See It This Week

Politics and punk on film, a show that riffs on the AIDS crisis, an excellent ‘Hedwig,’ a new series from Gramma Poetry and more

Dat Garcia

Tuesday, June 19

Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song

Writer/director/producer/editor/composer Melvin Van Peebles’ 1971 indie flick was a cinematic sawed-off shotgun in its day—a ragged, angry, flawed but galvanizing political statement clad in some flashy-trashy exploitation movie threads. All these years on, it still packs a blow as sharp as a crooked cop’s nightstick. —Tony Kay
Grand Illusion Cinema

Thursday, June 21 – Saturday, June 23

Marching in Gucci: Memoirs of a Well-Dressed Black AIDS Activist

Chad Goller-Sojourner’s Marching in Gucci bears witness to his harrowing years living through the AIDS crisis in New York and reckons with his own complicated life story, all in a new multimedia solo show that’s both poignant and hilarious in a laugh-to-keep-from-crying kind of way. Read this profile of Goller-Sojourner from our June issue, and make sure your ticket-buyin’ fingers are warmed up. —Gemma Wilson
Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute

Friday, June 22

Mamma’s Birthday Bash with Hotels, Fabulous Downey Brothers, Brown Calculus and Dark Smith

Tonight’s your opportunity to rock out while showering love upon Michelle “Mamma Casserole” Smith, a treasure of Seattle nightlife who’s celebrating her birthday with an awesomely eclectic lineup of music. Hotels plays smart, cinematic noir-pop; Fabulous Downey Bros dress in kooky costumes to perform obnoxious, endearing electro-punk; Brown Calculus is an elegant, PDX-based minimalist neo-soul duo; and Dark Smith is quintessential goth. Let’s get weird! —Jonathan Zwickel

Friday, June 22 – Sunday, June 24

Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Nicholas Japaul Bernard gives an outstanding performance as Hedwig, that most sublimely dingy, acerbic and hilarious Eastern-bloc rock goddess. She’s arrived at ArtsWest to tell us her life story through rock concert, cabaret confessional and wrenching revelation, and I just offered to babysit my sister’s three boys so she can go see this show, that’s how much I liked it. Runs through July 8. —Gemma Wilson

Friday, June 22 – Sunday, June 24

Here to Be Heard: The Story of the Slits

For the uninitiated, British band the Slits were one of few female-driven bands to surface during punk’s first wave. I know nothing about the band’s history, so I’m itching to get schooled by this film while grooving to their slashing, influential weld of punk, dub and art rock. —Tony Kay
Northwest Film Forum


Friday, June 22 – Sunday, June 24

Beat Science – Music in Motion

The Alchemy Tap Project presents Beat Science – Music in Motion, a show that revives and reimagines a classic American art form. Featuring some of Seattle’s best tap dancers, cutting-edge choreography and live music by the excellent Cascade Jazz Quartet.
Cornish Playhouse

Saturday, June 23

The Gramma Reading Series

Need ammunition to silence those bemoaning the demise of print/publishing/art in Seattle? Gramma supplies it. The local publisher recently debuted a new Risograph mail newsletter and now launches a new quarterly arts and literary series. The first iteration features writers Lindy West, Kate Durbin and Stacey Tran reading from their work, plus a new dance by Cheryl Delostrinos and Fausto Rivera of Au Collective. —Margo Vansynghel
Erickson Theatre

Sunday, June 24

ZZK Records Tour feat. Dat Garcia, King Coya & Queen Cholas, El G and Terror/Cactus

Thanks to Martín of Terror/Cactus for hipping me to ZZK Records, a 10-year-old label out of Buenos Aires that specializes in psychedelic, electronic-inflected excursions into traditional cumbia music. Tonight ZZK (pronounced Zizek) presents a showcase of wildly experimental Argentinian artists, including headliner Dat Garcia, who’s something of a Spanish-language Bjork, plus Day-glo folktronica duo King Coya and Queen Cholas, DJ El G (aka label head Grant Dull) and Seattle’s own electro-cumbia weirdos Terror/Cactus. —Jonathan Zwickel