- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 10, 2002

Master of the universe
Karl Denson may live in a tiny universe, but he certainly is its guiding star. The jazz-funk jam band Karl Denson's Tiny Universe features the former Lenny Kravitz saxman as a rhythm and blues ringleader and, as the group's recent album "The Bridge" shows, he sure knows how to have a good time on stage. Get ready to groove along when he plays at 9 p.m. Saturday at the 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. Tickets are $20. 202/393-0930.

Medieval mayhem
In the realm of big historical events, it doesn't get much bigger than the Battle of Hastings in 1066. William the Conqueror's victory there laid the groundwork for modern England and will be duly toasted this weekend in Maryland with historical re-enactors taking up arms. See what happens when the Saxons, Normans and Vikings collide from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Marietta House Museum, 5626 Bell Station Road, Glenn Dale, Md. Tickets are $2-$5. 301/464-5291.

Suspended art
There are few places where Venetian artist Marsan's works could be displayed successfully, which is probably why they are suspended inside Union Station. Her large sculptures are made of light aluminum shapes that are detailed with ghostly images that the artist has described as a "mystical journey of the soul." Look up to see her works as part of Ianua Coeli (Heaven's Gate) from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily at Union Station, 40 Massachusetts Ave. NE. It's free to look. 202/289-8300.

Book it
First lady Laura Bush is certainly serious about encouraging reading. In the second National Book Festival, she hosts a day's worth of literary events (along with Librarian of Congress James H. Billington) that comprises more than 70 authors, illustrators and storytellers. Among the guests are mystery writer David Baldacci, children's author Rosemary Wells and historian David Halberstam. Check out readings, seminars and other events from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. It's free. 888/714-4696.

Quality crafts
When it comes to buying crafts, it's hard to top the homemade touch. At least that's the theory behind the Sugarloaf Crafts Festival, which puts more than 450 artisans, working in a wide range of materials, together to offer the finest in arts and crafts. From clothing and leather to pottery, fine art and jewelry, it shouldn't be hard to find something of interest. Check it out from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. tomorrow to Sunday at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds, 16 Chestnut St., Gaithersburg. Admission is $7. 301/990-1400.

Classics to dance
The Ballet Theatre of Maryland kicks off its season with a bang this year by combining classic works from Chopin, Gershwin and Debussy, and setting them to the acclaimed choreography of Peter Anastos. Patrons will get to see the world premiere of his work for Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue," as well as pieces set to Debussy's "Claire de Lune" and music from Chopin. See it all at 8 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday at the Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, 801 Chase St., Annapolis. Tickets are $26 to $41. 410/263-2909.

Epic opera
Opera often features larger-than-life plots, but it's pretty hard to top Wagner's "Die Walkure." His tale of gods and mortals highlights the "walkure," the daughters of Wotan who come to collect soldiers from the battlefield at their deaths. Their "theme song" is one of the best-known operatic passages in history and can be hummed by even non-opera buffs. Check it out as performed by Virginia Opera at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow and 2 p.m. Sunday at George Mason University Center for the Arts, at the intersection of Braddock Road and Route 123, Fairfax. Tickets are $42 to $78. 703/218-6500.

Loving Eva
Whatever you do, don't cry for her Eva Peron, that is. Andrew Lloyd Webber added another success to his resume with "Evita," a musical biography of the famed Argentinean first lady that features the rather memorable anthems "Don't Cry For Me, Argentina" and "You Must Love Me." See American University's Theater Department tackle the popular production at 8 p.m. today through Saturday at the Experimental Theatre, 4400 Massachusetts Ave. NW. Tickets are $9 to $14. 202/885-2567.

Derek Simmonsen

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