Need the perfect gift for that special someone, or just a break from studying? An outing to one of the great holiday activities in D.C. is the perfect solution.
A cultural metropolis, D.C. will host a wide variety of theater, dance and musical productions during the next two months. Most of the productions offer student discounts or are free.
At Lisner, The Christmas Revels will take the stage Dec. 5-14. It is a show filled with Medieval and Renaissance holiday music, drama and dance. Ticket prices range from $15-25.
If yearning to relive the carefree days of childhood, or needing a place to take a younger sibling, check out one of many productions of “The Nutcracker.”
The acclaimed Washington Ballet will perform its annual version of Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece at the Warner Theatre Dec. 12-27. The George Mason University Center for the Arts will stage “The Nutcracker” Nov. 28-29. The Kennedy Center Opera House will be the sight of the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago’s “The Nutcracker” Dec. 16-21.
Just a few blocks from campus, The Kennedy Center may be the best venue for students to catch the holiday spirit. During the holidays, it will be a gift in itself, covered with a huge red ribbon.
The “Messiah” sing along will ring from The Kennedy Center Dec. 23. Tickets are free, but hard to come by. They are distributed Dec. 6 at 10 a.m., and the line forms early. “Black Nativity,” a show telling the Christmas story through gospel music and dance, begins Dec. 16.
The National Symphony Orchestra offers $12 tickets to most performances, and the sound in the Concert Hall is vastly improved thanks to recent renovations. Tango Apasionado, an ensemble including cellist Yo-Yo Ma, will perform Dec. 10.
On Dec. 12, the National Symphony Orchestra will play holiday favorites with The Canadian Brass Ensemble.
If musical comedy is the desired genre, “Shear Madness” is always a crowd pleaser. The show will continue performances in the Terrace Theatre of The Kennedy Center during the holidays. Also, the smash Broadway hit “Smokey Joe’s Cafe” arrives in the Opera House Dec. 23. The musical runs through Jan. 18. Student tickets are offered at half price on a day-to-day basis.
“Bring in `Da Noise, Bring in `Da Funk” will be at National Theatre until Nov. 30. And The Shakespeare Theatre is hosting Patrick Stewart in “Othello.” Although the show is completely sold out, standing room tickets are available one hour before the curtain the day of the show for $10. “A Tuna Christmas,” a Washington tradition in comedy, will be at the Warner Theatre Nov. 25 to Dec. 7.
A great place to search for holiday presents is the National Helping Hands Craft Show, held at the Ethical Society headquarters on 16th Street Dec.5-7. A $5 admission fee is charged, which, along with the profits from the sale, benefits charitable organizations that help the homeless become independent. The sale showcases many crafts, including wearable art and ceramics.
From performances to craft shows, D.C. offers a variety of ways to enjoy the festive season. If a few hours for a performance seems like lost time, at least view the lighting of the National Christmas Tree and the National Menorah on the Ellipse.