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Everything you need to know about the hottest tickets in town: Seattle events for December 2018

Seattle band Thunderpussy will headline the venerable Showbox for the second straight New Year’s Eve. (Lindsey Wasson / The Seattle Times, 2017)

In December, Mary Poppins returns, Moby performs, and the annual run of vacation exhibits and live shows start. Our Seattle Occasions arts writers dish on subsequent month’s most buzzworthy arts and leisure events.

Look Forward

From Mary Poppins to Moby, “Nutcracker” to a nutso variety of vacation exhibits, listed here are arts-and-entertainment events to hold you merry all through December.



“Mary Poppins Returns”

Why am I feeling so curiously optimistic about this film (which, at the time of this writing, I haven’t but seen)? Is it as a result of Emily Blunt, who performs the title nanny in this sequel to the peerless 1964 Julie Andrews basic, appears incapable of giving a efficiency that isn’t charming? Is it as a result of the presence of Lin-Manuel Miranda, as a Cockney lamplighter, lightens my “Hamilton“-loving coronary heart? Is it as a result of I’ve watched the trailer means too many occasions and covet Mary Poppins’ well caped coat? Or have I simply had too many spoonfuls of sugar at present? Anyway, chim-chim-cheree, the gang at Disney who dreamed this up have gotten a whole lot of nerve, and full generations of us are hoping they didn’t screw it up. It’ll in all probability make a fortune both approach.

Opening Dec. 19 at a number of theaters; advance tickets out there at

Moira Macdonald


KEXP Xmas profit: Moby

The beloved station‘s annual fundraising concert should be one to remember, with inventive electronic composer Moby partnering with members of the Pacific Northwest Ballet Orchestra. Moby recalibrated some of his best-known songs for this one-off orchestral performance, conducted by PNB’s Emil de Cou. A very distinctive gig to help a Seattle establishment.

eight p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6, McCaw Corridor, 305 Harrison St., Seattle; $49.50-$99.50,

Michael Rietmulder


Run the Vacation-Present Gantlet

It’s that point of yr once more, when Seattle stuffs its collective stocking with so! many! vacation! exhibits!, from the conventional to the bonkers. You would make an entire day of it, from heat fuzzies at a matinee to chilly pricklies in the night. A quick overview: “A Christmas Carol” at ACT Theatre; “The Dina Martina Christmas Show” at ACT Theatre; “Scott Shoemaker’s War on Christmas” at Re-bar; “A Very Die Hard Christmas” by sketch-comedy group The Behavior at Seattle Public Theater; “Christmastown: A Holiday Noir” by Wayne Rawley, additionally at Seattle Public Theater; the E-book-It adaptation of Willa Cather’s “My Ántonia” (which has some Christmas-y themes); “Homo for the Holidays: Jingle All the Gay!” at Oddfellows West Corridor; “Murder on the Mistletoe Express,” by delightfully bizarre native playwright Scot Augustson, at Cafe Nordo; “Land of the Sweets: The Burlesque Nutcracker” at the Triple Door; “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley” at Taproot Theatre; “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” additionally at Taproot; (pant — maintain on, I’m catching my breath — pant); “Sugar Plum Gary,” a grimly humorous, solo-show creation from comic/storyteller Emmett Montgomery at 18th & Union; “To Jesus, Thanks for Everything!” by “RuPaul’s Drag Race” stars Jinkx Monsoon and BenDeLaCreme at Neptune Theatre; “Wonderland,” a winter-themed dance/burlesque present at the Can Can; “A Christmas Carol” and “Christmas Carol Junior” (like “A Christmas Carol,” however with kid-friendly elves as an alternative of ghosts) at Second Story Repertory; and, um, extra? Haven’t you suffered sufficient?

All month, all throughout city.

Brendan Kiley


“The Nutcracker”

Full with tutu’d snowflakes and flowers, gargantuan mice, a 40-foot Christmas tree and 30 cubic ft of faux snow (per efficiency!), Pacific Northwest Ballet’s enjoyably giant-sized “Nutcracker” continues all through the month, with choreography by George Balanchine, units and costumes by Ian Falconer (love the stripes!) and music by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky. It’s principally a colourful spectacle for households (and a showcase for many gifted PNB Faculty college students), and rightly so, however there’s some beautiful dancing hiding inside, notably in the quietly noble Sugar Plum Fairy/Cavalier pas de deux in Act II.

Via Dec. 28; Pacific Northwest Ballet, Marion Oliver McCaw Corridor, 321 Mercer St., Seattle; $37-$209; 206-441-2424,

Moira Macdonald


Seattle Symphony presents Handel’s “Messiah”

One among the area’s beloved traditions, the SSO “Messiah” is totally different yearly due to modifications in soloists, conductors, and the inclusion or omission of varied arias and choruses. This time, “triple threat” Dmitry Sinkovsky will probably be the conductor and violinist … and countertenor soloist, too. Yulia Van Doren is the soprano soloist, with Colin Balzer, tenor, and baritone soloist Michael Kelly.

eight p.m. Friday, Dec. 14; 1 p.m. and eight p.m. Saturday, Dec, 15; and a couple of p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16; Benaroya Corridor, 200 College St., Seattle; $24-$89, 206-215-4747,

Melinda Bargreen






Rebecca Makkai

A 2018 Nationwide Ebook Award finalist for her novel “The Great Believers,” Makkai comes to Hugo Home for a Craft Speak titled “Researching Into the Void,” in which she’ll talk about methods for researching characters whose lives are in contrast to our personal.

7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1; Hugo Home, 1634 11th Ave., Seattle; free; 206-322-7030,

Erika Lee

Writer of “The Making of Asian America: A History” and a professor at the College of Minnesota, Lee will current this yr’s A. Scott Bullitt Lecture, on the matter of “A History of American Xenophobia from Japanese-American Incarceration to the ‘Muslim Ban.’ ”

7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1; Seattle First Baptist Church, 1111 Harvard Ave., Seattle; free; 206-624-6600,

Bob Peterson

Seattle-based photographer Peterson, whose 60-year profession included stints at Life and Sports activities Illustrated, will converse in dialog with artist and sculptor Tony Angella about his latest assortment of pictures, referred to as merely “Bob Peterson.”

6 p.m. Monday, Dec. three; College Ebook Retailer, 4326 College Means N.E., Seattle; free; 800-335-7323, Additionally at 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 10; Elliott Bay Ebook Co., 1521 10th Ave., Seattle; free; 206-624-6600, elliottbay

Octavio Solis

An acclaimed playwright for greater than 30 years (his works embrace “Lydia,” carried out right here final yr at Strawberry Theater Workshop), Solis comes to City Corridor to converse about his new memoir about his childhood, “Retablos: Stories From a Life Lived Along the Border.”

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. four; Rainier Arts Middle, 3515 S. Alaska St., Seattle; $5; 206-652-4255,

Christopher Sandford

A Seattle- and London-based writer and biographer (“Masters of Mystery: The Strange Friendship of Arthur Conan Doyle and Harry Houdini”), Sandford will talk about his newest ebook, “The Man Who Would Be Sherlock: The Real Life Adventures of Arthur Conan Doyle.”

6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 5; College Ebook Retailer, 4326 College Means N.E., Seattle; free; 800-335-7323, Additionally at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 12; Elliott Bay Guide Co., 1521 10th Ave., Seattle; free; 206-624-6600, elliottbay

Randy Shaw

Shaw, director of the Tenderloin Housing Clinic in San Francisco (a supplier of housing for homeless single adults), will converse with journalist Monica Guzman about his new ebook, “Generation Priced Out: Who Gets to Live in the New Urban America.”

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6; The Summit on Pike, 420 E. Pike St., Seattle; $5; 206-652-4255,

Martha Brockenbrough

Writer of “Alexander Hamilton: Revolutionary,” Seattle-based Brockenbrough will converse about her newest work of nonfiction, “Unpresidented: A Biography of Donald Trump.”

7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7; College E-book Retailer, 4326 College Method N.E., Seattle; free; 800-335-7323,

Barbara Kinney

A former photojournalist for The Seattle Occasions, Kinney was an official photographer for President Invoice Clinton and later official photographer for Hillary Clinton’s two presidential campaigns. Her new ebook, “#StillWithHer,” paperwork these campaigns, with a foreword from Secretary Clinton. She’ll be joined onstage by Florangela Davila, managing editor of Crosscut.

7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. eight; Elliott Bay E-book Co., 1521 10th Ave., Seattle; free; 206-624-6600,

Stephanie Stokes Oliver

A Seattle native and former editor-in-chief of Essence journal, Oliver’s at Third Place Books celebrating the paperback launch of her guide “Black Ink: Literary Legends on the Peril, Power, and Pleasure of Reading and Writing,” a set of nice black American literature together with authors from Frederick Douglass to Ta-Nehisi Coates.

7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 10; Third Place Books at Seward Park, 5041 Wilson Ave. S., Seattle; free; 206-474-2200,

Moira Macdonald: [email protected]



Turtle Island Quartet

This genre-bending, Grammy-winning ensemble is all the time recent and imaginative. This time, the foursome presents Winter’s Eve, a live performance of winter music and year-end celebrations from round the globe. How about a musical melding of J.S. Bach’s “Air on the G String” and Miles Davis’ “Seven Steps to Heaven”? Or a transforming of Vivaldi’s “Winter” (from “The Four Seasons”) as “Thin Ice”? Plus items from Eire, India and Israel.

7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. eight; Gerlich Theater at Meany Corridor, College of Washington; $46-$54, youth 5-17 free (two per paid grownup); 206-543-4880,

Seattle Professional Musica presents “Silent Night”

Marking 100 years since the finish of WWI, this program of English, French and German carols conveys the spirit of the “Christmas truce” that happened in the trenches throughout the conflict: 100,000 English, French and German troops ceased hostilities to supply vacation greetings, mingle and even change presents. This month additionally marks the 200th anniversary of the beloved carol “Silent Night,” by Franz Xaver Gruber and Joseph Mohr.

three p.m. and seven:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. eight, Seattle First Baptist Church, 1111 Harvard Ave., Seattle; three p.m. and seven:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, Chapel at Bastyr College, 14500 Juanita Drive N.E., Kenmore; $12-$38; 206-781-2766,

We Three Kings: The Irish Tenors Vacation Live performance

The well-known Irish Tenors — Ronan Tynan, Anthony Kearns and Finbar Wright — supply a program of conventional, well-known vacation classics and Irish ballads, in a night of tales and track that ought to allure even a decided curmudgeon into the vacation spirit.
 And it’s good to know that proceeds from this present go to profit the packages and providers of Ballard NW Senior Middle.

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 18; Benaroya Corridor, 200 College Road, Seattle; $55-$150; 206-215-4747,

Baroque String Extravaganza

Byron Schenkman & Associates current a few of the area’s premiere period-instrument performers in a baroque program that features “Winter” from Vivaldi’s beloved “The Four Seasons.”

7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 30; Nordstrom Recital Corridor at Benaroya Corridor; $10-$48; 206-215-4747,

Melinda Bargreen: [email protected]



“Merce 100: Seattle Artists Respond to Merce”

In the dance world, that is the Yr of Merce — a world centennial celebration of choreographer Merce Cunningham, the native boy (born in Centralia; met the love of his life, John Cage, at Cornish) who completely reworked the modern dance world. Born in 1919, he first studied with faucet dancers and vaudevillians, ultimately joined Martha Graham’s dance firm, then stored chasing his avant-garde horizons, working with Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, the I Ching, computer systems (earlier than that was trendy), Radiohead and a lot extra. His legacy is so revolutionary, it nonetheless baffles neat encapsulation. Intrigued? As a part of the Cunningham Centennial, Velocity presents a weekend of workshops (for dancers and non-dancers), plus Cunningham-inspired performances by an appropriately eclectic vary of dancers, artists and writers together with Donald Byrd, Kate Wallich, Christiana Axelsen, Daniel Roberts (a former member of Cunningham’s firm) and others.

Dec. 14-16; Velocity Dance Middle, 1621 12th Ave., Seattle; $15-$25;

Brendan Kiley: [email protected]



Tickets are already on sale for the following films:


Author/director Alfonso Cuarón (“Gravity,” “Children of Men”) seems again on his Mexican childhood in “Roma,” a superbly filmed black-and-white drama about household, love and reminiscence. It’s screening for a quick run at Cinerama, and can look beautiful on that big display; see it there if you can.

Dec. 6-9 and 14-19; Cinerama, 2100 Fourth Ave., Seattle; 206-448-6680, Additionally opening Dec. 7 at Landmark Crest.

“It’s a Wonderful Life”

One in every of Seattle’s most enduring — and endearing — vacation traditions will get underway Dec. 7: the annual Grand Phantasm run of Frank Capra’s 1946 basic, that includes James Stewart as the Bedford Falls businessman who learns to his pleasure (and ours) that it’s, certainly, an exquisite life. Now in its 48th yr, the screenings start with a Christmas present for everybody: The 6:30 p.m. displaying on the seventh is free for everybody (however get there early; the theater’s small).

Dec. 7-27; Grand Phantasm Cinema, 1403 N.E. 50th St., Seattle; $9; 206-523-3935, (word that tickets are solely bought in-person)


The DC Comics half-Atlantean/half-human superhero, performed by Jason Momoa, lastly will get his very personal film (he appeared in “Justice League” and “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice“). James Wan (“The Conjuring,” “Livid 7“) directs, and the forged additionally consists of Amber Heard, Dolph Lundgren, Nicole Kidman, Willem Dafoe and (be nonetheless my coronary heart!) the voice of Julie Andrews.

Opens Dec. 21 at a number of theaters;

Moira Macdonald: [email protected]



Kinski 20th anniversary

After dropping their fuzzed-up new album, “Accustomed to Your Face,” earlier this yr, the native psych-rock crushers have fun 20 years of bandhood with two exhibits on both finish of the metropolis. The weekend of Kinski additionally coincides with the remastered vinyl launch (by means of Kill Rock Stars) of the band’s basic “Be Gentle With the Warm Turtle” LP. Kinski performs aspect one (amongst different songs) Friday, Dec. 7, at the Sundown and aspect two Saturday, Dec. eight, at Clock-Out.

9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7; Sundown Tavern, 5433 Ballard Ave. N.W., Seattle; $12; 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. eight; Clock-Out Lounge, 4864 Beacon Ave. S., Seattle; $12-$15;

Lil Mosey

One yr in the past, Lil Mosey was unknown even to most native hip-hop observers. However the Mountlake Terrace teen’s viral hit “Pull Up” sparked a whirlwind yr that noticed the younger rapper shifting to L.A., touring with rising cloud-rap stars Juice Wrld and Smokepurpp and scoring a major-label deal. Mosey returns for a homecoming present recent off the launch of his debut album, “Northsbest.”

eight p.m. Thursday, Dec. 13, Showbox, 18-plus, 1426 First Ave., Seattle; $10-$20,

Minus the Bear

It’s the finish of an period for the proggy indie-rock vets, who’re disbanding after 17 years of intricate riffs and infrequently goofy music titles. The Seattle quartet, which launched one final EP, “Fair Enough,” this fall on Suicide Squeeze, fittingly closes its farewell tour with three very sold-out nights at the Showbox.

eight p.m. Dec. 14-16, Showbox, 1426 First Ave., Seattle; bought out,


This yr noticed the launch of the long-awaited debut album from one among Seattle’s most promising rock bands and the ’70s-revering rawkers closely toured the U.S. and Europe nobly chasing “total world domination.” Headlining the venerable Showbox for the second straight New Yr’s Eve, Thunderpussy lead what may be the loudest NYE celebration in city, that includes Portland’s mighty stoner rockers Pink Fang and fellow Seattle faves the Black Tones.

9 p.m. Monday, Dec. 31, Showbox, 1426 First Ave., Seattle; $39.50-$45,

Michael Rietmulder: [email protected]



“Dragon Mama”

Author, performer, director and omni-artist Sara Porkalob brings us half two of her semi-autobiographical “Dragon Cycle” trilogy. Half one (“Dragon Woman“) was about a badass Filipina gangster, making an attempt to inform youthful relations tales about her exploits. “Dragon Mama” offers with the subsequent era, particularly Porkalob’s mom, Maria, who needs to bust out of her Bremerton hometown. Porkalob guarantees “queer love in a barren land, a dope ’90s R&B soundtrack, Filipino gangsters and ghosts.”

Via Dec. eight; 18th and Union, 1406 18th Ave.; $15-$25; 206-937-6499,

“In the Heights”

You know the deal: Individuals have been wanting ahead to this for months: Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony Award-winning, pre-“Hamilton” musical set in Washington Heights, a largely Dominican neighborhood in Manhattan. Directed by Might Adrales. That is your probability to see (or revisit) the musical that made Miranda a Tony Award magnet earlier than he turned a family identify.

By way of Dec. 30; Seattle Repertory Theatre, 155 Mercer St., Seattle; $16-$112; 206-443-2222,

Dina Martina: “The Dina Martina Christmas Show”

Dina Martina‘s Christmas present is as previous as Christmas itself. (Significantly. Her first gig was singing off-key in the manger, the place her footwear have been splashed with sheep dip. Google it.) Circa 1998, she washed up on the shores of Re-bar, performing her gorgeously deranged model of Christmas (pronounced “Chriisht-maash”) glamour with pianist and “adult prodigy” Chris Jeffries. If you know Dina, you know the deal: Like you and your nice aunt have taken a heroic dose of one thing hallucinogenic and she or he’s making an attempt to reside up to her girlhood goals of internet hosting her personal vacation TV particular whereas holding you hostage on the sofa. If you don’t know Dina, do your self a favor and simply go. She’s traveled the world; transformed John Waters and Whoopi Goldberg into followers; and carried out with Margaret Cho, Alan Cumming and the Village Individuals. This yr, she’ll be at ACT Theatre. How will she look beneath the brilliant lights of a theater that doesn’t double as a homosexual bar/dance membership? Will there be as many completely satisfied, loud drunks? Will there be sheep dip? There’s just one method to discover out.

Dec. 6-24; ACT Theatre, 700 Union St., Seattle; $27-$47; 206-292-7676,

Theater Nameless: “It’s a Wonderful Life”

The premise behind “It’s a Wonderful Life” is straightforward: Take a vacation basic and forged it in secret — so secret, even the actors don’t know who the different actors are. However the execution is complicated. How do you rehearse and carry out a present the place the actors have by no means met? The decision: Everybody takes a vow of secrecy, works one-on-one with the director, comes to the present dressed in undercover “audience” garments, sits in the crowd, listens for her cue line, stands up to declaim her first line, then walks up the aisle to be a part of the present. The result’s improvisation at its best. Each individual in the theater sorta-kinda is aware of what to do and sorta-kinda makes it up in the second. Like the conclusion to the 1946 Frank Capra film, it’s an invigorating, real-time train in what individuals do when there’s no one in cost and everybody is looking the photographs collectively.

Dec. eight; Cornish Playhouse, 201 Mercer St., Seattle; $30-$55;

Okwui Okpokwasili: “Poor People’s TV Room”

Artist, choreographer and MacArthur fellow Okpokwasili (creator of the mind-bending “Bronx Gothic“) brings “Poor People’s TV Room” to On the Boards. “TV Room” takes two historic events as its beginning factors: 1) the 1929 Ladies’s Conflict, in which Igbo ladies rioted towards British-Nigerian colonial powers (by singing and dancing their grievances, in addition to looting and smashing up buildings), and a couple of) the Convey Again Our Women motion, which protested the kidnapping of a whole lot of Nigerian women throughout 2014 by separatist group Boko Haram. The end result, On the Boards says, “is a narrative by brown women contending with the meaning of their bodies in relation to each other.”

Dec. 6-9; On the Boards, 100 W. Roy St., Seattle; $5-$30; 206-217-9886,

Brendan Kiley: [email protected]



Quenton Baker: “Ballast”

In 1841, en route between Virginia and New Orleans, the ship Creole turned the website of one in every of the most profitable slave revolts in U.S. historical past. Led by a prepare dinner named Madison Washington, the 135 enslaved individuals aboard — who have been being transported together with tobacco — took over the Creole and demanded it’s sailed to British-controlled Nassau, the place slavery had been unlawful since 1833. Award-winning native poet Quenton Baker (“This Glittering Republic”) has created an exhibition of poems and “erasures” from Senate paperwork about the occasion. Baker blew up pages from the Senate report to loom over guests, then closely redacted them with black paint in order that they appear to be stark, silent monuments, with scraps of language effervescent up to the floor. Two screens undertaking what he calls “invented form” poems, impressed by his years of historic analysis about documentation of the Creole: “a palm-in-palm rebuke of this brutal arithmetic” and “blood don’t run toward freedom/it just run.”

Via Jan. 27, 2019; Frye Artwork Museum, 704 Terry Ave., Seattle; free; 206-622-9250,

Nordic Museum: “The Vikings Begin”

Reality: Some individuals discover the concept of Vikings weirdly engaging. For them, the mythos of a pale-but-brawny coastal individuals who principally stated “screw it — the Roman Empire is falling apart, so let’s till our soil, forge some weapons, build some boats, then rage forth into the unknown!” is sort of a siren music. That music has impressed a 21st-century curiosity in previous Viking sports activities (throwing heavy bones at one another, aggressive swimming that includes aggressive drowning), “Viking metal” bands and the trend development of “Viking chic” (beards, man-buns, braids, wrought metallic, tanned hides, amulets, and so forth.). The place did all this come from? Seattle’s Nordic Museum teamed with Gustavianum (the Uppsala College museum) to deliver a touring exhibit of Viking-era artifacts (helmets, weapons, carved bone, a reproduction of a burial ship) and “inform the story not solely of the individual buried with them, but in addition of the world they inhabited.

By way of April 14, 2019; Nordic Museum, 2655 N.W. Market St.; $10-$20; 206-789-5707,

Edgar Arceneaux: “Library of Black Lies”

Los Angeles-born artist Arceneaux is in the conversations between then and now. Previous challenge titles, of large-scale drawings and installations, embrace: “Jesus and Dinosaurs,” “Miracles and Jokes” and “The Philosophy of Time Travel.” Typically, Arceneaux will get snarled in mistranslations between the two. (His much-heralded Watts Home Challenge, an try to pair artists and designers to rework homes round the Watts Towers, hit main turbulence when the undertaking didn’t reside up to residents’ expectations.) The outside of Arceneaux’s “Library of Black Lies” appears like a easy, cube-ish picket field — or maybe the abstracted maintain of a ship — however its insides are slowly roiling, with a labyrinthine “library” of books steadily rising sugar crystals: “Birth of a Nation,” “On the Origin of Species,” “Framing Blackness: African American Images in Film,” “Goodnight, Moon.” The “library” is a sprawling mental biography that’s rising sugar (a key financial element of the trans-Atlantic slave commerce), and a chilling rumination on how concepts, and our bodies, may be preserved or corroded — and, typically, mysteriously transfigured — whereas stowed away in packing containers.

By means of June 2, 2019; Henry Artwork Gallery, College of Washington; $10 common public, $6 seniors, free for members, UW school/employees, college students and youngsters; 206-543-2280,

Wing Luke Museum: “Worlds Beyond Here: The Expanding Universe of APA Science Fiction”

“Blade Runner,” “Star Trek,” “The Fifth Element,” “silkpunk” (an Asian-inflected variation on steampunk): How heavy — or mild — is the Asian presence in the panorama of sci-fi? Seattle Occasions freelance author Tantri Wija says: “You can explore the idea of Asian imagery in sci-fi visions of the future at the Wing Luke Museum’s new exhibit, ‘Worlds Beyond Here,’ which highlights Asian Pacific Americans in sci-fi, both as characters or creators.”

 By means of Sept. 15, 2019; Wing Luke Museum, 719 S. King St., Seattle; free (for youngsters beneath 5) to $17; 206-623-5124,

Brendan Kiley: [email protected]