- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 14, 2008

Japan’s best

The Kennedy Center’s “Japan! Culture + Hyperculture” festival closes Feb. 17, but it’s still going strong: The performance art troupe Maywa Denki, which performs with robotic instruments, not only takes to the Millennium Stage at 6 p.m. Feb. 16 but shows off its instruments on the North Millennium Stage all day Feb. 14 and 15 and has demos to boot at 4 and 5 p.m. those days. And don’t forget the Anime Premiere Marathon, a screening of three new anime features in the Family Theater Feb. 17. For all remaining shows, see Theater, Stage/Performance Art/Robotics, Dance, Galleries, Classical Music and Lectures/Readings/Films.

Presidents’ Day and Washington’s birthday

Mount Vernon does Presidents’ Day just right with a three-day weekend celebration of George Washington’s 276th birthday. Visitors to the estate can breakfast with a Washington re-enactor on Feb. 16 and 17; watch a fife-and-drum-plus-farm-animals parade on Feb. 16, 17 and 18; and see a wreath laying at Washington’s tomb, followed by a performance and battle demonstrations on Feb. 18. And of course there’s the 61st Annual George Washington”s Birthnight Supper and Ball on Feb. 17, with tickets starting at $175. See Museums.

Lincoln’s retreat

After years of restoration by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Lincoln Cottage at the Soldiers’ Home opens to the public at 9:30 a.m. on Feb. 19. The 34-room Gothic Revival house was Lincoln’s refuge from Civil War Washington from 1862 to 1865. Audio-visual presentations and self-guided and interactive exhibits supplement the guided tours on the site of the Armed Forces Retirement Home at Eagle Gate, Rock Creek Church Road and Upshur Street NW. See Museums.

Feelin’ groovy

With one of the world’s most recognizable high-tenor voices and a secure niche in the rock pantheon, Art Garfunkel doesn’t have to worry that the world still thinks of him as the other half of Paul Simon. Mr. Garfunkel sings S&G; hits and selections from his latest recording tonight at 8 at The Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda. See Pop Music.

Fifty years flexible

Just a month shy of its 50th anniversary, the internationally acclaimed and always supple Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater returns to the Kennedy Center at 7 p.m. Feb. 19 for a six-day run in the Opera House, where its program will include its late founder’s own “Revelations.” See Dance.

Butterflies not free

The National Museum of Natural History’s long-awaited Butterfly Pavilion opens its doors Feb. 15. Visitors to the hot and humid 1,400-square-foot enclosure can watch more than 300 live butterflies toy with their favorite greenery. A companion exhibit, “Butterflies and Plants: Partners in Evolution,” is free, but entry to the flutter pavilion is timed, ticketed and costs $4.50 to $6. 10th Street and Constitution Avenue NW. 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. daily. See Museums.

All for love

They’re one day late for Valentine’s Day, but that’s trivial for the Folger Consort, whose material dates from the 13th century. Drop in on instrumentalists Robert Eisenstein, Christopher Kendall and Mary Springfels as they and soprano Johana Arnold make their way through “Seven Songs of Love” at the Folger Shakespeare Library Feb. 15, 16 and 17. 201 East Capitol St. NE. See Classical Music.

Boats ahoy

Captains real and aspiring can find more than 500 pleasure boats on display on more than nine acres at the 47th Annual Washington Boat Show, at the Washington Convention Center, 801 Mount Vernon Place NW, from Feb. 14 to 18. Along with the big beauties will be display booths with electronics, clothing, gadgets and other products, and kind advisers who can tell the old salts how to pay for their dreams. See Etc.

Choreographer plus

Choreographer Mark Morris does double — maybe even triple — duty at George Mason University’s Center for the Arts at 8 p.m. Feb. 15 and 16 as the Mark Morris Dance Group performs “Dido and Aeneas,” Purcell’s operatic retelling of the Aeneid. Mr. Morris not only choreographed the work but will conduct a chamber orchestra, chorus and vocal soloists. 4400 University Drive, Fairfax. See Dance.

Celebrating Washington’s music

Local musicians get their due at the State Theatre on Feb. 17 as the 22nd Annual Wammie Awards honors the year’s best performers. Taking the stage will be a bevy of standouts, among them the Billy Coulter Band, Mambo Sauce, Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer, the David Kitchen Band and more. Doors open at 7 p.m. at 220 N. Washington St., Falls Church. See Pop Music.


He’s one of the kings of blue-collar comedy, and he’s in town at the Warner Theatre, 13th and E streets NW, from Feb. 15 to 17. Larry the Cable Guy’s newest show, “Eat, Drink and Be Larry,” features fellow redneck standup Reno Collier. See Comedy.

Film and consciousness

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden’s newest show, opening Feb. 14, is so ambitious it needs two takes. “The Cinema Effect: Illusion, Reality and the Moving Image” explores contemporary moving-image art — film, video and digital works — to ask how cinema has blurred the line between illusion and reality. Part I, called “Dreams,” looks at film’s ability to take viewers out of their everyday lives into the darker recesses of the imagination. Once visitors have absorbed it all, they’ll go on to Part II, “Realisms,” beginning in June. Independence Avenue and Seventh Street SW. See Museums.

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