- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 1, 2004

Unfinished look

Now in its third year, the Kennedy Center’s annual “Page-to-Stage” new play festival has become a must for theater lovers. Featuring more than 25 theater companies, the festival gives fans the chance, through readings, special events and panel discussions, to see new plays and musicals that are still in the development process. Among this year’s highlighted works include one by novelist and poet Joyce Carol Oates. The festival begins on Saturday and runs through Monday. Admission is free. F Street and New Hampshire Avenue NW. 202/295-2400.

Young and successful

Gregory Douglass, at 22, has a string of successful CD releases and tours behind him and is being compared to Jeff Buckley and Tori Amos. He brings his music to Jammin’ Java on Tuesday. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $10. 231 Maple Ave., Vienna. 703/255-1566

Latin queen

The “queen of Latin pop,” Gloria Estefan, is back after an eight-year hiatus. The “Live and Re-Wrapped” tour features Miss Estefan performing some of her greatest hits along with new tracks from her album, “Unwrapped.” The Grammy-winning artist plays the MCI Center on Wednesday. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $40.50 to $86. Seventh and F streets NW. 202/432-SEAT.

Holiday with the NSO

Labor Day weekend in Washington means barbecues, last minute school shopping, and the National Symphony Orchestra’s annual free concert on the West Lawn of the Capitol. This year’s concert focuses on popular American music and will once again be led by NSO associate conductor Emil de Cou. Arrive early if you want a good seat on the lawn. The concert begins at 8 p.m. on Sunday. E. Capitol and First street, NE. 202/225-6827.

A different shade of fall

The Del Ray Artisan Gallery’s all-member exhibit is “Fresh for Fall.” The show will feature work by several new members along with seasoned professionals. While the exhibit officially opens on Sept. 10, the gallery is offering a sneak peek tonight as part of Del Ray’s final “First Thursday” event for 2004. Viewing times are 6 to 9 p.m. Free admission. 2704 Mt. Vernon Ave., Alexandria. 703/317-9340.

No baking required

Made up of four guys from California, Cake mixes funk with hip-hop, country, jazz and guitar rock. The group became the face of ‘90s geek-rock after the hit, “The Distance,” sold millions. Set to release its fifth album in October, the quartet hits the road to show off some of the new tunes. They play the Merriweather Post Pavilion on Saturday. The gates open at 5 p.m. Tickets are $10. 10475 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia, Md. 202/432-SEAT.

Up and coming

From the indie “it” boy to a short-lived record label relationship, Ben Arnold has been on both ends of the musical spectrum. Now back as an independent artist, the Philadelphia singer-songwriter is hoping to get back onto the charts with his newest release, “Calico.” He plays Iota on Sunday. The tunes begin at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10. 2832 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. 703/522-8340.

Kennedy Street celebrates

You could call it a block party, but it’s meant for everyone. Sunday’s fourth annual Kennedy Street Festival, sponsored by the New Sewell Music Conservatory, offers music by the conservatory faculty and the Pocket Band and dance performances by the Twinkle Toes Dance Company — along with health screenings, food and children’s activities such as face painting and balloon fun. The point is to foster a better community in Petworth. Join the neighbors on Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. on Kennedy Street NW between Seventh and Eighth streets. For further information, call 202/722-5361.

Thomas Walter

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