Thursday, December 9
The Embassy of Denmark (3200 Whitehaven St., NW) is celebrating its 50th anniversary with “Creative Christmas: 50 Years of Iconic Danish Design.” The event includes 50 Christmas trees that have been designed and decorated using Danish architecture, furniture, and graphic design as inspiration. 1 to 5. Free; no registration required. Beginning December 11, you can view the exhibit at Gallery 31 at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. To see photos of last year's creations, click here.
The National Symphony Orchestra Pops is wishing Washington “Happy Holidays” along with the City Choir of Washington at their performance of Christmas classics. At the Kennedy Center through December 12; tickets ($20 to $85) are available here.
Get inside the artist’s head during “A Conversation With Alice Whealin” at Artisphere. Her exhibit “Fields and Networks,” composed of ink drawings on acetate, is currently on display in Artisphere’s Mezz Gallery. 8 PM; pay what you can.
Friday, December 10
Find a gift for the artist in your life at “Off the Walls” at the Corcoran Gallery, the annual sale of work by College of Design students, faculty, alumni, and staff. The event starts Thursday and runs through Saturday. Proceeds from all sales benefit the artist and the school. 10 to 3.
Violinist Christen Lien combines classical training with electronic beats to create her unique sound. She’s playing for free tonight at the Sitar Arts Center at 5.
At Darklight Festival: State of a Nation, director Nicky Gogan has picked a lineup of movies that represent the best of Ireland’s independent film as well as the current social climate. In true Irish style, there’ll be free beer. 9 PM at the Goethe-Institut. Get tickets ($10) here or at the door.
See Christmas as it looked centuries ago with the annual Historic Alexandria Candlelight Tour. This year, four historic Alexandria homes and museums—Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, Carlyle House, Lee-Fendall House, and the Athenaeum—are decorated in their Christmas best and offering refreshments and live music. 6 to 9. A shuttle runs continuously around the sites. Tours also run December 12 from 3 to 6. Tickets ($5 to $20) are available here.
The festive Winter’s Eve at Glen Echo Park includes craft-making, choral performances, a gift sale, and hot-chocolate-and-popcorn bar. Visitors age 16 and older can make their own blown-glass ornament ($26.50). 6 to 10; free.
Patti Smith is discussing and signing copies of her memoir of early 1970s New York, Just Kids, at the National Portrait Gallery. The musician was also a close friend of Robert Maplethorpe, whose work is currently featured in the exhibit “Hide/Seek: Difference in American Portraiture.” 2 PM; free.
The exhibit “Party Crashers” is coming to Artisphere. It runs through Feburary 12 and explores the relationship between comics and contemporary art. Tonight is the opening reception and after-party ($12). Guests can also learn how to draw figures with burlesque dancers as models ($5). 8 to 11.
Sunday, December 12
At the Santa Paws event at Hotel Monaco pets can get dressed in their holiday best and have their photo taken with Santa ($20), while human guests enjoy complimentary refreshments. Proceeds go to the Washington Humane Society. WHS staff will be on hand with pets up for adoption. 2 to 4.
It’s the last day to catch Swingtime at the Atlas Performing Arts Center. The show combines the music, sights, and style of the 1940s as it tells the story of six iconic entertainers in New York City. Buy tickets ($20 to $39) here.