Nana Danso Abiam resigned as director of the Ghanaian National Symphony Orchestra when his proposal to substitute traditional instruments for violins, cellos, and the like was rejected. Abiam studied music at the University of Ghana and in the U.K., then recruited 30 musicians from all over his West African homeland to form the Accra-based Pan African Orchestra of Ghana. On its 1995 debut, Opus 1, recorded on Peter Gabriel’s RealWorld label, the orchestra uses antenteben and wia flutes, xylophonelike gyiles, lutelike koras, one-string fiddlelike gonjes, and a variety of folkloric drums, gongs, bells, and horns to beget themes that are alternately soothing and noisily percussive. Tonight’s program will include some of that material plus more pop-rooted compositions, such as Abiam’s rearrangements of highlife rock by Ghanaian band Osibisa and Afrobeat by the recently deceased Nigerian, Fela Kuti. At 7:30 p.m. at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater. $15. (202) 467-4600. (Steve Kiviat)