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Archives: July 2013


Critic’s picks: Mozart opera at PLU, Ethnic Fest, Bellevue Arts Fair and Tacoma Art Museum

Free Mozart opera at PLU

You can’t do much better than opera for free, especially when it’s sung by up-and-coming college singers and directed by two of Puget Sound’s best directors. Pacific Lutheran University’s Summer Opera Workshop offers a pair of Mozart opera programs this weekend, free to the public: Jim Brown directs “Cosí fan tutte” at 7 p.m. tonight and tomorrow; Barry Johnson directs scenes from various Mozart operas at 3 p.m. July 28. Lagerquist Concert Hall, Pacific Lutheran University, 12180 Park Ave. S., Tacoma. 253-535-7602, plu.edu/music/workshops

Ethnic Fest in Wright Park

Celebrate cultures from around the world in Tacoma’s annual Ethnic Fest, held in Wright Park this weekend. Stage shows from Peruvian dance to Columbian folk, from Mexican to Pacific Islander, from Korean drums to salsa, hula and VamoLa will be followed on Saturday night by the free outdoor screening of “Wreck-It Ralph.” And don’t miss all the global food. Noon-7 p.m. July 27 and 28. Free. Wright Park, 501 S. I St., Tacoma. 253-305-1022, metroparkstacoma.org/ethnicfest

Bellevue Arts Museum Arts Fair Read more »


Critic’s picks: New Muses Theater in Tacoma, Gig Harbor Arts Festival, Click Flick at The Grand and Jazz Under the Stars at PLU

New Muses in new theater

New Muses Theater Company’s production of Neil Labute’s dark comedy “The Shape of Things” continues through next weekend at the brand-new black box theater run by Dukesbay Productions on the third floor of the historic Merlino Building downtown. The play explores modern ideals of love, art and manipulation. 8p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays through July 28. $15. Dukesbay Theater, 508 6the Ave., Tacoma. newmuses.com, dukesbay.org

Gig Harbor Arts Festival

Celebrate everything artsy with 125 Northwest artists at the 29th annual Gig Harbor Summer Arts Festival this weekend. Chalk your own art, browse the vendors, grab some food or join in other art-making activities in Gig Harbor’s historic downtown. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. July 20, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. July 21. Free. Judson Street, Gig Harbor waterfront. peninsulaartleague.com, gigharborguide.com

Click Flick is “The Smurfs” Read more »


Aussie glass artist in residency at MOG July 24-28

Australian artist Tom Rowney will be working in the Museum of Glass’s Hot Shop July 24-28. The visiting artist residency concludes with a lecture at 2 p.m., Sunday, July 28.

Rowney uses Venetian techniques with a contemporary viewpoint to create precise geometric forms and graphic lines.

Currently on view at MOG are pieces from Rowney’s Maelstrom series – part of the exhibition, “Links: Australian Glass and the Pacific Northwest.” The exhibit is up until January 2014.

Here’s more from the announcement:

The Maelstrom series narrates the water-like qualities of glass while exploring the relationship between the medium’s solid

Read more »


Critic’s picks: Dance This and Cirque de la Symphonie in Seattle, TacomaArt Walk and Old Town Blues Fest

Kinecting to Dance at EMP

Bust out your moves at “Kinecting to Dance” tonight at the Experience Music Project’s Sky Church. With special appearances by Seattle dance crew the Massive Monkees and stars from Dance This, the free night of dance includes live DJs, Xbox/Kinect dance competitions, food trucks and more. 7-11 p.m. tonight. Free. EMP, Seattle Center, 325 5th Ave. N, Seattle. stgpresents.org

Circus meets symphony at Benaroya Hall

When you combine world-class aerialists, contortionists and strongmen with Seattle’s own symphony orchestra, you can expect plenty of breath-taking drama. Choreographed to favorites by Mozart, Grieg, Tchaikovsky, Bartók, Beethoven, Debussy and more, Cirque de la Symphonie comes back to Seattle fresh from stellar performances in Australia. 8 p.m. tonight, 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. July 13. $19-$112. Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., Seattle. 206-215-4747, seattlesymphony.org

Third Thursday Art Walk and Mingle  Read more »


One person’s junk, another person’s Tinkertopia: Art foraging store opening mid-July on Pacific Avenue

R.R. and Darcy Anderson in Tinkertopia, opening soon on Pacific Avenue, Tacoma. Photo: Rosemary Ponnekanti
R.R. and Darcy Anderson in Tinkertopia, opening soon on Pacific Avenue, Tacoma. Photo: Rosemary Ponnekanti

It looks like an OCD nightmare – tins and barrels and baskets of plastic bits, wooden piano keys, yarn spools, picture frames, fabric remnants and any other little object you can imagine, all sprawled around the baby-blue space at 1914 Pacific Avenue. But for R.R. and Darcy Anderson, new entrepreneurs at creative reuse center Tinkertopia, it’s heaven – and the couple are hoping it will be for local artists, parents, teachers and anyone else who likes making things.

“Both of us are creative people and like to reuse things,” explains Darcy, a former pre-school teacher. “We were always fans of Creation Station in Lynnwood (another artist recycling store) but it was so far away.”

Then, when R.R. Anderson – a local cartoonist and chalk artist – lost his design day job, they realized the moment had come. The couple applied for the City of Tacoma’s Spaceworks Creative Enterprise program, which offers rent-free empty commercial space to start-up businesses on a temporary basis, and moved into the former gyro restaurant last month.

Since then they’ve been getting donation after donation: unused plastic slide holders from hospitals, tile samples from architectural firms, buckets of wood and plastic bits from the Creation Station, where the owners are retiring. Read more »


New Dukesbay Theater in Merlino building offers a cheaper, more permanent alternative for Tacoma’s fringe theater

Randy and Aya Hashiguchi Clark in their new Dukesbay Theater. Photo: Rosemary Ponnekanti
Randy and Aya Hashiguchi Clark in their new Dukesbay Theater. Photo: Rosemary Ponnekanti

Last week I wrote about Dukesbay Productions’ new black box theater in Tacoma’s Merlino Building, where New Muses is about to open their season with Neil Labute’s “The Shape of Things.” This week I got to see the theater from the inside, and the hard work that’s gone into making a permanent home for fringe theater in Tacoma

Husband-and-wife theater duo Randy and Aya Hashiguchi Clark are the masterminds behind the project. As Dukesbay Productions they’ve presented plays in other non-traditional venues like the revamped basement of First Congregational Church downtown, but instability is always the threat with such venues, like when they got double-booked, or when First Congregational recently got sold to Mars Hill Church. So when they got the chance to rent a large third floor studio in the historic Merlino Building (above The Grand Cinema) they took it.

“We built this not just for our use,” says Aya. “We want to see fringe and independent theater in Tacoma. A lot of small productions have no place in which they can perform that’s affordable. We’re charging a little less than comparable spaces.” Read more »


Critic’s Picks: Gig Harbor Art Walk, Stadium Fare, CinemaGig and Eric Carle at Tacoma Art Museum

Gig Harbor Art Walk

The monthly art walk around Gig Harbor’s historic downtown is on again this Saturday, featuring work by Bob Meade and Shirley Fina Lane at Ebb Tide Gallery, Brad Stave and Patrice Bruzas at Gallery Row, Lola Waller at Water’s Edge Gallery and local work at the Harbor History Museum, among others. 1-5 p.m. July 6. Free. Various locations on Harborview Drive and Pioneer Way, Gig Harbor. gigharborguide.com

Craft and arts at Stadium Fare this summer

Check out local artists, artisans and performers at Stadium Fare, the new bimonthly craft fair in the Stadium District.10 a.m.-3 p.m. July 6, 20; Aug. 3, 17, 31; Sept. 14, 28. Parking lot of First Presbyterian, 20 Tacoma Ave. S., Tacoma. facebook.com/stadiumfare

Outdoor flicks at CinemaGig in Gig Harbor Read more »


New Dukesbay Theater in Merlino building attracts new fringe theater group New Muses, with edgy season starting next week

Having just opened the doors of their new black box theater in the Merlino Building, Tacoma company Dukesbay Productions has already attracted a three-show season from South Sound company New Muses Theatre Company.

Producing fringe theater in Seattle and surrounds since 2009, New Muses will kick off their first show July 12 – Neil Labute’s dark comedy “The Shape of Things,” exploring modern ideals of love, art and manipulation.

8p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays July 12-28.

The season continues with “Angels in America” from Aug.16-Sept.1, Tony Kushner’s Pulitzer-winning play about the ’80s AIDS crisis, and goes on with a version of “Romeo and Juliet” updated for the social media age in late September.

“We are thrilled to be bringing our brand of independent fringe theater to Tacoma,” says managing artistic director Niclas Olson.

Renovated from a long, sunlit room on the top floor of the Merlino Arts Building, the Dukesbay Theater is the work of Tacoma theater husband-and-wife duo Randy and Aya Hashiguchi Clark, who have presented plays in other non-traditional venues like the revamped basement of First Congregational Church downtown. Watch this space for more details soon.

The theater is located at 508 6the Ave., Tacoma. All New Muses tickets will be $15 single, $33 season. newmuses.com, dukesbay.org Read more »