Arts & Culture

Critic’s Picks: Four don’t-miss arts events this weekend

Autoharpist Brian Bowers will kick off the Olalla Bluegrass and Beyond Festival this weekend.
Autoharpist Brian Bowers will kick off the Olalla Bluegrass and Beyond Festival this weekend. Courtesy

Meaningful Movies

A new series at the Center for Spiritual Living presents “Meaningful Movies,” films with social impact. This week it’s “Sonic Sea,” a 60-minute documentary about the destructive impact of industrial and military ocean noise on whales and other marine life, and featuring acoustic scientists as well as musician and activist Sting. A discussion follows the film.

7 p.m. Friday. Free. 206 N. J St., Tacoma.

Early Music Workshop concert

Hear sublime Renaissance choral music in the resonant acoustic of Christ Episcopal for free Saturday as the annual Tacoma Early Music Workshop presents a final concert, “Nuova Musica: 100 Years of Italian Music.” After workshops with Dr. Anne Lyman, artistic director of Canonici and the Seattle Bach Choir, participants will join in presenting the concert.

7 p.m. Saturday. Free. Christ Episcopal, 310 N. K St., Tacoma. 253-383-1569,

‘Flesh and Butter’ performance art

An evening of performance art, visual art and music by queer and trans people of color, “Flesh and Butter” Saturday promises “an exposé exploring love, identity, body and resistance.” Co-hosted by Nicci Montgomery and Tacoma poet laureate Cathy Nguyen.

7-9 p.m. Saturday. Suggested donation is $3, free for 24 and younger. Alcohol-free, mature audience only. 1120 Creative House, 1120 Pacific Ave., second floor, Tacoma.

Olalla Bluegrass and Beyond

Olalla’s annual Bluegrass and Beyond festival this weekend features Trout Steak Revival, Rabbit Wilde, Danny Barnes, Hot Damn Scandal, Farmstrong Country, Rural Delivery, Slocan Ramblers and the Eclectic Cloggers, plus an extra Friday (Aug. 19) concert with autoharpist Brian Bowers.

6:30 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-dusk Saturday. $5 donation Friday. Saturday advance tickets $17 adults, $15 seniors and military, $13 teens, free for 12 and younger. Prices will be higher at the door. Buy tickets at Allstar Guitar, Gig Harbor, and Olalla Little League ballfield, 5795 SE Hovgaard Road, Olalla. 253-857-5604,