Have an arts-related event? Best to mail your information to: Metro Weekly, 1012 14th St, NW; Suite #209; Washington, DC 20005; fax it to (202) 638-6831, e-mail . Phone with questions only: (202) 638-6830.
The contemporary Irish arts organization Solas Nua presents a free, one-night-only screening of Frank Berry's film Ballymun Lullaby as part of its Irish Popcorn! screening series. A film about a music teacher who corrals kids to praise their Dublin housing project in advance of its demolition, the British newspaper the Sunday Independent called it ''a towering musical tribute'' to gentrification. Monday, May 20, at 7 p.m. The lobby of the Renaissance Washington, DC Dupont Circle Hotel, 1143 New Hampshire Ave. NW. Free. Visit solasnua.org
SCATTER MY ASHES AT BERGDORF'S
Matthew Miele's documentary offers a chronicle of the Manhattan landmark and iconic high-end department store Bergdorf Goodman's and features interviews with, among others, Karl Lagerfeld, Vera Wang, Marc Jacobs and Diane von Furstenberg. Opens Friday, May 17. Area theaters. Visit fandango.com.
STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS
J.J. Abrams returns to the USS Enterprise for a victory lap before switching his nerd allegiances to Star Wars. Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto and Zoë Saldana star in this caper investigating an act of terrorism within Starfleet's own ranks. Opens Friday, May 17. Area theaters. Visit fandango.com.
Tana Hicken stars in Amy Herzog's play about a 21-year-old neo-hippie who, following his girlfriend's death, seeks refuge in the Greenwich Village apartment of his 91-year-old leftist grandmother. Studio's former longtime artistic director Joy Zinoman returns to direct the show starring local stage veteran Tana Hicken, who is threatening this may be her swan song, and Grant Harrison. Closes this Sunday, May 19. Studio Theatre, 14th & P Streets NW. Call 202-332-3300 or visit studiotheatre.org.
A man rises and falls as a hero on account of his inflexible self-belief and contempt for popular rule, and then seeks revenge against the Romans who banished him. Gee, sounds like House of Cards, but it is in fact Shakespeare. David Muse directs a large cast led by Patrick Page in the title role. Running in repertory with Wallenstein to June 2. Sidney Harman Hall, Harman Center for the Arts, 610 F St. NW. Call 202-547-1122 or visit shakespearetheatre.org.
DC-7: THE ROBERTO CLEMENTE STORY
GALA Hispanic Theatre presents Luis Caballero's bilingual musical based on the life of Roberto Clemente, who went from the barrios of Puerto Rico to a successful run with the Pittsburgh Pirates to a fateful flight delivering humanitarian aid in Nicaragua. Caballero directs the production with musical assist from Didier Prossaird of the salsa band Sin Miedo with choreography by Luis Salgado. To May 26. GALA Theatre at Tivoli Square, 3333 14th St. NW. Tickets are $20 to $42. Call 202-234-7174 or visit galatheatre.org.
When a novelist dies mid-sentence, his typist continues to take dictation -- creating concern among the novelist's wife, publisher and the general public. John Vreeke directs Michael Hollinger's play, inspired by Henry James and his typist Theodora Bosanquet, with a strong cast including Paul Morella and Helen Hedman and what has been called a groundbreaking tour de force performance by Susan Lynskey. To June 2. MetroStage, 1201 North Royal St., Alexandria. Call 800-494-8497 or visit metrostage.org.
Part god, part man, King Gilgamesh goes on an epic quest for immortality in the latest show in Constellation Theatre Company's seasonal focus on heroes. As conceived by dramaturg Chad Garcia, Gilgamesh features poetry by the Pulitzer Prize-winning Yusef Komunyakaa and music by the Helen Hayes-winning eclectic new age local musician Tom Teasley. Constellation's Allison Arkell Stockman directs. To June 2. Source, 1835 14th St. NW. Tickets $50. Call 202-204-7760 or visit constellationtheatre.org.
OPTIMISM! OR VOLTAIRE'S CANDIDE
Spooky Action Theater presents TJ Edwards' wild romp of an adaptation -- complete with rhyming couplets -- of Voltaire's Candide. Michael Chamberlin directs nine actors playing over 70 roles as our hero is propelled by a kiss to pursue the best of all possible worlds -- come war, earthquake and the Spanish Inquisition. Closes this Sunday, May 19. Universalist National Memorial Church, 1810 16th St. NW. Tickets are $20 to $25. Call 202-248-0301 or visit spookyaction.org.
OTHER DESERT CITIES
Arena Stage presents this drama that tells the story of a woman's return home after a six-year absence. Written by Jon Robin Baitz, best known for ABC's Brothers & Sisters, the story pivots on the woman's upcoming memoir, which threatens to revive the most painful chapter of her family's history. Some secrets cannot stay buried forever. Kyle Donnelly directs. To May 26. Mead Center for American Theater, 1101 6th St. SW. Call 202-488-3300 or visit arenastage.org.
SPANK! THE FIFTY SHADES PARODY
Later this year Chelsea Handler is expected to publish the parody 50 Shades of Chartreuse: This Time It's Personal. But next week, comes a stage parody of Fifty Shades of Grey, what is billed as a hilarious musical that brings all the naughty fun of E.L. James's book to life -- but without her or her publisher's permission, of course. Wednesday, May 22, through Saturday, May 25, at 7 p.m. Also Friday, May 24, and Saturday, May 25, at 10 p.m. Fillmore Silver Spring, 8656 Colesville Road, Silver Spring. Tickets are $29.50 to $39.50. Call 301.960.9999 or visit fillmoresilverspring.com.
THE ELDER STATESMAN
The Washington Stage Guild presents a production of T.S. Eliot's final play in its first D.C. production, as part of its Eliot canon. Bill Largess directs this moving story about an esteemed politician whose career is besmirched just as he retires from public life. Certainly sounds like a fail-safe play for Washington. Closes this Sunday, May 19. Undercroft Theatre of Mount Vernon United Methodist Church, 900 Massachusetts Ave. NW. Tickets are $40 to $50. Call 240-582-0050 or visit stageguild.org.
THE FULL MONTY
Keegan Theatre presents the Americanized musical stage version of the 1997 British film, with a book by Terrence McNally and a score by David Yazbeck. The musical follows a group of unemployed steelworkers desperately seeking employment -- until they hatch a plan to make money by stripping for the ladies. To June 1. Church Street Theater, 1742 Church St. NW. Tickets are $40. Call 703-892-0202 or visit keegantheatre.com.
No Rules Theatre Company, in residence at Shirlington's Signature Theatre, presents a stage adaptation by the company's Brian Sutow of the film Blind Date, about a couple who goes on a series of blind dates in an effort to save their marriage after the death of their daughter. Josh Hecht directs Anne Kanengeiser and Michael Kramer in the play, based on the films by the late Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh and Stanley Tucci and likened to the classic fiery tête-à-tête Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf. Closes this Saturday, May 18. Signature Theatre, 4200 Campbell Ave., Arlington. Tickets $30 to $40. Call 703-820-9771 or visit signature-theatre.org or norulestheatre.org.
Maryland's Olney Theatre steps outside of its usual, mass-appeal musical bent to present a play, and one with a gay angle at that. Jeff Talbott's The Submission focuses on a gay white playwright who makes up a fake identity to release a new play about an alcoholic black mother and her son -- and then has to hire someone to play the part after the play becomes a hit. What could possibly go wrong? The New York Times called Jeff Talbott's play ''a perky tale of racial pride and prejudice in the theatre.'' David Elliott directs Olney's production featuring Frank De Julio and Kellee Knighten Hough. Now to June 9. Olney Theatre Center, 2001 Olney-Sandy Spring Road, Olney, Md. Tickets are $32.50 to $65. Call 301-924-3400 or visit olneytheatre.org.
THE UNCLEAR FAMILY: A REPERTORY OF THREE PLAYS
The women-strong Pinky Swear Productions presents three plays, grouped into two programs, about what it means to be a family. The first program features two world premiere one-acts by local playwrights: Allyson Currin's Benched is about three mothers whose friendship becomes threatened, while Renee Calarco's Bleed, directed by Matt Ripa, involves the last round of a game that defines a husband and wife's marriage. The second program features Rachel Axler's Smudge, directed by Ryan Maxwell, exploring expectant parents' fears about what happens if an unborn child comes out…wrong. Closes this Sunday, May 19. The Writer's Center, 4508 Walsh St. Bethesda. Tickets to each program are $20. Call 301-654-8664 or visit pinkyswear-productions.com.
Lost lovers and unruly servants conspire in Shakespeare's beloved romantic comedy about unconditional, unrequited and undeserved love, now in a production at the Folger Theatre directed by Robert Richmond. To June 9. Folger Theatre, 201 East Capitol St. SE. Call 202-544-7077 or visit folger.edu.
Yes, you are seeing double, because there really are two productions of the Bard's popular music-filled rom-com, the second far wilder than the first. Maryland's Rude Mechanicals, whose name derives from another beloved Bard comedy A Midsummer Night's Dream, offers Maureen Shanahan's adulterated version, with the story moved to a music festival in the 1980s, centered on two pop stars who get separated after a freak tour bus accident. Patrons are encouraged to dress up in particular '80s-era rock star garb: ''Hip-Hop and R&B night'' Friday, May 17, and ''Superstars of Pop night'' Saturday, May 18. Both shows at 8 p.m. Howard County Center for the Arts, 8510 High Ridge Rd. Ellicott City, Md. Tickets are $12 first weekend, $15 second. Visit rudemechanicals.com.
The Shakespeare Theatre Company presents a newly commissioned adaptation and translation of Friedrich Schiller's drama, one of Germany's greatest dramatic works. Wallenstein follows the famous general Albrecht von Wallenstein at the height of his influence and power during the Thirty Years' War. Michael Kahn directs an ensemble cast led by Steve Pickering in the title role. Running in repertory with Coriolanus to June 2. Sidney Harman Hall, Harman Center for the Arts, 610 F St. NW. Call 202-547-1122 or visit shakespearetheatre.org.
BALTIMORE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Carlos Kalmar conducts the great moments from Prokofiev's intoxicating and impassioned ballet Romeo and Juliet, while pianist Jean-Philippe Collard joins to perform the rarely performed Piano Concerto No. 3 by Saint- Saëns. Thursday, May 23, at 8 p.m., and Friday, May 24, at 3 p.m. Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, 1212 Cathedral St., Baltimore. Also Saturday, May 25, at 8 p.m. Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda. Tickets are $29 to $91. Call 410-783-8000 or visit bsomusic.org.
BETTYE LAVETTE, BLIND BOYS OF ALABAMA
Technically, the legendary gospel group the Blind Boys of Alabama gets top billing for this concert at the Howard Theatre. But it's the great, hard-living soul singer Bettye Lavette who most appeals to us. Lavette has been incredibly forthcoming about her many dalliances with women, including in her recent memoir, and The New York Times wrote that she's basically second only to Aretha Franklin in influencing her generation -- and to think she's only now getting the credit she deserved decades ago when she started out in the business. Saturday, May 18, at 8 p.m. The Howard Theatre, 620 T St. NW. Tickets are $37.50 in advance, or $43 day-of show. Call 202-588-5595 or visit thehowardtheatre.com.
BOHEMIAN CAVERNS JAZZ ORCHESTRA
Every Monday night the 17-piece jazz orchestra performs a variety of music from the big band repertoire -- including pieces by Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Billy Strayhorn and Maria Schneider, plus originals from band members -- at its namesake venue. Founded by baritone saxophonist Brad Linde and club owner Omrao Brown, features some of D.C.'s best jazz musicians, including Linde and trumpeter Joe Herrera, who co-direct. Performances at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. every Monday night. Bohemian Caverns, 2001 11th St. NW. Tickets are $10. Call 202-299-0800 or visit bohemiancaverns.com.
DARCY JAMES ARGUE'S SECRET SOCIETY
A Swing Era-style 18-piece big band, which earned a Grammy nod for its record Infernal Machines, takes what it is billed as a ''steampunk-inspired attitude towards the traditional big band…[refashioning] this well-worn instrumentation into a cutting-edge ensemble.'' Definitely sounds intriguing. Saturday, May 18, at 8 p.m. Atlas Performing Arts Center, 1333 H St. NE. Tickets are $15 to $30. Call 202-399-7993 or visit atlasarts.org.
DJ LIL'E'S DIVAS DANCE PARTY
After repeated tweaks to her popular divas dance party, DJ lil'e (nee Erin Myers) reprises the last one at the 9:30 Club, a ''battle'' between Lady Gaga and Madonna -- and Boy Bands, from New Kids on the Block to Backstreet Boys to One Direction. It may not be much of a contest, but that of course is the point: It's all meant to be a fun night of pop, with all billed acts getting fair share of play. Saturday, May 18. Doors at 8 p.m. Nightclub 9:30, 815 V St. NW. Tickets are $15. Call 202-265-0930 or visit 930.com. Also visit 930.com/friends to sign up for the club's new Friends With Benefits rewards program offering exclusive deals and discounts on tickets, drinks and merchandise.
INTERNATIONAL CONTEMPORARY ENSEMBLE
John Adams conducts Schoenberg and Stravinsky plus the world premiere of a Library of Commission by this provocative ensemble, dedicated to reshaping the way music is created and experienced. Friday, May 24, at 8 p.m. Coolidge Auditorium in the Library of Congress's Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. SE. Tickets are free but required. Call 202-707-8000 or visit loc.gov/concerts.
KATHLEEN BATTLE, CYRUS CHESTNUT
The legendary, luminous soprano Kathleen Battle pays tribute to the songs and spirituals of her heritage in ''Underground Railroad,'' a concert with acclaimed pianist Cyrus Chestnut and the Heritage Signature Chorale exploring the road to freedom for African Americans, which was as long as it was musically rich. Saturday, May 18, at 8 p.m. Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda. Tickets are $55 to $95. Call 301-581-5100 or visit strathmore.org.
LADY LAMB THE BEEKEEPER
Something of a cross between Florence and the Machine and Mumford & Sons, with a little Feist and Bon Iver thrown in for even more appeal, 23-year-old Aly Spaltro's work under the alias Lady Lamb The Beekeeper is sweet and dramatic, tender folk and bombastic rock -- often in the same long song. Her debut album Ripely Pine reveals an impressive display of musicality, and something about the rich, eclectic instrumentation and the songs' dramatic buildups suggest she'll be even stronger live. Monday, May 20. Doors at 8 p.m. Black Cat Backstage, 1811 14th St. NW. Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 day of. Call 202-667-4490 or visit blackcatdc.com.
Fourteen years isn't a typical span worth celebrating, but then Macy Gray isn't your typical singer, either. And given flagging interest in the soul-pop singer's career even after an attempted boost via Dancing with the Stars, there probably would be even fewer seats filled if she were to wait another whole year to celebrate the 15th anniversary since her debut album On How Life Is. And so, Gray returns now to the Birchmere to sing through her 1999 studio album, the one with ''Do Something,'' ''Still,'' and of course the unforgettable song -- no matter how hard you might try -- ''I Try.'' Thursday, May 23, at 7:30 p.m. The Birchmere, 3701 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria. Tickets are $59.50. Call 703-549-7500 or visit birchmere.com.
MARY LOU WILLIAMS WOMEN IN JAZZ FESTIVAL
The 18th edition of the Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival, named after the late legendary jazz pianist/composer, features three evenings of star-studded performances of some of contemporary jazz's leading women. Thursday, May 16, offers the Tineke Postma Quartet and the Amina Claudine Myers Trio, plus a ''Bebop to Freebop'' concert featuring vocalists Sheila Jordan and Jay Clayton. Friday, May 17, brings the Helen Sung Quintet, vocal super-group Tillery -- featuring Rebecca Martin, Gretchen Parlato and Becca Stevens -- and Grammy-nominated violinist Regina Carter and her ensemble Reverse Thread. And Saturday, May 18, offers flutist Nicole Mitchell and her Ice Crystal quartet, Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocal champ Cecile McLorin and virtuosic drummer Cindy Blackman Santana and her ensemble Explorations. As always, Dee Dee Bridgewater hosts each nigh of the festival. Thursday, May 16, through Saturday, May 18, at 7 p.m. Kennedy Center Terrace Theater. Tickets are $38 for each night's performance. Call 202-467-4600 or visit kennedy-center.org.
NATIONAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA: TRIBUTE TO STEPHEN SCHWARTZ
NSO Pops Conductor Steven Reineke has lined up quite a bash to celebrate both the 65th birthday of Broadway composer Stephen Schwartz as well as the 10th anniversary of his blockbuster show Wicked. Former Wicked stars Jennifer Laura Thompson and Julia Murney, plus Jeremy Jordan (Newsies) and Norm Lewis (The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess), join the NSO and the Washington Chorus in a performance of hits from the Schwartz repertoire, including Broadway's Godspell and Pippin and Disney films Pochantas and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Why even Schwartz is expected to show up and tickle the ivories. How could any self-respecting showtunes queen skip this? Thursday, May 16, at 7 p.m. Also Friday, May 17, and Saturday, May 18, at 8 p.m. Kennedy Center Concert Hall. Tickets are $20 to $85. Call 202-467-4600 or visit kennedy-center.org.
PITBULL, MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS AT PREAKNESS INFIELDFEST
Before the 138th running of the Preakness Stakes comes performances, organized by IMP Productions, by Pitbull and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, plus Afrojack, Kristen and the Noise, Chevelle and Florida Georgia Line. Saturday, May 18. starting at 8 a.m. -- yes, that's a.m. Pimlico Race Course, 5201 Park Heights Ave. Tickets are $50 to $70. Baltimore. Call 877-206-8042 x300 or visit preakness.com.
SPECIAL AGENT GALACTICA
Local drag phenom Special Agent Galactica, aka the "pink-haired diva," performs a free bi-monthly happy hour show at Black Fox Lounge, singing with her "Very-Sexy-Cute-Boy" combo and offering some lip-sync favorites. Galactica is also joined by special guests. Friday, May 10, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Black Fox Lounge, 1723 Connecticut Ave. NW. Tickets are free. Call 202-483-1723 or visit blackfoxlounge.com.
One of the most popular American rock bands returns to Merriweather Post Pavilion for what is expected to be a hit parade, as well as selections from last year's Battle Born, which produced no hits -- in the U.S. anyway. Naturally The Killers, with a name derived from New Order, are still killing it in the U.K. Tickets on sale Friday, May 17, at 10 a.m. for Aug. 10 show at Merriweather Post Pavilion, 10475 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia, Md. Tickets are $35 to $125. Call 800-551-SEAT or visit merriweathermusic.com.
THE WASHINGTON CHORUS
''Comin' Up Shoutin''' is the name of this program lead by singer/songwriter Melanie DeMore that explores the rich sounds of the African-American heritage, as well as the centuries-old art of Gullah stick-pounding. Sunday, May 19, at 5 p.m. National Presbyterian Church, 4101 Nebraska Ave. NW. Tickets are $25 to $35. Call 202-429-2121 or visit the washingtonchorus.org.
TODD TERRY AT U STREET MUSIC HALL
Red Fridays presents a night featuring house legend Todd Terry that'll no doubt be as you might remember the New York DJ/producer's name through his remix of ''I'll House You'' by the Jungle Brothers or, even better, ''Missing'' by Everything but the Girl. (Or Annie Lennox's ''Little Bird.'' Or Snap!'s ''Rhythm Is A Dancer.'' Or…) And then there were his own '90s club hits ''Something Goin' On'' and ''Keep on Jumpin''' – both featuring great vocals by house divas Jocelyn Brown and Martha Wash. If I haven't convinced you of the need to go to U Street Music Hall this Friday, May 24, well, then stick to your Skrillex noise and let us househeads savor quality dance tunes in peace. Friday, May 24, at 10 p.m. U Street Music Hall, 1115A U St. NW. Cover is $10. Call 202-588-1880 or visit ustreetmusichall.com.
TOMMY CECIL, BILL MAYS
Side by Side (Sondheim Duos) features many of the gems you know and love from Stephen Sondheim musicals -- ''Not While I'm Around,'' ''Broadway Baby,'' ''Anyone Can Whistle'' -- but reinterpreted as jazz tunes by these two respected jazzmen, a bassist and pianist. Tuesday, May 21, at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW. Tickets are $25, plus $10 minimum purchase. Call 202-337-4141 or visit bluesalley.com.
20TH CONCERT FOR LIFE: AN AIDS BENEFIT
''Looking Back, Living Forward'' is the focus of this year's benefit for various AIDS charities, featuring an array of popular local singers led by Foundry's Music Director Stanley J. Thurston. The recital features a variety of music, and the audience is encouraged to sing along. Friday, May 17, at 8 p.m. Foundry United Methodist Church, 16th and P Streets NW. Concert tickets are $25, or $75 for concert and a post-show dessert reception. Call 202-332-4010 ext. 606 or visit concertforlife.org.
The popular German cabaret and jazz singer Ute Lemper offers her interpretations of songs by Weill, Piazzola, Piaf, Brel and more in ''Last Tango in Berlin.'' Saturday, May 18, at 8 p.m. Sixth & I Historic Synagogue. 600 I St. NW. Tickets are $40. Call 202-408-3100 or visit sixthandi.org.
WASHINGTON NATIONAL OPERA'S SHOWBOAT
The WNO's artistic director Francesca Zambello directs an opera version of Broadway's original masterpiece by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II. This is a big-budget co-production with opera companies in Chicago, San Francisco and Houston. When it was in Chicago, the Chicago Tribune raved it was a "joyous, beautifully mounted entertainment [that] should keep rolling along for a long while to come." To May 26. Kennedy Center Opera House. Tickets are $25 to $270. There will also be a free simulcast of the production as part of M&M's Opera in the Outfield series Saturday, May 18, at 7 p.m. Nationals Park, 1500 South Capitol St. NE. Call 202-467-4600 or visit kennedy-center.org.
CHRISTOPHER K. MORGAN & ARTISTS, SKYBETTER AND ASSOCIATES
Gay choreographer Christopher K. Morgan and his dance company teams up with New York-based skybetter and associates for a contemporary dance show employing sinuous and abstract movement. The Kennedy Center co-presents the production. Saturday, May 18, at 8 p.m., and Sunday, May 19, at 7 p.m. Dance Place, 3225 8th St. NE. Tickets are $22. Call 202-269-1600 or visit danceplace.org.
VICKI LAWRENCE & MAMA
Emmy Award-winning comedian Vicki Lawrence returns to Annapolis's Rams Head on Stage for a show reviving her most endearing character to date, Thelma Harper, better known as the crotchety old star of the '80s TV show Mama's Family, spun off from the Carol Burnett Show. To think Lawrence was only 24 years old when she created the character. Saturday, May 18, at 8 p.m. Rams Head On Stage, 33 West St., Annapolis. Tickets are $75, or $155 including dinner and unlimited drinks. Call 410-268-4545 or visit ramsheadonstage.com.
Richard Blanco was the first immigrant, the first Latino, the first openly gay person and the youngest person to be the U.S. inaugural poet when President Barack Obama tapped him earlier this year. He'll read from his poems in this event sponsored by Friends of the Library, Montgomery County and the Latino GLBT History Project. Friday, May 17, at 7:30 p.m., preceded by a reception. Rockville Library, 21 Maryland Ave. Rockville. Visit www.folmc.org.
BICE LAZZARI: SIGNATURE LINE
As part of the ''Year of Italian Culture'' initiative organized by the Italian government, the National Museum of Women in the Arts presents a selection of 25 paintings and drawings from one of Italy's most revered modern artists. Bice Lazzari, who died in 1981, faced much gender discrimination in her early years as an artist but persevered and eventually found success. Now to Sept. 22. National Museum of Women in the Arts, 1250 New York Ave NW. Admission is $10. Call 2020-783-5000 or visit nmwa.org.
The National Museum of American History, in collaboration with the National Museum of African American History and Culture, offers an exhibition celebrating two milestone moments in American civil rights history -- 1863's Emancipation Proclamation, and 1963's March on Washington. Through Sept. 15. National Museum of American History, 14th St. and Constitution Ave. NW. Call 202-633-1000 or visit americanhistory.si.edu.
DIAGHILEV AND THE BALLETS RUSSES
''Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes, 1909-1929: When Art Danced with Music'' showcases costumes, set designs, paintings, sculptures, prints and drawings, photographs and posters from the most innovative dance company of the 20th century. Now to Sept. 2. National Gallery of Art East Building, 3rd Street at Constitution Avenue NW. Call 202-737-4215 or visit nga.gov.
DOG FIGHTING: THE VOICELESS VICTIMS
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has created this exhibit, now at the Crime Museum, offering an inside look at the tools used by dogfighters, from treadmills to a "rape" stand to breaking sticks to a copy of Michael Vick's indictment papers, all seized during dogfighting raids by ASPCA. Clearly not for the faint of heart, the exhibit is also unquestionably important in raising awareness about the inhumane "sport" of dogfighting, still prevalent after the Vick raid. Through Sept. 2. The Crime Museum, 575 7th St. NW. Tickets are $15 online, or $21.95 at the museum. Call 202-393-1099 or visit crimemuseum.org.
DOMESTIC, WILD, DIVINE: ARTISTS LOOK AT ANIMALS
Drawn from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts' entire collection, this exhibition examines the way artists have responded to the significant but often enigmatic roles that animals have played in human life. Through Aug. 4. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 200 North Boulevard. Richmond, Va. Call 804-340-1400 or visit vmfa.state.va.us.
FRENCH DRAWINGS, WATERCOLORS AND PASTELS
Color, Line, Light: French Drawings, Watercolors and Pastels from Delacroix to Signac offers approximately 100 drawings and watercolors from the collection of American James T. Dyke. Artists represented include Monet, Degas and Cezanne in addition to Delacroix and Signac. Exhibit organized by the National Gallery of Art in association with the Musée des impressionnismes in Giverny, France. Through May 26. National Gallery of Art's West Building, 4th Street & Constitution Avenue NW. Call or visit nga.gov. GARDENS BY NIGHT: PHOTOGRAPHS BY DIANE COOK AND LEN JENSHEL Exploring the unexpectedly colorful world of gardens photographed during nighttime hours. Through Sept. 8. National Geographic Museum, 1145 17th St. NW. Call 202-857-7588 or visit ngmuseum.org.
GRAND PROCESSION: DOLLS FROM THE DIKER COLLECTION
"Grand Procession: Dolls from the Charles and Valerie Diker Collection" features the work of five female artists from Plains and Plateau tribes. The exhibition includes 23 colorful and meticulously detailed dolls originally created as both toys and teaching tools in their communities. Through Jan. 5. National Museum of the American Indian, Independence Avenue at 4th Street SW. Call 202-633-1000 or visit nmai.si.edu.
INVENTING A BETTER MOUSETRAP
Inventing a Better Mousetrap: Patent Models from the Rothschild Collection features 32 models illustrating the wide variety of 19th century patented inventions submitted by inventors from across the U.S. All the models on display come from the collection of Alan Rothschild, who has the largest private assemblage of American patent models. Through Nov. 3. Smithsonian American Art Museum's McEvoy Auditorium, Lower Level, 8th & F Streets NW. Free. Call 202-633-1000 or visit americanart.si.edu.
JENNIE C. JONES: HIGHER RESONANCE
The Hirshhorn Museum presents an immersive installation, featuring audio collages, paintings, sculptures and works on paper, that explores ''the physical residue of music,'' such as headphones and tapes, and reflects on the passage from analog to digital. Opens Thursday, May 16. Through Oct. 27. Hirshhorn Museum, Independence Avenue and Seventh Street SW. Call 202-633-1000 or visit hirshhorn.si.edu.
JULIE WOLFE: REWILDING
A show of works, based in painting, addressing human intrusions into the environment and wide-open perceptions of nature. Through May 18. Hemphill Fine Arts, 1515 14th St. NW. Call 202-234-5601 or visit hemphillfinearts.com.
KOEN VANMECHELEN: LEAVING PARADISE
Two living, breathing chickens have been imported to the U.S. and now take up roost at the Northeast art gallery Connersmith. The birds will be surrounded by photographs, sculptures and records documenting the work of this Belgian artist/activist and his efforts to breed chickens until they regain traits they lost over centuries of evolution and human intervention, such as flying. Through June 29. Connersmith, 1358 Florida Ave. NE. Call 202-588-8750 or visit connersmith.us.com.
LINCOLN AND LEADERSHIP
This special exhibition at Ford's Theatre explores the qualities of good leadership through the lens of some of Abraham Lincoln's key leadership principles, including courage, integrity, empathy, tolerance, equality and creativity. Through August. Second Floor Gallery at Ford's Theatre, 511 10th St. NW. Tickets are $20 to $52. Call 800-982-2787 or visit fordstheatre.org.
MARY MARGARET PIPKIN: WATERCOLORS
In celebration of Virginia Garden Month, the Athenaeum of Old Town Alexandria presents large-scale watercolors featuring colorful, sunlit-enchanted images of flowers and vegetation by this Virginia artist. The exhibition launched just before the Old Town Alexandria Historic Home and Garden Tour earlier in April. Through May 26. The Athenaeum, 201 Prince St., Alexandria. Call 703-548-0035 or visit nvfaa.org.
MID CITY ARTISTS' SPRING OPEN STUDIOS TOUR
Artists who are part of the 14th Street-centered Mid City Artists collaborative open their studios for the public to meet, learn, enjoy and buy art as part of this bi-annual event. The artists represented offer a range of work, from drawings to sculptures to photographs to mixed media, and include many of note to the LGBT community, among them Metro Weekly contributing illustrator Scott G. Brooks, plus Michael Crossett, Gary Fisher, Brian Petro and Colin Winterbottom. Saturday, May 18, and Sunday, May 19, from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Mid City corridor, from Dupont to Logan Circles and north to Florida Ave. NW. Free. Call 202-506-3056 or visit midcityartists.com.
ONE LIFE: AMELIA EARHART
The National Portrait Gallery presents this exhibition featuring portraits of the aviator in all artistic media, with a focus on her role in breaking barriers for women. Through May 27. National Portrait Gallery, 8th & F Streets. NW. Call 202-633-8300 or visit npg.si.edu.
NOBILITY AND NEWCOMERS IN RENAISSANCE IRELAND
Ireland wasn't just a country in conflict during the 16th and 17th centuries as often portrayed, including in Shakespeare's works. It was also a place of intermingling culture and adaptability – and a land of ideas and art – as documented in the Folger Shakespeare Library's latest exhibit, which focuses mainly on the Irish upper class. Closes this Sunday, May 19. Folger Great Hall, 201 East Capitol St. SE. Call 202-544-7077 or visit folger.edu.
OUT OF SOUTHEAST ASIA: ART THAT SUSTAINS
The Textile Museum presents historic textile artworks from its collection plus the work of four contemporary artists and designers, which demonstrates how contemporary artists are preserving the traditional arts even as they interpret them in new and innovative ways. Through October 13. The Textile Museum, 2320 S St. NW. Suggested donaton of $5. Call 202-667-0441 or visit textilemuseum.org.
PALACES FOR THE PEOPLE
"Palaces for the People: Guastavino and America's Great Public Spaces" pays tribute to Rafael Guastavino Sr., arguably one of the most influential architectural craftsmen working in America a century ago, designing tiles in New York's Grand Central Terminal, the Baird Auditorium of the National Museum of Natural History and the Washington National Cathedral, among other venues. Through Jan. 20. National Building Museum, 401 F St. NW. Call 202-272-2448 or visit nbm.org.
PICTURES IN THE PARLOR
After the introduction of photography in the 1840s, ordinary Americans were able to display art in their homes, something previously the preserve of the rich. Pictures in the Parlor features decorative images and collages from the Victorian era, all from the permanent collection of the Smithsonian. Through June 30. Smithsonian American Art Museum, 8th & F Streets NW. Call 202-633-1000 or visit americanart.si.edu.
POP ART AND BEYOND: TOM WESSELMANN
A survey of one of the leading figures in the vanguard of American Pop Art, who was famous for his "Great American Nude" series. Through July 28. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 200 North Boulevard. Richmond, Va. Call 804-340-1400 or visit vmfa.state.va.us.
THE ART OF STORYTELLING
Baltimore's great American Visionary Art Museum presents its 18th, yearlong exhibition, which explores the power of stories to inspire and enchant, spread lies or inform. The Art of Storytelling: Lies, Enchantment, Humor & Truth features visual narratives created by 30-plus artists, working in all manner of media, from sculpture to film to diorama, even embroidery. Through Sept. 1. American Visionary Art Museum, 800 Key Highway, Baltimore. Call 410-244-1900 or visit avam.org.
THE NEXT WAVE: INDUSTRIAL DESIGN INNOVATION
The Next Wave: Industrial Design Innovation in the 21st Century features products from local designers and retail stores selected, curator Douglas Burton of Apartment Zero tells Metro Weekly, based on "those I think are the most interesting or unusual, or have a great story." The exhibition is the centerpiece of the inaugural, multidisciplinary Washington, DC International Design Festival. Closes this Sunday, May 19. Artisphere, 1101 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. Call 703-875-1100 or visit artisphere.com.
WASHINGTON PROJECT FOR THE ARTS' OPTIONS 2013
You know how some people get lucky and discover artists before they become sensations, purchasing some original artwork for a fraction of what they're worth later? Well there's certainly no guarantee any of the 16 emerging and currently unrepresented regional artists at this 15th biennial exhibition will eventually garner fame and fortune, much less that of their artwork. But even if not you can still walk out with some one-of-a-kind art. And hey, no doubt at least some of your houseguests might mistake you for an art trendsetter. Through June 9. Arlington Arts Center, 3550 Wilson Blvd. Arlington. Call 703-248-6800 or visit arlingtonartscenter.org or wpadc.org.
WINDOW TO WASHINGTON
Window to Washington: The Kiplinger Collection at HSW is an exhibition at Washington's Carnegie Library that traces the development of the nation's capital from a sleepy Southern town to a modern metropolis, as documented through the works of artists. The Historical Society of Washington, D.C., exhibition was made possible by a donation from the Kiplinger family. It's also an early step in a reorganization effort by the society, which has struggled to revive ever since its short-lived effort a decade ago to run a City Museum of Washington proved far too ambitious. Exhibition on display now through May. Open Mondays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Thursdays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Historical Society of Washington, D.C., at the Carnegie Library, 801 K St. NW. Call 202-393-1420 or visit historydc.org ABOVE AND BEYOND
SOUNDBITES BENEFIT FOR DC CENTRAL KITCHEN
Subtitled ''Music*Food*Change,'' this block party outside the 9:30 Club is a benefit for the D.C. Central Kitchen, and features music twice over from Rich Morel -- once in his great rock band Deathfix, and again as a DJ, spinning his Hot Sauce-style tunes. Other local acts and DJs are on tap, but the real attraction is the food and drink, from a battle between some of D.C.'s best bartenders -- or mixologists, if you prefer -- to all-you-can-eat food samplings from hip area restaurants and food trucks. Among them: Cork Wine Bar, El Centro, H&Pizza, Jaleo, Rappahannock River Oysters and Sticky Fingers Bakery. Sunday, May 19, starting at 1 p.m. Outside the 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. Tickets are $40. Call 202-265-0930 or visit soundbitesdc.com.
RAINBOW MAMBO: GAY AND LESBIAN PRESENCE IN LATIN MUSIC
Jim Byers, host of WPFW 89.3 FM's Latin Flavor, has organized this presentation that will discuss the influence of LGBT individuals on Latin music, from contemporary stars Ricky Martin and Albita, to unsung pioneers such as singer Johnny Rodriguez and composer/pianist Julio Gutierrez. Andy Torres, an original cast member of the musical The Wiz, will be a discussion panelist. The lecture was intended to run as part of a full ''Metro Mambo'' series and in tandem with Capital Pride -- before Congressional sequestration made organizers scramble to make alternate plans with scraped-together funds from the Anacostia museum. Saturday, May 18, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum, 1901 Fort Place SE. Free but space is limited. Call 202-633-4866 or visit Anacostia.si.edu.