WASHINGTON NATIONAL CATHEDRAL: FLOWER MART 2019
Since 1939, Washingtonians have flocked to the city’s grand neo-gothic edifice the first weekend in May in a nod to Spring. A plethora of plants and flowers are on display as well as for sale, with proceeds benefiting the organization All Hallows’ Guild, responsible for the upkeep of the cathedral’s beautiful gardens and grounds. Yet the greenery alone isn’t what draws thousands of people to the historic 59 acres in Cathedral Heights. There’s also the gifts, collectibles, and food available from local artisans and vendors set up at over 70 booths. Add to that the garden tours, gargoyle walks, and many games and activities for children, most notably riding the Guild’s historic carousel dating to 1890. And of course people come to visit the nave — decked out in an International Floral Display by area embassies — and/or to climb to the top of the Cathedral for a bird’s eye view of the city. (Tower Climb tickets are $20 to $25.) There’s also the option of a Taste in the Tower seated luncheon in the South Tower. (Advance reservations are $35 per person.) Live music will also be performed throughout. Friday, May 3, and Saturday, May 4, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 3101 Wisconsin Ave. NW. Call 202-537-2937 or visit www.allhallowsguild.org.
TIM BURTON’S BATMAN
A bit Avengers weary? Fathom Events marks the 80th anniversary of the DC Comics Caped Crusader with screenings of Batman, Tim Burton’s 1989 blockbuster starring Michael Keaton as Bruce Wayne/Batman, Jack Nicholson as The Joker, and Kim Basinger as Vicki Vale. The 30-year-old classic screens only for one day, Saturday, May 4, at 1 and 4 p.m. Also getting one-day-only screenings are the three sequels that followed in the ’90s, including Batman Returns, Burton’s 1992 effort with a returning Keaton and the addition of Michelle Pfeiffer as Catwoman and Danny DeVito as the Penguin, showing on Monday, May 6, at 4 and 7 p.m. The other two films in the series, Batman Forever, starring Val Kilmer, and Batman & Robin, with George Clooney, screen on May 12, at 1 and 4 p.m. and Tuesday, May 14, at 4 and 7 p.m., respectively. Area theaters including Regal venues at Gallery Place (701 7th St. NW) and Potomac Yards Stadium (3575 Jefferson Davis Highway). Visit www.fathomevents.com.
I’VE GOT A LITTLE TWIST
Victorian-era dramatist W. S. Gilbert and composer Arthur Sullivan jointly created 14 comic operas, including the masterpieces H.M.S. Pinafore, The Pirates of Penzance, and The Mikado. The New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players are the leading interpreters of the repertoire and return to the area to perform a twist on the usual cabaret, one in which the timelessness of the comic opera masters shines in rewritten lyrics to their tunes as well as mash-ups with modern-day examples — from Spamalot to Sondheim’s Company — and of course a selection of untouched Gilbert & Sullivan classics. Saturday, May 4, at 7 p.m. The Robert Ames Alden Theatre at the McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave., Mclean, Va. Tickets are $35 to $40. Call 703-790-0123 or visit www.aldentheatre.org.
ANNUAL RUNNING OF THE CHIHUAHUAS
Billed as “D.C.’s funniest Cinco de Mayo celebration,” this year’s 8th annual race, planned for the day before the actual Mexican holiday, offers the unexpected joy of seeing 128 Chihuahuas, competing in groups of eight, on a 60-foot “race track.” Don’t worry: You won’t have to squint to see all the little doggies compete for the crown as Fastest Chihuahua in D.C. — which comes complete with an official championship trophy — as the action will be captured on a huge video wall. Anyone with their own personal Chihuahua can register for the race in advance, or until all spots are full, at $30 per dog. All proceeds benefit Rural Dog Rescue, which works to save canines from high-kill rural shelters. It’s a win-win kind of event for everyone, and every dog, too, whether they’re Chihuahuas, Xoloitzcuintlis, non-Mexican breeds, even all-American mutts. Indeed, all fur babies can compete in the contest for the day’s best-dressed dog. There will also be pet-friendly vendors, a Beer Garden serving cold Mexican beers, food kiosks, and a dance party with live music after the races. Saturday, May 4, from 1 to 5 p.m. District Pier at the Wharf, 101 District Square SW. Free. Visit www.cincodc.com for more information.
Arena Stage presents a world-premiere a cappella-infused play written and directed by Tazewell Thompson and featuring spirituals including “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” and “Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen.” Dianne Adams McDowell serves as music director and vocal arranger for this chronicle of the world-renowned Fisk Jubilee Singers, an African-American troupe who shattered racial barriers as they captivated royalty and commoners alike while travelling the globe. The 13-person cast includes Shaleah Adkisson, Joy Jones, Zonya Love, Sean-Maurice Lynch, and Jaysen Wright. Now to June 2. Kreeger Theater in the Mead Center for American Theater, 1101 6th St. SW. Tickets are $41 to $95. Call 202-488-3300 or visit www.arenastage.org.
An unearthly Guitar Man and Blues Speak Woman interweave three tales based on short stories by the Harlem Renaissance writer Zora Neale Hurston and adapted by Jelly’s Last Jam‘s George C. Wolfe. The Signature Theatre production is directed by Timothy Douglas and stars Jonathan Mosley-Perry and Iyona Blake, with Drew Drake, Marty Lamar, Ines Nassara, and KenYatta Rogers. Mark G. Meadows (Ain’t Misbehavin’) serves as musical director for the show, which is infused with live blues music composed by Chic Street Man. Now to June 23. The Ark, 4200 Campbell Ave., Arlington. Call 703-820-9771 or visit www.sigtheatre.org.
Singer-songwriter Lissie Maurus lives in Iowa, but got her start on the Los Angeles coffeehouse circuit before opening for the likes of Lenny Kravitz and Ray LaMontagne and appearing at the Lilith Fair. Although she doesn’t channel Stevie Nicks quite as blatantly on last year’s Castles as she did on 2016’s My Wild West, Lissie’s fourth studio album is every bit as steeped in the dramatic and folky rock/pop style of her idol, with the biting “Love Blows” and the power ballad “Meet Me In The Mystery” particular standouts. Monday, May 6. Doors at 6 p.m. City Winery DC, 1350 Okie St. NE. Tickets are $25 to $35. Call 202-250-2531 or visit www.citywinery.com.
NEWMYER FLYER’S DREAM DISCS: BLUE & BLOOD ON THE TRACKS
A wide array of talented pop/folk vocalists from around the area are brought together to perform in their entirety two of the most revered albums by two of the greatest singer-songwriters of all time: Joni Mitchell’s Blue and Bob Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks. Presented by the production company Newmyer Flyer, led by BandHouse Gigs co-founder Ron Newmyer, the concert features Lori Williams, Kenny Wesley, Margot MacDonald, Kipyn Martin, Sara Curtin, Maureen Andary, Luke Brindley, Laura Tsaggaris, Justin Jones, and John Bustine. Saturday, May 11. Doors at 6:30 p.m. The Hamilton, 600 14th St. NW. Tickets are $18 to $40. Call 202-787-1000 or visit www.thehamiltondc.com.
REDISCOVERING BALTIMORE’S FORGOTTEN MOVIE THEATERS
A survey of Baltimore’s movie-going past from 1896 to the present, this Flickering Treasures exhibition at the National Building Museum features oral histories, architectural fragments, theater ephemera, and of course photography — particularly vivid, contemporary shots from Baltimore Sun staff photographer Amy Davis. All of it illuminates themes of memory, loss, and preservation, as well as the importance of movies and movie houses in 20th century American life. While only a handful of more than 240 theaters built in Charm City still function today, many survive in some form, as documented in this exhibition. On display to Oct. 2019. 401 F St. NW. Call 202-272-2448 or visit www.nbm.org.
Billed as “Where Spoken Word and Musical Theatre Collide,” this presenting organization showcases local talent regularly on select Monday nights at Bistro Bistro in Dupont Circle. Yet as good as every performance at that venue is, none of them quite compares to the special Saturday show planned for the first weekend in May — at the city’s preeminent performing arts center. All the more so since the Kennedy Center engagement is free, as part of the complex’s nightly Millennium Stage programming. Saturday, May 4, at 6 p.m. Call 202-467-4600 or visit www.kennedy-center.org.