See It This Week

Odesza at the Paramount, First Thursday Art Walk, ‘A John Waters Christmas’ Returns

Monday, Nov. 30–Thursday, Dec. 3
It sounds weird to describe a movie shot entirely from the dashboard of a cab dazzling, but damned if Iranian director Jafar Panahi’s Taxi isn’t just that. It’s a riveting trek through the streets of Tehran, shot on the fly under the government’s nose and rife with bursts of drama, unexpected belly laughs, and exhilarating immediacy. –Tony Kay
Grand Illusion Cinema

Wednesday, Dec. 2
The legendary director of Pink Flamingos and Hairspray returns to stuff your stockings with sleaze with a reprise of his one-man show A John Waters Christmas: Holier and Dirtier, about Yuletide joys and perversions. In scattershot monologue, the “Prince of Puke” revels in his longtime obsession with Christmas, from holiday exploitation films to toxic family dynamics to his religious fixation on St. Nick. –Brett Hamil
Neptune Theatre

Thursday, Dec. 3
Half the art world may have momentarily relocated to Miami for the annual art fair bacchanalia, but there are still some must-see exhibits opening this week at home during First Thursday Art Walk. At the top of the list is Cable Griffith’s solo show at G. Gibson Gallery. Called Sightings, it melds Griffith’s totally satisfying, color-saturated, 8-bit-minimalist landscape paintings with the uncanny of UFO sightings and other unexplained phenomena in the PNW. Roq la Rue’s group show Charismatic Megafauna culls work by some of the gallery’s favorite regulars (Chris Berens, Femke Hiemstra, Peter Ferguson and Peter Gronquist among many more) to illustrate the spectacular critters of the animal kingdom. Over at Piranha Shop, the guys from Electric Coffin Studio are exhibiting a print show of unique, one-off prints; Preston Graves‘ ink and wax drawings at SOIL are melty, mysterious cartographic things (described by the artist as “one part natural history illustration and one part set design for a monster movie”); and at Davidson Galleries Charles Spitzack unpacks a series of woodblock prints drenched in smoldering hues and peopled with contorted, elongated figures—equal parts sensual and tortured. –Amanda Manitach
Various locations

Thursday, Dec. 3–Saturday, Dec. 5
Predator Songstress: Dictator
is the latest performance from Degenerate Art Ensemble, longtime standard-bearer of Seattle performance art. Dictator tells the story of a repressed woman who finds herself physically and metaphorically without a voice, oppressed by a mythical totalitarian regime. The Butoh-inspired multimedia performance tackles heavy themes of surveillance and control, and features lighting design by Ben Zamora, costumes by Alenka Loesch and video by Ian Lucero and Leo Mayberry, with performances by violinist Paris Hurley, singer Okanomodé and musician Benjamin Marx. Pro tip: definitely read Amanda Manitach’s stellar profile of DAE before you go. –Gemma Wilson
On the Boards

Thursday, Dec. 3
DJ Marco Collins is the motivating force behind Every Little Counts, a night of New Order cover tunes delivered for a great cause: the musicians-advocacy group Musicares. The stem-to-stern great lineup includes Fly Moon Royalty, FM Collective featuring Ken Stringfellow, Daniel Blue of Motopony, Tacoma glam-dance imps the Fame Riot and more. –Tony Kay

Saturday, Dec. 5–Monday, Dec. 7
To witness the contour of Seattle’s new musical landscape, look no further than Odesza’s historic three-night run at the toniest venue in town. Next to Macklemore, the producer/composer duo of Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight is the biggest thing to emerge from the Northwest in years. Their luscious, luminescent electronica is unabashedly feminine in its soft curves and upbeat emotionalism—not to mention the pair’s penchant for enlisting strong female singers like Little Dragon’s Yukimi Nagano and Seattle’s own Briana Marela to contribute vocal hooks. Maybe that’s why Odesza is so popular: More than most EDM, their music attracts women, and whither the women go, the dudes go too. –Jonathan Zwickel

Paramount Theatre