The Week of Sept. 2

The D.C. Blues Society hosts the 17th annual D.C. Blues Festival Sept. 3 at Carter Barron Amphitheatre, featuring Candye Kane, Ruby Hayes, DeConstance and other local blues divas. Call 202-962-0112. {diam} More than two dozen local theater companies present free readings and open rehearsals at the fourth annual Page-to-Stage New Play Festival Sept. 3-5 at the Kennedy Center. Call 202-467-4600. {diam} The National Symphony Orchestra marks the end of summer with a free concert Sept. 4 on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. Call 202-619-7222. {diam} Herndon hosts its 17th annual Labor Day Wine and Jazz Festival, with free entertainment on two stages, wine-tastings, crafts and food vendors, Sept. 5 at its municipal center. Call


The Week of Sept. 9

The Kennedy Center celebrates its 34th birthday with its 21st annual Open House Sept. 10 (a Saturday this year), with free performances and other activities throughout the center. Call 202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524). {diam} James Moody, Ahmad Jamal and Nnenna Freelon headline the 15th annual free Rosslyn Jazz Festival Sept. 10 in Arlington's Gateway Park. Call 703-228-1850. {diam} More than 200 artists display their works along six blocks of King Street during the Alexandria Festival of the Arts Sept. 10-11 in Old Town Alexandria. Call 703-838-4200. {diam} The National Council of Negro Women presents the 20th annual Black Family Reunion Celebration, with entertainment, exhibits and an international marketplace, Sept. 10-11 on the Mall. Call 202-737-0140. {diam} Musicians, dancers and storytellers perform on multiple stages, artisans sell their crafts and community organizations host information tables at the 28th annual free Takoma Park Folk Festival Sept. 11 at Takoma Park Middle School. Call 301-589-0202. {diam} Washington's Adams Morgan neighborhood hosts entertainment on multiple stages, exhibits and food vendors at Adams Morgan Day Sept. 11 around 18th Street and Columbia Road NW. Call 202-232-1978.

The Week of Sept. 16

Concerts, agricultural exhibitions and midway rides are highlights of the Great Frederick Fair Sept. 16-24 at the Frederick County Fairgrounds in Frederick. Call 301-663-5895. {diam} The Arts on Foot Festival presents indoor and outdoor performances, art exhibitions and other activities Sept. 17 in Washington's Pennsylvania Quarter neighborhood. Call 202-482-7271. {diam} Children's performers from around the world entertain on multiple stages at the International Children's Festival Sept. 17-18 at Wolf Trap Park in Vienna. Call 703-642-0862 or 703-255-1860. {diam} Mount Vernon hosts its annual 18th-Century Fair, with crafts displays and demonstrations by artisans in Colonial attire, Sept. 17-18. Call 703-780-2000. {diam} Sample Maryland wines and local food specialties and enjoy a crafts fair and entertainment at the Maryland Wine Festival Sept. 17-18 at the Carroll County Farm Museum in Westminster. Call 410-876-2667 or 800-654-4645.{diam} The Washington National Opera opens its 50th anniversary season with Verdi's "I Vespri Siciliani," a bloody tale of Sicilian resistance to French oppression, Sept. 17 through Oct. 4 in the Kennedy Center Opera House. Placido Domingo will conduct the orchestra. Tickets cost $45 to $290. Call 202-295-2400. {diam} Tour embassies and historic sites at the 21st annual Kalorama House and Embassy Tour Sept. 18 in Washington's Embassy Row neighborhood. Call 202-387-4062. {diam} Fiesta Musical is a celebration of Latin American culture with music, dance and traditional foods Sept. 18 at the National Zoo. Call 202-673-4821. {diam} The Big Apple Circus, now in its 28th season, stages its newest show, "Grandma Goes to Hollywood," Sept. 22 through Oct. 10 under its little big top at Dulles Town Center. Tickets cost $15 to $47 plus service charges from Ticketmaster. Call 202-397-7328.


The Rolling Stones have added a Baltimore date to their American tour (shows Oct. 3 at MCI Center and Oct. 6 in Charlottesville are sold out). Tickets go on sale Saturday at 10 from Ticketmaster for their concert Feb. 1 at 1st Mariner Arena. They cost $162, $101 and $62. Call 202-397-7328 (service charges added). {diam} Tickets go on sale Friday at 10 from Ticketmaster for a "Tribute to the Troops" by Montgomery Gentry, Chely Wright and Keith Anderson, Oct. 8 at Nissan Pavilion ($39.50 and $29.50 in-house, $20 on the lawn); the Manhattans, Bloodstone, Blue Magic and Enchantment, Oct. 7 at the Hippodrome in Baltimore ($53); and Stephen Lynch, Oct. 20 at Lisner Auditorium ($28.50). On sale Saturday at noon from Ticketmaster: Foo Fighters and Weezer, Oct. 10 at Patriot Center ($45) . {diam} On sale Monday from Ticketmaster: the Low Life and Kenin, Nov. 23 at the Birchmere ($17.50). {diam} Tickets go on sale Monday from for the entire 2005-06 season at George Mason University's Center for the Arts. Highlights among dozens of classical, pop and dance artists include the Mark Morris Dance Group, Ballet Hispanico, Ballet Flamenco, Chanticleer, Canadian Brass, John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers, Arlo Guthrie & the Massacree Band, Ute Lemper, Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble, "Macbeth" by Opera Verdi Europa, the Russian National Ballet and four productions by the Virginia Opera. For tickets, call 703-218-6500; for information, call 703-993-8888 or visit


On Stage

On stage soon, on sale now: Arena Stage presents the world premiere of "Passion Play, a cycle," a political fantasy by Sarah Ruhl in which the traditional religious drama is performed in Elizabethan England, Oberammergau just before World War II, and in Spearfish, S.D., during the Vietnam War and in the present, Sept. 2 through Oct. 16 in the Kreeger Theater. Tickets cost $41 to $60. Call 202-488-3300. {diam} Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company opens Gina Gionfriddo's "After Ashley," a satire in which a family tragedy becomes talk-show fodder, with "pay-what-you-can" previews Sept. 5-6; the run continues through Oct. 9. Regular prices are $30 to $48. Call 202-393-3939. {diam} Studio Theatre opens its fall season with "A Number," the new play by Caryl Churchill that explores a father-son relationship, Sept. 7 through Oct. 16. Tickets cost $32 to $54. Call 202-332-3300. {diam} American Century Theater presents "It Had to Be You," a romantic comedy about a show business couple, Sept. 8 through Oct. 8 at Gunston Arts Center. Tickets cost $20 to $29.50. Call 703-553-8782.

On Screen

Opening Wednesday: Based on the book by John Le Carre, and starring Ralph Fiennes and Rachel Weisz, "The Constant Gardener" is a romantic thriller. Opening Sept. 2: Jason Statham reprises his role as an underworld deliveryman in "The Transporter 2." {diam} "Underclassman" is a comedy about a police officer (Nick Cannon) who goes undercover at a tony private high school. {diam} A pregnant teenager develops a friendship with a woman grieving the death of her only son in the French drama "Sequins." {diam} First-time filmmaker Andrew Bujalski's "Funny Ha Ha" looks at post-college life in contemporary America. {diam} From Thailand, "Tropical Malady" is the story of a young Thai soldier who seduces a country boy. Opening dates may change.

On Exhibit

The following exhibitions open next week: "Silk and Leather: Splendid Attire of 19th-Century Central Asia," opening Sept. 2 at the Textile Museum, features garments and accessories worn by members of the elite and ruling classes of Central Asia. Call 202-667-0441. {diam} On Sept. 4, two exhibitions open at the National Gallery of Art, West Building: "Origins of European Printmaking: 15th-Century Woodcuts and Their Public" examines the role of printmaking in late medieval culture, while "The Prints of Felix Buhot: Impressions of City and Sea" spotlights the work of a French artist known for his renderings of rain, snow, mist and fog. Call 202-737-4215. {diam} "Bound for Glory: America in Color, 1939-1943," opening Sept. 8 at the Library of Congress, features color images taken by photographers of the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information. Call 202-707-4604.


Closing on stage this weekend: "The Royal Hunt of the Sun," by the Washington Shakespeare Company at Clark Street Playhouse. Call 800-494-8497 or 703-418-4808. {diam} This weekend is your last chance to visit "Shomei Tomatsu: Skin of the Nation," at the Corcoran Gallery of Art (202-639-1700); and "David Garrick (1717-1779), A Theatrical Life," at the Folger Shakespeare Library (202-544-4600).


It's Labor Day weekend, the unofficial end of summer. Build one more sand castle, feast on butter-slathered corn on the cob, take in a drive-in movie, pick juicy peaches or add some color to your buddies at a paintball park.

Young artists create with chalk at the Kennedy Center Open House.Shawn Ashmore, left, and Nick Cannon star in "Underclassman," opening Sept. 2.Mick Jagger and the Rolling Stones rock Baltimore Feb. 1.