Arts Picks




Music freaks who've sprung for a full pass to the EMP Pop Conference this weekend ($55/$35 for EMP members) get a bonus tonight, as Marclay leads a tour of his intriguing, inspiring, absurd exhibition at SAM. Later, for the rest of us, the turntablist will perform, as he often did in '80s New York, with Wayne Horvitz on keyboards, joined by violinist Eyvind Kang and "surprise guests" (which around here usually means Bill Frisell). For his 1996 "Graffiti Composition," Marclay affixed music notation paper around the streets of Berlin, allowing passersby to scrawl whatever notes or other contribution they chose (see photo); tonight pianist Robin Holcomb will interpret the results. Reception/Tour: 6:45 p.m. Concert: 8:30 p.m. Fri., April 16. $10/$7 for SAM members and conference attendees. Seattle Art Museum, 100 University St., 206-EMP-LIVE. MARK D. FEFER




What's the definition of an optimist? A trombone player with a cell phone and pager. So goes the jazz joke, but Roseman's having the last laugh. He's one of the busiest, most enterprising performers in a downtown scene where progressive funk, elec­tronica, and avant tendencies have been stewing together for a decade. Key to the famed Groove Collective, Roseman has gone on to lead his own bands, and his Unit comes on with a kind of organ-trio sound that includes the versatile Peter Apfelbaum on sax and keys. Beyond the complex harmonies, old-school grooves, and electric inventions, it's a joy to hear someone make the maligned trombone as modern as the newest scratch track. 7:30 p.m. Wed., April 14. $15. The Triple Door, 216 Union St., 206-838-4333. MARK D. FEFER




When the Soviet Union's most gifted composer wrote his Fifth Symphony in 1937, many of his contemporaries heard the bombastic finale as a tribute to the glories of socialism. But the audience at its premiere responded differently, as though the piece spoke to their suffering at the height of Stalin's terror. The debate continues over what Shostakovich was getting at with his Fifth, but one thing's for sure: You'll never hear a better performance than when Mstislav Rostropovich, a longtime colleague of the composer, is on the podium. He'll lead the Seattle Symphony in a concert that also includes that other great Russian Fifth, Tchaikovsky's. 7:30 p.m. Thurs., April 15, and 8 p.m. Fri., April 16. $12–$80. Benaroya Hall, Third Avenue and Union Street, 206-215-4747. GAVIN BORCHERT




Smith's expansive attention to the ways in which everyday Americans express their anger, confusion, grief, and resignation has shaped a historical record as important as anything in The New York Times. After interviewing hundreds of people to construct her solo re-creations, Smith makes you listen because you know she listens. This free lecture is a chance to catch up with her microscopic insight at a time when our country's identity seems more uncertain than ever. 7 p.m. Fri., April 16. Free. Meany Hall, UW campus, 206-616-1825. STEVE WIECKING




What if Fast Food Nation were redone by an "immersion journalist" and filmed in the style of Michael Moore? You'd get this Sundance-favorite documentary in which Morgan Spurlock eats every meal at the Golden Arches for a month solid—and always answers "Yes" to the counter jockey's offer (recently discontinued) to supersize his order. Between bites, he takes a look at the health costs and consequences wrought by our nation's insatiable drive-everywhere, junk-food habits, and eventually becomes Exhibit A as he practically suffers renal failure. It's part of a 40-plus title documentary film festival at SAM (Sat., April 17–Sun., April 25) and Spurlock will be on hand for a Q&A. 7:15 p.m. Sun., April 18. $7. Seattle Art Museum, 100 University St., 206-325-6500. BRIAN MILLER

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