Compiled by Richard Selden
European Union Film Showcase
The European Union Film Showcase, now in its 30th year, continues through Dec. 20 at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, Maryland. More than 40 films will be screened, including Swedish director Jens Assur’s rural drama “Ravens,” a U.S. premiere; Italian director Jonas Carpignano’s Calabrian coming-of-age tale “A Ciambra,” executive-produced by Martin Scorsese; Estonian director Rainer Sarnet’s gothic fantasy “November”; and other countries’ official Oscar submissions for Best Foreign Language Film.
A Jazz New Year’s Eve
NEA Jazz Master Dee Dee Bridgewater will sing blues and soul songs from her new album “Memphis … Yes, I’m Ready” at the Kennedy Center’s “A Jazz New Year’s Eve” on Sunday, Dec. 31, in the Terrace Theater. Bridgewater, a three-time Grammy Award winner, was born Denise Eileen Garrett in Memphis, the daughter of a jazz trumpeter and DJ known as “Matt the Platter Cat.” Tickets, which include admission to the center’s Grand Foyer Party, are $79 to $89.
MAGfest at National Harbor
Short for Music And Gaming Festival, MAGfest 2018 will be held Jan. 4 to 7 at Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland. Dedicated to the appreciation of video-game music, the event runs 24 hours a day, offering, in addition to speakers and vendors: console, arcade, tabletop and LAN games; chiptunes; and live video- game cover bands. The Washington Metropolitan Gamer Symphony Orchestra will perform on Jan. 6. Please note that “Prop weapons are welcome but must be checked in with security promptly upon arrival.” Advance registration is $85.
WNO Hires General Director
The general director of Opera Theatre of Saint Louis — a summer festival that performs works in English and has presented several world premieres of American operas — Timothy O’Leary will join Washington National Opera as general director, effective July 1 of next year. O’Leary, who takes over from Michael Mael (who had the title executive director), is also chairman of service organization Opera America. Francesca Zambello continues as WNO’s artistic director.
New Music Director at CCS
Steven Fox, artistic director of the New York-based Clarion Orchestra and Clarion Choir, has been named music director of Cathedral Choral Society, the National Cathedral’s resident symphonic chorus. Fox, who founded Musica Antiqua St. Petersburg, Russia’s first period- instrument orchestra, will give his first public performance with Cathedral Choral Society on Oct. 21 of next year. He is the third music director in the society’s 76-year history, following J. Reilly Lewis, who died in 2016.
Powell to Leave National Gallery
The National Gallery of Art’s longest-serving director, Earl A. Powell III, will retire early in 2019. Known as Rusty, Powell succeeded J. Carter Brown in 1992. After graduating from Williams College (he is a member of the so-called Williams mafia of art-museum directors), Powell served in the Navy, then went to Harvard and later headed the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. At the National Gallery, he oversaw the creation of the Sculpture Garden in 1999 and the renovation and expansion of the East Building, which reopened last year.