Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

The Kennedy Center Announces Millennium Stage Schedule for October Featuring José James, Samantha Crain & More

October will also feature a Celebration of Diwali event with District of Raga which will feature the Aditya Prakash Trio.

The Kennedy Center Announces Millennium Stage Schedule for October Featuring José James, Samantha Crain & More

Millennium Stage is a manifestation of the Kennedy Center's mission and vision to welcome all to celebrate our collective cultural heritage in the most inclusive and accessible way possible. Millennium Stage will offer free live community performances, streamed live, plus online programs and film screenings, Wednesday-Saturday each week throughout their campus.

October events will include José James sings Badu, Choctaw singer, songwriter, poet, producer, and musician Samantha Crain, and a Celebration of Diwali event with District of Raga which will feature the Aditya Prakash Trio-musicians who have deep roots in the classical traditions of Karnatik and Western. The Extraordinary Cinema Film Series, a curated Sunday matinee film series featuring the best in Independent art films, cult classics, and documentaries will feature three emotional and intimate films, The Sound of Metal (2019), Songs My Brothers Taught Me (2015), Parallel Mothers (2021) and the classic thriller Hitchcock's North by Northwest (1959). Millennium Stage will also host the Cactus Blossoms performing new music from their acclaimed album, One Day a soulful and explorative album written and recorded in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For schedule updates and reservations, visit the Kennedy Center website. Registration does not guarantee entry to the event space. Access is first come, first served and may be restricted due to capacity. Performances are open to television and radio news coverage. Media crews must request access at least one full week prior to the performance date.

Chronological Schedule for October 2022
Please check the Kennedy Center websites for updates on programming.


Sat., Oct. 1

6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
The String Queens
Praised for its "authentic, soulful, and orchestral sound," The String Queens (TSQ) is a dynamic trio that creates stimulating musical experiences that inspire diverse audiences to love, hope, feel, and imagine! With an array of repertoire spanning from the Baroque era to the Jazz Age to today's Billboard Hot 100 Chart, TSQ performs versatile programs that transport audiences through time and a multitude of musical genres.

Sun., Oct. 2

3 p.m.

Justice Forum at the REACH
Extraordinary Cinema: The Sound of Metal (Film)
During a series of adrenaline-fueled one-night gigs, itinerant punk-metal drummer Ruben (Riz Ahmed) begins to experience intermittent hearing loss. When a specialist tells him his condition will rapidly worsen, he thinks his music career - and his life - is over. His bandmate and girlfriend Lou (Olivia Cooke) checks the recovering heroin addict into a secluded sober house for the deaf in hopes it will prevent a relapse and help him learn to adapt to his new situation. But after being welcomed into a community that accepts him just as he is, Ruben has to choose between his equilibrium and the drive to reclaim the life he once knew. Utilizing startling, innovative sound design techniques, director Darius Marder takes audiences inside Ruben's experience to vividly recreate his journey into a rarely examined world.

Wed., Oct. 5


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Cactus Blossoms
"Hey baby, do you wanna take a trip with me? / I've got a feeling there might be a silver lining all around." So begins One Day, the captivating new album from critically-acclaimed Minneapolis duo The Cactus Blossoms. Written and recorded during the COVID-19 pandemic, the record explores the tension between optimism and despair that's defined much of the past few years of American life, examining the power (or naïveté, depending on your perspective) of positive thinking in the face of chaos and uncertainty.

The Cactus Blossoms broke out nationally in 2016 with their JD McPherson-produced debut, You're Dreaming. Dates with Kacey Musgraves, Jenny Lewis, and Lucius followed, as did rave reviews from the New York Times and NPR, who praised "the brothers' extraordinary singing." The band was further catapulted into the spotlight in 2018, when David Lynch tapped them to perform in the return of Twin Peaks, and continued to build on their success with their 2019 sophomore LP, Easy Way, which led Rolling Stone to laud the duo's "rock-solid, freak of genetics harmonies."

Thu., Oct. 6


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Tomáš Kačo presented in collaboration with the Embassy of the Czech Republic
Tomáš Kaco hails from the small city of Novy Jicin in the Czech Republic. Gypsy music, which is part of his roots and culture, greatly influenced him. He taught himself to play the piano by mimicking complex melodies and developed the skills to hear harmonic progressions from an early age. As he began performing on a more advanced level, he developed a passion for classical music and felt inspired and motivated to properly learn the technique. Kačo has performed numerous recitals in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Israel, Washington D.C., and Los Angeles. He has had a long-lasting collaboration with Ida Kelarová, including their joint 2010 album Romská balada (Romani Ballad). He is also working on a long-distance project with Ondřej Brzobohatý. He openly declares that his stay in the United States is not just for his own sake - he wants his proverbial "musical tenacity" to serve as an example to other Romani children. Although his primary goal is music itself, music unlimited by genre or style, he trusts that it can also prove an effective weapon against racism and can help find common ground between majorities and minorities.

Fri., Oct. 7


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Nobuntu
Nobuntu, the female a cappella quintet from Zimbabwe, has drawn international acclaim for its inventive performances that range from traditional Zimbabwean songs to Afro Jazz to Gospel. The ensemble's concerts are performed with pure voices, augmented by minimalistic percussion, traditional instruments such as the Mbira (thumb piano) and organic, authentic dance movements.

Sat., Oct. 8


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Presented in Honor of Indigenous People's Day: Jennifer Kreisberg
Jennifer Kreisberg is an Emmy®-nominated singer/composer with 30 years of experience in musical performance, soundtracks, scoring, teaching, and workshop facilitating. Music for film credits include: Emmy Award®-winning Dawnland, Raven West's Unnatural and Accidental, Miramax's Smoke Signals, Rumble, TBS's Music for The Native Americans, The Business of Fancy Dancing, Anagram Films' Elijah, Palm Pictures's One Giant Leap, among countless others.

Sun., Oct. 9

3 p.m.
Justice Forum at the REACH
Extraordinary Cinema: Songs My Brothers Taught Me (Film)
The setting is the often starkly beautiful Badlands of South Dakota's Pine Ridge Indian Reservation; most of the key players are young Lakota Native Americans who attend Little Wound High School. Johnny and his preteen sister, Jashaun, spend time on horseback when they're not selling illegal liquor or tattoo-designed apparel. Director Chloe Zhao captures the subtleties of a marginalized existence in which the historic culture of a people can't compete on a level playing field with the modern problems of poverty, alcoholism, and violence. Amazingly, she embroiders her tale with moments of breathtaking natural beauty that offset the despair her characters struggle against. SONGS is an auspicious debut feature from a director whose superb eye is informed by the sophisticated and nuanced compassion she brings to her story.

Wed., Oct. 12

6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Cortadito: Presented in Honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month
"Best Latin Act 2019" --Miami New Times.

Cortadito's focus is on performing the traditional Cuban folk country music of the early 20th century. From Son Montuno, Guaracha, Boleros, Nengon, and Bolero Son, this dynamic ensemble brings the listener back to an era when Cuban Music was influencing the all over the world. The group's sound can best be described as being reminiscent of the Buena Vista Social Club. This show will be in celebration of the groups 10 year anniversary and Hispanic Heritage Month.

Thu., Oct. 13


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Isokratisses
Isokratisses (Greek for "women who sing the iso or drone") is a vocal ensemble comprised of eight women who carry the ancient tradition of polyphonic songs from Epirus, a region in northern Greece and southern Albania. Born and reared in the Greek speaking villages around Deropoli and Politsani in Albania, the women of Isokratisses have sung these songs since childhood. They were nurtured by this archaic music, listening and singing it with their family and friends. The songs were passed down from generation to generation.

Fri., Oct. 14


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
NSO
Members of the National Symphony Orchestra play an assortment of chamber music.

Sat., Oct. 15

6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Baltic Jazz Trio presented in collaboration with the Lithuanian, Latvian, and Estonian Embassies
Founded in 2008, the Baltic Jazz Trio is a collaboration of three outstanding jazz artists from Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. Their music is elegant, fresh, and characteristic to the Baltic region. Each of the musicians is a leading force of the jazz life in their own country and have performed at jazz festivals on both sides of the Atlantic. The Trio has released two albums--Baltic Saga and Centenary--with music by Baltic composers Arvo Pärt, Pēteris Vasks, and Mikalojus Čiurlionis. They are performing at the Kennedy Center in honor of the Centennial of Diplomatic Relations between the United States and Baltic countries.

Sun., Oct. 16


3 p.m.
Justice Forum at the REACH
Extraordinary Cinema: Parallel Mothers
Two women, Janis and Ana, coincide in a hospital room where they are going to give birth. Both are single and became pregnant by accident. Janis, middle-aged, doesn't regret it and she is exultant. The other, Ana, an adolescent, is scared, repentant, and traumatized. Janis tries to encourage her while they move like sleepwalkers along the hospital corridors. The few words they exchange in these hours will create a very close link between the two, which by chance develops and complicates, and changes their lives in a decisive way.

Wed., Oct. 19


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Samantha Crain
Samantha Crain is a Choctaw singer, songwriter, poet, producer, and musician from Oklahoma. She is a two-time Native American Music Award winner and winner of an Indigenous Music Award. Her genre spanning discography has been critically-acclaimed by media outlets such as Rolling Stone, SPIN, Paste, No Depression, NPR, PRI, The Guardian, NME, Uncut, and others. She has toured extensively over the past 15 years nationally and internationally, presenting ambitious orchestrated shows with a band and intimate folk leaning solo performances. She has toured with First Aid Kit, Neutral Milk Hotel, Gregory Alan Isakov, The Avett Brothers, The Mountain Goats, Brandi Carlile, Langhorne Slim, The Staves, and many other bands and artists. With her new album, A Small Death, and newer EP, I Guess We Live Here Now, she continues her tradition of keeping things close to the heart and the ground by leaning into the fulfillment of affinity with an audience and the satisfaction of a song with a memorable melody and an honest story.

Thu., Oct. 20


6 p.m.

Millennium Stage
Cha Wa
New Orleans brass band-meets-Mardi Gras Indian outfit Cha Wa radiates the energy of the city's street culture. Their Grammy®-nominated album Spyboy is a modern mix of fiery, toe-tapping sounds. PopMatters describes the band as "a grand gumbo of singing, intoxicating rhythms, and deep funk grooves that are impossible to resist." "Cha Wa, with bass lines played on sousaphone plus trumpet and two trombones, bring the city's brass band tradition to bear. Add sick jazz-funk guitar, and two frontmen in full-beaded holiday regalia, and the result was a portable Mardi Gras Dance Party!" - Rolling Stone

Fri., Oct. 21


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Dan + Claudia Zanes
"The family-music genre's most outspoken and eloquent advocate." - TIME

"The gold standard in kids music..." - NPR

Grammy Award®-winning children's performer Dan Zanes and Haitian-American music therapist/ jazz vocalist Claudia Zanes have been making music with each other since the day they met in the fall of 2016. Inspired by their artful modern-day all-ages folk music and their commitment to accessibility, the Kennedy Center commissioned Claudia and Dan to create a theater piece for young audiences. Night Train 57: A Sensory Friendly Comic Folk Opera premiered in October 2017 and has been performed several times since. Their love of songs and communal music-making lead to a publishing deal and the result, an award winning songbook entitled Dan Zanes' House Party: A Family Roots Music Treasury, was released in 2018. They started their Social Isolation Song Series after a national emergency was declared in March of 2020. For the next 200 days they performed a different song every day. This series of videos currently resides in the Library of Congress.

Sat., Oct. 22

6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Billing: On & On: José James sings Badu
In his new project, On & On: José James Sings Badu finds James throwing down the gauntlet on the past 100 years of jazz singing while charting a path forward for the culture. The album, produced by James with contributions from like-minded musicians Big Yuki (A Tribe Called Quest), Ben Williams (Kamasi Washington) and Jharis Yokley (My Brightest Diamond) investigates the breadth of Badu's iconic catalog, from her groundbreaking debut album Baduizm to her contemporary masterpieces New Amerykah Pt. 1 and 2. But make no mistake: This is thoroughly a jazz album. Conceived in the spirit of Herbie Hancock's River: The Joni Letters, James artfully draws upon his experiences with modern masters McCoy Tyner, Robert Glasper, and Flying Lotus to create a new sonic landscape through an improvisatory lens. James also builds on his reputation as a modern jazz tastemaker by introducing featured horn players Ebban Dorsey and Diana Dzhabbar.

Wed., Oct. 26


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
A night to commemorate and rejoice Andean fellowship with performances by: Priscila Navarro & Jorge Saade-Scaff presented in collaboration with the Embassy of Peru and the Embassy of Ecuador
"Peruvian-born pianist Priscila Navarro is a phenomenal talent" - Atlanta Audio Club

Peruvian pianist Priscila Navarro is the first prize winner of several international competitions. Priscila made her Carnegie Hall solo recital debut in 2013 and returned there this 2022. Priscila forms a piano duet with Dr. Michael Baron. Their first album was released this past December with the MSR Classics label, followed by a Carnegie Hall premiere concert in March 2022. Navarro is a champion and advocate of Latin American music. Her most recent project included the development of a piano method for children based on Peruvian folk tunes.

Jorge Saade-Scaff, has been described as Ecuador's most outstanding violinist. Mark Holston, music critic for the Americas magazine, Washington D.C., wrote, "...one of the best young classical musicians of the Americas...his reputation as Ecuador's violin virtuoso is reinforced by this haunting, richly rewarding selection."

He has performed concerts and recitals in 45 countries in the Americas, Asia, Africa, Europa and the Middle East, in such famous halls as the Royal Festival Hall in London, the Carnegie Hall in New York, the Sydney Opera House, among others.

Thu., Oct. 27


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
The Commonheart
The Commonheart is bringing old school rock and soul to the Kennedy Center.

"This band is therapy for me to bring myself back to being a better person, and I hope people come along with me," says powerhouse singer Clinton Clegg of The Commonheart. Clinton didn't grow up in a Baptist church, and his soul machine of a band isn't pushing religion. Live and in the studio, the Pittsburgh-based collective is offering feel-good positivity, Golden Rule messaging, and sweat-soaked performances that nimbly ease through blues, vintage soul, and rock.

The nonet is bonded by familial-like ties and a desire to foster spiritual uplift. Among its ranks are female backup singers, drums, bass, guitar, a horn section, and keyboards. Out front is Clinton, a lightning bolt charismatic front man with dynamically expressive pipes that effortlessly traverse bluesy pleading, and honeyed balladeering. Onstage and in the studio, Clinton evokes B.B. King, Al Green, Otis Redding, and Sam Cooke.

Fri., Oct 28


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
Quinn Christopherson
Quinn Christopherson is an Ahtna Athabascan and Iñupiaq songwriter, born, raised, and based in Anchorage, Alaska. His songs sketch out raw, vivid character studies that reflect on his family, addiction and, in Erase Me, the dramatic shift in perspective and privilege that took place when he came out as a trans man. In 2019, Christopherson won NPR Music's fifth annual Tiny Desk Contest on the strength of a video that in nearly six minutes spotlighted just two sounds: a haunting electric guitar and Christopherson's stark, expressive voice.

Sat., Oct. 29


6 p.m.
Millennium Stage
A Celebration of Diwali presented in collaboration with District of Raga:
Aditya Prakash Trio Feat Erika Dohi and Kamalakiran Vinjamuri

Aditya Prakash Trio featuring Aditya Prakash on vocal and percussion, Erika Dohi on piano, and Kamalakiran on violin is a performance that explores a genre-fluid space by musicians who have deep roots in the classical traditions of Karnatik and Western. The performance will feature melodically experimental explorations unraveling points of connection between the contemporary and traditional, pushing boundaries of raga, playing with dissonance and harmony and beauty and tension - in response to the Celebration of Diwali, a festival commonly associated with the triumph of awareness, compassion, and illumination over hate, ignorance, and darkness.

Sun., Oct. 30


3 p.m.
Justice Forum at the REACH
Extraordinary Cinema: North by Northwest
Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Cary Grant stars as an innocent man mistaken for a spy in one of director Alfred Hitchcock's greatest thrillers. While leaving New York's Plaza Hotel, advertising executive Roger Thornhill (Grant) has the misfortune of standing just as the name "George Kaplan" is paged--starting a lethal case of mistaken identity and a nonstop game of cat and mouse as he is pursued across North America by espionage agents trying to kill him--and by police who suspect him of murder.

All performers and programs are subject to change without notice.

Regional Awards


More Hot Stories For You


Derrick 'D-Nice' Jones to Headline the Kennedy Center Opera House With CLUB QUARANTINE LIVEDerrick 'D-Nice' Jones to Headline the Kennedy Center Opera House With CLUB QUARANTINE LIVE
September 23, 2022

The legendary artist, DJ, photographer, and Kennedy Center Hip Hop Culture Council Member Derrick “D-Nice” Jones, will be the first DJ and Hip Hop artist to headline the Kennedy Center Opera House with a very special edition of Club Quarantine Live on Saturday, November 19 at 7:30 p.m.

Photos: First Look at THE TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL at the Ford's TheatrePhotos: First Look at THE TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL at the Ford's Theatre
September 23, 2022

Ford's Theatre Society is presenting Horton Foote's The Trip to Bountiful through October 16, 2022. Directed by Michael Wilson, this classic American drama is a compelling portrait of family, what we hold onto and what we leave behind. Get a first look at photos here!

Kennedy Center Presents Cloud Gate Dance Theatre Of Taiwan Next MonthKennedy Center Presents Cloud Gate Dance Theatre Of Taiwan Next Month
September 23, 2022

Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan returns to the Kennedy Center, last seen in 2016, with an acclaimed production by its new artistic director Cheng Tsung-lung, October 20–22 in the Eisenhower Theater.

ARCH/Valley Place Arts Collaborative Presents Staged Readings of BRUTE FARCE, An Original Comedy By Craig HoukARCH/Valley Place Arts Collaborative Presents Staged Readings of BRUTE FARCE, An Original Comedy By Craig Houk
September 22, 2022

BRUTE FARCE by DC based playwright, Craig Houk will receive four staged readings at the Anacostia Arts Center on Oct 27th, 28th & 29th, 2022.

The Washington Ballet Opens the 2022/23 Season with NEXTstepsThe Washington Ballet Opens the 2022/23 Season with NEXTsteps
September 21, 2022

 The Washington Ballet’s annual contemporary choreography series, NEXTsteps, returns to open the 2022–2023 subscription season with six performances, October 12–16 at Sidney Harman Hall. The program features new works from emerging and acclaimed choreographers Silas Farley, Dana Genshaft and TWB’s own Andile Ndlovu.