Things to Do

Waterfront Yoga, Indigenous Poetry, and a Show Memorializing George Floyd: Things to Do in DC, May 24-26

Plus: How and when DC-area theaters are reopening.

Illustration by Hannah Good.

Hi folks!

We’ve got outdoor yoga, indigenous poetry, and a new movie series.

Tuesday marks one year since the murder of George Floyd.

Here’s what you should check out this week:

Lyrical lessons: Current US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo—the first indigenous writer to receive that honor—curated the recently published Living Nations, Living Words: An Anthology of First Peoples Poetry. Verses from major indigenous voices including pro-basketball player-turned-poet Natalie Diaz, novelist Ray Young Bear, and activist Layli Long Soldier meditate on displacement, resistance, perseverance, and cultural preservation. Harjo will speak with authors Deborah A. Miranda and Eric Gansworth in a virtual book event from Politics and Prose. Monday 5/24 at 8 PM; register here.

Nom nom: Fairfax City Restaurant Week kicks off today. Catch discounted meals and prix fixe menus at various restaurants including Mama Chang, Masala Wok, and Bebop Korean-Mexican Grill. Some early takeout customers will also receive a free picnic blanket. Through May 31; Learn more here.

Date night: Catch movie screenings on the lawn outside of the National Building Museum as part of the DowntownDC Summer Flicks—Can I Kick It? series. See Star Trek, Tenet, Mad Max: Fury Road and other films accompanied by a live score from Shaolin Jazz every week. Every Tuesday from May 25-July 27 (movies begin at sunset); Free, find out more here.

Stretch in the sunshine: Head to the Wharf for outdoor yoga classes from District Flow Yoga on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays. Bring your own mat to one of the piers for a one-hour vinyasa flow; stay afterwards on Thursdays for a free hard seltzer. Ongoing through September; $10 per class, buy tickets here.

Essential listening: Tuesday marks one year since the murder of George Floyd. The following Monday will be the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre. In response to these violent tragedies, composer/activist Daniel Bernard Roumain wrote the aria “They Still Want To Kill Us.” Mezzo-soprano star J’Nai Bridges performs the work in a short film of the same name, directed by Yoram Savion, that will premiere at various venues nationwide, including a special event from Washington Performing Arts. See the performance virtually and stay for a conversation with the creators. Tuesday 5/25 at 8 PM (available to stream through July 31); Free, learn more here.

She/he/they: How does language limit or expand our understanding of gender identities? Dig into this question in the online talk “Divercities: Breaking Barriers-The Language of Gender Identity” from Planet Word, the recently opened museum dedicated to language and literacy. Hear gender nonconforming folks, including muxes of Mexico and drag queens in DC and Berlin, speak about how they challenge and reshape linguistics in the varied ways that they express their genders. Wednesday 5/26 at 11 AM; Free, register here.

Dining out: If you’re thinking about sitting down to eat beyond your dinner table, you probably have questions about what to expect from restaurants in the area. Masks? Capacity limits? Bar games? Here’s my coworker Anna Spiegel’s super-helpful guide to what you need to know before confirming that rez.

Looking forward: 

Not one, but two productions of Rent are coming to DC next season.
One thing that I am sure all of you have been missing in the pandemic is live performances. It’s been ages since many of us heard the swell of an orchestra, laughed at the same jokes in unison, or gasped collectively at the drama unfolding onstage. It’s wild to think that last January I was on a panel previewing the 2020 theater season only to then realize within a couple months that poof! none of those amazing productions actually premiered IRL. But that didn’t mean DC artists stayed still—in fact, we’ve seen more than a year of innovative approaches to performances like radio plays (hearing entertainment the 1930s way), interactive Zoom dramas, and even scavenger hunt-inspired storytelling. What are some of the best shows or performances that you’ve seen in the pandemic? What local theaters have you been most excited to follow and which productions did you tune into? 

For those of you who are ready to take a look at what’s back onstage currently and what the future of DC theater will look like, I wrote a story on what we know so far about theater reopenings, new season announcements, and upcoming live performances. Looking ahead to next season, there will be two productions of Rent (including the 25th anniversary farewell tour), holiday programming like Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical, and other big-name Broadway shows like Hadestown, Mean Girls, and Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird. Read all about it here (and keep checking back in the coming weeks—I’ll update the story as more theaters announce their reopening plans).

Thanks for reading! Tell me what you’re up to at home by dropping me a line at rcartagena@washingtonian.com.

Web Producer/Writer

Rosa joined Washingtonian in 2016 after graduating from Mount Holyoke College. She covers arts and culture for the magazine. She’s written about anti-racism efforts at Woolly Mammoth Theatre, dinosaurs in the revamped fossil hall at the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum, and the horrors of taking a digital detox. When she can, she performs with her family’s Puerto Rican folkloric music ensemble based in Jersey City. She lives in Adams Morgan.