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The heart-wrenching family drama of A Raisin in the Sun comes to Seattle Rep.

THEATER

Thru Oct 30
A Raisin in the Sun
Seattle Rep opens its season with Lorraine Hansberry’s 1959 classic A Raisin in the Sun still resonates with its story of an African American family struggling to find a better life in Chicago after the death of its patriarch. A fair lot can sometimes still seem unattainable. Seattle Repertory Theatre, $17–$75

BOOKS & TALKS

Sat, Oct 8
Maria Semple
Maria Semple gleefully skewered almost everything about Seattle in her superb 2012 novel, Where’d You Go, Bernadette?. But it’s clear when reading her follow-up book, Today Will Be Different, that she’s warmed up to the place. Protagonist Eleanor Flood—a neurotic cartoonist desperate to be more present in her own life—inhabits a Seattle that’s still provincial, but endearingly so. That’s not to say Semple’s gone soft, though; now she just saves the sharpest barbs for herself. Semple celebrates the new novel’s release week with a visit to Town Hall. Town Hall, $32 (Admits two and includes a copy of the book)

CONCERTS

Thur, Oct 6
Gnar Babes: Skate Like a Girl Benefit
Skate Like a Girl is rad enough on its female-empowering skateboarding non-profit programming alone, so the fact the organization’s benefit concerts always sport awesome lineups just seems like the cherry on top of an already sweet sundae. The latest addition features the faux glamorous punk rabble rousers of Mommy Long Legs, Hoops’ mellow vibes, folktronica singer-songwriter Kelli Frances Corrado (premiering a new skate-tastic music video), and downtempo electronic tunes from Portland’s SciFiSol. Sunset Tavern, $8

Oct 7–Nov 11
Earshot Jazz Festival
For a month every fall, Earshot Jazz Festival brings a veritable cornucopia of jazz stylings to Seattle stages. With over 50 concerts on the lineup, it can be tough to decide what to see, but you really can’t go wrong. There are big shows like local jazz guitar legend Bill Frisell’s When You Wish Upon A Star gig at the Moore, the students of Garfield High School’s acclaimed jazz team teaming up with the Seattle Symphony for Sonic Evolution, and Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition winner Kris Bowers playing at Seattle Art Museum, but there are also plenty of worthwhile smaller sets at places like Cornish’s Poncho Concert Hall or Bellevue’s Bake’s Place. When it comes to Earshot, there’s something to satisfy most any jazz fan. Various venues, $5–$52

Sat, Oct 8
Brian Wilson Presents Pet Sounds

The Beach Boys’ 1966 masterpiece, Pet Sounds, featured groundbreaking production, instrumental arrangements, and melodic complexity. Its very existence challenged acts like the Beatles to further experiment and expand their sound (see: Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts ClubBand). To celebrate its 50th anniversary, the album’s mastermind, Brian Wilson, plays Pet Sounds in its entirety for the final time. Paramount Theatre, Sold out

Sat, Oct 8
Cathedrals XIII: Jeremy Enigk, Laura Gibson, and Tomo Nakayama
There’s a magical, breathless quality to the concerts held in St. Mark’s Cathedral as part of Abbey Arts’ Cathedrals series, and the non-profit plans to make the most of this fact by hosting four concerts in the grand venue over the next three months. While later installments feature Damien Jurado, Lemolo, and Noah Gundersen, the first show on the slate consists of three superb singer-songwriters: Sunny Day Real Estate’s unwitting emo pioneer Jeremy Enigk, Portland’s Laura Gibson, and Seattle Cathedrals veteran Tomo Nakayama. The Passenger String Quartet also joins the fray to give the esteemed trio of troubadours an even more majestically moving soundscape to work with. St. Mark’s Cathedral, $15–$18

Sat, Oct 8
The Julie Ruin
Kathleen Hanna has been a musical, political, and style trendsetter since she began howling at Olympia house shows in the early ’90s with Bikini Kill. Hit Reset—the bouncy and emotion-ally charged latest album from Hanna’s current rock band, the Julie Ruin, and its first on Hardly Art—proves that the original riot grrrl hasn’t lost any of her ferocity. The Showbox, $20–$25

Sat, Oct 8
Rocky Votolato: Makers 10 Year Anniversary Tour 
It’s easy for Seattle singer-songwriters to drift toward a gloomy path. But on his 2006 Barsuk Records release, Makers, Rocky Votolato managed to tap into a majestic Northwest beauty and childish innocence while pairing light folky roots with serene melodies. The album remains Votolato’s beloved calling card, and he shares it in full with fans in celebration of its 10th anniversary. As a bonus, fellow local Barsuk troubadour Chris Staples opens the show. Tractor Tavern, $17

SPECIAL EVENTS

Sat & Sun, Oct 8 & 9
GeekGirlCon
Being marginalized, ostracized, or ignored is not new for female geeks. Thankfully, GeekGirlCon exists and continues to grow. For 2016, organizers have added another floor of the convention center, doubling the number of exhibitors and artists, adding new gaming and VR areas, expanding the DIY Science Zone, and featuring panels on everything from Hamilton to geektivism. Hooray for truly inclusive spaces! Washington State Convention Center, $40–$55

Sun, Oct 9
Seattle Children’s Festival
Prepare for an ankle-biter invasion as Seattle Center hosts the third annual Seattle Children’s Festival. Kids can grab event passports that guide them through the various areas packed with fun-filled activities: children’s rock bands, a Discovery Zone of hands-on learning, cultural dance performances, arts and craft creation stations (glitter!), and more. It might even be enough to tire them out for a proper nap. Seattle Center, $10 (Suggested donation)

CLASSICAL & MORE

Oct 7–9
Cirque Goes to the Cinema

It’s great to expose children to orchestral music, but keeping them engaged during a live performance can some-times feel like an impossible task. Performance company Cirque de la Symphonie is here to help. The ensemble features acrobats, aerialists, and jugglers to provide visual excitement while the Seattle Symphony performs selections from movie scores like Raiders of the Lost Ark. Benaroya Hall, $34–$106

FILM

Thru Oct 6
French Cinema Now
All things French manifest at SIFF’s annual showcase of the best in Francophone cinema. This something-for-everyone mini festival offers a mélange of features like Eva & Leon, an uplifting tale of serendipitous friendship between a 35-year-old, childless Eva and an 11-year-old Leon in search of his parents. French culture expert Virginie Paradis helps provide further context and meaning to the films with presentations before select movies. Allons-y! SIFF Cinema Uptown, $12; Festival pass $75

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