Willamette Weekend: 20 Things to Do and See In Portland March 17-19

There's plenty to do besides get rowdy on Guinness this weekend!


Japandroids, Craig Finn & the Uptown Controllers

Canadian duo Japandroids never imagined selling out theaters the world over with their rowdy brand of stripped down heartland punk, so they've dialed it down a bit on this year's Near to the Wild Heart of Life as a way to avoid burning out before their boundless energy fades. Read our review with their drummer, Dave Prowse, here.  Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark St., revolutionhall.com. 9 pm. Sold out. All ages.

Kells Irish Beer Fest

This is somehow the very first Irish beer fest at Kells Brewpub—with milk stouts from Grixsen, Plastic Paddy from Cider Riot and at least a dozen other reds, stouts and nitro stouts. Have a very mild time!  Kells on 21st, 210 NW 21st Ave., kellsbrewpub.com. $10-$20.

Mo Troper & the Assumptions, the Exquisites, Alien Boy, Mayhaw Hoons & the Outsiders

Morgan James Troper is one of the best vocalists to have called Portland home in recent years. His slightly whiny shout-croon commands attention with each octave it climbs, making it the most important instrument featured on his songs both solo and with his band, the Assumptions. Troper recently released a collection of recordings as proof: All done between 2010 and 2015, Mo Troper Gold shows Troper's range for emotive songwriting and the all-around feels expressed through in-your-face instrumentation. The album couldn't be more appropriately named, since each track is solid gold. The Know, 3728 SE Sandy Blvd., theknowpdx.com. 8 pm.  $8. 21+.

The Coathangers, the Birth Defects, Tender Age

The Coathangers play on pure, fiery instinct. The Atlanta trio has been producing explosive punk pop with a grimy chip on its shoulder for a decade now, and as evidenced by the volatile set it delivered at last summer's Project Pabst, is showing no signs of slowing down. Last year's Nosebleed Weekend definitively elevated the band to the same echelon as the Thermals or Sleater-Kinney. Far too many bands fail to deliver after inquiring, rhetorically, if the crowd is ready to rock. The Coathangers are here to remedy that. Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi Ave., mississippistudios.com. 9 pm. Sold out. 21+.

Feathers and Teeth

Considering the mass amounts of fake blood used in the production, Feathers and Teeth is the kind of play that risks seeming outrageously campy.  Karo syrup aside, the most outrageous horror of the production is left off-screen (or at least inside the pot). But luckily, the camp is delivered with depth, cleverness and levity. See our full review hereArtists Repertory Theatre, 1515 SW Morrison St., artistsrep.org. 7:30 pm Wednesday-Sunday and 2 pm Sunday, through April 2. Additional shows noon Wednesday, March 22, 7:30 pm Tuesday, March 28, 2:30 pm. No 7:30 pm show Sunday, April 2. $25-$50.

I Wake Up Dreaming 

Film noir programmer Elliot Levine is one of the most beloved people in Bay Area film, and this summer, he's moving to Portland. But this week, Cinema 21 is showcasing a preview of Levine's curatorial skills with Portland's first iteration of Levine's I Wake Up Dreaming film series, showcasing double and triple features of obscure noir almost impossible to find anywhere else. Cinema 21, 616 NW 21st Ave., cinema21.com. Through March 23.

Playhouse Creatures

Playhouse Creatures is set in 17th-century London when it became legal for women to be actors, but when doing so carried the same social stigma as prostitution, and male audience members could pay to spy on actress changing backstage. Through an unconventional, slightly fragmented narrative, the play tells the stories of some of London's first actresses, including the remarkable Nell Gwynn, who eventually became the esteemed mistress of Charles II. But the stories told are not simply about triumph over sexist bullshit, they're also about the very real and sometimes crippling difficulties the first women in theater had to face. Containing unabashedly feminist themes, the play evaluates what it's like to be a woman in the arts through one of the first great pushes for their inclusion. CoHo Theater, 2257 NW Raleigh St., cohoproductions.org. 7:30 pm Thursday-Saturday and 2 pm Sunday, March 17-April 8. $20-$28.

In the Heights

Before Hamilton, playwright Lin-Manuel Miranda had another Broadway hit, in 2008, with In the Heights. Currently onstage at Portland Community College, it's a slice of life in a tight-knit immigrant community in the NYC neighborhood of Washington Heights. See our review herePCC Performing Arts Center, 12000 SW 49th Ave., pcc.edu. 7 pm Friday-Saturday and 2 pm Sunday, through March 19. Additional shows 7 pm Wednesday, March 15 and 11 am Thursday, March 16. $10-$15.


The living room drama Lydia is a fitting play for Milagro to stage: no matter the political climate, Milagro's plays tends to be message-heavy. Plus, they're a bilingual theater (all of their plays are partially in Spanish and partially in English). Lydia is set in the home of a Mexican-American family living in El Paso, Texas, near the Mexican border in the early 1970s. In that politically charged and socially complicated backdrop, the play focuses on the lives of the family: a daughter reduced to an almost vegetative state after a car accident, a disengaged father who doesn't do anything except watch TV, an undocumented immigrant housekeeper, and a cousin recently returned from the Vietnam War to become a border patrol agent. Milagro Theatre, 525 SE Stark St., milagro.org. 7:30 pm Thursday-Saturday and 2 pm Sunday, March 16-April 8. $18-$27.


Choreographer Ihsan Rustem didn't want to create a ballet with a narrative for NW Dance Project's current season, but when pushed by artistic director Sarah Slipper, he decided on the opera Carmen. The scenes the company has previewed imply that it was a worthwhile push: the contemporary ballet is enriched by the intricacies required for character-driven choreography, and Rustem's carefully developed work is elaborate, but thoroughly modern: It features sneakers instead of pointe shoes and pelvic thrusts mixed in with twirls. Newmark Theatre, 1111 SW Broadway Ave., nwdanceproject.org. 7:30 pm Thursday-Saturday, March 16-18. $34-$58.

Serial's Sarah Koenig and Julie Snyder

Koenig and Snyder took popular culture by storm in 2014 with their podcast, Serial, using the tools of journalism to delve into a murder case that had kept a possibly innocent man in prison for a decade and a half. Tonight, the duo offers a behind-the-scenes look at the investigation. Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway Ave.,503-248-4335 arleneschnitzer.org. 8 pm. $29.50-$100. All ages.


Willamette Week's Best New Band Showcase

More than 170 music insiders can't be wrong, could they? Either way, find out tonight, as we present three of the emerging acts Portland voted as the best in the city: soul singer Blossom, rapper Donte Thomas and jazz-pop adventurer Coco Columbia. Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi Ave., 503-288-3895, mississippistudios.com. 9 pm. Free. 21+.


Everyone's favorite funky beer yeast will be on full display at Bailey's Taproom, with a whole world of Brett beers and no cover at all. What a beautiful life. Bailey's Taproom, 213 SW Broadway, baileystaproom.com. Noon-midnight.

Kells Irish Smoker

It's the day after St. Paddy's, you're a bit hungover and a bit drunk again. There's nothing you'd rather do than watch two people beat the tar out of each other who aren't even getting paid for it. Welcome to the Kells Irish Smoker, in which a team from Oregon and a team from Ireland smack each other's gobs in an amateur boxing tournament. Kells Irish Pub, 112 SW 2nd Ave., kellsportland.com. 7 pm. $25.

Jesca Hoop

Jesca Hoop lives one of those lives that always seems dictated more by fate than anything else. It was a chance gig nannying for Tom Waits that made her whole career possible. She passed her first demo to him, and he liked it enough to hand it to influential L.A. radio station KCRW, who nurtured Hoop all the way through her first LP. This kind of mystical alignment makes sense for her, though. Hoop's songs are pastoral and esoteric in content, but also take symphonic, nonlinear twists and turns. It's easy to lump Hoop in with "New Weird American" singer-songwriters like Joanna Newsom and Fiona Apple, and some of her stylization does rely heavily on the tropes of that scene. But it's her flexible parlay from freak pop to indie folk—which she fully embraces on just-released LP Memories Are Now that sets her up for a long run, as the rest of her genre becomes more electronic and shiny. Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie Ave., aladdin-theater.com. 8 pm. $15. All ages.


Isaiah Rashad

Rapper Isaiah Rashad might be the mellowest member of Top Dawg Entertainment, the label that broke Kendrick Lamar and Schoolboy Q, but don't mistake his chill for levity. Under the laid-back grooves of last year's acclaimed The Sun's Tirade is a wealth of emotional anxiety, made all the more jarring by Rashad's calm delivery. Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE Cesar E. Chavez Blvd., hawthornetheatre.com. 8 pm. Sold out. All ages.

Emily Wells

No one blends and bends genres quite like Emily Wells. Live, the producer, composer and multi-instrumentalist is a spellbinding one-woman band, combining classical instruments with looped hip-hop beats. What she offers from album to album is never the same, but it's always absolutely original. Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside St., dougfirlounge.com. 9 pm. $13 advance, $15 day of show. 21+. Through Monday, March 20. 

Other People: Takes and Mistakes

David Shields made his name writing novels, and then drew controversy when he wrote a book, Reality Hunger, that called for the, uh, abandonment of novels. His newest, Other People: Takes and Mistakes, discusses the impossibility of reducing an impossible amount of human information into a simple nonfiction narrative. If he hasn't lost faith in the workability of conversation, he'll be discussing the book with OPB's Beth Hyams. Powell's City of Books, 1005 W Burnside St., powells.com 7:30 pm. 

Kelli Schaefer

No Identity finds Kelli Schaefer in a darker mode than on her 2011 debut, Ghost of the Beast, which itself was a pretty gloomy affair. Read our review of the album hereRontoms, 600 E Burnside St., facebook.com/rontomsportland. 9 pm. Free. 21+.

Adidas Shamrock Run

Consider the 2017 Shamrock Run your golden opportunity to run off all the corned beef and Guinness you've ingested over the past two days- and it just so happens to be one of the largest yearly running events in Oregon. May the wind be at your back and your hangover waiting for you just beyond the finish line! Tom McCall Waterfront Park, NW Naito Blvd., shamrockrunportland.com. 6:30 am. $44 for adults, $15 for children 12 and under. 

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