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There is a retro quality to the“avant-garde” work of Etienne Rolin, the Franco-American composer: His compositions, primarily saxophone-based, are one part John Coltrane but two parts late-’50s Greenwich Village beat. Yet those willing to ride the high planes of improvisation might appreciate his collaborative performance with fellow sax player Russell Peterson and dancer Angela Allyn. The renaissance artist also picks up a brush, and his paintings are currently on display at La Maison Francaise; his show is tonight at 8 p.m. at the Embassy of France, 4101 Reservoir Rd. NW. $10. (301) 309-6843. (TJ Edwards)