing. Also in this cast: New York City's Mr. Gorgeous, serving his uniquely tall and hilarious boylesque as the Little Drummer Boy." These favorites return, along with the UK's Reuben Kaye.
DECEMBER 6-JANUARY 1WINTER HOLIDAYS
Every night, Ivar's powers up the park with thousands of Christmas lights depicting various clammy characters. Is this where clams go to heaven after you eat them at Ivar's?
DECEMBER 6-JANUARY 19WINTER HOLIDAYS
Denny Park's winter light display will provide a magical, twinkly respite with a light display, food trucks, a beer garden, live entertainment, and a winter market. Check out the Grand Opening Party for some extra fun.
New York snarkman Schulz was reportedly 2018's most-viewed comedian on YouTube. You may also have heard his witticisms on his special Views From the Cis, plus the shows Benders and There's Johnny.
Gen Z heartthrob and MTV-dubbed "Prince of Pop" Conan Gray will return to Seattle for a night of bedroom pop on his Comfort Crowd tour with opener Benee.
The charity circuit will get an indie-rock soundtrack as a pitch-perfect lineup gathers to help raise funds for Seattle Children's Hospital. Attendees will get the unique treat of pairing their five-star meals with live sets by Pacific Northwest favorites that will be announced soon.
RESISTANCE & SOLIDARITY
Theater Anonymous's yearly performance of It's a Wonderful Life is slightly different from Frank Capra's 1946 holiday classic. In this version, the cast members (who have never met each other) will pop up out of the audience and start reciting lines. Don't be surprised if your best friend turns out to be George Bailey.
The Washington Fair Trade Coalition will lead workshops on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the 1999 Seattle World Trade Organization protests. Learn about the effect of trade policy on important issues like labor, the environment, health, indigenous rights, and more, then hear from Nobel Prize-winner Joseph Stiglitz, an expert on globalization.
Your favorite underground shopping experience will feature over 80 vendors hawking clothes, arts and crafts, food items, bikes, droids, skateboards, and everything else you can think of to satisfy the eclectic interests of the weirdos in your life.
This is not one naked person trying not to breathe too hard in front of a handful of art nerds. No, this is a whole crowd of art nerds with an entire building full of models, naked, clothed, in drag, holding instruments, and/or wearing funky costumes. Your ticket includes art supplies and access to many instructor demonstrations. If you get hungry, grab something from Off the Rez food truck. There will also be a holiday market to shop from if you get hand cramps.
The Northwest Film Forum presents two days of pre-millennial anxiety about information technology, propaganda, corporatism, totalitarianism, and other societal forces that have indeed led the world off a cliff. Spend your weekend watching WarGames, Johnny Mnemonic, Scanners, and Strange Days.
DECEMBER 7-JANUARY 1WINTER HOLIDAYS
1920s-era Tudor homes in Ravenna have been boasting impressive light displays every holiday season since 1949. Stroll along Northeast Park Road taking in Nutcracker-themed havens complete with sleighs, reindeer, sugar plum fairies, and blow-up candy canes galore.
Local artist Scherer confronts the depiction of suffering, loss, and vulnerability in her series of 35 small-scale black watercolor drawings of victims in the TV show Law and Order.
DECEMBER 8FOOD & DRINK
At this gathering at the Palace Ballroom, you can sip wine, browse wares from local vendors, purchase cookbooks, sample recipes inspired by the titles on display, get autographs, and visit with the authors of some of the season’s most vaunted cookbooks.
Snap up some street food while you shop for gifts at this holiday festival, with food trucks galore and a market with over a hundred local vendors.
California trio the Aquadolls will make your fuzzy surf-rock dreams come true at this all-ages show.
St. Louis rapper Comethazine will visit Seattle on his Hench Mafia Tour with support from fellow SoundCloud-bred artist Max the Demon.
READINGS & TALKS
Seattle-area musician/producer Brian Fennell, aka SYML, aka a former member of gentle indie-rock band Barcelona, will headline out in the U-District.
Get the maximum amount of instruction from Hugo House's excellent prose writers and poets at this annual event featuring five hours of mini-workshops and talks.
DECEMBER 9FOOD & DRINK
The Feast of the Seven Fishes is a traditional Italian American supper featuring seven kinds of fish or seafood, usually served before midnight mass on Christmas Eve. This lavish spread from Delancey promises the freshest catches the Ballard pizzeria can procure, with albacore crudo, handmade Il Corvo pasta with lobster, Dungeness crab, Penn Cove mussels, anchovies, roasted oysters snatched from Delancey’s roaring wood-fired oven, and a steady flow of wine throughout. They’ll finish with some delightful-sounding butterscotch pots de creme for dessert.
Ubiquitous pop-crafter Mat Kearney will bring his iTunes commercial-ready tracks to Seattle on this acoustic tour, which is celebrating the 10th anniversary of his breakout album, City of Black & White.
Kevin Smith and Jason Mewes, podcast co-hosts and the filmmakers behind the classic slacker comedy Clerks and its sequels, will appear in support of Smith's new directorial venture, Jay and Silent Bob Reboot.
This comedic quartet is made up of Seattle comedic institution Lisa Koch (co-progenitor of such classics as Ham for the Holidays), "folk-funk" songwriter Laura Love, vaudeville entertainer Linda Severt, and musician Linda Schierman.
READINGS & TALKS
Radio station 107.7 ("The End") presents a stacked rock-centric lineup for their annual winter music spectacle, including the 1975, the Head And the Heart, Catfish and the Bottlemen, the Regrettes, and Chong the Nomad.
Erika Lee, director of the Immigration History Research Center at the University of Minnesota, is here to explain just how long the Statue of Liberty has been an absolute joke, a monument to openhearted immigration policy in a country that has excluded the Chinese, harassed the Germans and the Irish, and corralled the Mexicans and the Japanese into concentration camps. Lee's early work focused on the Chinese Exclusion Act, but her new history, America for Americans: A History of Xenophobia in the United States, takes a broader view, examining the connections between racism and xenophobia over the last couple hundred years. RICH SMITH
After an apprenticeship with Bonnie "Prince" Billy, Missouri-born musician Angel Olsen struck out on her own. On her first two records, the unfiltered vocals and stripped-down settings align her with roots singers on the shadowy end of the spectrum, like Roy Orbison and Gillian Welch. Since then, Olsen’s moved in a more rock-oriented direction—the reverb on 2014’s Burn Your Fire for No Witness came as a shock the first time I heard it. A friend once dismissed her as the sort of vocalist who demands a reaction, and he’s not wrong, but her show-stopper of a voice fully earns it. KATHY FENNESSY
READINGS & TALKS
Grammy-winning country singers Mary Chapin Carpenter and Shawn Colvin will team up for an acoustic tour.
James Baldwin is the author of several masterpieces of fiction, many brilliant essays, and a couple of plays. His reputation as an artist and public intellectual grows with each passing year, especially because he channeled his perceptions of white supremacy into timeless articulations of the evil lurking beneath America’s premises. This tribute to Baldwin is a collaboration between Hugo House and the Northwest African American Museum. It will feature readings and remembrances by Anastacia-Reneé, Ebo Barton, LaNesha DeBardelaben, and Seattle civic poet Jourdan Imani Keith. CHRISTOPHER FRIZZELLE
This inaugural multimedia festival organized by musicians Ruben Mendez (DYED) and Abigail Swanson (Belva) will raise funds for the American Federation of Suicide Prevention and promote mental health awareness in these Trumpian times. The lineup includes synth punks ONONOS, Archie, art-rockers Tissue, fiction author Richard Chiem, avant-rockers Children’s Hospital, poet and former Stranger freelancer Sarah Galvin, visual artist Tara Thomas, and more.
Trailers for the remake of this 1974 slasher tease a feminist twist as sorority girls get sick of their sisters being stalked and murdered on campus.
Electro-pop act Ladytron first broke out of their Liverpool scene in 1998 with a sound that evoked '70s synth and '80s new wave, and an eye towards the future. They've dipped in and out of the public consciousness over the last two decades, and have recently popped back up with a new tour and their sixth full-length album.
READINGS & TALKS
I don’t think you could do much better on any given night than getting down with Mr. Lee Fields, one of the last soul singers from way back still dialed in and still pushing. And he recently toured the world in support of his LP, Special Night. Uh, the album is fucking GREAT, full of deep soul groovers in the Dan Penn/Muscle Shoals vein, some of his mid-tempo funk action, and the anthem “Make the World.” Every song on here only reassures me that Fields’s lamp is lit with lightning. MIKE NIPPER
The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Hours will contend that profoundly human characters, not plot, should be a writer's focus in this Word Works: Writers on Writing lecture.
Often seen on the lineups of giant EDM fests like Lucky and Deadbeats, Belgian bass duo Ganja White Night will perform tracks with their unique "Wobble" sound.
This show by UW Creative Research Fellow Daniel Alexander Jones, aka Jomama Jones, takes you through black freedom struggles and explorations of Afromysticism through "the musical influences of Prince, Sade, Diana Ross and Tina Turner."
Acclaimed local choreographer Donald Byrd developed this adaptation of the cherished Christmas ballet for black American culture. This will be the performance of "phase one," which will include Act 1, "Party Scene" and Act 2, "Club Sweets."
Velocity's annual Next Fest NW spotlights exciting new choreographers coming up in the Seattle dance scene. Lucie Baker, Shane Donohue, Marco Farroni, Vladimir Kremenović, and Hannah Rae will present pieces that play to this year's theme—"Ritual and Rebellion"—covering subjects such as "Brutalist architecture, corporate sponsorship, queer coming of age and Slavic mythology." Last year, Donohue put on a transcendently good display of weird-ass bravado during his solo performance in Kim Lusk's fabulous Dance for Dark Horses, so I'm hoping he brings a similar energy to THIS SPACE FOR RENT, which sounds like a welcome send-up of the unholy alliance between capitalism and the arts. According to a preview in Broadway World, Farroni's (papi) will draw from the dancer's personal experiences, revealing "performance practice as a method to understand displacement, adaptation, love, memory and trauma." Lucie Baker's Singing Over the Bones, inspired by "figures from Eastern European folklore alleged to be the restless spirits of women who have died unjust or untimely deaths," sounds eminently unmissable, too. RICH SMITH
Land of the Sweets: The Burlesque Nutcracker is a lascivious holiday show experience with sugar plum fairies, exciting clothes-dropping times, and more swanky fun.
Blessing: South African comedian Trevor Noah has control of the bully pulpit of Comedy Central's The Daily Show. Curse: He had to follow Jon Stewart in that slot. It's hard not to seem a tad second-rate replacing a vastly influential and beloved political-satire legend, but Noah's gamely making a go of it. He leverages his outsider status in America—how many other South African comics do you know?—to offer fresh slants on myriad social and political topics. DAVE SEGAL
When that Gayngs Relayted album came out in 2010, I was sure it heralded a yacht rock renaissance. Everybody seemed way into it again for a minute. Friends were fist-pumping during Hall & Oates songs and going earnestly to Michael McDonald concerts. The revival never really took off, and the soft sounds of the late ’70s/early ’80s have remained mostly in the past, except for the odd artist like Aussie musician Alex Cameron. Something about his tonal quality brings me right back to that brief non-revival. He definitely has the soft, breezy, mellow quality and warm sax accompaniment, courtesy of business partner/bandmate Roy Molloy, but with more up-tempo synthy dance moments and an intriguing individuality that’s hard to pinpoint. Pitchfork calls his 2018 album Forced Witness “art-sleaze” that “transcends its surface-level smarm to become a biting piece of commentary.” I say, sure, why not? LEILANI POLK
Slightly brotastic, but not egregiously so, Ryan Caraveo puts words together in a fashion that sounds confident and cool. LARRY MIZELL JR.
Few queens belt a Broadway hit like Ginger Minj. I once saw the RuPaul’s Drag Race star perform her Crossdresser for Christ cabaret show to a sold-out crowd of bears (the gay kind), and her brassy singing brought the crowd to tears. By the end of it, I was drunk and singing along in the balcony. I’m pretty sure it will go down as the gayest night of theater in my life. Now that she’s bringing a version of that showtunes-filled original show to Queer/Bar, maybe I can have the queerest night of theater in my life. CHASE BURNS
The Google Kirkland campus will turn on their 25,000-light display for a holiday light show synchronized to music. There will also be free hot chocolate and cookies for the first 2,000 people.
The experience of listening to Brandi Carlile's 2018 album, By The Way, I Forgive You, is similar to that of listening to Carole King's Tapestry or Bob Dylan's Blood on the Tracks; it's a little bit country, a little bit rock and roll, and a lot of hard truths about the human race. Carlile's talents lie in her tone, a dusky alto that swims around confessions of heartbreak and lifelong efforts to love and be loved, with the deftness of a much more senior troubadour. She'll be joined in this performance of her recent works by the Seattle Symphony, with an opening set by Americana singer-songwriter duo the Secret Sisters. KIM SELLING
DECEMBER 13-20VISUAL ART
Celebrate clay art "from teapots to abstract sculpture" at this celebration featuring work—which you can buy!—by more than 40 Pacific Northwest artists.
This festive and raunchy holiday show promises glittery professional dance and holiday satire set to a hair-metal soundtrack...for the very last time.
Luke Burbank's Live Wire is an NPR-type variety program based in Portland, Oregon, featuring artists, writers, filmmakers, and musicians in conversation. This edition will feature comedian and screwy advice columnist John Hodgman and respected journalist and author Jon Mooallem.
See the work of more than 100 artists and artisans in four buildings at the mammoth Georgetown arts collective. The studios also promise "guest artists, music, poetry, dance, demos, food trucks, and a whole lot more! " Stay after 10 pm for a night of revelry.
Every year, the Green Lake Park circuit illuminates its pathway with thousands of candles. You can walk through it, hear holiday music, and warm up with treats.
Shop for crafts from new and returning makers while you enjoy live DJs, food trucks, and cocktails.
Regardless of how you feel personally about SantaCon—the annual bar crawl that encourages adults to dress as the jolly mascot of Christmas and jingle their bells to various downtown watering holes—it will likely outlive us all. If you're participating, don't forget to hydrate with plenty of water and/or milk.
DECEMBER 14-JULY 11VISUAL ART
Unfussy treasures of the Mingei movement, which was launched by the Japanese collector Yanagi Soetsu in the 1920s and fostered an appreciation for simplicity and utility, include folk art-influenced ceramics, textiles, sculptures, and prints from Japan, Korea, and the US.
NOVEMBER 29-DECEMBER 1 & DECEMBER 13-15FESTIVALS
Find gifts for loved ones by local Native artists and makers at this annual market.
Heather K. McMahan, whose persona is a combination of basic bitch and self-proclaimed "high-functioning hot mess," will embark on her first ("and possibly last") tour.
Chart-topping country singer Granger Smith will bring his talents to Seattle with support from Earl Dibbles Jr. (whose interests include "crackin cold ones, dippin, fishin, huntin, shootin guns, ropin stuff, workin," according to his Facebook page.
Prolific indie-hop Oaklander the Grouch is back for the final installment of his "'How The Grouch Stole Christmas" holiday tour. He'll be joined in his seasonal crusade by Murs and Danyiel.
Wander through 25 artist studios, hear local music, check out the Holiday Small Works show, and buy creative goodies for your loved ones.
Check out many, many artists' studios and pick out some gifts for families and friends at this expansive shindig.
San Diego quartet Cattle Decapitation (who crank out extreme metal, as you might guess from their name) will flaunt how far they've come over the course of their 20-year career on their Geocidal Tendencies Tour. Atheist, Primitive Man, Author & Punisher, and Vitriol will round out the bill.
Welsh alt-rock band the Joy Formidable will bring their dreamy-yet-brash soundscapes to Seattle with support from TWEN and Bryde. LEILANI POLK
DECEMBER 17-JUNE 7VISUAL ART
As part of their Recent Acquisitions series, the Frye displays two works from this Whidbey Island artist's estate, North Slope #15, Kuparuk and Brooks Range, based on the Brooks Range mountains seen from Wiseman, Alaska. Mary Henry was a pioneering Minimalist who, despite her long career, did not start exhibiting until the 1990s, at which time she began to be recognized as a "matriarch of Modernism."
This film concludes the Skywalker Saga, which contains three prequels, three originals, and three sequels to the original. The Rise of Skywalker is the end of the saga, for now, according to Disney CEO Bob Iger, whose mega-entertainment corporation purchased the Star Wars brand from its creator, George Lucas, in 2012. The director of The Rise is also the director of the first sequels (Star Wars: The Force Awakens), J.J. Abrams. The big question that will be answered during the Christmas season, when the film opens, is whether Abrams’ second directorial contribution to the saga is as good or better than his first, The Force Awakens, which, in my opinion, is the third best film in the series. First is, of course, is The Empire Strikes Back, and second, A New Hope. I’m also of the opinion that Abrams directed the best Mission Impossible film (the third one). CHARLES MUDEDE
Massively popular K-pop group A.C.E. will hit Seattle on the winter leg of their 2019 world tour in promotion of their latest album.
Hawaiian singer-songwriter Anuhea, the winner of two Na Hoku Hanohano Awards and Billboard Hot 100 hitter, will perform her pop, R&B, and island-infused reggae in Seattle on her All Is Bright 2019 tour.
Deadmau5, the Canadian progressive techno/trance house producer with the iconic illuminated mouse head, will be back in town for a long set to please all the Disney ravers about town.
Producer William Phillips uses his moniker, Tourist, as an excuse to jump from genre to genre—garage, electronica, and darker pop sensibilities included—and take little inspirations from each to create a more expansive sound with all.
MacArthur Grant-winning genius Taylor Mac is an unparalleled playwright and performer. Mac produces shows that are bombastic and colorful, somewhere between drag and cabaret and classical Greek tragedy, with the loudest costumes ever concocted, created by the equally genius designer Machine Dazzle. I’m betting Mac’s new music-filled show about “Christmas as calamity” will be the highlight of Seattle’s holiday show season. CHASE BURNS
Drink away the cold-weather doldrums at this indoor craft beer festival hosted by the Seattle Farmers Market Association. The event will feature an all-ages night market with food trucks and shopping, plus a separate heated tent for beer tasting with wintry brews from over 25 local and regional breweries and a live music stage.
When Nicole Kidman, Charlize Theron, and Margot Robbie all link up, what have you got? Well, a sizeable chunk of the Fox Newsroom, as it turns out. In this movie adapted from real life events, Bombshell follows three women who accused late Fox founder and CEO Roger Ailes of sexual harassment, and the fallout when their accusations are made public. Kidman portrays former Fox host Gretchen Carlson, Robbie plays a fictionalized producer, and Theron seemingly fully transforms into Megyn Kelly. Announced in the months following Ailes’s death, the film will explore the toxic environment brewing over at the president’s favorite news channel. JASMYNE KEIMIG
This Christmas, give yourself the gift of uncanny-valley terror as you watch A-list movie stars cavort under layers of digitally generated fur.
The boisterous, punk-kicking folk outfit from Phoenix formerly known as Andrew Jackson Jihad have shortened their moniker to a simple acronym, AJJ, and were recently on the road behind two 2017 releases—a vinyl live album, Decade of Regression: Live at SideOneDummy, and a short and sweet EP of surprisingly mellow yet intriguing new songs, Back in the Jazz Coffin. LEILANI POLK
Death Cab for Cutie and the Postal Service frontman Benjamin Gibbard will play a special solo set with support from singer-songwriter Johnathan Rice.
Oakland's fabulous funk and soul-jazz heavies Tower of Power return for yet another Seattle residency. Reports from the most gushing-est of fans claim that every TOP show is a killer dance party, but then they are the "Hipper Than Hip" from "Bump City" and would obviously know how to dig it deep "In the Slot"! That they keep killin' it time and again is REALLY saying something, as Tower of Power have been active for over 50 years and show no signs of getting up from all their serious getting down! MIKE NIPPER
DJ duo Lost Kings (aka Robert Abisi and Nick Shanholtz) will stop in town on their Lost Angeles Tour with support from Martin Jensen.
Young DJ and producer REZZ from Niagara Falls will regale you with a set of heavy underground minimalist techno and dark, spooky industrial cuts. She'll be joined by additional guests Peekaboo and Black Gummy as a part of their winter tour.
Last year, in a preview of To Jesus, Thanks for Everything! Jinkx and DeLa, Christopher Frizzelle wrote: "BenDeLaCreme and Jinkx Monsoon are like peanut butter and jelly: two great tastes that taste great together. They were on back-to-back seasons of RuPaul’s Drag Race, they are both stunning drag queens from Seattle, they are both fiery political commentators, and they’ve never had a proper theatrical production for just the two of them." With To Jesus a smashing success, Jinkx and DeLa are back with another bid for your love.
The Jewish festival of lights that commemorates the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem is an eight-day holiday full of food and games and sometimes presents. Major hits from our Hanukkah calendar include Westlake Park's Light Up the Night - Burger Fest, a Giant Menorah Lighting in Volunteer Park, and The Chanukah Party III: Black Hot Chanukah at Washington Hall.
Prog-rock band Symphony North has teamed up with members of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra and Grammy-nominated band Dream Theater to create a raucous holiday album that "builds on the ideas of selflessness and self-worth." Hear it in its entirety at this live show and pick up a copy of the album knowing that a portion of album proceeds will be donated to the Toys for Tots Literacy Program.
Seattle rock band the Classic Crime have hosted a Christmas party every year for over a decade now. This year, they'll play a headlining set of their own work as an exclusive live listening party for their latest album.
Surfaces will grace very cold Seattle with their summery jazzy sounds spiked with pop, hip-hop, reggae, soul, calypso, and swing.
NOVEMBER 29-DECEMBER 23WINTER HOLIDAYS
The Puget Sound is filled with lights throughout the holiday season, but no vessel can compete with Argosy Cruises' Christmas Ship, which docks in 65 waterfront communities to serenade people onshore and onboard with its resident choir. Those who choose to board the ship will enjoy photos with Santa, a reading of "'Twas the Night Before Christmas," and kids' activities. For a less family-oriented option, you can trail behind in a 21+ boat with rotating themes each week. It's also free to watch from the shore.
THROUGH DECEMBER 24FOOD & DRINK
In 2014, Greg Boehm of New York bar Boilermaker temporarily transformed the space for his bar Mace into a kitschy Christmas wonderland replete with gewgaws and tchotchkes galore. Now the pop-up has expanded to over 100 locations all over the world and will be returning to Belltown’s Rob Roy this year. The specialty cocktails are no ordinary cups of cheer: Beverages are housed in tacky-tastic vessels (a drinking mug resembling Santa’s mug, for example), bedecked with fanciful garnishes like peppers and dried pineapple, and christened with irreverent, pop-culture-referencing names like the “Bad Santa,” the “Yippie Ki Yay Mother F**r,” and the “You’ll Shoot Your Rye Out.” JULIANNE BELL
Every year, downtown Bellevue turns into a winter wonderland not just for one night but for a whole dang month, with (fake) falling snow, jolly live music, and a nightly parade filled with dancers and toy drummers.
It’s as if writer-director Greta Gerwig fancast Louisa May Alcott’s iconic Little Women using a list of all the hottest (and most swoon-worthy) actors right now. Saoirse Ronan as Jo?! Emma Watson as Meg?! Eliza Scanlen (from HBO’s Sharp Objects) as Beth?! Scream queen Florence Pugh as Amy?! The floppy-haired Timothée Chalamet as Laurie?! Meryl Streep AND Laura Dern playing Aunt March and Marmee March, respectively?! A film with a cast list of this caliber either buckles under the weight of its own star power or really shines. Though the Winona Ryder film version of the novel is the definitive interpretation for some, Gerwig’s adaptation is sure to give it a run for its money. JASMYNE KEIMIG
Sandler hasn’t made a good movie in a looong time. Like (checks IMDb filmography), since Punch-Drunk Love? I mean, I guess it depends on how you like your Adam Sandler, since romantic male lead or lead fool of an ensemble cast in a shitty lightweight comedy seems to be his fallbacks, with a few not-super exceptions (see: Reign Over Me). Uncut Gems has the potential to be Sandler’s comeback-to-quality vehicle. Billed as a “black comedy crime film,” it finds Sandler in a bind (he’s a sleazy jewelry store owner and gambler who owes money to the wrong people), and has to figure out how to settle his debts before shit gets real. Also, the Safdie brothers (Good Time) are directing and it’s an A24 film, which lends it automatic street cred. Hopefully Sandler can hold it up. LEILANI POLK
THROUGH DECEMBER 26WINTER HOLIDAYS
The historic Fairmont Olympic hotel celebrates the winter season each year with caroling, an impressive display of decorated trees in their lobby, and a teddy bear suite.
As an atheist, I am often sickened by the stuff done in the name of god(s) worldwide. But the Blind Boys have something. Call it a summoning. Call it an invocation of spirit. It builds slowly through their set and expands and spreads its wings in the big finish. They've lost some of their big guns in recent years, notably founders Clarence Fountain and George Scott, leaving only Jimmy Carter (no relation to the presidential peanut farmer) from the group's gestation 80 years ago. That shouldn't matter. They still have the summoning. ANDREW HAMLIN
Blues-punk post-grunge makers/Hendrixian rock-and-roll torchbearers the Black Tones are led by the fabulous Walker twins, with brother Cedric pounding out the heavy, calculated rhythms, and sister Eva belting it out in a rich, sonorous vocal that varies between full-bodied operatic and fuck-your-face fierce. Sure, we recommended them as a must-see at 2018's CHBP, but that set surpassed even our own high expectations. And this year saw the release of their Jack Endino-produced debut full-length, Cobain & Cornbread, which they celebrated with a sold-out release show in April. The Black Tones have been generating a national buzz, too; they were included in a recent NPR shout-out highlighting 15 Seattle musicians redefining our city's music "beyond grunge." In sum, don't sleep on this one. LEILANI POLK
NOVEMBER 29-DECEMBER 28PERFORMANCE
If you haven't seen this Christmas classic since you were a kid, give it a go this year. In 2014, Pacific Northwest Ballet replaced its beloved Maurice Sendak set with one by Ian Falconer, who did the Olivia the Pig books, and I'm glad that they did. The new set is gorgeous in a Wes Anderson-like way, and it reflects the genuine weirdness and beauty in the story. I mean, the last 45 minutes of this thing is a Katy Perry video starring dancing desserts and a glittery peacock that moves like a sexy broken river. Bring a pot lozenge. RICH SMITH
NOVEMBER 29-DECEMBER 31WINTER HOLIDAYS
From a winter train village to an ice rink, and from music and dance performances to ice sculpting, Winterfest promises five weeks of free festive cheer for all ages.
MxPx’s best-known cut, “Chick Magnet,” told my story! No, really! I was always sitting there, unable to even get a woman to talk to me. And the guy next to me scored at will, and I could never figure out why or how. As I got older (not necessarily wiser), I met other fellows who thought MxPx were singing their song, too. And so I learned my story isn’t so special. A few years ago, I met the Chick Magnet (my Chick Magnet) on a bus platform. I’d noticed him back in town, wasn’t sure whether to talk. He was divorced, he said. He never saw his children. A few years later, his son died. And so I learned that even Chick Magnets live with what they conceal and they muster through. A painfully human moment sprung from punk-pop. ANDREW HAMLIN
THROUGH DECEMBER 29WINTER HOLIDAYS
Following a successful first year, Enchant Christmas will transform T-Mobile Park into a winter wonderland complete with an impressive light maze, light sculptures, a market curated by Urban Craft Uprising, and more. This year's theme is "Mischievous," so expect to see sly little elves roaming about.
Electronic-music producer David Sugalski, aka the Polish Ambassador, hails from the Bay Area. And while he may not be an official diplomat, he does bring together the sounds of hip-hop, dub, and funk with electro, breaks, lounge, and glitch to create dance-music harmony—hip-shaking and head-bob-inducing jams that are bright and fun like Sugalski's trademark neon jumpsuits. Sugalski executes live sound mixing at his concerts, using a combination of computers and MIDI instruments to reproduce tracks. LEILANI POLK
Straight No Chaser take their name from a Thelonious Monk blues song divided not into three four-measure segments, but two six-measure sections, because Monk couldn't do anything the normal way, heaven cherish him. So Straight No Chaser are well-versed in not doing things the conventional way themselves. But they're not afraid to throw in a medley of boy-band classics, spiked with Britney Spears for flavor. They're also famous for the "12 Days of Christmas" video bit that landed in 1998, and, as of the afternoon I'm typing this, has tallied 23,120,103 views. So they're a little white bread and they make all the percussion noises with their lips, which pisses off some people, but they're talented, choreographed, and cute. Also, hey, Britney Spears. ANDREW HAMLIN
NOVEMBER 30-DECEMBER 31WINTER HOLIDAYS
Whimsical flora and fauna, birds, animals, and cascading waterfalls get the holiday light treatment at Bellevue Botanical Garden's annual display. (To be clear, actual birds and animals will not be strung with lights.) Wander the grounds and take photos among the "half a million" bulbs.
Writer/actor Guy Branum boasts of having served as "Staff Homosexual" on Chelsea Lately. He's also appeared on E!, on MTV (for whom he also worked on Punk'd), and in the film No Strings Attached, and his book My Life as a Goddess was included on NPR's 2018 Good Reads List.
FOOD & DRINK
Resolution is an annual end-of-the-year electronic music bash that gathers extremely popular and mainstream EDM and nü-rave artists into an arena-like space and unleashes their energy onto a throng of writhing young adults. This year's lineup includes massive figures in the scene like Adventure Club, Knife Party, Madeon, Tchami X Malaa, and many more.
Spend the final hours of 2019 on a festively decorated Waterways yacht to revel in champagne toasts, fireworks, and live DJs.
For the eighth year running, Artist Home, the Seattle-based talent-buying, event-promoting, and artist-consulting collective, will host a New Year's Eve bash featuring artists with whom they've worked. Dance your way into 2020 with live sets from members of Seattle bands across the rock, soul, folk, and pop genre spectrums like Naked Giants, Pickwick, Prom Queen, Smokey Brights, Hobosexual, Eva Walker, Fly Moon Royalty, Gypsy Temple, NightraiN, Gibraltar, Warren Dunes, Local Liars, Tekla Waterfield, Sarah Gerritsen, Hotels, Tea Cozies, Witch Trip, Invisible Shivers, The Environment, Helen Chance, King Youngblood, Glass Elevator, and Leah T.
Colorado-based progressive funk group the Motet will be joined in their Afrobeat ecstasy by special guests at this bombastic New Year's Eve celebration.
If you like to rock out with your id out on New Year's Eve, you could do a lot worse than Thunderpussy. The band are a foursome of fierce speed queens who are the rare Seattle rock group signed to a major label. Their self-titled debut LP revamps familiar classic-rock power moves and hard-rock hooks to put some led in your zeppelin and some depth in your purple. A quality headbanging hangover awaits you. DAVE SEGAL
PARTIES & NIGHTLIFE
Ex-Stranger music writer Jennifer Maerz once described U.S.E. as "Seattle's own less serious, more cheeseball Daft Punk, a seven (I think, or thereabouts) member dance band with songs about Seattle's various neighborhoods and going to the beach ('Vamos a la playa'). The best thing about USE, though, is that they actually get people to dance, and they seem to be playing together just for the fun of it." They've returned to the scene for a one-off NYE performance with Aqueduct and 52Kings.
The 19th annual Indulgence New Year's Eve Bash will provide plenty of entertainment before the clock strikes midnight, including comedy performances, live bands and DJs, and after-hours access to MoPOP's exhibits. Plus, the party takes place right under the Space Needle, so you'll have prime views of the fireworks show.
Choose between two rooms of dancing at Century Ballroom New Year's Eve Party: A live salsa room with Tumbao (featuring lead singer Carlos Cascante of Spanish Harlem Orchestra), or an LGBTQ+ "OutDancing" room with a live DJ. There's also an optional five-course dinner with meat, seafood, and vegetarian menus.
Wrap up this decade with a swanky, speakeasy-style night out under the Space Needle—very appropriate given the centennial of the roaring '20s. Tickets include virtual and augmented reality experiences, live DJs, laser karaoke, craft booze, and after-hours access to exhibits.
DECEMBER 31-JANUARY 5PERFORMANCE
The great disco diva Donna Summer gets the musical biography treatment, complete with a score full of her biggest hits—"Hot Stuff," "Love to Love You Baby," and more.
THROUGH JANUARY 1WINTER HOLIDAYS
For the 27th year in a row, diabetes research center JDRF Northwest has invited local architecture firms to use their skills for a holiday tradition: crafting an elaborate gingerbread village that uses 1,850 pounds of gingerbread, 150,000 pieces of candy, 350 pounds of fondant, and 15 gallons of egg whites, according to press materials. This year's theme is #ElfLife, featuring pixies, gnomes, and pucks from across genres.
NOVEMBER 29-JANUARY 5WINTER HOLIDAYS
This year, Santa is enlisting the help of young princes and princesses in helping him find six hidden presents. In addition to the prize-bearing hunt, this kid-oriented indoor festival will also have a gift market (complete with fresh produce and seasonal treats) and a light display.
The zoo will light up with thousands upon thousands of (energy-efficient) LED lights that recreate wild scenes and creatures. You can also throw fake snowballs at your friends, get up close with certain animal residents, and sip hot chocolate.
Holiday traditions don't get more classic than strolling through the zoo when it's transformed into a luminous wonderland of 3-D animal light installations. Displays from previous years have included hammerhead sharks and sea turtles, a majestic polar bear family, and a giant Pacific octopus.