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Full disclosure: A bunch of my former and current colleagues are involved in tonight’s TBD-hosted Phillips After 5, but it’s still your best bet for early-evening revelry. Set to perform: Warped disco dudes Protect-U (featuring very occasional WCP contributor Aaron Leitko) and DJs Whiskey Sherpa (featuring WCP Beerspotter columnist Orr Shtuhl). THEATER PEOPLE: WCP theater critic Chris Klimek is participating in a panel following a reading of John Guare’s Six Degrees of Separation. 5 to 8 p.m. at the Phillips Collection. $12.
I don’t speak house music, but I’m taking my colleague Ally Schweitzer’s word that tonight’s Kassem Mosse set at Sweet Spot will be worthwhile. The German producer, née Gunnar Wendel, slips easily from “from driving Detroit beats to blissful synths,” at least according to this Resident Advisor review. The B-side of a November 2010 release was the A-side played backward. So he’s a weirdo, but you can move to it. 10 p.m. at Sweet Spot.
Fort Reno! Blackberry Belles play some capably cocky garage rock, Cane & the Sticks plays some capably sweet guitar pop, Wild Fruit channels early Talking Heads and The Thermals in the right ways. 7:15 p.m. at Fort Reno. Free.
From WCP contributor Steve Kiviat: Music programming at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival returns today and runs through Monday. The Garifuna Collective, featuring Umalali, opened the festival’s first day last week, performing before lots of pre-schoolers, but by the weekend this Belize ensemble—-with its strong-voiced, soulful female vocals and African, Latin, and Caribbean hybrid rhythms—-was drawing all ages. The group survived the 2008 death of its founder Andy Palacio. They’re busy through the rest of the fest: Just today, they’re performing on the Peace Corps stage today at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. and at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage at 6 p.m. Free free free.
Brightest Young Things has a good deal on Studio Theatre’s Venus in Furs tonight, which also comes with a free drink at a before-curtain happy hour. WCP‘s Chris Klimek liked the play, which he called “a wickedly ingenious dark comedy that premiered in New York last year and has now arrived at Studio Theatre in a new production that finds its whip-smarts fully intact.”
Today’s galleries pick from Louis Jacobson: “‘CultureScape‘ might have something to do with culture, landscape, or space. From the show’s tedious press release, it’s unclear—the description is stuffed with as many buzzwords as a Whitney Biennial wall text. To put it simply, “CultureScape,” curated by Isabel Manalo, contains the evocative work of five women artists. Elise Richman’s small paintings pop with stalagmites of multicolored paint that suggest topographical island views or maps of desertification or population density. The spaces in Bridget Sue Lambert’s voyeuristic, invasive photographs are so cluttered and copiously detailed, it takes a minute to realize that they portray only dollhouses—and sometimes, the dolls are caught copulating. Lisa Blas’ understated work is dominated by Matisse-like collages on music paper, but her “Autosculptures” are the most engaging; while they appear to be little more than scans of crumpled paper, their simple forms posses the grace of origami without the need of swans.” On view 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays to Saturdays to July 30 at Addison/Ripley Fine Art. Free.
Benjamin R. Freed says you should see Hijos de Kennedy at the Natural History Museum: “As part of its 50th anniversary celebration, the Peace Corps is partnering with the Smithsonian’s Folklife Festival this month, which has been filling the National Mall with exhibits highlighting Colombia, rhythm and blues, and the Peace Corps. The Maureen Orth-produced Hijos de Kennedy captures two out of the three themes, documenting the experiences of Peace Corps volunteers in Colombia. Orth served in Colombia in 1966 alongside Sam Farr, now a Democratic congressman from California.” At 6 p.m. at the National Museum of Natural History. Free.
IF YOU DON’T MIND THEATER WITHOUT AIR-CONDITIONING
Fringe Festival starts today! READ FRINGE & PURGE. BOOKMARK IT. LOVE IT.