The Weekly Wire: The Week’s Recommended Events


First Thursday: Animal Appeal

Don’t wait for next week’s Belltown Art Walk to see the new show at Roq La Rue, because the gallery won’t be there. Instead, Stacey Rozich is featured this month in the gallery’s brand-new location—now a stop on the First Thursday circuit around Pioneer Square. Within Without Me offers whimsical, colorful creatures from the local painter. Some are half man/half beast, like figures of myth or Dr. Moreau’s science experiments gone comically wrong. There are suggestions of Greek satyrs and centaurs, Egyptian hieroglyphics, Chinese dragons, Northwest coast Indian carvings, and Mayan bird deities. If there’s mythology at work, it’s a private, artist-generated mythology. Figures are draped in masks, pelts, and costumes that transform them, like shamans, into ambassadors from a supernatural realm. Her patchwork creations share a kinship with those of Maurice Sendak and Miguel Calderón (he who did those funny/frightening paintings in The Royal Tenenbaums). These demons-from-inside form a colorful bestiary—not exactly menacing, but more like the friendly, familiar monsters from a children’s storybook. (Rozich’s show remains on view through June 1.) Roq La Rue, 532 First Ave. S., 374-8977, Free. 6–9 p.m.

Fashion: Hunks Among Us

There’s a certain kind of Northwest woman who’s into microbrews, cut-offs, and campfires. On the opposite end of the Seattle spectrum is the type who loves her chardonnay, stilettos, and trunk sales. If you?re one of the latter, Wine Women & Shoes, a benefit for Seattle Children’s Home, is tailor-made for you. Four Seasons chefs prepare the food, and 10 West Coast wineries provide the drinks. What should you wear? “Dress to impress,” says SCH development manager Tiffany Crosby. When assembling your outfit, pay particular attention to your footwear—there’ll be a contest for the “sassiest shoe.” And if your spring wardrobe needs sprucing up, Neiman Marcus will stage a runway show; their shoes will also be displayed among eight other retailers’ footwear—including swank local favorites Sway & Cake and The Finerie. And the shopping will be 10 times easier than grabbing and shoving at the department store: Nine “Shoe Guys” will mingle and bear selected merchandise on silver platters for you to peruse. The guys are all volunteers, and one’s a demi-celeb: Doug Clerget, the sweet single dad who appeared as a contestant on the most recent season of The Bachelorette. He didn’t win, which means there’s more of him for us. Clerget and his cohort will be wearing a uniform of black slacks and tight black T-shirts, says Crosby. “We like to make them look kind of hunky.” Four Seasons Hotel, 99 Union St., 298-9670, $175–$2,500. 6–9 p.m.


Comedy: Hometown Pro

With many late-night TV credits and an Apatow endorsement (Knocked Up) under his belt, comedian Nick Thune returns home to his native Northwest to put the finishing touches on a new hour of material for an upcoming Comedy Central special. Thune is something of a double threat: Self-accompanying his deadpan one-liners on acoustic guitar heightens their absurd appeal. And though today based in L.A., he knows our local stages well—this is where he trained. When you walk in the door at Laughs, look for the infamous Styrofoam to-go container displayed on the wall, covered with the signatures of Thune and fellow stars from a celebratory secret show that followed Bumbershoot a few years back. “He could have played anywhere in town, and he chose to play Laughs,” says the club’s co-proprietor, Angela Dennison. Especially since Thune has become a national act, she adds, “I take it as an honor that he will be here.” Laughs Comedy Spot, 12099 124th Ave. N.E., Kirkland, 425-823-6306. $15–$18. 8 & 10 p.m. (Repeats Sat.)


Film: Big River

Though the Seattle True Independent Film Festival (aka STIFF) begins Friday with an opening-night package of shorts at the GI (6 p.m., $8), I opted to sample a travel doc visiting a place where I once touristed: The headwaters of the Ganges River in India, where Go Ganges! filmmakers Josh Thomas and JJ Kelley also dunk themselves in the glacial torrent to be cleansed of sin. They need that holy protection, since they then follow the river some 1,300 miles to Calcutta by pedal-powered rickshaw, rowboat, and unreliable Vespa. Their DIY intent is “to travel as organically as possible,” which means both using Google Maps and not carrying a patch kit or more than one extra tube for their rickshaw tires. Each breakdown and dead end becomes a chance to meet and mingle with the locals, whose unfailing friendliness impresses the duo. By the time they start rowing, however, they realize they’re on “a river of poop,” where people also wash, swim, and dispose of their corpses. Thomas and Kelley strike a likable, casual tone that’s somewhere between Lonely Planet guidebooks and Vice (though Kelley has worked for National Geographic). If their goal is to inspire other young people to travel off the beaten path, that adventurous spirit also applies to STIFF, which offers 30 features and nearly 100 shorts through May 11. Venues also include Lucid Lounge and Wing-It Productions. Grand Illusion, 1403 N.E. 50th St., $8. 8 p.m.


Music: Love and Loss

There are moments in No One Said It Would Be Easy, the new documentary about experimental indie band Cloud Cult, that are so precious and earnest you might think Craig Minowa had cast a spell over everyone. The multi-instrumentalist and organic farmer is lauded by friends and fans as a genius, a visionary, a Renaissance man. In the doc, we see the long evolution of the band—best described as “Modest Mouse on lithium”—to its current eight-piece incarnation (including two live painters). We also learn of the death of Minowa’s young son, making the film a meditation on grief, love, and resilience—not the usual subjects for a music doc. Minowa and company are currently touring behind Cloud Cult’s ninth album, unsurprisingly titled Love. For fans of the positive, life-affirming troupe, the doc is worth seeking out on Amazon and Netflix, but the live experience is preferred. The Neptune, 1303 N.E. 45th St., 877-784-4849, $17–$20. 8 p.m.


Classical: Slow Fave

I can always tell right from the outset when a performance of Franz Schubert’s String Quintet is going to include the repeat (that is, play the opening section twice, as was standard practice in his day). And you can too, when you hear musicians from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center play it tonight. Listen for the way the players handle the peculiar rhetoric of the Quintet’s first minute: unchanging chords stretched like taffy, pregnant silences, demure gestures rather than songlike melodies. (Those come later, in profusion.) Do the players give all this its due? Do they sound comfortable with this generous approach—willing to yield to Schubert’s time scale, in no hurry to get anywhere but doing so gorgeously? Or do they seem nervous, perfunctory, the silences cut short, skittish about their ability to hold the audience’s attention, worried about missing their bus? If the latter, then they will not take the repeat, and the first movement will be 15 minutes long instead of 20. I have never yet guessed wrong. The term “heavenly length,” which Robert Schumann applied to Schubert’s sweeping final symphony, also applies to much of the unprecedentedly expansive chamber and piano music he wrote in his late years—“late” in his case meaning late 20s; he died at 31. Ironically, his music sounds like he has all the time in the world; the dark-chocolate sound of the Quintet’s paired cellos, especially, is meant to be savored. Meany Hall, UW campus, 543-4880, $20–$38. 7:30 p.m.

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