Things to Do

Things to Do in DC This Weekend (July 5-8): Improv Musicals, a Cupcake Competition, and a Cider Tasting

Washington Improv Theater presents the spontaneous performance “iMusical” at the Source Theatre; WIT’s Summer Escape series runs through August 5. Photo by Jeff Salmore.


FILM AFI Silver presents a week of special 50th anniversary screenings of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey in 70mm. This film recreation was struck from the original camera negative, without digital effects or remastered elements. Thursday night’s screening will be followed by a Q&A with actor Keir Dullea who played Dr. David Bowman. Advanced tickets are sold out, but a standby line for remaining tickets will begin at 7 PM. Through July 12. $15-$20.

MUSIC DC’s longstanding outdoor concert series at Fort Reno is back for its 50th season. As is tradition, it features independent artists based in and around Washington, DC. Thursday’s show features Inner Ear producer and musician Don Zientara alongside locals Victor Archie and No Plans. These shows are exceptionally family-friendly, as alcohol (and glass bottles in general) are banned, so bring the kids and enjoy tunes against the setting sun. Mondays and Thursdays through August 2. Free, 7-9:30 PM.


THEATRE Washington Improv Theater presents three new spontaneous musical offerings in its Summer Escape series. In “iMusical” (July 6, 13, 20, 27, August 3), audience members will pick a world-ending event that the ensemble will stage as a musical. WIT’s cast will also present “Heavy Rotation” (July 8, 15, 22, 28, August 4), an improvised rock comedy whose cast performs live music on stage. The company’s final show, “Karaoke Storytellers” (July 27, 28), features characters prefacing a karaoke performance with an improvised personal story. All shows are at the Source Theatre. Through August 5. $15-$18.

KIDS Make your own “Night at the Museum” at the Spy Museum with a special sleepover event. Kids will work in groups to gather intelligence, break secret codes, and find a mole within their own ranks. Nearby, adults will be assigned their own secret mission. Snacks and breakfast will be provided; the program is designed for kids age 9-13 with one adult required for every two children in attendance. $115 per person, 7 PM Friday to 10 AM Saturday.

CIDER Set aside your rosé for a minute: Germans would argue that alcoholic apple cider is the best summer drink, due in large part to their climate, which is better for growing apples than grapes. This beverage, “Apfelwein,” is seeing a resurgence today due to its modernization with carbonation and exotic flavors. Smithsonian Associates presents a panel discussion about the history of Apfelwein, featuring Christoph Trares of German cidery Bembel-With-Care, importer Lars Dahlhaus, and cider makers/journalists Ronald Sansone and William Grote. Following the discussion, taste several flavors from Bembel-with-Care (named after the stoneware pitchers, “bembel,” out of which Apfelwein was traditionally poured). The event takes place at the S. Dillon Ripley Center. $35, 7 PM.

FILM The National Symphony Orchestra and the Choral Arts Society of Washington will accompany a screening of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban at Wolf Trap. Enjoy the live score performed to the third of J.K. Rowling’s now-classic tales. Through July 7. $40-$65, 8:30 PM.

BOOKS British punk band The Clash are known for their musical influence and their political outspokenness: they were dubbed by their record label as “The Only Band That Matters.” Writers Mark Andersen and Ralph Heibutzki delve into the group’s history in their new book We Are the Clash: Reagan, Thatcher, and the Last Stand of a Band That Mattered, using interviews to document the band’s influence on other musicians of the era as well as the influence that contemporary political events—such as the nuclear arms race and the British miners’ strike—had on their music. Hear Andersen and Heibutzki speak about the band at Politics & Prose. Free, 7 PM.


MUSEUMS ARTECHOUSE’s newest show, “Fractal Works” opens on Saturday. This immersive exhibition by Dutch artist Julius Horsthuis will incorporate projection and virtual reality elements, using fractals to create sci-fi worlds including eight different virtual reality experiences as well as an immersive experience in ARTECHOUSE’s 270-degree projection walls. Through September 3. $15.

FILM The National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is presenting the summer outdoor film series, “Reels on the Ramp.” This week’s film is the coming-of-age October Sky, which follows a teen inspired to find a new path after the Soviet satellite Sputnik flies overhead. Future weeks’ films include Apollo 13, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Guardians of the Galaxy. Bring chairs, blankets, and food, but no alcohol is allowed. Most Saturdays through August 25. Doors at 8 PM; films begin at dusk.

MUSEUMS Local sound collective DC Listening Lounge presents the eleventh annual “Sound Scene” at the Hirshhorn. The exhibit provides interactive sonic experiences for all ages, including ways to hold sound in your hand and transformations of words from speech to text to dance. There will also be live performances throughout the weekend. Through July 8. Free, but registration is recommended.

FOOD & DRINK Port City Brewing Company is hosting its fifth annual Old Town Pub Crawl in Alexandria. Visit any of the eight participating venues for food and drink specials (and the chance at free swag). If you visit all 8 venues, you’ll receive a special commemorative pint glass. Note that purchases are not required at each stop. PCBC staff will be on-site to stamp passes. Free to attend (food & drink prices vary), 1:30-6 PM.


FILM The National Gallery of Art is celebrating the 100th anniversary of Swedish filmmaker Ingmar Bergman’s birth with a series of film screenings. Sunday afternoon features a screening of his 1946 film It Rains on Our Love, which follows two strangers who meet at a train station and start a new life together with a balance of hope and despair. This is the first of Bergman’s films with actor Gunnar Björnstrand, who became a regular in the filmmaker’s later works, including his more famous films Wild Strawberries and The Seventh Seal. Free, 4 PM.

CUPCAKES Check out a DC version of Cupcake Wars at Studio 52, where 12 DC bakers will each present two different flavors of cupcakes, and professional judges will evaluate their creations for taste and presentation. There will also be a People’s Choice Award, so come prepared to taste all of the cupcakes (no joke!). $25, 3 PM.