Get a head start on Valentine’s Day by seeing an Americana treasure live at The Anthem, taking in a dance work that finds common ground with Jewish and Arab culture, and celebrating the prestigious black dance company Alvin Ailey Dance Theater’s 60th anniversary. Check out the latest in arts news, reviews, and ticket sales at the bottom of this newsletter. —Kayla Randall


Lucinda WilliamsWhen is the last time you’ve listened to Lucinda Williams? Not the last time you heard one of her tunes, but really sat down to listen to 1998’s stellar Car Wheels on a Gravel Road or her timeless 1988 self-titled album? If you have listened recently, then you know, but if you haven’t then you might have forgotten: Lucinda Williams is a goddamned national treasure. Read more>>> Lucinda Williams performs with Drive-By Truckers at 8 p.m. at The Anthem, 901 Wharf St. SW. $40–$75. (202) 888-0020. (Matt Cohen)

Folk singer Arlo Guthrie brings his new Alice’s Restaurant tour to The Birchmere. 7:30 p.m. at 3701 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria. $65.

Grammy-nominated rapper Slick Rick performs at The Howard Theatre. 9 p.m. at 620 T St. NW. $27.50–$60.

Seminal South African choral group Ladysmith Black Mambazo performs at Music Center at Strathmore. 8 p.m. at 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda. $29–$69.


ZviDanceWith Dabke, Israeli-born choreographer Zvi Gotheiner set out to create an evening-length work that found common idioms in both Arab and Jewish folk dances. Hence, he gave it a title that translates to “the stomping of feet” in Arabic and is one vowel switch away from the comparable Hebrew term “debka.” Read more>>> The show runs to Feb. 10 at Dance Place, 3225 8th St. NE. $15–$30. (202) 269-1600. (Rebecca J. Ritzel)

Celebrate the Year of the Pig at the Kennedy Center, which hosts its KC Chinese New Year Family Day 2019, a day of Lunar New Year festivities and arts entertainment. 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at 2700 F St. NW. Free.

English musician Joe Jackson, of “Is She Really Going Out With Him?” fame, brings his Four Decade tour to The Lincoln Theatre. 8 p.m. at 1215 U St. NW. $55–$75.

Tennessee’s beloved bluesy, genre-blending singer Valerie June performs at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue. 8 p.m. at 600 I St. NW. $35–$38.


Alvin Ailey American Dance TheaterFor its 60th anniversary, the nation’s premier black dance company is presenting works that push its art in new directions. Its Sunday program features performances of Ronald K. Brown’s “The Call,” a mix of modern and African dance, and Wayne McGregor’s “Kairos,” which uses walls to create a dramatic world onstage. But it’s the company’s signature choreographic work, which debuted way back in 1960, before Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and before he delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech, that endures. Read more>>> The show begins at 1:30 p.m. at the Kennedy Center Opera House, 2700 F St. NW. $59–$219. (202) 467-4600. (Rebecca J. Ritzel) 

The Birchmere welcomes British singer and rapper Estelle, whose voice can be heard on the cartoon Steven Universe. 7:30 p.m. at 3701 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria. $29.50.

The Heiress, the tale of a plain girl whose hopes and dreams are awakened after an unexpected visit from a suitor, continues the first weekend of its run at Arena Stage. 7:30 p.m. at 1101 6th St. SW. $86–$105.

Union Stage hosts a seated record release show for acoustic guitar-playing folk singer Taylor Carson. 3:30 p.m. at 740 Water St. SW. $25.


Mark G. MeadowsThe ever-restless pianist Mark G. Meadows is a finely honed composer in his own right, but he is no less skilled in jazz repertory. For evidence, look no further than Signature Theatre, where Meadows is at the core of a revival of the revue Ain’t Misbehavin’: The Fats Waller Musical Show. Read more>>> Mark G. Meadows performs at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. at Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW. $20. (202) 337-4141. (Michael J. West)

Experimental pop artist Panda Bear performs at 9:30 Club. 7 p.m. at 815 V St. NW. $25.

Science writer Christie Aschwanden speaks at Politics and Prose about her new book, Good to Go, which combines her own experiences and the stories of other athletes to paint a more clear picture of the science behind athletics. 7 p.m. at 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free.

As part of its Broadway Center Stage series, the Kennedy Center hosts The Music Man, the classic musical about a traveling salesman who cons people out of their money. 7 p.m. at 2700 F St. NW. $69–$249.


YNW MellyAs far as breakthrough singles go, YNW Melly’s “Murder On My Mind” is an unlikely candidate. With a sparse, slowed-down beat powered by a simple piano melody, it certainly won’t get any parties started. The funereal production gets even more melancholy when YNW Melly, a 19-year-old rapper from Gifford, Florida, gets on the mic with his tales of jailhouse isolation, smoky self-medication and, most evocatively, a fictional account about accidentally murdering a friend and holding him until he dies. Read more>>> YNW Melly performs at 8 p.m. at Union Stage, 740 Water St. SW. $18–$35. (877) 987-6487. (Chris Kelly)

Summer Salt, a band which deems itself “coral reef rock” and blends bossa nova grooves and ’60s pop, perform at MilkBoy ArtHouse. 8 p.m. at 7416 Baltimore Ave., College Park. $16–$18.

Pearl Street Warehouse hosts country anthem-maker Elise Davis, as part of the Smithsonian Year of Music series. 8 p.m. at 33 Pearl St. SW. $13.

Kramerbooks hosts a rosé tasting featuring wines from around the world. 6 p.m. at 1517 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free.


Putney SwopeRibald and irreverent, Robert Downey Sr.’s 1969 advertising firm satire Putney Swope is a counterculture touchstone that has influenced everyone from the Coen brothers to Chris Rock. The movie charts the rise of the titular character (Arnold Johnson, his voice dubbed by Downey), the only African-American person on the board of a prestigious but stodgy advertising firm. Read more>>> The film screens at 8:30 p.m. at Suns Cinema, 3107 Mount Pleasant St. NW. $8. (Pat Padua)

California rock band Cherry Glazerr performs at U Street Music Hall. 7 p.m. at 1115 U St. NW. $20.

DC9 hosts a night of drinking and dancing to celebrate its 15th anniversary. 5 p.m. at 1940 9th St. NW. Free.

Latin pop singer David Bisbal performs at The Fillmore Silver Spring. 8 p.m. at 8656 Colesville Road, Silver Spring. $22.50–$45.


NeoArcticScientists have yet to agree on a precise beginning for the Anthropocene epoch—the era in which human activity has significantly impacted the planet’s ecology. Some have argued the beginning was the prehistoric agricultural revolution and others have suggested the Manhattan Project’s 1945 Trinity test. However, artists are already envisioning the future that scientific consensus says we are rapidly approaching. In NeoArctic, a collaboration between Denmark’s artistic incubator Hotel Pro Forma and the Latvian Radio Choir, 12 songs cover 12 landscapes to convey eco-tourists traveling through a Northwest Passage reshaped by the climate change and species loss that our increasingly urbanized and digitized lifestyle has caused. Read more>>> The show runs to Feb. 16 at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater, 2700 F St. NW. $35–$49. (202) 467-4600. (Ian Thal)

City Winery hosts an evening with talented acoustic guitarists Andy McKee and Trevor Gordon Hall. 8 p.m. at 1350 Okie St. NE. $20–$30.

Beirut, a band which deftly combines rock and world music, perform at The Anthem. 8 p.m. at 901 Wharf St. SW. $41–$76.

Buzzy indie rock band Valley Queen performs at Songbyrd. 8 p.m. at 2477 18th St. NW. $12–$14.


Film: Short Change—reviews of 2019 Oscar nominated short films.

Museums and Galleries: To be a negro in this country is really never to be looked at is required viewing in D.C.

Museums and Galleries: Remembering revered D.C. artist Michael B. Platt.

Museums and Galleries: Cairn Sounds answers the question: Why do we so badly want to be remembered?

Performance: I can’t stop watching this Ivanka Trump lookalike vacuum up breadcrumbs.

Theater: Signature’s Ain’t Misbehavin’ is a revue every music and musical lover can enjoy.

Music: Longtime go-go star Donell Floyd is preparing to retire.

Music: DJ Kool was pleasantly surprised to learn his song was played during the Super Bowl.

Music: On his new album, Reginald Cyntje soundtracks the resistance.


Tickets go on sale at 12 p.m. for electropop teen singer-songwriter Billie Eilish, performing at The Anthem on June 20, 2019. 7:30 p.m. at 901 Wharf St. SW. $55.19–$240.19.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. for Roy Blair, indie artist and affiliate of hip-hop collective Brockhampton, who brings his Cat Heaven USA tour to Union Stage on April 11, 2019. 7:30 p.m. at 740 Water St. SW. $17–$30.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. for funk band Scary Pockets, performing at Union Stage on April 14, 2019. 7:30 p.m. at 740 Water St. SW. $20–$40.

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