The Pearl Fishers
So there are these two guys — one’s a hunter and the other is a fisherman — and they are the best-est of friends. And there’s also this veiled woman, a virgin priestess who must keep her face hidden and dedicate her prayers to ensuring the safety of the fishing village. But love, especially the forbidden kind, cannot be contained and Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers wraps up Act One with an oh-so engaging and charged chorus calling for people to die!
Yes, opera is theatrical, dramatic and I can’t remember a time when I did not fall in love with the performers’ vocal talents, but this production is particularly entertaining because of the high-octane costume and set design by fashion icon Zandra Rhodes. Set on the island of Ceylon (Sri Lanka), Rhodes has created a magical world where the palm fronds are the brightest of yellows, the sarongs are the brightest of blues and the turbans are hot pink. Serious, fabulous eye candy; you will eat this production up.
If you go: The Pearl Fishers, McCaw Hall, Through Oct. 31 (Tickets start at $25)—F.D.
Soups for Syria
Mamnoon is teaming up with cookbook author and activist Barbara Abdeni Massad for a special night benefiting Syrian refugees. Since 2012, Mamnoon has been bringing the flavors of Lebanon and Syria to Capitol Hill. They spice up familiar dishes like hummus and baba ghanoush, with fresh herbs, za’atar and Aleppo pepper. This night coincides with the release of Massad’s cookbook Soup For Syria: Recipes to Celebrate Our Shared Humanity, which not only celebrates soup with recipes from swoon-worthy cooks like Alice Waters, Mark Bittman and Yotam Ottolenghi, but it raises money for the plight of millions of Syrians. Spend $250 and you get a full-course meal, beverage pairings and a copy of Massad's cookbook. Or all-you-can eat soup, bread and a beverage for $35. All of the money goes to charity organizations and the food is sure to be perfect.
If you go: Soups for Syria, Mamnoon, 5:30 p.m. Oct. 22 (Tickets start at $35)—N.C.
Not Too Late with Elicia Sanchez *
Local comedians Elicia Sanchez and Nick Sahoyah host this monthly variety show at the intimate Eclectic Theater. Each month is a lot different, with promised guests, comedy, and music, all "inspired by 1970s variety shows, ’80s public-access programming, and everything on Nickelodeon in the ’90s." Elicia Sanchez is a special comedian; with unparalleled storytelling, quick wit and a bubbly demeanor, she can make magic out of any moment. Whether hosting The Moth, doing stand-up or hosting her own show, she’ll have you laughing the whole night and you'll want to be her friend. The best advice I can give: Whenever you can see her, go see Elicia Sanchez.
If you go: Not Too Late with Elicia Sanchez, Eclectic Theater, 10:30 p.m. Oct. 24 ($10 in advance, $12 day-of)—N.C.
If you happen to be out of it when it comes to Famous Thai Pop Stars, let me brief you on Bie Sukrit. After being discovered on a Thai TV talent show, he became a household name with his music, acting roles in movies and on TV, and, no surprise here, his leading man looks. Now, he’s making his U.S. stage debut with a world premiere musical based on a contemporary Thai novel. Sukrit plays the young, handsome Thai diplomat who falls in love with the older American wife of his (also older) boss. She’s a striking woman played by Laura Griffiths. Together, they find themselves alone under a waterfall in the mountains of Japan during which a magical moment is captured.
It’s the 1930s and the monarchy of Thailand, then known as Siam, has fallen; meanwhile, Japan is on the brink of war. The musical takes on some big topics — race, patriotism, happiness — with some clever songs about being Thai, being American and being Japanese. The show features an actual waterfall on stage and a musical number with Japanese silk kimonos. It's one of the most spectacularly colorful scenes I’ve ever seen.
If you go: Waterfall, 5th Avenue Theatre, through Oct. 25 (Tickets start at $15)—F.D.
Cabinet of Dr. Caligari *
For this special Halloween edition of Silent Movie Mondays, Trader Joe’s presents the quintessential German horror film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari. Wherever your appreciation of mise-en-scène may be, Dr. Caligari is bizarre and visually interesting enough to make it still creepy even 95 years later. And this is the way to see it — clutching Trader Joe’s snacks in the historic, gilded setting of the Paramount, with a live original score by the Wayne Horwitz Ensemble providing a soundtrack.
If you go: Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Paramount Theatre, 7 p.m. Oct. 26 (Tickets start at $10)—N.C.
If you’re looking for a night out with live jazz, a va-va-voom leading lady, a handsome fellow hoisting a Manhattan and a flight of killer craft cocktails, then this is the show for you. SAUCED is the noir-style thriller set just after the end of prohibition that launched Café Nordo back in 2010. The show has been re-imagined for Nordo’s new Pioneer Square space, which is the perfect intimate and vintage-y venue. We’re supposed to be in a bar, sipping our drinks, listening to Saul the bartender (Ray Tagavilla) tell the story of the mysterious arrival of Charlotte Bright (Bille Wildrick) and a mysterious vial that supposedly holds some magical elixir. And, that’s what transpires: You sit, you listen, you drink a whole host of cocktails crafted by the one and only Murray Stenson and you think, 'Yes, this is what a civilized evening out should be like.'
If you go: SAUCED, Nordo’s Culinarium, Through Dec. 20 (Tickets start at $65)—F.D.
* events that are under $15