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This week, when our region may or may not feel the effects of a coming polar vortex, you can jam out to some good ol’ dad rock, enjoy the musical stylings of a local hip-hop connoisseur, and see an emotional tale of friendship between a girl and her donkey. Read to the bottom for theater deals for furloughed feds and the latest in arts happenings and ticket sales. —Kayla Randall


GusterThe last time I saw Guster in concert, a photographer in search of the perfect shot kicked my gin and tonic off the bar and spilled it all over my arm. And yet in that moment of cold stickiness, I could not muster up any anger, for Guster shows are inherently happy places. For more than 25 years, original members Adam Gardner, Ryan Miller, and Brian Rosenworcel (multi- instrumentalist Luke Reynolds joined them in 2010) have performed percussive, lo-fi sing-alongs that in the late ’90s would have been called “college rock” and would now unfortunately be labeled “dad rock,” and aging audiences still scream and dance to make their affection known. Read more>>> Guster perform with Henry Jamison at 8 p.m. at 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. $37. (202) 265-0930. 930.com. (Caroline Jones)

Montana bluegrass band The Lil Smokies perform at Union Stage. 8 p.m. at 740 Water St. SW. $17–$25.

The Howard Theatre hosts a performance from ’90s R&B favorite Jon B. 7:30 p.m. at 620 T St. NW. $26.50–$65. 

D.C.-based alt-country band The Walkaways perform at Pearl Street Warehouse. 8 p.m. at 33 Pearl St. SW. $10–$12.


KokayiWhen the Kennedy Center launched its Hip Hop Culture Council last year, it was an overdue acknowledgment of a culture that continues to leave an indelible mark on America and the world. Since then, the Kennedy Center has hosted hip-hop dance parties, film screenings, innovative theater works, and, of course, concerts, with a premium on performances that create “bridges between artists, audiences, and beyond.” Its latest features D.C.’s own Kokayi, a multi-talented musician who has spent years exploring the infinite permutations and possibilities of African diasporic music, be it hip-hop, jazz, soul, or go-go. Read more>>> Kokayi performs at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. at the Kennedy Center Terrace Gallery, 2700 F St. NW. $20–$25. (202) 467-4600. kennedy-center.org. (Chris Kelly)

Philadelphia jam band The Disco Biscuits perform at The Anthem. 7:30 p.m. at 901 Wharf St. SW. $40–$95.

DC9 hosts a performance from prolific Canadian musician, poet, and visual artist Daniel Romano. 8 p.m. at 1940 9th St. NW. $15.

Funk icons Nile Rodgers & CHIC perform at The Theater at MGM National Harbor. 8 p.m. at 101 MGM National Ave., Oxon Hill. $89.50.


Au Hasard BalthazarJanuary means “Janimals” at Mount Pleasant’s independent movie theater Suns Cinema, but this doesn’t just mean your beloved pets—there’s more to it than programs devoted to cats, dogs, and parrots. Director Robert Bresson’s 1966 drama Au Hasard Balthazar follows the life of Balthazar from birth to death, making it a kind of precursor to Richard Linklater’s Boyhood—except this coming-of-age story is told from the point of view of a donkey. Read more>>> The film screens at 7 p.m. at Suns Cinema, 3107 Mount Pleasant St. NW. $10. sunscinema.com. (Pat Padua)

Singer-songwriter Neko Case, known for both her solo work and her work in the indie band The New Pornographers, performs at The Lincoln Theatre. 8 p.m. at 1215 U St. NW. $46.

One More Page Books hosts local young adult author Olivia Hinebaugh to celebrate the launch of her contemporary debut novel The Birds, The Bees, and You and Me. 2 p.m. at 2200 N. Westmoreland St., Arlington. Free.

DJ Gryffin performs a set at Soundcheck. 9 p.m. at 1420 K St. NW. $20–$25.


Stephen A. Geppi Collection of Comics and Graphic ArtsThe shutdown has not closed the Library of Congress and has not stopped Captain America either. Entrepreneur Stephen A. Geppi is the founder of Diamond Comic Distributors, the largest distributor of comic books, graphic novels, and related collectables to comic book shops in North America. Fortunately for the nation’s library, Geppi donated more than 3,000 items from his personal collection, including the comics and other artifacts of pop culture history he loves, after he closed his Baltimore museum last year. Read more>>> The exhibition is on view to Feb. 11 at the Library of Congress Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. SE. Free. (202) 707-4604. loc.gov. (Ian Thal)

Author and former domestic worker Stephanie Land speaks at Politics and Prose about her book Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive, a first-hand account of life lived below the poverty line. 7 p.m. at 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free.

Washington Performing Arts’ Mars Urban Arts Initiative presents prodigious young Latin jazz artist José André Montaño, who previously appeared at the Kennedy Center with Jason Moran, and his trio, as part of a season-long series of events showcasing Latinx artists who live in D.C. 6 p.m. at 2700 F St. NW. Free.

Philadelphia indie rock band Thin Lips perform at Songbyrd Music House. 8 p.m. at 2477 18th St. NW. $10–$12.


HarlequinadeThe penniless, motley-dressed Harlequin attempts to run off with his sweetheart Columbine over the objections of her father, Cassandre, who has another suitor in mind, and his melancholy servant Pierrot. Thankfully, Harlequin’s agility and fairy protector ensure that love conquers all and he won’t be penniless forever. Commedia dell’arte, broadly improvised masked comedy, may have originated in 16th century Italy, but like classical mythology, it continues to inspire artists no matter their medium. Read more>>> The ballet runs to Feb. 3 at the Kennedy Center Opera House, 2700 F St. NW. $39–$199. (202) 467-4600. kennedy-center.org. (Ian Thal)

Come see random strangers’ home movies along with gems from the DC Public Library vault at Suns Cinema. 8 p.m. at 3107 Mount Pleasant St. NW. Free.

The Kennedy Center Millennium Stage hosts Voices of Change: Mars Urban Arts Initiative Spoken Word Showcase, an evening of spoken word presented by Washington Performing Arts and Rise, featuring special appearances from Nobel Peace Prize nominee and Rise founder Amanda Nguyen, Purify Love, and students from Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School. 6 p.m. at 2700 F St. NW. Free.

Memphis rapper Young Dolph performs at The Fillmore Silver Spring. 8 p.m. at 8656 Colesville Road, Silver Spring. $29.50.


Nederlands Dans Theater 2For nearly a decade, one of the world’s best modern dance troupes never came to Washington, frequently performing in New York but somehow skipping D.C. in favor of university arts hubs like Chapel Hill. If you missed Nederlands Dans Theater’s long-awaited performance at the Kennedy Center last year, pile on the Green Line this Wednesday and get yourself to College Park to catch NDT 2, the junior dance troupe of the famed Dutch company. Read more>>> The show begins at 8 p.m. at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, 8270 Alumni Drive, College Park. $10–40. (301) 405-2787. theclarice.umd.edu. (Rebecca J. Ritzel)

Celtic bop-making rock band Gaelic Storm perform at The Birchmere. 7:30 p.m. at 3701 Mount Vernon Ave., Alexandria. $35.

Soul vocalist and Strathmore artist-in-residence Dante’ Pope performs at The Mansion at Strathmore. 7:30 p.m. at 10701 Rockville Pike, North Bethesda. $17.

The Barns at Wolf Trap celebrates International Guitar Night, featuring performances from four global guitar masters: Luca Stricagnoli, Antoine Boyer, Samuelito, and Cenk Erdogan. 8 p.m. at 1635 Trap Road, Vienna. $27–$30.


The Brothers SizePlaywright Tarell Alvin McCraney’s stories about black relationships ooze a rare and raw sincerity. He was born and raised in Liberty City, Florida, and his experiences growing up there as a black gay man shaped what would become Moonlight, the 2016 film he co-wrote that won the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay and is based on his own play, In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue. But before Moonlight, there was The Brothers Size, a 2007 gem of a play. Read more>>> The show runs to Feb. 24 at 1st Stage, 1524 Spring Hill Road, Tysons. $15–$39. (703) 854-1856. 1ststagetysons.org. (Kayla Randall)

Gulf Coast pop singer-songwriter Elley Duhé performs at Songbyrd Music House. 8 p.m. at 2477 18th St. NW. $10–$12.

The University of Maryland Center for Art and Knowledge at The Phillips Collection hosts a conversation between D.C. artist Renée Stout, who uses found objects, African symbols, remnants of stories and letters, and vintage photographs in her art, and Vesela Sretenović, senior curator of modern and contemporary art at the museum. 6:30 p.m. at Hillyer Court behind 1600 21st St. NW. $12.

Experimental indie rock artist Amen Dunes performs at 9:30 Club. 10 p.m. at 815 V St. NW. $20.


News: Hey, D.C.! Here’s your chance to ask us your burning questions.

News: Federal employees, be they essential or furloughed, can use their IDs to claim discounted theater tickets.

  • Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company is offering feds 15 percent off seats to its upcoming run of BLKS, opening Feb. 4, with the online code SHUTDOWN.
  • Studio Theatre is offering feds 20 percent off tickets to its production of Admissions, opening Jan. 16, with the online code DCisOPEN.

  • Herndon’s NextStop Theatre is offering furloughed workers 50 percent off weeknight tickets to its production of [title of show], running through Jan. 27, with the online code FED19.

  • Although the Kennedy Center receives some federal funding, performances will continue as scheduled. Check out free shows every day at 6 p.m. on the Millennium Stage.

Film: The Iranian Film Festival enters its 23rd year with a diverse glimpse of Iran’s film scene.

Museums and Galleries: At the Arlington Arts Center, a strong showing of fiber.

Books: The perils of a literary pursuit are harrowing in Juliet LapidosTalent.

Theater: Studio Theatre’s Admissions looks for humor in white guilt.

Theater: Pointless Theatre’s Visions of Love presents Charlie Chaplin in three dimensions.


Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. for R&B and soul veteran Erykah Badu, performing at The Anthem on March 16, 2019. 8 p.m. at 901 Wharf St. SW. $75–$145.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. for Japanese instrumental rock band Mono, performing at Union Stage on May 23, 2019. 8 p.m. at 740 Water St. SW. $15–$30.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. for folk singer-songwriter Jessica Pratt, performing at The Miracle Theatre on May 17, 2019. 8 p.m. at 535 8th St. SE. $15.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. for indie rock musician Stephen Malkmus, performing at Union Stage on May 5, 2019. 8 p.m. at 740 Water St. SW. $30–$45.

Tickets go on sale at 12 p.m. for Remember Jones: Back to Back to Black—A Tribute to Amy Winehouse, at Union Stage on March 14, 2019. 9 p.m. at 740 Water St. SW. $15–$30.

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