When Pearl Jam burst onto the scene in 1991 with its first record Ten, it seemed unlikely that the band would survive to see studio album number 10. (That’s not a knock against Eddie Vedder and crew, it’s just...look at how all their peers petered out.) Yet 22 years later, Seattle’s most consistent rock stars continue to create relevant music. Their new, 10th album, Lightning Bolt, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard charts in October. KeyArena, sold out.
Cathedrals 6: Sera Cahoone and Friends
Abbey Art's breathtaking Cathedrals concert series has brought some of Seattle's finest talent–Damien Jurado, the Moondoggies, Noah Gundersen, and more–into St. Mark's Catherdral for intimate concerts. The sixth installment in the Cathedrals series welcomes Sera Cahoone and her equally talented friends–Grant Olsen (Gold Leaves/Arthur and Yu), Tomo Nakayama (Grand Hallway), and S (aka Jenn Ghetto)–into the hallowed walls for a show that might just feel like a religious experience. St. Mark's Cathedral, $12.
Wilco front man Jeff Tweedy has more than a few stories to tell. He basically created alt-country as a member of Uncle Tupelo, produced the two most recent Mavis Staples records, and has become an indie-rock icon. While Tweedy hasn’t released an album of his own since 2011, he boasts a repertoire of over 400 songs to choose from when he plays solo shows. Moore Theatre, $33–$43.
Thru Dec 31
The 5th Avenue Theater brings Seattle a classic holiday treat in the form of Oliver!, the popular musical based on Dickens's cherished novel. This family show will bring wamth and music to an otherwise chilly winter season. 5th Avenue Theatre, $41–$154.
Thru Dec 22
Ham for the Holidays: Close Encounters of the Pork Rind
The Christmas season is ripe for a good skewering, and no one in Seattle can match Dos Fallopia’s legacy of holiday irreverence. The comedic duo of Lisa Koch and Peggy Platt delivers its 13th hammy holiday spectacular, Ham for the Holidays: Close Encounters of the Pork Rind, replete with satirical sketches and parody tunes from their reoccurring mother--daughter country-act characters, the Spudds. ACT Theatre, $28.
A John Waters Christmas
The famed director of trashy camp cult films like Pink Flamingos brings his “sleigh full of smut” to Seattle for a one-man show with tales of perverted gifts, takedowns of sacred holiday traditions, and more of Waters’s gleefully twisted worldview. Neptune Theatre, sold out.
Home for the Holidays
Generally, singing along with the Seattle Symphony is strongly discouraged. The annual exception is the holiday pops concert, when families can carol along to their hearts’ desire. Benaroya Hall, $19–$91.
Dec 6 & 7
Tiny Tots: Holiday Hooray
No one sings Christmas songs better than little kids. It’s all about their unbridled joy. Take the tots to sing along with a brass trio at these family-friendly 35-minute performances. Benaroya Hall, $7–$12.
The Clay Duke
Seattle choreographer Dayna Hansen, known for visually arresting abstract narratives, explores themes of vigilantism and suicide through source materials drawn from a Florida man’s revenge shooting at school board meeting, ’70s death wish films, and writings from Chekhov. The Clay Duke uses movement, original music, and found texts to pose troubling questions with no obvious answers. On the Boards, $20.
Dec 5–Jan 25
Seattleite Tony Angell has parlayed his avian fascination into a career of sculpting beautiful birds in bronze and stone. In a month that’s notoriously bereft of visual arts openings, a collection of his works soaring into the Foster/White Gallery is a welcome sight. Thankfully Angell’s creations didn’t fly south for the winter. Foster/White Gallery, free.