Jesse Kanda: Waking from a Coma, the Japanese-born designer and filmmaker triggers the senses with sights and sounds, depicting images never quite seen before. Shown in rotation on the video wall and around the building. 4 p.m.-11 p.m. Wednesdays-Fridays, noon-11 p.m. Saturdays, noon-5 p.m. Sundays, Artisphere, 1101 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. Free. 703-875-1100 or http://artisphere.com/.
African American Book Discussion, for adults, a discussion of Rebecca Skloot’s “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks,” about a a poor African American mother of five in Baltimore who died in 1951 from an aggressive cancer. Cancer cells were taken from Lacks without her knowledge or consent and have aided in medical discoveries from the polio vaccine to AIDS treatments. 6 p.m., Rockville Memorial Library, First floor meeting room, 21 Maryland Ave., Rockville. Free. 240-777-0140.
Mariinsky Ballet: Les Saisons Russes, The Ballet returns with Les Saisons Russes (“The Russian Seasons”), with three works by Michel Fokine: Chopiniana, Scheherazade, and The Firebird. 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Friday, 1:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Kennedy Center, Opera House, 2700 F St. NW. $29-$150. 202-467-4600. 800-444-1324, TDD:202-416-8524.
Mavis Staples, the R&B/soul dynamo is the first major name to play Washington's newest music venue. 8 p.m. The Hamilton, 600 14th St. NW. $100, advance purchase recommended. 202-787-1000.
Rudresh Mahanthappa, Blues Alley’s week-long Indian Jazz Series concludes with this alto saxophonist, who fuses Western and Indian sounds. 8 and 10 p.m. Thursday-Friday, Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW (rear). $22. 202-337-4141.
Children’s Theater: “The Snowy Day,” based on Ezra Jack Keats popular children’s book. Peter, a young African American boy, explores snow that has fallen over night in his city. Various times Jan. 20-Feb. 12., Glen Echo Park, Adventure Theatre, 7300 MacArthur Blvd., Glen Echo. $18. 301-634-2270.
Historic Beer Dinner, Gadsby’s Tavern Museum hosts a four-course dinner paired with history-inspired beers from Yards Brewery of Philadelphia. 7 p.m., Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 N. Royal St., Alexandria. $85, including tax and gratuity. 703-746-4242.
Theater: “Necessary Sacrifices,” for age 13 and older, Jennifer L. Nelson directs Richard Helleesen’s play that explores the two documented encounters between Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln, in 1863 and 1864, envisioning a post-emancipation world and a unified nation, starring David Selby and David Emerson Toney, post-performance discussions about the play’s themes and issues on special days. Jan. 20-Feb. 12. Check website for showtimes., Ford’s Theatre, 511 10th St. NW. $22-$52. 202-347-4833 or www.fordstheatre.org.
Theater: “Red,” Painter Mark Rothko struggles with his legacy as he creates murals for a restaurant and hires a new assistant. 8 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sundays, 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays-Wednesdays, Arena Stage, 1101 Sixth St. SW. $55-$100. 202-488-3300.
“The Secret Garden,” Missoula Children’s Theatre puts on a musical production of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s story, with a cast of 50-60 local kids. 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., Harmony Hall Regional Center, 10701 Livingston Rd., Fort Washington. $5, advance purchase recommended. 301-203-6070.
Children’s Theater Festival, the day’s bilingual activities will include painting, drawing and reading, with two stagings of “Hansel and Gretel” and performances by Abikan Dance & Drum Ensemble, Ko’eti Folkloric Ballet and Las Lunitas. 11 a.m., Spectrum Theatre at Artisphere, 1611 N. Kent St., Arlington. $15, $10 ages 4 to 12, younger free. 703-228-1150.
Poetry Writing Workshop, with poet Laini Mataka. 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Sankofa Video, Books & Cafe, 2714 Georgia Ave. NW. 202-234-4755.
Lorenzo Dow Turner Exhibit, a special program honoring Dr. Lorenzo Dow Turner titled “From Lincoln Park to Leading Scholar.” Turner (1890-1972), was educated in segregated Montgomery County public schools, and later became the first African American linguist, and a founder of the field of African American Studies. The exhibit, sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution, Anacostia Community Museum, and the library, can be viewed through February 29. 2 p.m., Rockville Memorial Library, 21 Maryland Ave., Rockville. Free. 240-777-0140 or www.montgomerycountymd.gov/library.
A Tribute to Civil Rights Heroes, in song and spoken word. 3 p.m., Largo Kettering Library, 9601 Capital Lane, Largo. Free. 301-336-4044.
Sulu DC, spoken word, music, dance, theater, film and multidisciplinary arts from local and national scenes performed by Asian American artists. 7 p.m., Artisphere, 1101 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. $8-$10. 703-875-1100 or www.artisphere.com.
“The Religion Thing,” a perfect couple reexamines their relationship when the wife’s friend find Jesus in this comedy. 8 p.m. Saturdays, 3 and 7:30 p.m. Sundays, 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays, through Jan. 29, Theater J, 1529 16th St. NW. $30-$60. 800-494-8497.
“Truth Be Told,” Alight Dance Theater blends dance, physical theater, scripted text and videotaped “true” confessions in a humorous examination of our collective fascination with the secret lives of others and new works by Monica Warren-Schaeffer and guest artist Wayles Haynes. 8 p.m. Saturday, 4 p.m. Sunday, Dance Place, 3225 Eighth St. NE. $22; seniors and teachers, $17; college students, $10; 17 and younger, $8. 202-269-1600 or www.danceplace.org.
Ethel Merman’s Broadway starring Rita McKenzie, 8 p.m., Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda. 301-581-5100.
Syleena Johnson, 8 and 10 p.m., Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW (rear). $35. 202-337-4141.
Comedian Adam Carolla, 10 p.m., The Fillmore Silver Spring, 8656 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring. $29.50-$49.50. 301-960-9999.
Wizards, vs. the Boston Celtics. 1 p.m., Verizon Center, 601 F St. NW. Call or visit website for ticket prices. 202-628-3200.
National Jazz Workshop, See an ensemble of jazz musicians from the East Coast and the Blues Alley Youth Orchestra. 3 p.m., Artisphere, Ballroom, 1101 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. Free. 703-875-1100.
“Living the Dream Singing the Dream,” 300 singers from the Washington Performing Arts Society Men, the Choral Arts Society of Washington and Women and Children of the Gospel Choir perform music that celebrates the life of Martin Luther King Jr., sponsored by Washington Performing Arts Society. 7 p.m., Kennedy Center, Concert Hall, 2700 F St. NW. $22-$45. 202-785-9727 or www.wpas.org.
Lahla Hadiya, 8 p.m., Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW (rear). $20. 202-337-4141.
Children’s King Poster Exhibit, “Continuing to Keep the Dream Alive,” Alexandria schoolchildren created art celebrating the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. weekdays, through Feb. 29, Alexandria City Hall, Vola Lawson Lobby, 301 King St. Free. 703-838-4356.
Film: Thurgood, a special presentation of director Michael Steven’s drama “Thurgood,” (2011) a one-man show starring actor Laurence Fishburne about Civil Rights lawyer and Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall. 1 p.m., Margaret Schweinhaut Senior Center, in the Garden Room, 1000 Forest Glen Rd., Silver Spring. Free. 240-777-8086.
La Plata Theater Auditions, held by College of Southern Maryland Theatre Company the upcoming performances of “Raggedy Ann and Andy,” “The Laramie Project,” and “Our Town.” Open to anyone in high school and older; ages 10 and older for “Our Town.” 6-8 p.m. Monday-Tuesday, College of Southern Maryland, 8730 Mitchell Rd., La Plata. Free. 301-934-7828.
Deangelo Redman, 8 and 10 p.m., Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW (rear). $18. 202-337-4141.
Adobe Photoshop Class, for age 13 and older, learn how to create and edit digital images using the art and photography software. 6:30 p.m., Brentwood Arts Exchange at Gateway Arts Center, 3901 Rhode Island Ave., Brentwood. $50-$60, registration required. 301-277-2863; TTY 301-446-6802.
Heston, 8 and 10 p.m., Blues Alley, 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW (rear). $20. 202-337-4141.
Silver Spring Author Meet and Greet, Janet Willen, co-author of “Five Thousand Years of Slavery Slavery” will discuss her book about slaves, slave owners, and abolitionists around the world from long ago to present day. 1 p.m., Margaret Schweinhaut Senior Center, 1000 Forest Glen Rd., Silver Spring. Free. 240-777-8086.
Imani Winds and SIREN, Imani Winds and SIREN the Grammy-nominated wind quintet performs with SIREN, the UMD School of Music’s Graduate Fellowship Wind Quintet. 7 p.m., Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, Gildenhorn Recital Hall, University of Maryland, Route 193 and Stadium Drive, College Park. $30. 301-405-2787 or http://www.strathmore.org/eventstickets/calendar/view.asp?id=7276.
Wizards, vs. the Charlotte Bobcats. 7 p.m., Verizon Center, 601 F St. NW. Call or visit Web site for ticket prices. 202-628-3200.
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