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PCC Cascade plays host to sketch comedy

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The cast and crew of  “Portlandia” gather at the library of Cascade Campus to shoot the season pilot. (Photo by Abraham Proctor)

By Abraham Proctor

For the sake of argument, let’s say you’re a member of an adult hide-and-seek team, and you’re looking for a place to hold a competitive match. Where to go? The Cascade Campus Library, of course!

The Cascade Library stepped into the showbiz spotlight this past fall when it served as the backdrop for an extended scene from “Portlandia,” a new sketch-comedy series from cable TV’s Independent Film Channel (IFC). The scene was shot over the course of a Friday afternoon during the break between PCC’s summer and fall terms.

As much as we love our city, most Portlanders would agree that the many foibles, customs and idiosyncrasies that help “Keep Portland Weird” are ripe for satire. Enter “Portlandia,” the brainchild of “Saturday Night Live” alum Fred Armisen and former Sleater-Kinney frontwoman Carrie Brownstein. The show lovingly skewers Portland’s proudly off-kilter people and culture.

The hide-and-seek scene in the Cascade Library pokes fun at Portland’s somewhat strange world of organized adult sports (grown-up kickball leagues, anyone?). In it, Armisen plays the motivated captain of a hide-and-seek team who is more interested in the after-party than in winning the match. As the scene progresses, the players discover a mysterious, Zen-like stranger who has managed to stay hidden for several decades.

“Portlandia” airs at 10:30 p.m. Fridays on IFC (Channel 503 on Comcast cable). It can also be viewed online at www.ifc.com/portlandia or www. hulu.com.

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