What Ovations’ Insiders Can’t Wait For This Season

Who better to give event recommendations than the people on the inside?
With an incredible line up for 2019-2020 ranging from an intimate performance by renowned pianist Gabriela Montero to the cerulean covered spectacle of
the Blue Man Group, it was nearly impossible for the Ovations‘ staff to pick just one performance that we each can’t wait for this season.
We’re excited for all of the upcoming events, but here are some we REALLY can’t wait for.


Aimée’s Pick:
Taylor Mac A 24-Decade History of Popular Music (Abridged)

Taylor Mac truly lives up to the expression “once in a lifetime.” He is an artist that electrifies me on all levels – he causes me to think deeply and differently, is a thrilling performer, masterful musician and of course visually stunning as judi. Experiencing Taylor Mac is transfixing and transporting and never a form of mindless escapism.


Sam’s pick:
Songhoy Blues

I heard Songhoy Blues’ music floating out of our Executive Director’s office one day and was immediately hooked. I can’t wait to see their desert blues here in Portland.




Atiim’s Pick:
The Kingdom Choir

I am excited about the Kingdom Choir because what they are doing is bringing home a relative that has left our shores. The American African has created a sound from their struggle, and this sound is one of release, of emotion and an expression of pain, joy, and hope. Gospel music has traveled into the world, and to the UK, and will arrive to Maine a new voice, a new reflection, and a new sound of call and response.



Linda’s Pick:
Lady Rizo with guest Ari Shapiro

Ovations Annual Fundraiser
I came of age working for the Village Voice on the Lower East Side of New York City—so I love sultry club and cabaret events. The unexpected, once-in-a-lifetime combo of Lady Rizo, at the top of her game, with NPR’s All Things Considered host Ari Shapiro – who moonlights as a crooner with popular bands such as Pink Martini – at Aura is irresistible. Get your party on and prepare to be wowed by their great performances: this is THE season event not to miss in Portland this fall.


Laura’s Pick:
Malpaso Dance Company

Since 2017, I’ve had the privilege to see Malpaso Dance showcase in NYC. In an intense conference setting where back to back performances begin to blur together (I can often see upwards of 60 performances over a 4-day period), Malpaso is always a standout with their engrossing fluidity bordering on the virtuosic. I’m thrilled that we’re finally introducing them to our audiences. Though it’s only been three years, it feels like forever.


Liz’s Pick:
Miwa Matreyek: Glorious Visions in Animation

I first saw Miwa perform a decade ago in an underground, basement show at SXSW. It was Miwa, a sheet, a couple of puppets and some basic projections. I was entranced. It was unlike anything I had seen in my 20 (plus) years as a dancer. I can only imagine how much more bewitching her performance has become in 10 years of growth. I encourage you to step outside of the box and travel into the worlds she creates through her movement, art and puppetry.


Mary’s Pick:
Russian National Ballet: Sleeping Beauty

I’m totally excited to see the Russian National Ballet’s performance of “Sleeping Beauty” because ballet is such a unique art form and it has the ability to touch people on a deep, abstract level. Plus, the story is a classic with Princess Aurora and Prince Charming, fairies and dark magic….I can’t wait!



Sarah’s Pick:
he Snowy Day

Since childhood The Snowy Day has been one of my favorite books and I can’t wait to see it brought to life. There is no doubt that the show will be energetic, visually stunning, and playful. Plus there is nothing I love more than young people (and their families) attending theatre. It’s just good for the soul.