Top Things to Do This Weekend: June 27–30
A creepy and kooky clan, a local standup comic made good, and final performances for a trio of long-running plays are among our weekend highlights.
Ron Funches, Amy Miller, Anthony Lopez
Thu at 8 & 10; Mississippi Studios
Funches is a local comedian made good who left us (sob!) for the glitz, glamor, and meatier paychecks of Los Angeles. Yes, that was Funches playing a crazed transient singing "Dude Looks Like a Lady" by Aerosmith on the Zooey Deschanel sitcom The New Girl in April, so it looks like the move is paying off. And he can always use that clip to audition for The Voice.
Slingshot: Lone Wolves
Fri–Sat at 10; Gerding Theater
Some of Portland's funniest folks, including Shelley McLendon (Roadhouse: The Musical), and Wm Steven Humphrey (Portland Mercury) will perform solo comedy bits that they've written themselves. Heck, we'd be happy if Humphrey stood on stage riffing on his least favorite TV shows as he does so adroitly in the Merc's "I Love Television" column.
PetesFest: The Adventures of Pete and Pete Reunion
Fri–Sat at 7:30; Hollywood Theatre
The Adventures of Pete and Pete was a gently surreal bit of YA television that aired on the Nickelodeon network between 1993–96. A genuine cult hit, the show followed a pair of redheaded siblings named Pete Wrigley and their assorted weird friends and neighbors through a series of charmingly odd situations. For two days, the show's creators, Will McRobb and Chris Viscardi, along with stars Michael Maronna (Big Pete), Danny Tamberelli (Little Pete), Toby Huss (Artie, the strongest man in the world), and Judy Grafe (Mom) will hold court with fans amidst screenings, live music, and a Q & A session.
The Addams Family
Thu–Sat at 7:30, Sat at 2, Sun at 1, Sun at 6:30; Keller Auditorium
"Though the musical comedy seems like a form that could have destroyed the very essence of the Addams (family), they maintain the character traits we know and love about them. For all their flesh-eating plants and monsters under the bed, they treat the darkness with a sense of humor and humility, and this works well in musical form. Beneath all else is the comfortingly familiar tale of America’s favorite 'unhappy' family." Read our review of The Addams Family.
Closing this weekend: Ithaka
Thu–Sat at 7:30, Sun at 2; Artist's Repertory Theatre
"Stolowitz's concept of telling Ithaka's modern-day story through the framework of Homer's epic poem is ingenious, turning what easily could have been a rerun after-school special into a resounding myth, at turns strange, comical, and frightening. The playwright, who won an Oregon Book Award this year for an earlier drama, Antarktikos, interviewed more than 20 veterans at the Portland Veterans' Center to make sure she got her portrayal of life in the military, and life post-military, right." Read our review of Ithaka.
Closing this weekend: The People's Republic of Portland
Thu–Sat at 7:30, Sun at 2; Gerding Theater
"Weedman seems to 'get it' (Portland, and all us wacky Portlanders, that is), which is nice and affirming and all, but I kept waiting for her to give us some reason for why we should care. Instead, we get exactly what I feared: another comic parachuting in to skewer all of Portland's peculiar proclivities. Weedman has the love and the skill to do PDX right, but she’s got work to do before her story touches down." Read our review of The People's Republic of Portland.
Closing this weekend: Somewhere in Time
Thu–Sat at 7:30, Sun at 2; Gerding Theater
"At heart, this [ambitious production] is supposed to be a story about a love so strong that it transcends time. Yet Richard and Elise spend so little time together—most of which Richard, as performed by Samonsky, comes across as an uncharmingly goofy stalker, telling Elise all the things he knows about her life while suffering from twittering headaches—that there is no reason given to the audience for why they fall in love." Read our review of Somewhere in Time.
Wooden Indian Burial Ground, AndAndAnd, Grandparents, Summer Cannibals
Sat at 8; Star Theater
All this astounding music at a great venue for $5? Oh Portland, we'll never leave you. We've sung the praises of headliner Wooden Indian Burial Ground before, but there's no weak link in this local rock lineup. The glowering tough-girl punk of Summer Cannibals, a band named for a Patti Smith song, is particularly arresting.
Tell Mama: A Tribute to Etta James
Sat at 7:30 & 10; Jimmy Mak's
A powerhouse cast of groovy greats plays tribute to R&B icon Etta James, who passed away last year. With a killer band led by keyboardist DK Stewart, and guest vocal turns by some of the top women singers in the Northwest, including Duffy Bishop, LaRhonda Steel, Lady Kat, Rae Gordon, and Lisa Mann, classic James tunes like "At Last" and "I'd Rather Go Blind" get the reverential treatment they deserve.
Thu–Sun at 8; Performance Works Northwest
Thirty years after she made her debut as a choreographer in New York, Portland avant-garde dance doyenne Linda Austin will reprise her very first work, even flying in its original dancer Todd Ayoung to retrace his steps. Read our profile of Linda Austin.
Merge Dance Project: Swimming in Green
Fri–Sat at 7:30; Conduit Dance
If one of the dancers looks slightly familiar, there's a good reason: Ohio's Merge Dance Project features Sandra Mathern, the twin sister of Conduit Dance choreographer Tere Mathern. Her three-person company will perform a new evening-length multimedia work that delves into ideas about who we are and where we are.