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If you moved to D.C. after 2011, you’ll be forgiven for assuming the carefully, colorfully painted cast iron details on the Woodward & Lothrop Building at 11th and G Streets NW are faithfully preserved relics of another century. It is true that the Beaux-Arts architecture of the building dominating that block dates back to 1887 at the earliest, and the swirling acanthus leaves and cherubic faces date to 1902. However, they haven’t weathered the years untouched. Initially, they were covered in monochromatic layers of paint that made seeing the ornate details a struggle. After Woodward & Lothrop folded in the mid-’90s, the Washington National Opera attempted to buy it and convert it into their new home, but the costs were overwhelming, and they sold the property to Douglas Development Corporation. That’s the group that fought to rezone it, rehabilitated and updated it for contemporary use, and—finally, at the start of this decade—repainted the cast iron. The paint job isn’t perfectly faithful to history, though it does use colors that were popular at the turn of the 20th century. That’s in line with the larger philosophy of the building in the 21st, though. It retains its historic character, but it’s been updated, and arguably improved, for contemporary life. —Emma Sarappo
El Gran Combo de Puerto RicoEl Gran Combo de Puerto Rico have changed members a lot since forming in 1962, but their methodology has not—this large ensemble wants the audience dancing to its horns and rhythm-section-led salsa sound. Guided by their former pianist, 93-year-old Rafael Ithier, these veteran entertainers know how to put on a show. They feature three vocalists who do choreographed Motown-like arm motions and foot slides while singing together or alternating in the lead singer role. The instrumentalists skillfully play together, propelling couples around the dance floor. Read more >>> El Gran Combo de Puerto Rico perform at 8 p.m. at The Howard Theatre, 620 T St. NW. $59.50–$65. (202) 803-2899. thehowardtheatre.com. (Steve Kiviat)
Mandy Patinkin‘s Diaries is a cabaret mashup of Broadway and American standbys. 8 p.m. at The National Theatre, 1321 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. $65–$229.
If you’re feeling nostalgic—or magical—the National Symphony Orchestra is accompanying a screening of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix with a live score. 7 p.m. at the Kennedy Center Opera House, 2700 F St. NW. $29–$99.
Miami Horror are making conceptual, electronic Shapes. 8 p.m. at 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. $25.
Nappy NappaNappy Nappa reps Southeast D.C. hard—you don’t describe yourself as the “Young Mumbo Sauce Prince” if you’re not a Washingtonian—but his music seems to have a higher plane of existence in mind. The 23-year-old is a prolific talent who has been releasing cosmic rap transmissions from the fringes of D.C.’s underground rap scene since his teens. Take two of his 2019 projects as an example of his range. At the top of the year, he dropped I Can’t Een Hold You: The Mixtape, his syllables tumbling forth over skittering drums and breezy woodwind samples in a way that recalled early decade cloud rap. Read more >>> Nappy Nappa performs at 8 p.m. at The Pocket, 1506 North Capitol St. NW. $10. (202) 643-7424. songbyrddc.com. (Chris Kelly)
Newmyer Flyer and friends take on the Herculean task of performing Joni Mitchell‘s Blue and Bob Dylan‘s Blood on the Tracks. 8 p.m. at The Barns at Wolf Trap, 1635 Trap Road, Vienna. $27–$31.
Atlanta singer-songwriter Berhana‘s genre-bending new record is getting a lot of buzz. 7 p.m. at U Street Music Hall, 1115 U St. NW. $20.
Keller Williams (the artist, not the real estate company) hosts his Thanksforgrassgiving concert as Keller & the Keels with help from Lindsay Lou. 8 p.m. at The Hamilton, 600 14th St. NW. $29–$35.
The Eric Byrd TrioIt’s as beloved and as perennial as any Yuletide staple, yet the music of A Charlie Brown Christmas doesn’t get the same kind of seasonal revival and reinterpretation that we expect from, say, The Nutcracker or A Christmas Carol. At least, it didn’t before the Eric Byrd Trio brought it out. The DMV jazz ensemble (pianist Byrd, bassist Bhagwan Khalsa, drummer Alphonso Young Jr.) took note of this strange void and decided to do something about it. Read more >>> The Eric Byrd Trio perform at 3 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. at The Hamilton, 600 14th St. NW. $14.75–$34.75. (202) 787-1000. thehamiltondc.com. (Michael J. West)
Tanya Tucker clearly wants to perform While [She’s] Livin’. 7:30 p.m. at The Birchmere, 3701 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria. $55.
Our Family Album explores how a family navigates their relationships in the context of the United States, the Philippines, war, colonization, and globalization. 2 p.m. at the National Gallery of Art, 4th Street and Constitution Avenue NW. Free.
Manchester Orchestra aren’t an orchestra—they’re an indie rock band who will play through the entirety of Mean Everything to Nothing. 7:30 p.m. at The Fillmore Silver Spring, 8656 Colesville Road, Silver Spring. $27.
Marcel Duchamp: The Barbara and Aaron Levine CollectionEvery once in a while, a museum pulls in a treasure trove that requires multiple shows to give it context. A promised donation of some 50 modern and contemporary artworks to the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden is one of those shows, since nearly three dozen of the works are by the mercurial maestro Marcel Duchamp. The gift from D.C. collectors Barbara and Aaron Levine places the Hirshhorn near the Philadelphia Museum of Art and Museum of Modern Art as preeminent American museums where Duchamp’s work can be found. Read more >>> The exhibition runs to Oct. 15, 2020 at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, 7th Street and Independence Avenue SW. Free. (202) 633-4674. hirshhorn.si.edu. (Kriston Capps)
Attend a staged reading of Defying Gravity, a look at the 1986 Challenger disaster through the perspective of teacher Christa McAuliffe. 7:30 p.m. at the National Academy of Sciences, 2101 Constitution Ave. NW. Free.
The National Cathedral will continue to honor Matthew Shepard with a dedication ceremony for a new memorial plaque. 7 p.m. at the Washington National Cathedral, 3101 Wisconsin Ave. NW. Free.
All the proceeds from Eric Rachmany‘s show will go to The Last Prisoner Project, which serves people incarcerated for nonviolent cannabis charges. 8 p.m. at Union Stage, 740 Water St. SW. $27.50–$92.50.
Dark World: Photographs by Frank Hallam DayDark World: Photographs by Frank Hallam Day collects images from several of the D.C.-based photographer’s ongoing nocturnal series—Bangkok phone booths gone to seed, recreational vehicles in the Florida gloom, monumental character balloons being prepared for the Macy’s Parade, and nighttime street scenes in Berlin and Manhattan. While many of these projects have been excerpted over the past decade-plus at Addison/Ripley Fine Art, the American University Museum’s retrospective for this self-styled “benign voyeur” harnesses its larger spaces and curved walls to impressive—if sometimes also depressive—effect. Read more >>> The exhibition runs to Dec. 15 at the American University Museum, 4400 Massachusetts Ave. NW. Free. (202) 885-1300. american.edu. (Louis Jacobson)
Artist Laure Prouvost discusses her practice with Hirshhorn assistant curator Betsy Johnson. 6:30 p.m. at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, 7th Street and Independence Avenue SW. Free.
Signature Theatre’s A Motown Christmas, featuring classic, groovy holiday tunes, kicks off its three-week run. 7:30 p.m. at Signature Theatre, 4200 Campbell Ave., Arlington. $38.
Contemporary UK jazz band Ezra Collective bring smooth sounds to U Street. 7 p.m. at U Street Music Hall, 1115 U St. NW. $20.
The MenzingersScranton, Pennsylvania’s The Menzingers were a pretty down-the-middle punk band when A Lesson in the Abuse of Information Technology dropped in 2007. They were angry, loud, fast, and at home among contemporaries like Against Me! and Propagandhi. In the years since, they have slowed down and matured. In fact, it’s hard to think of a band dealing with their own encroaching middle age through their music more explicitly than The Menzingers. Read more >>> The Menzingers perform at 7 p.m. at Black Cat, 1811 14th St. NW. $25. (202) 667-4490. blackcatdc.com. (Will Lennon)
Rock legend Debbie Harry discusses her new memoir Face It. 7 p.m. at Sixth & I, 600 I St. NW. $40–$55.
The Second City’s revue Love, Factually, back for 2019, begins its run this week. 8 p.m. at the Kennedy Center Theater Lab, 2700 F St. NW. $49–$79.
Local favorites Griefcat are ready to yowl the night away. 8 p.m. at DC9, 1940 9th St. NW. $12.
She & HimA Christmas Story notwithstanding, non-cringe-worthy holiday entertainment can be hard to come by. Most of it is corny or maudlin, while attempts at novelty often result in unbearable Portlandia-esque quirk or the Star Wars Holiday Special levels of absurdity. Thank goodness then for She & Him, the eminently sophisticated duo of Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward. The Trans-Siberian Orchestra, they are not. For the better part of the past decade, the two have brought elegance and style to well worn holiday standards; the duo manage to make “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” close to bearable. Read more >>> She & Him perform at 8 p.m. at The Anthem, 901 Wharf St. SW. $46–$76. (202) 888-0020. theanthemdc.com. (Matt Siblo)
Ronnie Spector and the Ronettes are bringing D.C. “The Best Christmas Party Ever.” 8 p.m. at The Barns at Wolf Trap, 1635 Trap Road, Vienna. $52.
Another Sky, a rising indie band from the UK, play underneath foreign skies. 8 p.m. at Pie Shop DC, 1339 H St. NE. $12–$15.
The stars of the first music reality TV show on a major network, O-Town, got the band back together in 2014 and have been jamming ever since. 8 p.m. at City Winery, 1350 Okie St. NE. $28–$38.
NEWS AND REVIEWS YOU CAN USE
News: Four artists discuss creating Metro murals and public art.
OFFICE OF FUTURE PLANNING
Tickets go on sale 10 a.m. Friday for Jocko Willink at the Warner Theatre on Jan. 6. 7:30 p.m. at 513 13th St. NW. Ticket prices to be announced at time of sale.
Tickets go on sale 10 a.m. Friday for Jacquees at The Fillmore Silver Spring on Feb. 21. 8 p.m. at 8656 Colesville Road, Silver Spring. Ticket prices to be announced at time of sale.