Events February 19-21: Native Voices, a Modern Silent Film and Trumpet Jazz

This week, watch films by American Indian youths, see Academy Award-winner “The Artist” and snap your fingers to some world-class jazz

Jazz artist Michael “Bags” Davis
Jazz artist Michael “Bags” Davis pays tribute to trumpet legend Kenny Dorham (above, performing in Toronto in 1954) at Thursday night’s Take Five! jazz performance at the American Art Museum. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Tuesday, February 19: Voices of Native Youth

See life through the eyes of a young person in an indigenous community today in movie clips from the Native Youth Film and Video Festival. Open to submissions from American Indians, Alaskan and Hawaiian natives and members of Canadian First Nations under the age of 24, the festival selects numerous 10-minute films to be screened at the Santa Fe Indian Market in the summer. Last year’s chosen clips recently made their way to Smithsonian, where they are running until the end of the month. Free. 12:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. daily in February. American Indian Museum.

Wednesday, February 20: The Artist

The Artist is the most awarded French film in history. Shot in the style of a black and white silent film (check out its trailer), it depicts a romance between a fading silent film star and a rising actress from 1927 to 1932, when silent film was rapidly being replaced by sound film, a.k.a. “the talkies.” The American Art Museum and the National Portrait Gallery are showing the movie in their shared Kogod courtyard, which is an ideal place to escape a dull February Wednesday and slip into a romantic past. Be sure to bring along your Valentine from last week. Free. 7 p.m. to 8:40 p.m. American Art Museum, National Portrait Gallery.

Thursday, February 21: Take Five! Mike “Bags” Davis: Kenny Dorham

Trumpet rock star Michael Davis takes the stage tonight to perform the music of Kenny Dorham, one of jazz’s most influential trumpeters in the mid-19th century. Dorham made his mark playing bebop and hard bop, and composed the jazz standard “Blue Bossa.” Listen to a sample of Dorham’s genius here, and see Davis’s chops on display here. The performance is part of Smithsonian’s Take Five! program, a series of free jazz concerts every Thursday. Free. 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. American Art Museum.

Also, check out our Visitors Guide App. Get the most out of your trip to Washington, D.C. and the National Mall with this selection of custom-built tours, based on your available time and passions. From the editors of Smithsonian magazine, the app is packed with handy navigational tools, maps, museum floor plans and museum information including ‘Greatest Hits’ for each Smithsonian museum.

For a complete listing of Smithsonian events and exhibitions visit the goSmithsonian Visitors Guide. Additional reporting by Michelle Strange.

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