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Conduit Dance
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Portland Center Stage: "The Mountaintop"
Aug 3–Oct 27: This surrealist fantasy about the last night of Martin Luther King Jr.’s life premiered in 2009 at London’s Theatre503 before going on to win an Olivier Award for Best Play and become a Broadway smash starring Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett. "“It’s not the ‘I have a dream’ Martin Luther King," says Rodney Hicks (pictured), who will play King and last starred in "Oklahoma." "It’s a fictionalized version of who he is behind closed doors. It’s a radical King.” pcs.org
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Fuse Theatre Ensemble: "A Midsummer Night's Somnambulism"
Aug 24–25: You've heard of Shakespeare in the Park, but Fuse takes it to a whole new elevation: Shakespeare in the Forest. Join them on the side of Mt. Hood for a night of camping and a moving (literally) production of Shakespeare's enchanted forest classic. fusepdx.moonfruit.com
4 of 25
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PICA's Time-Based Arts Festival: "Jamie Isenstein: Will Return"
Aug 27–Oct 20: Rising New York artist and Portland native Isenstein puts herself into her work—literally. Many of the installations in this survey show involve her sustained presence in feats of artistic endurance, such as remaining hidden in a wall for hours with just her hand protruding. When she’s not there, she hangs a “will return” sign. We suspect we will, too—several times. pica.org
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Zena Zezza: "Artist Project Season 01: Josiah McElheny"
Sept 8–Dec 7: This exhibition by the internationally renowned artist Josiah McElheny promises to be both beautiful and intellectually challenging—two ambitions rarely found in so much abundance in one artist’s work. McElheny’s expansive intellect reaches deep into fashion, architecture, science, and cultural history, yet still yields work of breathtaking ethereality. The exhibition will feature works from projects spanning the past 13 years: four of his otherworldly glass wall pieces, works on paper, and two films, all loosely addressing his interest in 20th-century fashion, from Alexander Rodchenko and Sonia Delaunay to Alexander McQueen. (Pictured and profiled in the Fall Arts Guide: Zena director Sandra Percival.) zenazezza.org
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Portland Center Stage: "Fiddler on the Roof"
Sep 14–Oct 27: Portland Center Stage artistic director Chris Coleman (pictured) has dreamed of doing this Tony Award–winning classic for 20 years. “The music is so simple, but so moving,” he says. His patience paid off: he’s staging it with the largest known cast in PCS history. pcs.org
7 of 25
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Third Angle New Music Ensemble/TBA: String Quartet no. 3
Sept 17–19: Known for performing in unlikely venues—an office building, a fountain, a porch—the local new music ensemble plunges into pitch darkness at the OMSI Planetarium to perform Georg Friedrich Haas’s String Quartet no. 3, which the Los Angeles Times called “mind-blowingly good.” thirdangle.org or pica.org
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Oregon Symphony: "Scheherazade"
Sept 21 & 23: Few works of music are as beautiful, richly nuanced, and dynamically varied as Russian composer Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov’s brilliant interpretation of stories within stories, complemented here by a highly unusual and delicate percussion concerto by renowned Japanese composer Takemitsu. orsymphony.org
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Third Rail Repertory Ensemble: "Sweet and Sad"
Sept 27–Oct 20: Last season, Third Rail Rep’s That Hopey Changey Thing introduced us to the Apple family, the fictional clan at the center of a four-play series by Tony winner Richard Nelson. Sweet and Sad picks up with the family while they gather for a memorial service on the 10th anniversary of 9/11. “Sweet and Sad really showcases [actor] Maureen Porter (middle)," says rep member Isaac Lamb (right). "She’s a national treasure. She’s going to break your heart.” thirdrailrep.org
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Portland Piano International: Jean-Efflam Bavouzet
Sept 29–30: “Jean-Efflam Bavouzet has the best Ravel Gaspard de la nuit recording on the market,” says PPI's new artistic director, the internationally-renowned pianist Arnaldo Cohen (pictured and profiled in the Fall Arts Guide).
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PDX Contemporary Art: Jacques Flechmuller: "Dance with Ingres"
Oct 1–Nov 2: Gallery owner Jane Beebe with French-painter Jacques Flechemuller's self-portrait as Tarzan. Get it? pdxcontemporaryart.com
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Blue Sky Gallery: "Chuck Close: Tapestries"
Oct 3–Nov 3: Oregon’s photography center exhibits Close’s recent work in tapestries, through which the famed photographer and photorealist painter continues his career-long examination of how viewers see many parts as a coherent whole. blueskygallery.org
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Portland Baroque Orchestra: "Bach Concertos: Violin and Oboe"
Oct 4–13: PBO performs and records 10 Bach concertos highlighting leading period oboist Gonzalo X. Ruiz and artistic director/violinist Monica Huggett. “Gonzalo Ruiz is one of the top two or three baroque oboists in the world," says PBO Executive Director Tom Cirillo (pictured). "When he’s not performing with Portland Baroque Orchestra, he can be found dancing tango locally.” pbo.org.
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BodyVox: "Body Opera Files"
Oct 10–26: BodyVox’s multimedia dance-theater show Body Opera Files unfolds the noirish narratives of assorted outsiders to the live sounds of tango, torch songs, and Tom Waits. bodyvox.com
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Defunkt Theatre: "The Submission"
Oct 11–Nov 16: Having closed last season with a double knockout of historic gay plays (The Boys in the Band and The Children’s Hour), Defunkt presents a hot new voice on the topic: Jeff Talbott. About a gay, white, male playwright who works under the pseudonym of a black woman, Talbott’s The Submission is a provocative exploration of racism, homophobia, and hypocrisy. defunktheatre.com
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Oregon Ballet Theatre: "Dream"
Oct 12–19: Incoming artistic director Kevin Irving (pictured and profiled in the Fall Arts Guide) makes his presence known with Por Vos Muero, a contemporary ballet from the much-in-demand Spanish choreographer Nacho Duato. The Spanish Renaissance–inspired piece shares the program with Christopher Stowell’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. “Nacho Duato is one of the preeminent choreographers in the world today and a close personal friend," says Irving, "so introducing his work to Portland with this lovely ballet is a huge thrill for me.” obt.org
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Milagro Theatre Group: "Dia De Muertos"
Oct 17-Nov 10: A world premiere, bilingual celebration of the Day of the Dead, created & directed by Lakin Valdez of the legendary Teatro Campesino, in the style of the classic obra calavera, including music, raunchy humor, physicality, and bitter irony. milagro.org
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Oregon Children's Theater: "The Magic Tree House: A Night in New Orleans"
Oct 19–Nov 10: In this adaptation of an entry in the best-selling Magic Tree House children’s series, the time-warping tree house sends our sibling protagonists back to 1915 New Orleans, where they inspire a young Louis Armstrong. octc.org
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White Bird: Sydney Dance Company
Oct 23 at 7:30: Australia’s leading contemporary dance company returns to town after a six-year absence with a new artistic director, Rafael Bonachela, and a giant, pulsing, pixelated LED matrix. “This is all-out dance,” says Walter Jaffe, cofounder of local presenter White Bird (pictured right). whitebird.org
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Think & Drink
Oct 23 at 6:30: For the last in Oregon Humanities’ series of happy-hour talks on “How to Love America,” the featured speakers are two veterans: Karl Marlantes, the Seaside-born author of the Vietnam War novel "Matterhorn," and Cameron Smith, the 34-year-old new director of Oregon’s Department of Veterans’ Affairs. "I've just finished reading Karl Marlantes' 'What It Is Like to Go to War,'" says new executive director, Adam Davis (pictured and profiled in the Fall Arts Guide). "And I think he, along with Cameron Smith, will raise some really provocative and timely questions about military service—what we ask of and provide to people who serve and what those who serve go through. Marlantes' book still has me re-considering my own beliefs about fighting—about soldiers or warriors or whatever you call them—and it also got me thinking more about my son who likes to play with 'weapons,' what gets celebrated in movies and games, and the good and bad of protest politics. So... should be a loaded evening of conversation." oregonhumanities.org
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Northwest Dance Project: "New Now Wow!"
Oct 24–26: NWDP’s annual program of new works highlights pieces by two winners of its annual Pretty Creatives choreographic competition, as well as the company’s first work from Danielle Agami, who introduced the Israeli dance technique called Gaga to the US (no relation to the Lady). nwdanceproject.org
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Portland Opera: "Salome"
Nov 1–9: Powerful, intense, salacious—since its premiere in 1905, Strauss’s operatic adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s retelling of this biblical tale continues to shock and thrill audiences. Portland Opera will create a new, modern, main-stage production (its first since 2007), starring soprano and Metropolitan Opera regular Kelly Cae Hogan in one of the form’s most demanding roles. "“It’s swift, it’s brutal, it’s bloody,” says the opera's general director, Christopher Mattaliano (pictured). "It’s a 90-minute roller-coaster ride that will knock you sideways." portlandopera.org
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P:ear's Second Annual Harvest Fundraiser
Nov 9: P:ear's annual fall fundraiser promises food by Ned Ludd and Olympic Provisions, cocktails, goats (?!), and live music by Hook & Anchor (same band members as Blind Pilot)——all in the name of supporting homeless youth. pearmentor.org
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Portland Playhouse: "The Other Place"
Nov 13–Dec 8: “I gravitate to stories that follow the path from the tidy to the chaotic, so 'The Other Place' is my kind of theatre," says new managing director Kevin Kruse (pictured on right and profiled in the Fall Arts Guide). "There's something about there-but-for-the-grace-of-God stories that command respect, especially when the specter lurking in the background is Alzheimer's, an illness that hits close to home for me. And, of course, there is the incomparable Gretchen Corbett to look forward to (pictured on the left of the third photo strip).” portlandplayhouse.org
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Fall Arts Editor Aaron Scott and Art Director Kate Madden
We couldn't be more delighted with all the creativity, energy, and shenanigans Portland's art's community brought into the photo booth. Thanks all!
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