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Seussical

Stage

Seussical

No use mincing words: Seussical, the latest show in Tacoma Little Theatre's 99th season, is a supremely open-hearted, deliriously goofy spectacle, and in its final two weeks of shows, it is not to be missed. This is a vivid, boisterous, and exhilaratingly staged production, a tornado of a show that somehow manages

A Very Special Holiday Special

Stage

A Very Special Holiday Special

Successfully executing holiday humor is, to me, an almost impossible feat. You're basically given two options of approach: deliver the sort of corny, gentle, observational comedy about the rigors of holiday shopping and family interactions, or, you commit to subverting deeply ingrained traditions aiming to get laughs from audiences breathing

Head and heart

Music

Head and heart

I recall an interview with indie rock vet Andrew Bird where he was talking about St. Vincent -- specifically, about Annie Clark, the frontwoman and mastermind behind the project -- where he talked about how happy he was to see her moving away from her more clinical, mathematical composition of

Chasing iconoclasts

Music

Chasing iconoclasts

There is a hallowed hall in the hearts of sensitive, self-consciously intellectual music lovers that is dedicated to singer-songwriters who managed to craft their art in equal deference to the heart and mind. Pop music history is littered with people that wrote songs like novels, that wrote songs like slyly

Art-damaged groove

Music

Art-damaged groove

If you've never seen it before, I urge you to check out a Talking Heads video -- in general, but also this specific one of the band performing "Born Under Punches." The video, which is available on YouTube, captures the band at a very specific time in their career, at

Goodbye Teddy

Music

Goodbye Teddy

As we make our way through our lives, a little bit of anxiety works its way into the back of our minds, a question that goes something like, "Will we be missed when we're gone? Will we be remembered when we've left this mortal coil?" In most people's small orbit

Caspar Babypants

Music

Caspar Babypants

Years ago, the folks at the Weekly Volcano sent me on a dubious assignment to attend a live production of Yo Gabba Gabba!, a beloved children's show that ran for four seasons. Even though I was given two tickets, none of my friends were willing to wake up early enough on a Saturday

Warren Miller's Line of Descent

South Sound Cinema

Warren Miller's Line of Descent

For all of its problems -- and, truly, there are many -- the 1985 James Bond outing, A View to a Kill, has its interesting points: Christopher Walken and Grace Jones going all gonzo wackadoo as the villains; Roger Moore blessedly coming to terms with being too old for Bond, once

Struckout

Music

Struckout

I sometimes wonder where a person was when they were confronted with a musician's voice that didn't quite fit the mold of acceptability, and where they were when they realized that imperfection might actually be preferable. Growing up, I was inundated with songs from the ‘50s and ‘60s, which typically

Calligraphy

Stage

Calligraphy

There are some works of fiction that gain their power through bravado, high-density dialogue, spectacle, or pyrotechnic productions. Others, though, find strength, and lasting resonance, in closely observing human stories that somehow access universal empathy through specificity. Calligraphy is, at its bare bones, a story I've seen before: a grown-up child is

Three easy pieces

South Sound Cinema

Three easy pieces

In Three Easy Pieces, I take a look at a specific subgenre of pop culture, and examine it from its birth to today. This month: two of my biggest passions collide when stars of the professional wrestling world try their hand at making movies. BIRTH: El Santo Honorable mention: Tor Johnson, Adrian

Evan Main's exit

Music

Evan Main's exit

In some ways, Tacoma functions as a sort of farm league for artists looking to make it big in the world. Yes, there are frequently plenty of outlets for creatives to express themselves in town, but one can only grow so big in a city that lacks a functioning transit

"Blithe Spirit"

Stage

"Blithe Spirit"

In their 99th season, Tacoma Little Theatre is now two for two when it comes to wry comedies featuring cosmopolitan couples dealing with extraordinary circumstances. Their first production, Rumors, was a dizzy deconstruction of, and tribute to, the genre of farce; in its whirlwind, breathless execution, it was an exuberant hit. This

Hop Roast Coffee Beer Festival

Features

Hop Roast Coffee Beer Festival

In the halcyon days of the ‘90s, The Drew Carey Show came up with a concoction called Buzz Beer. Our beloved, dumb main characters had mixed coffee and beer into something both immediately addictive and absolutely disgusting. Anyone from outside their circle would note how nasty it tasted, but still acknowledged the

Electronic eccentricities

Music

Electronic eccentricities

As the years go on, it becomes more and more common for a sighing refrain to ring out among a segment of the population: Oh my God, it's not even Halloween, and the stores are already stocked with Christmas decorations. Yes, Christmas comes earlier every year, and there seems no

Tinder Live

Stage

Tinder Live

Online dating has survived years of skepticism and scoffing from those who believe true human connections can only be made in person; for some, admitting that they'd met their significant other on the Internet was felt to be a fairly taboo confession. But, with the Internet increasingly invading every aspect

Gig Harbor Film Festival

South Sound Cinema

Gig Harbor Film Festival

One of the best parts of autumn is the unbridled flow of quality films that tend to inundate theaters. Even disregarding the mainstream output that makes up the majority of what people will be seeing, the Pacific Northwest becomes overrun with film festivals. We've already written about the Destiny City

What Tacoma needs

Music

What Tacoma needs

Hey, look: I've long since admitted that I will first pay attention to a band with an attention-grabbing name. There's no getting around it. I have relegated myself to a world where I'm inundated with bands and sounds that are fated to sound exactly the same. Because of this, I've

Cymbeline

Stage

Cymbeline

I've struggled with how to approach diving into Harlequin Productions' staging of Cymbeline, which it seems is a fairly normal reaction that many have had to the work, since its first production around 400 years ago. One of William Shakespeare's final plays - generally categorized as one of his "late romances,"

Three Easy Pieces

South Sound Cinema

Three Easy Pieces

In Three Easy Pieces, I deconstruct one specific genre of pop culture, from its birth through how it exists today. This month, I'm looking at cartoons for adults. When did animation shift from a medium cultivating imagination in kids to something to expand the minds of grown-ups? BIRTH: Fritz the Cat Honorable mention: Fantastic

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