The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra has some light and enjoyable programs coming up. It plays Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons” and Astor Piazzolla’s tango version, “Four Seasons of Buenos Aires,” on July 10. A program called “The Tchaikovsky Spectacular,” which includes the “Romeo and Juliet” violin concerto and selections from Swan Lake, is July 17. Maestro/pianist Leon Fleisher’s 80th birthday will be celebrated with an all-Mozart program July 24. “A Tribute to Gershwin & Bernstein”—including “Rhapsody in Blue” and “An American in Paris” by Gershwin and selections from West Side Story by Bernstein—takes place July 31. For tickets ($25 to $60), call 877-276-1444 or visit bsomusic.org. 5301 Tuckerman La., North Bethesda; 301-581-5100; strathmore.org.
Pop/rock singer/songwriter John Mayer appears with guitarist/singer Brett Dennen July 13; tickets are $36 to $59.50. The Steve Miller Band and Joe Cocker come through town July 17; tickets are $35 to $75. The rock band O.A.R., whose founding members are from Rockville, is joined by the Beautiful Girls, a trio of Australian blokes playing roots rock, July 26; tickets are $30 to $38. 10475 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia; 410-715-5550; merriweathermusic.com.
On a hot day, the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden is one of the city’s nicer spots. On Fridays at 5 (except July 4), Jazz in the Garden takes place on the west side of the fountain. The Joshua Bayer Quartet plays classic jazz July 11; Nasar Abadey and Supernova do modern jazz July 18; Deanna Bogart and her boogie-woogie rhythm-and-blues jazz band stir it up July 25. Admission is free, with no tickets required. Drinks and snacks are sold at the sculpture garden’s cafe. The main entrance is at Seventh St. and Constitution Ave., NW; 202-737-4215; nga.gov/programs/jazz.
Pop singer George Michael recently released a new CD, TwentyFive, a retrospective of his career that includes his ’80s days with Wham! He’ll be at the Verizon Center July 29. Ticketmaster is handling tickets ($55 to $250) at 202-397-7328 or Ticketmaster.com. 601 F St., NW; 202-628-3200; verizoncenter.com.
At the Filene Center, Brazilian star Sergio Mendes performs July 1 along with Zap Mama; tickets are $22 to $75. Singer/songwriter Lyle Lovett returns July 2; tickets are $25 to $40. The Wolf Trap Opera Company and the National Symphony Orchestra perform a concert version of Leonard Bernstein’s Candide July 6; tickets are $20 to $55. The Paul Taylor Dance Company, always innovative, returns July 8; tickets are $8 to $38. Opera lovers will be pleased to spend the evening of July 11 with soprano Kiri Te Kanawa and the NSO July 11; tickets are $20 to $55. For something completely different, there’s Not the Messiah! (He’s a Very Naughty Boy) with Eric Idle and the NSO July 24. The “comic oratorio” is based on Monty Python’s Life of Brian and Handel’s Messiah; tickets are $20 to $55. “Broadway Rocks” might be a bit of a stretch for the NSO, but on July 26 the orchestra is game for an evening of music from The Phantom of the Opera, Dreamgirls, The Lion King, and Mamma Mia! sung by Susan Egan, Capathia Jenkins, Robert Evan, and Doug LaBrecque; tickets are $20 to $48. Noche Flamenca, a sizzling Spanish dance troupe, performs July 29; tickets are $8 to $38.
In the Barns, the Wolf Trap Opera Company performs Handel’s Alcina July 11, 13, and 15; tickets are $28 to $68. Pianist Steven Blier’s first recital performed at Wolf Trap, in 1994, was Tales From the Vienna Woods, and that’s what he and the Wolf Trap Opera Company will perform July 19; tickets are $38. 1551 Trap Rd., Vienna; 877-965-3872; wolftrap.org.
Singer/songwriter/guitarist Brad Paisley performs with a West Virginia twang July 12. Joining him will be Jewel—the folk/pop singer now making a bid for a country audience—Chuck Wicks, and Julianne Hough; tickets are $25 to $54.50. Country fans will also stream in for hit makers Rascal Flatts July 26, with teen songstress Taylor Swift opening ($35 to $80). The Projekt Revolution Tour—an annual summer rite of hard rock, rap, and more—this year features Linkin Park, Chris Cornell, the Bravery, and Busta Rhymes, July 27 ($24.75 to $75).
Tickets for all shows are available from Ticketmaster, 202-397-7328 or Ticketmaster.com and Livenation.com. 7800 Cellar Door Dr., Bristow; 703-754-6400; livenation.com.