Arts Desk

Arts Roundup: Too Much Music Edition

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Good morning! Did you read our Summer Music Guide? Has it helped you figure out what bands you're seeing tonight—you know, between Title Tracks at St. Stephens, the State Department at Rock & Roll Hotel, Ugly Purple Sweater at New Community Church, and Hercules & Love Affair's DJ set at U Street Music Hall? We doubly suggest you see the first one. But it'll probably end early enough that you'll have time to catch any of the others.

Local label Windian Records is releasing a 7-inch of songs by the overlooked punk band the Testors.

Little Orphan Annie: Fired. Law & Order: Same fate?

The DC Youth Orchestra turns 50 this year, and is looking for alumni for an anniversary event in August.

WaPo's Ann Hornaday is at Cannes—and says the mood, maybe due to the absence of much-anticipated American movies (Robin Hood hardly counts) is rather drab and serious this year:

USA Today reporter Anthony Breznican said he sensed "mild disappointment" on the part of festival-goers at the absence of mainstream American titles this year. (Several fans were hoping that Terrence Malick's "Tree of Life" and Christopher Nolan's "Inception" would be here.) "But in their absence, there's now an eagerness and a sense of potential surprise for movies that probably would have been overshadowed totally by higher-profile behemoth Hollywood movies."

The governing ethic of austerity seems to have seeped into the movies themselves. Among a program featuring films about a disaffected father (Wang Xiaoshuai's "Chongquin Blues"), a young photographer's obsession with a dead girl (de Oliveira's "The Strange Case of Angelica") and divorce (Radu Muntean's "Tuesday, After Christmas"), only "Tournée" ("On Tour"), directed by the actor Mathieu Amalric, has dared to show a little skin, figurative and literal. The quirkily transgressive backstage comedy-drama features a dazzling cast of American New Burlesque performers strutting their spangled, suggestive stuff as dancers touring France under the tutelage of an anxious impresario, played by Amalric. "Tournée" offered a brief, unruly burst of joie de vivre in an otherwise tasteful but tediously safe opening slate.

Amalric is one of my favorite French actors—hopefully Tournée gets a theatrical run in the states.

It's a gray Friday, but it doesn't have to be!

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  • Stevek

    More stuff tonight:

    Mathew Dear at Muse

    Fernando Villalona (Dominican Republic merengue singer ) at Bravo Bravo Night Club ,1001 Conneticut Ave NW, Washington DC ,

    Luis Enrigue (Nicaraguan salsa romantica) at Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill, 400 New Jersey Ave NW, Washington DC

    Chatham County Line (Bluegrass) at the Birchmere

    Little Brother (hiphop) at the Black Cat

...