The Crime Museum shines a light on the dark underbelly of society with more than 100 interactive events spread across three stories and 25,000 square feet of gallery space. After resting their weary bones in an unplugged electric chair, fans of CSI can live out television fantasies at the Crime Scene Investigation event, where they can learn what it takes to be a forensic scientist and watch professionals in action before trying to determine whether or not fellow museum-goers exhibit the traits of serial killers. The event also serves as a crash course in fingerprinting, DNA testing, fraudulent-check investigation, and dental-impression and ballistics analysis. The museum’s many permanent events include A Notorious History of American Crime, about the country's felonious forefathers, and an exploration into one of the most heinous masterminds of modern times in the Ted Kaczynski: The Unabomber event.
Dance Place first leapt onto the scene more than three decades ago as an educational and performing arts company that toured local schools. In the years since, it has grown into a multi-faceted operation and source of both entertainment and instruction.
Every weekend, Dance Place dazzles crowds with performances in modern dance, African Dance, performance art, and spoken word. Rather than hiring a sketch artist to doodle each dance step into a flipbook, spectators can learn the moves they see on stage by enrolling in one of Dance Place's programs, or by dropping into an adult or children's class. Dance Place has remained true to its roots through its continued support of local schools, and to this day organizes family-friendly performances, workshops, and school assemblies.
Founded by a ring of cinephiles who set out to rehab an abandoned theater just north of George Washington University, West End Cinema screens foreign, independent, and documentary films that open up new intellectual and cultural vistas. Films run the genre gamut from quirky, independent dramedies and comedramas to special live events such as Opera in Cinema or Ballet in Cinema. Sunset-orange and slate walls and recessed lighting usher guests from a glass-fronted lobby into three cozy theaters, each of which seats between 50 and 100 watchers. On the way, they'll pass an abundantly stocked concession stand, where they can harvest drinks from a full bar, baklava, and gourmet sandwiches along with additional children from the sour patch.
The Grammy-winning Washington Chorus has delighted audiences with a repertoire of classical choral masterpieces and modern compositions for 51 years. In addition to leading the choir, music director Julian Wachner has scribed more than 100 published compositions, including "Come, My Dark-Eyed One," an amalgamation of poetry and a dramatic musical score. Acclaimed singers tell the tale of lovers whose great passion transcends death, their melodious voices reflecting the powerful emotions and increasingly expensive anniversary gifts of a lifelong love. Words by Dickinson, Tennyson, and Turkic poet Ali-Shir Nava’i instill the performance with additional resonance. Four soloists join the choir to sing Mozart’s bold Great Mass in C Minor, widely credited as being the composer’s best choral work alongside the Requiem and Rock Me Amadeus.
The inaugural RiverFrontFest is an all-day music, food, and art exposition aimed at pleasing the ears, stomachs, and eyes of its attendees. With a ticket to the event, you'll have access to a three-stage line-up of live music performances, including the folk-rock styles of Wes Tucker & the Skillets and the haunting sounds of Koshari, whose beautifully layered rhythms hit like a wedding cake shoved into your ears. Food vendors will be on hand to peddle pabulum, and beer and wine merchants will keep taste buds cooled and cozy. A diverse gathering of artisans and artists will also be assembled to showcase their products and their performance abilities. Head-spinning and high-flying highlights will include a breakdance competition and the most exciting live trapeze demonstration since Bronson Pinchot appeared on Circus of the Stars in 1987.
Held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, The 2011 Washington Auto Show will feature more than 700 new mobile makes and models. Four-wheel fanatics can pore over concepts, production models, and prototypes from more than 30 manufacturers, including Ford, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW. Take some time out from the car catwalk to enjoy a variety of contests, entertainment, and exhibits. Events on February 1 include appearances from the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders, as well as auto-themed speed dating to transform emotional Edsels into romantic Alfa Romeos. WWE Superstars Big Show and Randy Orton will make special appearances on February 2 and 3, respectively, while all three days feature a cartoon cavalcade of Playland Mascots such as PBS heroes Clifford the Big Red Dog, WordGirl, and Robert MacNeil's hair. Additionally, visitors can check out the Advanced Technology SuperHighway exhibit, which showcases the latest breakthroughs in automobile sustainability and safety. Photography and video equipment are allowed, and ample food vendors and local restaurants ensure grumbling bellies don't drown out revving engines.