Happy Holiday? Get Listed!
Weekend will publish its annual guide to Christmas, Hanukah and other winter holiday activities on Dec. 3. If you would like us to list your concert, pageant, children's show or similar event, mail a description -- with dates and times, prices, street address and a telephone number that we may print -- to Holiday Happenings, Weekend, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071-5650. This is in addition to information you may wish to submit for our regular weekly listings. Our deadline is Nov. 19. Craft fairs and religious services cannot be included.
No Happy Ending
Mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves stars as the vengeful Gypsy Azucena in the Washington National Opera's production of "Il Trovatore," opening Saturday in the Kennedy Center Opera House (Metro: Foggy Bottom-GWU, with free shuttles). In Verdi's tragic tale, a baby is kidnapped, a count and a rebel troubadour are archenemies in politics and love, and dark secrets are revealed. Eight performances, in Italian with English supertitles, continue through Nov. 13. Tickets cost $45 to $290. Call 202-295-2400 or 202-467-4600.
Walk on the Grass
Explore the Rose Garden, the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden, the Children's Garden, the South Lawn and other spots on 18 acres of grounds during the White House Fall Garden Tour, Saturday from 10 to 4 and Sunday from noon to 4 (the Executive Mansion itself will not be open). Military band ensembles will perform on the White House balcony during the tours. Free timed-entry tickets are required; they will be distributed each day starting at 7:30 at the Ellipse Visitor Pavilion, near 15th and E streets NW. Only one ticket will be given to each person, and every visitor, including infants, must have a ticket. The tours will be canceled in the event of inclement weather. Call 202-208-1631.
Family Fun at Corcoran
The Corcoran Gallery of Art, at 500 17th St. NW, hosts a free family day Saturday from 10 to 3 in conjunction with the opening of the special exhibition "Common Ground: Discovering Community in 150 Years of Art, Selections From the Collection of Julia J. Norrell." Norrell's collection reflects her devotion to civil rights and cultural understanding, and the "Celebrate Community!" festival will include hands-on art workshops, storytelling by Jon Spelman, music by Bruce Hutton and the Howard Gospel Choir, and puppetry by Black Cherry Inc. Admission and the festival are free. Call 202-639-1700.
Arthur, Meet Agnes
Washington playwright Norman Allen borrows the King Arthur legend in "The Light of Excalibur," in its world premiere through Nov. 7 in the Kennedy Center Theater Lab. In the play, part of the center's Imagination Celebration series for children, kindly magician Merlin travels through time to help Agnes, a modern teenage girl, deal with her mother's cancer, her dad's confusion and her own adolescence, and she journeys back to his era to help Arthur save Britain. Tickets cost $14. Call 202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524).
Best Riders, Best Horses
Some of the world's leading riders and their steeds compete in the 46th annual Washington International Horse Show, an Olympic-level equestrian competition, from Tuesday through Oct. 31 at MCI Center, 601 F St. NW (Metro: Gallery Place-Chinatown). Daytime hunter and jumper competitions begin at 7 a.m. daily through Oct. 29 and conclude at about 5; evening sessions begin at 7 Tuesday and Wednesday. Featured performances, with terrier races, barrel racing, an "equine extremist" and other special events, are scheduled Thursday and Oct. 29 at 7:30, and Oct. 30 at 1 and 7. On Oct. 31, one competition runs from 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $15 to $60 plus service charges from Ticketmaster. To order, call 202-397-7328; for information, call 301-987-9400 or visit www.wihs.org.
A Choral 'Requiem'
The Cathedral Choral Society opens its 63rd season with Verdi's "Requiem" Sunday at 4 at Washington National Cathedral, Wisconsin and Massachusetts avenues NW. Guest soloists are soprano Christine Goerke, mezzo-soprano Elizabeth Bishop, tenor Jay Hunter Morris and bass Kurt Link. Tickets cost $20 to $55. At 2:30, Verdi biographer Mary Jane Phillips-Matz offers a free talk about the composer and his music next door at National Cathedral School. Call 202-537-5527.
A Legend Looks Back
Mickey Rooney, who has appeared in more than 200 films going back to the 1920s, shares highlights of his life in the movie business in "The One Man One Wife Show," an evening of stories and songs with his wife, Jan Chamberlin Rooney, Saturday at 8 at the Parilla Performing Arts Center at Montgomery College, 51 Mannakee St., Rockville. Tickets cost $28, seniors and students $26. Call 301-279-5301.
Madness and Medicine
Arlington's Signature Theatre, at 3806 S. Four Mile Run Dr., is staging the world premiere of "The Highest Yellow," a musical inspired by an encounter between Vincent van Gogh and a young French doctor, opening Tuesday and continuing through Dec. 12. Set in Arles in 1888, the doctor admits a patient suffering from delirium and a self-inflicted knife wound who turns out to be the Dutch painter. In trying to cure van Gogh, he learns about art, genius and obsession. Tickets cost $30 to $47. To order, call Tickets.com, 703-218-6500 (service charges added); for information, call 703-820-9771.
Sounds Around Town
* Jazz vocalist Nancy Wilson celebrates her half-century in the music business and sings music from her latest CD ("R.S.V.P. -- Rare Songs, Very Personal") in a concert with her trio Saturday at 4:30 in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. Tickets are $25 to $60; call 202-467-4600.
* Smokey Robinson and Gladys Knight share the stage Saturday and Sunday at 7 at DAR Constitution Hall, 1776 D St. NW. Tickets are $66 plus service charges from Ticketmaster; call 202-397-7328.
-- Compiled by Barry Barriere