As part of its Culture in Motion series, the National Portrait Gallery presents Ira Aldridge: The African Roscius. The play, a tribute to the late Shakespearean actor, is free, but seating is limited. RSVP here.
Tuesday, December 7
Every week, NPR opens its doors to anyone who wants to see how the media giant does its thing. Tours of the headquarters (635 Massachusetts Ave., NW) begin promptly at 11 every Tuesday and Thursday morning.
Wednesday, December 8
You know what they say: Nothing says “Christmas” quite like a mess of tubas. Okay, so maybe no one actually says that. But if they did, Merry TubaChristmas would be the concert for them. Taking place at the Kennedy Center’s free Millennium Stage, the event brings together a collection of sousaphones, euphoniums and, yes, tubas to play traditional Christmas music. 6 PM.
Thursday, December 9
Jack, a five-year-old, has spent the entirety of his life in a 11-square-foot space that he knows only as “room.” Alone with his mother, Jack—the protagonist of Emma Donoghue’s novel, Room—lives a fairly contented existence, unaware that a man he knows only as Old Nick denies him life outside his walls. Donoghue will be on hand to discuss her novel at Politics and Prose at 7.
Friday, December 10
During December, the staff of the National Zoo decks the animal habitats out in lights, seasonal decorations, and holiday nostalgia. What better way to start the weekend than a festive romp around ZooLights? 6 to 8:30.
Saturday, December 11
Today is your chance to see silent films the way they were meant to be viewed. With accompaniment on a Wurlitzer organ, the Library of Congress is screening short comedies from Hal Roach’s studio, the source of Harold Lloyd and Laurel & Hardy movies. 2.
Sunday, December 12
Carolers make their way through the National Gallery of Art rotunda this month, an annual Washington tradition. Among the groups is the Encore Singers, who perform two sets this afternoon at 1:30 and 2:30.