THURSDAY, JANUARY 18
ART The newest immersive installation at ARTECHOUSE, Parallel Universe, opens on Thursday. This is the first solo retrospective exhibit for Turkish art studio Ouchhh and contains four installations, one of which was created in collaboration with ARTCHOUSE specifically for this show. The exhibit features projections and light installations that pull inspiration from science, mathematics, and astrology. Through March 4. $15.
BENEFIT The Washington Area Fuel Fund (WAFF) is hosting an Ice House at the Washington Harbour in Georgetown to raise awareness and benefit the families who cannot afford to heat their homes in the winter. WAFF has partnered with Ice Lab to build a house made of 60 large blocks of ice to show what it’s like to live in a cold home. Visitors can pop in for a quick photograph or participate in a 30-minute challenge to raise money (successful participants will be let out early). Celebrity guests such as Capitals alum Peter Bondra, Bullets alums Harvey Grant and Phil Chenier, and various mascots and announcers will spend time in the Ice House. Free to attend (donations encouraged). Thursday 2-8 PM, Friday 2-9 PM, Saturday 12-9 PM.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 19
THEATRE The DC Premiere of Unnecessary Farce opens on Friday at the Keegan Theatre. In this comedy, a crooked mayor meets with his female accountant at a motel while two undercover cops observe everything from the room next door. Characters rotate in and out of the motel rooms, causing rising confusion as to who’s in which room and where the money trail leads. Through February 10. $35-$45.
OPERA The American Opera Initiative Festival brings world premieres of contemporary American stories to the Kennedy Center’s Terrace Theater this weekend. Friday and Sunday feature Proving Up, a coming-of-age story about families in Nebraska trying to claim their land under the Homestead Act. Three new 20-minute operas will debut on Saturday: A Bridge for Three details the lives of historical figures who have jumped from the Brooklyn Bridge; Fault Lines tells of day-to-day life in New York during World War II; and Precita Park, about the aftermath of the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906. Proving Up: $39, Friday at 7:30 PM, Sunday at 2 PM. 20-minute operas: $29, Saturday at 7 PM and 9 PM.
THEATRE Ford’s Theatre presents the American premiere of Jefferson’s Garden, a drama that explores the contradictions between the ideals of our founding fathers and the realities of American life. In the play, a Quaker pacifist defies his family’s beliefs to fight in the American Revolution, but then he meets an enslaved woman who is tempted to join the British when they promise her liberation. Through February 8. $20-$62.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 20
CONVENTION If this winter weather has you daydreaming of warmer climates, head over to the 14th DC Travel & Adventure Show at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Plan your next trip, get travel tips at seminars, watch live cooking demonstrations, and meet travel authorities such as Samantha Brown (host of Places to Love) and travel journalist Rudy Maxa. $15, Saturday: 10 AM – 5 PM; Sunday: 11 AM – 4 PM.
FESTIVAL Ice Yards returns for its fourth year to the boardwalk at Yards Park. Celebrate winter at this festival with ice bars serving cocktails and local DC brews, games such as ice shuffleboard, and live music. $10, 1 PM-5 PM.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 21
ACTIVISM On the one-year anniversary of the Women’s March, Sixth & I is hosting “Empow(HER)ed: An Evening of Arts & Activism.” The event will feature artists and activists coming together to reflect on the experience and refuel for the journey ahead. Speakers and performers include Ilyse Hogue (President of NARAL Pro-Choice America), Fatima Goss Graves (President and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center), and spoken word poet Sarah Lawson. After the performances, local organizations will gather in a Justice Fair to raise awareness of the causes that affect the DC community. $8 (in advance) or $10 (day-of), 7 PM.
BOOKS Author Robert N. Gross, Assistant Academic Dean at Sidwell Friends School, has delved into the long history of school choice in the US in his new book, Public vs. Private: The Early History of School Choice in America. Gross looks back at the rise of Catholic parochial schools in the late 19th century and the effort of states to ban Catholic schools in the 1920s; he also explores how public and private schools have since been able to co-exist and thrive. Gross will discuss this history and his research at Politics & Prose. Free, 5 PM.