Sunday, June 10, 2007


ONE HUNDRED FILMS IN six days? You can't see them all, but you could spend all your free time trying -- and gainfully so -- at Silverdocs. The annual documentary festival, at the American Film Institute in Silver Spring, opens with Tuesday night's self-explanatory "Pete Seeger: The Power of Song," and features 100 features and shorts that offer revelatory takes on their diverse subjects.

Here's a few to get you into the nonfiction groove: "Audience of One," about a Pentecostal minister who believes God told him to make a biblical sci-fi movie; "Garbage Warrior," about eco-architect Michael Reynolds, who builds homes for the unhoused with tires and beer cans; "Enemies of Happiness," about Malalai Joya, the first woman elected to parliament in Afghanistan; and "Big Rig," Doug Pray's lyrical portrait of the truckers who bring food, gas and just about everything else we need for life. The fest runs through next Sunday, although "Arctic Tale" -- the official "closing night film" -- screens at 6:30 Saturday. That movie hopes to do for the walrus and polar bear what "March of the Penguins" did for those tuxedoed birds. And look for Thursday night's outdoor screening of Jonathan Demme's seminal Talking Heads documentary, "Stop Making Sense."

-- Desson Thomson

At AFI's Silver Theatre. For more information, visit


CITYDANCE ENSEMBLE honors female choreographers -- something of a minority group in the field of dance-making -- in a program that features two world premieres and a bit of historic Americana. Sophie Maslow's "Dust Bowl Ballads," from 1941, reflects on the Midwestern experience during the Great Depression. Contemporary works by Susan Shields, Meisha Bosma and Tara Pierson Dunning round out the program.

-- Sarah Kaufman

At the Music Center at Strathmore's Concert Hall, Friday at 8 p.m. $15-$35. Call 301-581-5100 or


CATCH THE MAESTROS OF TOMORROW today -- or, rather, Saturday -- when the National Conducting Institute comes to a close with performances by four young musicians: Julian Kuerti, Kayoko Dan, Marcelo Lehninger and Ruth Lin, each leading the National Symphony Orchestra. This training program for conductors on the verge of solid careers is one of the happiest inspirations of NSO Music Director Leonard Slatkin, who will serve as the host.

-- Tim Page

Saturday at 6 p.m. at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. Free. For information call 202-467-4600 or visit

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