LOOKING AHEAD

The Week of Dec. 13 he U.S. Army Band and special guest Kathy Mattea present "A Holiday Festival" concert at DAR Constitution Hall Dec. 13-15. Free tickets may be downloaded from w3s.belvoir.army.mil/mdwetickets/. Call 877-795-9572. * The Chanticleer vocal ensemble presents a concert of holiday and sacred music Dec. 13 at the Concert Hall at the Center for the Arts at George Mason University, 4400 University Dr., Fairfax. Call 703-218-6500. * Fredericksburg hosts a Christmas Candlelight Tour of 10 historic homes on Dec. 14-15. Call 800-678-4748 or 540-373-1776. * Fort Ward Museum in Alexandria holds a Civil War Christmas Open House Dec. 14. Call 703-838-4848. * The Cathedral Choral Society presents a "Joy of Christmas" concert Dec. 14-16 at Washington National Cathedral, Wisconsin and Massachusetts avenues NW. Call 202-537-5527. * The Maryland Boy Choir presents a Christmas concert on Dec. 14 at the Ina and Jack Kay Theatre at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center in College Park. Call 301-405-2787.

The Week of Dec. 20

Corcoran Biennial: "Fantasy Underfoot," Dec. 21 through March 10, explores the legacy of conceptual art and the "new media" of the late 1960s through the work of 13 contemporary artists who employ familiar or popular forms, such as cinema, illustration and interactive digital media, for overtly conceptual ends. Call 202-639-1700. * The Fairfax Choral Society and soprano Barbara DeMaio Caprilli present a "Holiday Music Spectacular" Dec. 21 at Fairfax High School's auditorium. Call 703-757-0220.

* The Metropolitan Chorus, members of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra, guest soloists and conductors perform excerpts of Handel's "Messiah" joined by the audience on Dec. 23 in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. Free tickets will be given away starting at 10 a.m. Dec. 14, in the Kennedy Center's Hall of Nations. Call 202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524). * The Washington Auto Show takes place Dec. 26 through Jan. 1 at the Washington Convention Center. Call 202-237-7200.

The Week of Dec. 27

Fabian Barnes's Dance Institute of Washington and guest artists celebrate the "Spirit of Kwanzaa" Dec. 28-29 in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. Call 202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524). * These major New Year's Eve Celebrations are scheduled: "First Night Annapolis," with more than 200 family performances at indoor and outdoor sites throughout downtown Annapolis and fireworks at midnight; call 410-268-8553. "First Night Alexandria" features family entertainment and other activities throughout Old Town Alexandria and fireworks at midnight; call 703-838-4200, Ext. 210. "First Night Leesburg" will offer indoor and outdoor entertainment and other family activities throughout Leesburg's historic district; call 800-752-6118. Baltimore's "New Year's Eve Spectacular" has free entertainment and family activities in Baltimore's Inner Harbor and fireworks at midnight; call 410-837-4636. Falls Church Watch Night welcomes the new year with music, dance, magicians, puppet shows and other entertainment around Broad and Washington streets; call 703-532-0884.

Hot Tickets

Tickets are on sale now from Tickets.com for Neil Finn, appearing Jan. 28 at the 9:30 club, and The Pretenders, performing Jan. 31, also at the 9:30 club. Tickets for Finn are $20; tickets for The Pretenders are $40. Call Tickets.com at 703-218-6500.

OPENING SOON

Stage On stage soon, on sale now: Alice Ripley stars in "Tell Me on a Sunday," one of Andrew Lloyd Webber's early musicals, at the Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater Dec. 17 through Jan. 12. Tickets are $25 to $120; call 202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524). * "The Nightingale," adapted from the story by Hans Christian Andersen, runs Dec. 20-29 at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater. Tickets are $13; call 202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524). * Don DeLillo's "The Day Room," a farce about two unsuspecting patients and the bizarre goings-on in a hospital waiting room, runs Dec. 16 through through Jan. 12 at the AFI Theater in the Kennedy Center Tickets are $21 to $48. Call 202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524).

Film Opening Dec. 13: "Daughter From Danang," Gail Dolgin and Vicente Franco's award winner for best documentary at the Sundance Film Festival, is about a Vietnamese mother and daughter reunited 22 years after being separated at the end of the Vietnam War. * In "Drumline," Harlem street drummer Devon (Nick Cannon) enrolls in a southern university full of confidence about his future there. But things aren't as easy as he anticipated. * In "Hot Chick," a popular but shallow and mean-spirited teenager (Rachel McAdams) wakes up one day in the body of a 30-year-old man (Rob Schneider). * Jennifer Lopez is a hotel maid who becomes involved with a senator (Ralph Fiennes) in "Maid in Manhattan." * Gen. Augusto Pinochet of Chile is the subject of "The Pinochet Case," a documentary at Visions Cinema/Bistro/Lounge. * And in "Star Trek: Nemesis," Capt. Picard (Patrick Stewart) and crew learn that the planet Romulus is planning an invasion of Earth. Opening dates subject to change.

CLOSING This is your last weekend to see: "A Doll's House" by Quotidian Theatre (301-816-1023); "The Cherry Orchard" at Round House (240-644-1100); "All the World" by Washington Stage Guild (240-582-0050); and "Seussical the Musical" at Morris A. Mechanic Theater (410-752-1200 or 410-625-4230).

NEXT FRIDAY IN WEEKEND Film critic Desson Howe previews the holiday releases as movie studios jockey for Oscar position.

WEEKEND ONLINE

To check out Weekend online, go to www.washingtonpost.com/weekend. There you'll find a variety of features, including an archive of Eric Brace's Nightwatch columns, Eve Zibart's Fare Minded columns, guides to some area events and, of course, stories and reviews from the current issue.

Rick Foucheux, Kathryn Kelley and Crystal Fox star in "The Cherry Orchard" at Round House Theatre.Ken Feingold's "If/Then, 2001" is at the Corcoran Biennial.Jennifer Lopez stars in "Maid in Manhattan."

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