This Week in Arts: Weekly Roundup (6/10)

This week brings plenty of dance and opera, a director-directed theatre festival, great ASL-interpreted show options, and a big burst of openings all around town. 

Ticketing links for most shows can be found on the Performance Calendar page here.  



Openings & Short Runs      


Pacific Northwest Ballet 

Presented in three full-length works (averaging 30 minutes each), All Tharp is a wide-ranging sampler of choreographer Twyla Tharp’s vast catalog.

Elle Macy performs in an earlier run of David Parsons’ ‘Caught’ at Pacific Northwest Ballet. Macy performs this weekend in ‘All Tharp’; and ‘Caught’ will perform Sunday night at ‘Season Encore’. Photo by Angela Sterling.

The pieces vary widely in styles, and the variety is a lot of fun: a Highland-ballet mashup in tartans, newly designed by Isaac Mizrahi, in Brief Fling; uptempo religious rites, with a live chorus, in Sweet Fields; and a more languid, theatrical lingering at a train station, to music by Allen Toussaint, in Waiting at the Station.

The first week of the run was lopped off (thanks to ongoing pandemic surprises), so it opened last night and runs only through Sunday. 

Also at PNB, on Sunday night is the annual Season Encore, a celebration of the season and a farewell to departing company dancers. On the lineup are Caught by David Parsons (performed at this season’s Plot Points; see NWT’s review here); Little mortal jump by Alejandro Cerrudo; two by Ulysses Dove; and two by George Balanchine. 

All performances are held at McCaw Hall at the Seattle Center (Mercer St. side). Tickets for All Tharp ($44-$197) are here; and Season Encore are here


Seattle International Dance Festival 

In seven shows over nine days, the annual SIDF highlights companies and artists from around the world — this year’s slate includes dancers based in India and South Korea — but takes a special focus on showcasing new work from loads of Seattle-based choreographers and dancers.

This year’s festival also marks the conclusion of the James Ray Residency Project, featuring works from five Seattle-based companies over two nights: Noelle Price’s PRICEarts / N.E.W. Dance Company (see NWT’s review of past show here); Beth Terwilleger’s The Gray (see NWT’s feature on upcoming SIDF performance here); Intrepidus Dance; Alana O. Rogers Dance Company (see NWT’s feature on upcoming SIDF performance here); and Xaviera Vandermay’s VNDRMade. All performances are held within a block of each other, at Broadway Performance Hall and the Erickson Theatre, both at Seattle Central’s campus on Capitol Hill. 

The festival opens tomorrow and continues through 6/19. Tickets are $28.50 or $100 for a full-festival pass, here.   


Seattle Opera 

In a free program tonight and tomorrow night, the opera premieres three short (20-minute) new works made by three locally based composer/librettist duos. One looks at two sisters’ decision of whether to open their ark to a stranger as a flood approaches; another is a cyclical horror opera on Orpheus and Eurydice; and the last follows two women in the Dust Bowl who find moments of beauty amidst the struggles of hard times. The performances take place in the opera’s smaller space, the Tagney Jones Hall, just next door to McCaw Hall.

Tickets are free but reservations required, here


Lowbrow Opera Collective 

Last we met the avocado-loving Millennial roommates at the center of the original opera #adulting, they were locating each other on Craigslist and finding dejected furniture on corners, ruminating over salaries and trust funds, and puzzling over how to write their first-ever rent check. 

‘#adulting’ performed at 18th & Union. Its sequel opens this weekend. Photo courtesy of Lowbrow Opera Collective.

That was an entire pandemic ago. Now they’re back at last, in what its creators promise is “the world’s gayest opera.” (I don’t know the contenders, but that has to be a high bar.) 

I loved the first one (see review here). And whatever the much-anticipated #adulting2: here we go again brings, it’s bound to be worth the adventure. It opened last night at 18th & Union, in Seattle’s Central District, and runs through 6/25 (extended from two weekends to three). 

Tickets are $10-$50 (sliding scale available to all), here


ASL Interpreted Performances 

It’s exciting to find a good variety of ASL-interpreted shows going up this weekend. Saturday night features ASL-interpreted theatre, song, and dance, with Air Play at Seattle Children’s Theatre; Belonging by Puget Soundworks, a choir centering queer voices of all genders (see NWT’s review of a prior show here); and Full Tilt 2022, a dance show from Evoke Productions at NOD Theater, in the former Velocity space. Sunday afternoon presents three ASL-interpreted theatre performances, with The 5th Avenue Theatre’s home-grown new musical, And So That Happened … (performed at ACT Theatre); the touring Broadway musical Pretty Woman at the Paramount; and the remount of Kim’s Convenience from Tacoma Arts Live (see NWT’s review of the original, featuring the same cast, directors, and designer, here)

Next week also brings two open-captioned musicals: You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown at Village Theatre in Everett on Thursday afternoon (see NWT’s review here); and Bruce at Seattle Rep, on Thursday night. And that following weekend brings another robust selection of ASL-interpreted shows: Bruce at Seattle Rep (Saturday matinee; also audio described); The 5th Avenue Theatre’s tour of The Prom (Sunday matinee); and Tacoma Little Theatre’s closing performance of The Luck of the Irish (also Sunday matinee). 

See the calendar of ASL-interpreted and open-captioned performances here. Shows are added on an ongoing basis, when NWT finds out about them. Be sure to also check out Deaf Spotlight’s well-established arts calendar, here.  


Jam Sessions 

Marking its return from pandemic darkness, Strawberry Theatre Workshop, an anchor company of Capitol Hill’s 12th Avenue Arts complex, brings a festival of works (new and classic) proposed and staged by several of the area’s accomplished directors. The festival, cleverly titled Strawberry Jam, runs for four weekends, with a different slate each weekend. 

The lineup includes works by Lauren Gunderson (this weekend), Quiara Alegría Hudes, Maria Irene Fornes, Kelleen Conway Blanchard, and more. The company is quick to note that additional short works may be added, so the schedule later in the festival may change a bit. 

Tickets are $13.50 per show or $39 for the full festival; or, if you buy by 6/14 and are on the company’s email list, you can get a code for a $20 pass to the full festival. See festival schedule and tickets here

As separately ticketed add-ons, check out concerts by the phenomenal Black Stax (Felicia Loud and Jace ECAj) (6/19); Jose Gonzales Trio (7/3); and BeatleConcert Unplugged, closing out the series (7/10). 

* * *


Pacific Northwest Ballet: All Tharp  (opened yesterday, closing 6/12). At the Seattle Center (Mercer St. side).

Kitsap Children’s Musical Theatre: High School Musical  (opened yesterday, closing 6/26). In Poulsbo.

Seattle Rep: Bruce  (opened Wednesday, closing 6/26). At the Seattle Center (Mercer St. side).

Seattle Opera: Creation Lab  @ Tagney Jones Hall (tonight & 6/11 only). At the Seattle Center (Mercer St. side).

Renton Civic Theatre: Hair  (opens tonight, closing 6/25). In Renton.

Village Theatre: Mamma Mia!  (opens tonight, closing 7/10 in Issaquah; runs 7/15-8/7 in Everett).

Book-It Repertory Theatre: The Bonesetter’s Daughter  (in previews, opens 6/11, closing 7/3).

Pacific Northwest Ballet: Season Encore  (6/12 only). At the Seattle Center (Mercer St. side).

Parley: Clarissa Buys the Flowers Herself  @ West of Lenin (6/12 only). In Seattle (Fremont).



Closing Soon 


Centerstage Theatre: Yellow Fever  (closing 6/12). In Federal Way (Dash Point).

Seattle Children’s Theatre: Air Play  (closing 6/12). At the Seattle Center.

Seattle Theatre Group: Pretty Woman  (touring) – Broadway @ The Paramount (closing 6/12). In Downtown Seattle.

Village Theatre Beta Series: Eastbound – A New Bilingual Musical  @ First Stage (workshop production) (closing 6/12). In Issaquah.



Continuing Runs 


Taproot Theatre: The Nerd  (closing 6/18). In Seattle (Greenwood).

The 5th Avenue Theatre: And So That Happened …  @ ACT Theatre  (closing 6/19). In Downtown Seattle.

The 5th Avenue Theatre: The Prom  (closing 6/19). In Downtown Seattle.

Kitsap Forest Theatre: Beauty and the Beast  (closing 6/19). In Bremerton.

Tacoma Arts Live: Kim’s Convenience  @ Theater on the Square (closing 6/19). In Tacoma. Read NWT’s review of an earlier run (featuring same actors, directors, and designers) here.

Tacoma Little Theatre: The Luck of the Irish  (closing 6/19). In Tacoma.

Valley Center Stage: The Tempest  (closing 6/19). In North Bend.

Village Theatre: You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown  (closing 6/19). In Everett. Read NWT’s review here.

Bremerton Community Theatre: The Cemetery Club  (closing 6/26). In Bremerton.

Lakewood Playhouse: Ragtime  (closing 6/26). In Lakewood.

The Phoenix Theatre: Skin Flick  (closing 6/26. In Edmonds.

Cafe Nordo: Down the Rabbit Hole  (extended through summer, and Sunday brunch shows added — closing 8/13). In Seattle (Pioneer Square).

Can Can Culinary Cabaret: Lola  (closing 8/28). In Seattle (Pike Place Market).


The Roundup is a weekly (ish) feature. Want to plan your show schedule further out? See NWT’s 2022 Shows list, which aims to list just about every theatre show in town. For shows by day and ticketing info, see the Performance Calendar.

Chase D. Anderson is Editor & Producer of NWTheatre.org.