Feb 7 & 8
The wait may have been interminable for Soundgarden fans, but 16 years after their last studio album, the Seattle grunge gods return with King Animal. The rockers picked up right where they left off in the ’90s, with songs loaded with massive heavy riffs and Chris Cornell’s mighty vocals. Paramount Theatre, sold out. Available on FanSnap.
Ra Ra Riot
The times they are a-changin’ for Syracuse indie rockers Ra Ra Riot. Drastically. Cellist Alexandra Lawn left the band last year, and rather than replacing her, the band shifted from a string-heavy sound to a synth-heavy sound. Their new album, Beta Love, pays homage to futurist and cyberpunk literature. Neptune Theatre, $20.
CLASSICAL & MORE
Seattle Modern Orchestra: Delerious Serialists
SMO continues its demystification of 20th- and 21st-century chamber music with a program of 1950s avant-garde works by Italian composers Bruno Maderna and Luigi Nono and French composer Pierre Boulez. PONCHO Concert Hall, $10–$20.
Hubbard Street Dance Chicago
Chicago’s great modern-dance export tours year-round behind its repertory of international (predominantly European) choreography. For its Seattle performance, the company will dance two works by Israeli choreographers: Ohad Naharin’s Three to Max and Too Beaucoup by Sharon Eyal and Gaï Behar. Paramount Theatre, $25–$40.
BOOKS & TALKS
Hugo Literary Series: Strong Female Leads
The annals of pop culture aren’t exactly filled with female characters who can fend for themselves. Even the few who do usually derive their strength from a weapon. The latest installment of Hugo House’s literary series brings National Book Award finalist Patricia Smith, poet Arlene Kim, cartoonist Kelly Froh, and rapper Katie Kate together to share new work and see how the female narrative can be advanced. Richard Hugo House, $25.
Feb 5–Mar 3
Tis the season of Tolstoy: First Keira Knightley, and now Book-It Rep tackle lusty Anna and her extramarital dalliance with Count Vronsky. Given Book-It’s style—to recite narration as dialogue—we might get to hear the dramatic delivery of lines like “a deep flush of pleasure suffused her face.” Book-It Repertory Theatre at Center Theater, Seattle Center, $23–$45.
Feb 8–Mar 2
Next to Normal
To pull off a successful production of Next to Normal, the Tony-winning rock musical about the ravages of mental illness, you need a leading lady who’s part Joan Jett, part Hedda Gabler to play the suburban mother with bipolar disorder. Thankfully, Balagan Theatre has pro Beth DeVries, whose powerful pipes have been showcased on Seattle stages for the past 17 years. Erickson Theatre Off Broadway, $20–$25.
Thru Mar 28
Vivian Maier: Out of the Shadows
In 2007 a boxful of prints, negatives, and undeveloped film was sold at auction in Chicago; it turned out to be a treasure trove of midcentury images by photographer Vivian Maier (1926–2009), whose black and whites captured both zeitgeist moments of the 1960s and the simplicity of the everyday. The exhibit reflects nine “journeys” she took, from rural France to downtown Chicago. Photo Center NW, free.
Feb 7–Mar 23
JoAnn Verburg: Mid-Career Survey
You can almost see the movement in the still lifes, landscapes, and portraits by this accomplished photographer, whose Little Green Trees (with Olives) and Antonietta in Light of the Duomo pause time for just the briefest moment. Verburg was the subject of a MoMA retrospective in 2007 and receives a midcareer survey at G. Gibson Gallery.
Feb 9–May 5
This is Scott Lawrimore’s first exhibit as a Frye curator: a multimedia study of James Joyce’s first published work (the poem anthology Chamber Music) with 36 newly commissioned works by Seattle artists inspired by the music inspired by Joyce’s writings. Frye Art Museum, free.
The high-energy pop-rock of the Not-Its!—“your child’s first rock band”—benefits from the vocals of Sarah Shannon, former front woman of Sub Pop indie band Velocity Girl. They celebrate the release of a new album, Kidquake!, and are sure to get the kids bouncing ’round the room. The Vera Project, free.
FOOD & DRINK
The Fifth Annual Pike Chocofest
Let your senses be turned on at Pike Brewing Company’s pre-Valentine’s Day festival where chocolate and beer make love, and then some. Chocolatiers, brewers, bakers, and vintners, 69 in total…(was that on purpose?), will be showcasing their finest. Pike Brewing Company, $45.