- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 4, 2001

Sounds of fall
Now that the leaves are starting to turn and jackets are becoming a necessity, it's the perfect time to put solo artist Shannon Wright on the stereo. The former lead singer of indie-rock band Crowsdell, Miss Wright's smooth voice, off-kilter melodies and mellow piano accompaniments are the perfect sound for a chilly, gray autumn day. Hear her live at 9 p.m. Sunday at the Black Cat, 1811 14th St. NW. Tickets are $6. 202/432-SEAT.
Wordplay
Cynthia Word and Word/Dance/ Theater aren't interested in the abstract. Their latest production "States of Mind," instead focuses on the lives of ordinary people life, death, comedy and tragedy. See the troupe's original works at 8 p.m. Saturday and 7 p.m. Sunday at Dance Place, 3225 Eighth St. NE. Tickets are $6-$16. 202/269-1600.

Taste test
If the wide variety of restaurants in Bethesda has ever seemed overwhelming, now is the time to try it all at once. This year's annual "Taste of Bethesda" promises samples from more than 50 local restaurants, as well as live entertainment and children's activities Bring an empty stomach along from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday to Fairmont, Norfolk, St. Elmo, Del Ray and Cordell avenues in Bethesda. Admission is free, but food costs vary. 301/215-6660.

Spinning yarns
Cherokee storyteller Lloyd Arneach's tales go back a long way. Two of his uncles taught him some of the oldest stories of his tribe when he was a boy, stories that have likely been passed down for hundreds of years. Now he's telling them to the next generation and adding a few new yarns of his own. See Mr. Arneach at 3:30 p.m. Saturday and 1 and 3 p.m. Sunday at the Kennedy Center's AFI Theater, F Street and New Hampshire Avenue NW. Tickets are $12. 202/467-4600.

Young opera
Think of it as operatic "Survivor." More than 900 young vocalists from around the world compete to win $175,000 in prize money and the chance to sing with famed tenor Placido Domingo at the Kennedy Center. Catch the final concert with the 10 finalists in Mr. Domingo's "Operalia" competition (in its first year in D.C.) at 4 p.m. Sunday at George Washington University's Lisner Auditorium, 730 21st St. NW. Tickets are $25-$100. 202/432-SEAT.

Art smorgasbord
If ever there were a weekend to buy art, now is the time. Alexandria's 6th annual "Art on the Avenue" features dozens of artists working in media as varied as acrylic paintings on glass, textiles, watercolors, pottery and more. The festival also features children's activities and live music and a collection will be taken to donate to the Pentagon victims' fund. Stop by from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday along Mount Vernon Avenue, Alexandria. It's free. 703/683-3100.

Flower power
There are few things more beautiful than seeing orchids in bloom, which means the National Capital Orchid Society's show and sale should be a pretty special event. Featuring thousands of the delicate flowers on display, the show will also have experts on hand to dispense tips on keeping orchids in bloom during the winter months. See it from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the U.S. National Arboretum, 24th and R streets NE. It's free. 202/245-2726.

Queen of crime
Agatha Christie was perhaps the best known mystery writer who ever lived, but that may not have been the title she was hoping for. In "Agatha Sings," Nostalgia Productions tells the story of how Miss Christie would much rather have been an opera singer and continued to sing throughout her lifetime. See it at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Ellipse Arts Center, 4350 N. Fairfax Drive, Arlington. Tickets are $23-$28. 703/836-8643.

Addictive music
In the late '80s, Jane's Addiction was an alternative rock band back when the term actually meant something. Its mix of metal, punk, jazz and other musical genres was a welcome alternative to the mainstream of hair bands and power ballads. Though the band broke up in 1991, the members (including solo artist Dave Navarro) have come together again to tour the country. See them with Live at 7 p.m. Saturday at Nissan Pavilion at Stone Ridge, 7800 Cellar Door Road, off Interstate 66 and Route 29, Bristow, Va. Tickets are $36. 202/432-SEAT.

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