Museums reopening tomorrow (with masks required except for visitors under age 6): the National Portrait Gallery, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Renwick Gallery and the National Museum of African American History and Culture. From the comfort of your couch, stream Japanese films, hear from Helen Hunt and view treasures from sunken cities of ancient Egypt. Clicking on the headings below will hook you up.
The 17th edition of the DC Shorts International Film Festival & Screenplay Competition, which began on Sept. 10, continues through Sept. 23. This year’s completely online festival has bundled 163 films from 34 countries into 20 showcases: 10 genre-specific, such as Animation, Documentary and LGBTQ, and 10 with something for everyone. All-access passes are $75.
PostClassical Ensemble will launch a virtual series called Up Close With … on Sept. 17 at 6 p.m. Music Director Angel Gil-Ordóñez will chat with concertmaster Netanel “Nati” Draiblate and share excerpts of this thrilling young violinist’s performances. Director of chamber music at Georgetown University, Draiblate is concertmaster of the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra and founder and director of the Annapolis Symphony Academy.
Lindsay M. Chervinsky, scholar in residence at Iona College’s Institute for Thomas Paine Studies and senior fellow at the International Center for Jefferson Studies, will discuss her new book, “The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution,” on Sept. 17 at 7 p.m. (ticket sales close at 4 p.m.). Dr. Chervinsky’s talk will explain how our first president formed this powerful institution and why its legacy is so important. Tickets are $6.
In the face of the pandemic, the innovative D.C. opera company decided early on to present an all-virtual season. In Series’ free Season Liftoff Concert will take place on Sept. 17 at 7:30 p.m. via Invision: The Logan Operahouse Without Walls. Subscriptions start at $0.
Virtual Contemporary for age 12 and teens is one of the online classes offered by Dance Place during the 12-week fall semester of Kids on the Move. Taught by performer and youth dance educator Dache Green, the class meets on Fridays from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. starting Sept. 18. Students will learn gestural and pedestrian movements, floor work and choreography, integrated with studies in rhythm, speed, direction and weight shifting. Tuition is $140. Other classes are available for children aged 3 to 12 and teens.
The first round of the Japanese Information & Culture Center’s New from Japan film series, co-presented with the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Asian Art, will begin on Sept. 18 at 7 p.m., when these three dramas will be available for complimentary streaming: “To the Ends of the Earth,” directed by Kiyoshi Kurosawa, starring a former J-Pop idol as a television reporter filming a travel show in Uzbekistan; “Labyrinth of Cinema,” directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi, at once a passionate anti-war statement and a wacky romp through Japanese cinema history; and “My Sweet Grappa Remedies,” directed by Akiko Ohku, which follows single, 40-something Yoshiko’s internal monologue as she enjoys life’s simple pleasures. Advance registration is required.
In conjunction with the exhibition “Treasures of Ancient Egypt: Sunken Cities,” on view through Jan. 18, Peter Schertz, Jack and Mary Ann Frable Curator of Ancient Art at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, will lead a “deep dive” into one of the most astonishing underwater discoveries of all time on Sept. 22 at 6 p.m. Participants in this online lecture will explore the recovered treasures of two powerful Egyptian cities that sank into the Mediterranean 1,200 years ago after cataclysmic events. Tickets are $25.
On Sept. 22 from 6:30 to 8 p.m., Yvette LaGonterie will give a free online lecture, “Enslaved at the Georgetown Hotel.” An avid family historian who retired from a federal career in immigration, international affairs and homeland security, LaGonterie will tell the story of three generations of one family who were held as slaves by the owner of the Georgetown Hotel (now known as the City Tavern) until President Abraham Lincoln signed the District of Columbia Compensated Emancipation Act in 1862.
Artistic Director Simon Godwin and Resident Dramaturg Drew Lichtenberg are the hosts of STC’s Shakespeare Hour LIVE! series. The topic on Sept. 23 at 7:30 p.m. is “Shakespeare’s Heroines.” Joining them online will be Academy Award-winning actress Helen Hunt and theater director and performer Madeline Sayet, executive director of the Yale Indigenous Performing Arts Program. Tickets are $10.
These two museums share the Old Patent Office Building at 8th and F Streets NW. When they reopen on Sept. 18, a free timed-entry pass for either is valid for both. New exhibitions at the National Portrait Gallery: “Her Story: A Century of Women Writers” and “Visionary: The Cumming Family Collection.” At the Smithsonian American Art Museum, “Alexander von Humboldt and the United States: Art, Nature and Culture” will be back on view. Hours are Wednesday to Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The Renwick Gallery, Pennsylvania Avenue at 17th Street NW, is the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s center for contemporary craft and design. Timed-entry passes will not be required when the Renwick reopens on Sept. 18. Newly installed: Janet Echelman’s “1.8 Renwick,” a huge fiber piece suspended from the ceiling of the Grand Salon. Hours are Wednesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and admission is free.
Reopening on Sept. 18, with free timed-entry passes required, the National Museum of African American History and Culture is unmistakably located at 1400 Constitution Ave. NW. Along with the museum’s permanent displays, “Double Victory: The African American Military Experience” will be on view. Hours are Wednesday to Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.