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Martin Mull once said that writing about music is like tap-dancing about architecture. Similarly, a pre-concert lecture about the music of the civil rights movement might seem a bit futile, especially when followed by the music itself. But whether you show up for the lecture or not, you can hear literally hundreds of voices join in song at the Seventh Annual Choral Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., presented by the Choral Arts Society of Washington. Joining the Choral Arts Society are the Howard Gospel Choir, the Levine Drum and Dance Ensemble, the Walter Johnson Madrigal Singers, the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology Colonial Singers, and the Duke Ellington School of the Arts Show Choir, which perform spirituals and other types of vocal and percussive music. The lecture, by musicologist Dr. Doris McGinty, is at 6:45 p.m. on the Roof Terrace of the Kennedy Center, and the concert, emceed by Channel 4’s Jim Vance, is at 8 p.m. in the Concert Hall. $10. (202) 244-3669. (James Lochart)