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Prelude 2008: Arts Across America

Open House Arts Festival

24th Annual!
Saturday, September 13 from 12 noon to 11 p.m.

A free day of performances all throughout the Kennedy Center

It's a new season of Performing Arts for Everyone! The Kennedy Center is kicking off its 37th birthday with a celebration of American innovators and artists carrying on and developing traditions. Continuing the theme of Prelude 2008: Arts Across America, which highlights the diversity of the United States, Open House features artists from across the country and the D.C. area in more than 30 performances, demonstrations, and events.

Performance Schedule

Great for children in kindergarten and up and their families
Open Captioned event
American Sign Language interpreted
View a map of the Kennedy Center

Main Plaza

12:30-1 p.m.
Step Team [K]

Check out nationally recognized step teams who will be performing later at 6 p.m. in the Concert Hall.

2-2:30 p.m. & 3:30-4 p.m.
PROJECT (Washington) [K]

Get up close and personal with beatbox flutist Greg Pattillo, bassist Peter Seymour, and cellist Eric Stephenson and see how they create their unique sound.

2:45-3:15 p.m. & 5-5:30 p.m.
Jamie Adkins (California) [K][ASL]

A former member of Pickle Family Circus and Cirque Éloize, this comedian and circus artist showcases his talents as an eccentric clown, juggler, balancing artist, and poet.

4:15-4:45 p.m.
Hungry March Band (New York) [K]

New York City's legendary street brass marching band comes roaring out of Brooklyn in the anarchic style that has become their trademark.

North Plaza

1-1:45 p.m. & 3:30-4:15 p.m.
Donald Knaack’s Junk Jams (Vermont) [K]

Monkey around with Junk Music play stations, sound sculptures made from recycled materials where visitors can have a Junk Jam.

2:15-3 p.m. & 4:45-5:30 p.m.
Dragon Art Studio (Oregon) [K]

NEA Heritage Award-winners Yuquin Wang and Zhengli Xu present the mastery of rod puppetry—a tradition from China featuring dramatic and acrobatic staging of folktales, legends, and opera.

12:15-6 p.m.
Edwin Fontánez’s Washington Chalk Festival (Puerto Rico) [K]

Now in its 12th year! Watch local artists at work and create your own colorful sidewalk masterpiece in chalk. This year, the festival welcomes the participation of Rick Aleman, Scott Buga, Pat Goslee, Seemeen Hashem, Judit Ilie, and Gina Robles-Villalba.

12:15-6 p.m.
NSO Instrument “Petting Zoo” [K]

Spotlighting instruments featured in the orchestra, this popular activity gives children the opportunity to strike, blow, and bow their way to fun. A project of the Women’s Committee for the National Symphony Orchestra.

12:15-6 p.m.
Backstage at the Opera [K]

Get a close-up look at props and equipment that make the opera so spectacular! Show your opera spirit with a Washington National Opera temporary tattoo!

South Plaza

12-12:15 p.m.
Opening Kick-Off

Featuring members of the Hungry March Band, Greg Pattillo, and Step Afrika!

12:15-1 p.m.
Hungry March Band (New York)

New York City’s legendary street brass marching band comes roaring out of Brooklyn in the anarchic style that has become their trademark. Put on your dancing shoes for European brass traditions, Gypsy and Roma classics, jazz, Latin, punk rock, hip hop, and music of the streets.

1:45-2:45 p.m.
Dan Zanes and Friends (New York) [K][ASL]

Dan Zanes and his merry band make music for families and people of all ages in a way that is changing the face of America. His albums Catch That Train! and ¡Nueva York! have won awards and praise from audiences everywhere.

3:30-4:15 p.m.
Algebra (Georgia) [ASL]

Atlanta, Georgia-based R&B songstress Algebra, who has worked on projects with Monica, Bilal, India.Arie, and more, moves easily between pop, rock, rap, funk or crunk, as heard on her debut CD Purpose.

5-6 p.m.
Lila Downs (Minnesota) [ASL]

Mexican born folk singer Lila Downs, nominated for an Academy Award for her song “Burn it Blue” in the film Frida, brings her unique style of music combining her Mexican roots with jazz and North American sounds.

7-8:30 p.m.
DJ Rahsaan (Maryland)

Get down as DJ Rahsaan spins hip hop, Go-Go, and Deep House.

8:30-9 p.m.
Hip Hop Dance Lessons with goLo LLC (Washington, D.C.)

Learn some fresh new moves with the Hip Hop Dance Experience from goLo LLC.

9-11 p.m.
Go-Go Dance Party with Chuck Brown (Washington, D.C.)

D.C. legend and Godfather of Go-Go Chuck Brown gets your groove on with this hypnotically danceable music rooted in funk and soul.

Artists and programming subject to change.