Things to See and Do in the Bethesda Area in May and June

Things to See and Do in the Bethesda Area in May and June

Our picks for music, shows and other entertainment

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Courtesy of Davenport Design

May 5 | An Idol’s Idol

Back in 2003, Ruben Studdard was victorious in the second season of American Idol, charming audiences with his soulful voice and earning comparisons to R&B great Luther Vandross. Studdard grew up listening to Vandross, who was one of his mother’s favorite singers and became a huge in uence on his career. At Always & Forever: An Evening of Luther Vandross Starring Ruben Studdard, the Idol crooner pays tribute to his own idol with a performance featuring hit songs by the eight-time Grammy Award winner.

8 p.m.; $50, $40 faculty and staff, $35 with student ID; Robert E. Parilla Performing Arts Center, Rockville;

Photo courtesy of Mark Setteducati, The Easton Foundation/VAGA, NY

May 10 through early 2020 | Artist Unraveled

Body parts, spiders and fractured families are repeated themes in Louise Bourgeois’ artwork. Glenstone’s new exhibition, Louise Bourgeois: To Unravel a Torment, features about 30 pieces spanning more than 50 years of the French-American’s career. Bourgeois (1911-2010), an influential feminist artist, was known for her large-scale sculptures and installations, but she was also a prolific painter and printmaker. Her artwork focused on desire, the unconscious and the body—sometimes explicitly. The exhibition will feature sculptures, drawings, prints, textiles and roomlike installations that the artist called “cells.”

10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Thursday-Sunday, free, Glenstone, Potomac,

Photo courtesy of Strathmore

May 11 | The Lowe Down

Known for his good looks and roles in Brat Pack ’80s movies as well as TV shows such as The West Wing and Parks and Recreation, Rob Lowe is also the author of two New York Times best-selling memoirs. The books were praised for their juicy tales from the actor’s personal life and career, including experiences with other Hollywood denizens. You can hear some of those stories directly from the star when he brings his one-man show, Stories I Only Tell My Friends: LIVE!, to Strathmore. The show, based on the two memoirs, includes video clips from Lowe’s career, as well as a Q&A session and photos and videos from his personal archive.

8 p.m., $38-$88, The Music Center at Strathmore, North Bethesda,

Courtesy photo

May 12-13 | Arty Party

Paintings, sculpture, original photography and handmade jewelry are among the unique offerings on display at the Bethesda Fine Arts Festival. The annual event, which features items for sale by about 120 artists, takes over the Woodmont Triangle section of downtown. Browsers and buyers alike can also hear live music by local bands and sample food from Bethesda restaurants, lending the festival a partylike atmosphere.

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, free, Norfolk and Auburn avenues, Bethesda,

Courtesy photo

June 2  | Use Your Imagination

Colorful balloons line the streets, and roaming performers weave through the crowds at Imagination Bethesda. The whimsical children’s arts festival, organized by the Bethesda Urban Partnership, features hands-on arts and crafts, and live music and dance performances by local and national groups.

10 a.m. to 3 p.m., free, Woodmont Avenue and Elm Street, Bethesda,

Photo courtesy of Round House Theatre

June 6 through July 1 | What a Drag

What’s the difference between an Elvis impersonator and a drag queen? Not all that much, main character Casey comes to find out in The Legend of Georgia McBride. Round House Theatre closes its season with this comedy, in which Casey, a down-on-his-luck Elvis impersonator, uses the tools of his trade—sequins, lip-synching skills and swiveling hips—to transform from “the King” to “queen” after the struggling bar where he works hires a drag show to attract more customers. This production promises a fierce cast performing fun musical numbers in outrageous costumes. 

$36-$65, Round House Theatre, Bethesda,

June 10-16 | Cue the Blues

The 10th annual Silver Spring Blues Festival features a daylong blues block party with live music on two stages. A stage at Veterans Plaza features an all-acoustic lineup on June 16 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Then, things get loud and move over to the main stage near the fountain at Ellsworth Drive for amplified music from 3 to 10 p.m. The party wraps up Silver Spring Blues Week, a series of nightly performances at various locations in Silver Spring. 

June 10-15, various locations; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. June 16, Veterans Plaza and Ellsworth Drive, free,

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