"The Figure in the Landscape," at Baumgartner Galleries through Feb. 9, is an excellent exhibition of paintings and sculptures by eight artists, the majority of them from New York galleries. It seeks to present different contemporary approaches to the treatment of the figure within the context of landscape. Some are figurative, some surrealistic, some expressionistic and some purely abstract. Washington gallery-goers may be unfamiliar with Archie Rand, John Walker, David Wojnarowicz or Martin Wong, but William Christenberry, Joan Snyder, Gary Stephan and David Krueger have had considerable exposure here. All take very different approaches to curator Greg Hannan's chosen theme. CLASSICAL
German conductor Heinz Wallberg will make his American debut this week conducting the National Symphony Orchestra, with Yong Uck Kim as violin soloist. A prelude concert at 7 p.m. will precede the Thursday performance. Other orchestral activity this week: the Handel Festival Orchestra, performing "Peter and the Wolf" and "Juanita the Spanish Lobster," Saturday in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall (not the Terrace Theater, where it usually plays); the Amadeus Orchestra, with pianist Frank Conlon, Saturday night at St. Francis Church, Great Falls; the Prince William Symphony, Saturday night at Gar-Field High School; the JCC Symphony Orchestra, with guitarist Stephen Robinson, Saturday night at the Jewish Community Center.
The New York City Opera National Company will perform Mozart's "The Marriage of Figaro," Monday night at Montgomery College. Other vocal music this week will include semi-staged scenes from Mozart tonight and Tuesday night at Mount Vernon College; soprano Alessandra Marc, tonight at the National Gallery; Kotobuki Kai, Japanese opera and dance, Friday night at the University of Maryland; the Donald Vails Salvation Gospel Choir, Wednesday noon at the National Building Museum.
The Smithsonian Chamber Players, performing an early baroque program Friday night in the Hall of Musical Instruments, will highlight the week's chamber music. Other highlights will be the Cleveland Quartet, Friday night at the Corcoran Gallery and Saturday at the University of Maryland; the DeReggi Inter-Arts Ensemble, with violinist Leroy Jenkins, Friday night at Strathmore Hall; violinist Pavel Pekarsky Tuesday night, masters of traditional Japanese instruments Wednesday night, the Western Brass Quintet Thursday night and guitarists Sharon Isbin and Carlos Barbosa-Lima Friday night, all in the Terrace Theater.
Also worth noting: Genesis Chamber Players, Tuesday night at the Sumner School; the Friday Morning Music Club, Friday, noon at the Sumner School; the Manchester String Quartet, Friday night at the Holton-Arms School.
Pianists of the week: Haesun Paik today at the Phillips Collection; Mickey Thomas Terry, Tuesday noon at the Church of the Epiphany. DANCE
American Ballet Theatre winds up its Kennedy Center Opera House visit with performances this afternoon and evening. The New York-based duo Karen Pearlman and Richard Allen present a program of movement, poetry and dance at Dance Place this afternoon.
"A New Dance for Life" is a performance by David Holmes and Friends and guest artists to benefit the Washington-based AIDS empowerment organization LifeLink; the concert, at Marvin Center Theater GWU this evening, will include the Washington Ballet, Keith Lee, the Adrain Bolton Dance Company, the Deborah Riley Dance Project, the Dance Exchange and the David Holmes Dancers.
Japan's Matsuyama Ballet makes its Washington debut with a visit to the Kennedy Center Opera House Tuesday through Thursday ("Mandala," choreographed by Testsutaro Shimizu) and Saturday and Sunday ("Giselle"), both programs featuring prima ballerina Yoko Morishita.
The Jose Greco Company offers a program of Spanish dance and music at Montgomery College Thursday night.
Susan Marshall & Company performs Marshall's full-length "Contenders" (premiered at the Brooklyn Academy of Music's Next Wave Festival last November) at George Mason University's Harris Theatre Friday evening.
Blondell Cummings presents the first act of her "For J.B." -- a full-length work about Josephine Baker, to receive its full premiere in Washington next fall, under a commission by District Curators -- at the Ellington Theater Saturday night; the original music is by Lester Bowie. The D.C. Rhythm Ensemble will present jazz tap master Eddie Brown, of Los Angeles, as its guest artist in a program at the French Embassy Theatre Saturday night. Wendy Woodson & Present Company perform the newest movement-theater works by former Washingtonian Woodson (now based in Amherst, Mass.) Saturday night and Sunday afternoon at Dance Place. POP MUSIC
Stand by Ben E. King, at Anton's Tuesday through Sunday.
Vanguard jazz musicians abound next Friday: the World Saxophone Quartet joins with African Percussion for two shows at Wolf Trap's Barns, while violinist Leroy Jenkins performs his compositions in a solo context at Strathmore Hall.