‘Anastasia’ at the Kennedy Center , through Nov. 25
The mystery of the Romanov dynasty continues to inspire (the new TV show from the creator of “Mad Men” is about possible descendants of the Russian royal family, after all). With its sumptuous costumes and backdrops, the Broadway musical “Anastasia” — based on the 1997 animated film and the 1956 Ingrid Bergman movie of the same name — comes to the Kennedy Center. The musical, about an orphan named Anya who tries to discover the secrets of her past life, is a more grown-up spin on the cartoon, but some of the songs fans remember are here, like “Journey to the Past.” $49-$175. — Adele Chapin
‘Rafael Lozano-Hemmer: Pulse’ at the Hirshhorn , through April 28
The newest multisensory exhibit to come through D.C. is Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s interactive piece “Pulse.” The three-part installation runs entirely on the vital signs of museum visitors, using heart-rate sensors to collect data and translate the information into blips of flashing lights, animated projections and rippling water tanks. “Pulse” marks the Hirshhorn’s largest — and most ambitious — tech-focused exhibition to-date. Free. — Stephanie Williams
Smithsonian Food History Weekend , through Nov. 3
This festival at the National Museum of American History offers a revealing look at the history, culture and future of food. Heading into its fourth year, the three-day event features a wide-ranging schedule comprised of panels with industry insiders, live cooking demonstrations, hands-on activities for children and more. Highlights include a “Last Call” discussion on the history of beer (complete with tastings to follow), a “Sounds of Faith” dance performance mixing South Asian bhangra and Mexican folkloric styles, and a “Power of Place” conversation on how food has shaped regional identities. Times vary. Free with RSVP. — S.W.
DMV Black Restaurant Week , Nov. 4-11
D.C.’s restaurant scene has exploded the last few years, with a growing number of black-owned businesses opening shop. The inaugural DMV Black Restaurant Week will highlight the magnitude of how many establishments exist in the region, featuring all-inclusive three-course menu options ($25-$35) or discounted prices at over two-dozen black-owned and allied partner restaurants, such as Smith Commons, Matchbox, Ben’s Chili Bowl and DCity Smokehouse. Aside from food deals, DMV Black Restaurant Week will host several events during its run, including a bartending competition at Service Bar on Nov. 5 and a conference centered on small business ownership at the University of the District of Columbia on Nov. 10. Go to dmvbrw.com for more details. — S.W.
Mysteries, murders and all things macabre are at the center of Brightest Young Things’ first true crime festival. Notable podcasts, television personalities and experts will gather at Lisner Auditorium to discuss some of history’s most infamous crimes and offer their insight and theories into these cases. Featured events include the sold-out “The Last Podcast on the Left,” a conversation with Lt. Joe Kenda from the Investigation Discovery show “Homicide Hunter,” and a talk with “Mindhunter” author John Douglas. Times and ticket prices vary. Go to brightestyoungthings.com/death-becomes-us for more details. — S.W.
Comedian Brandon Wardell, 26, grew up in Fairfax and started his stand-up career in D.C., quickly rising through the city’s ranks. In 2013, he moved to Los Angeles to pursue comedy full-time. Soon, he was getting gigs opening for Bob Odenkirk, Todd Glass, and Bo Burnham and appearing on Comedy Central stand-up shows. Wardell often takes an absurdist approach to his stand-up and has found a following through social media (his embrace of meme culture has made him a favorite among younger fans). In June, Wardell released “An ASMR Album,” where he basically whispers his jokes. For this homecoming, Wardell will do two shows at U Street Music Hall: A stand-up set and a live taping of his podcast, “Yeah, but Still,” which he co-hosts with comedian Jack Wagner. Doors open for both shows at 7 p.m. $15. — Rudi Greenberg
Virginia Cider Week , Nov. 9-18
Hard cider has been made in the Old Dominion since the colonial era, but it’s currently seeing a renaissance across the state as drinkers look for new, flavorful alternatives to mass-produced hard apple juice. The annual Virginia Cider Week, which has expanded to 10 days, is celebrated on both sides of the Potomac: Petworth’s Capitol Cider House will put Virginia cider on all 12 taps, while ChurchKey and Rustico will hold special tasting nights. The crowning event in this region is the Alexandria Cider Festival, at which at least a dozen cideries will pour their products at the Lloyd House in Old Town, with optional tasting seminars. (Nov. 17, 2 to 6 p.m.; $45). Locations vary; visit ciderweekva.com for a full schedule. — Fritz Hahn
Catharsis on the Mall , Nov. 9-11
If your appetite wasn’t sated from merely viewing the art at the Renwick Gallery’s “No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man” (on display through January), check out Catharsis on the Mall. The three-day event was founded in 2015 on the 10 principles of Burning Man, its Nevada desert-based inspiration, and seeks to engage the community through healing by means of art and expression. Expect to connect with psychedelic art pieces centered around this year’s theme of “Waking From the American Dream,” and be sure to witness the centerpiece “Temple Burn.” Free. — Hau Chu
Kamasi Washington at the Lincoln , Nov. 10
If jazz had a modern savior, it’s Kamasi Washington, the 37-year-old saxophonist and bandleader. Though he worked for years as a session musician — recording with such names as Ryan Adams, Kendrick Lamar and Flying Lotus — it wasn’t until his 2015 triple-album, “The Epic,” that Washington started getting recognition on his own. He followed that breakthrough with last year’s “Harmony of Difference” EP, which was commissioned for the Whitney Biennial. And in June, he dropped “Heaven and Earth,” another expansive and exploratory album of forward-thinking music that still manages to pay homage to jazz’s past. One way Washington does that is by welcoming collaborations from his father, jazz multi-instrumentalist Rickey Washington, and futuristic bassist Thundercat. 8 p.m. $39.95-$59.50. — R.G.
Mitski at 9:30 Club , Nov. 16-17
There are few musicians working today that better show the singularity of an artist’s vision than Mitski. The 28-year-old artist’s first two albums were self-released piano instrumentals from her time in college. Her “Simpsons”-referencing breakout “Bury Me at Makeout Creek” was a scuzzed-out, lo-fi rocker of an album that displayed her versatility but only scratched the surface of her ambition. The follow-up “Puberty 2” was a glistening record of softer, driving tunes, highlighted by the anthemic “Your Best American Girl.” This year’s “Be The Cowboy” is as declarative of a statement as any indie-leaning record with its jumps from glitchy disco pop to outlaw country-adjacent guitar riffs. The album distills years of lyrics and the stories interwoven therein that touch on longing, disappointment, identity and finding love in creating art. Friday: 10 p.m. Saturday: 8 p.m. Both nights sold out. — H.C.
ZooLights and BrewLights at the National Zoo , Nov. 23-Jan. 1.
In a season packed with bright and festive light displays, the National Zoo has made its 11-year-old ZooLights one of the area’s must-do attractions, especially for families. (Part of the appeal: Entry is free.) More than 500,000 environmentally friendly LED lights are used to create animated animals, including hummingbirds and red pandas, and to festoon trees along the Zoo’s main pathways, while holiday music plays in the background. Choral groups and bands perform every night, and there are special rides and attractions targeted at the youngest visitors. On Nov. 29, the adults-only BrewLights offers late-night access to Zoo attractions, including the great cats area and the elephant house, while offering unlimited tastings from 20 predominantly local craft breweries. ZooLights: 5 to 9 p.m. nightly. Free. BrewLights: Nov. 29 from 6 to 9 p.m. $50-$60. — F.H.
DC Brau Holiday Marketplace , Nov. 24
Holiday markets pop up all over the D.C. area at this time of year, but DC Brau’s indie-minded Holiday Marketplace is one of the few where you can browse for gifts with a cold brew in hand. (Whether that’s a good or bad thing is up to you.) More than 40 local businesses sell jewelry, stationary, pottery, T-shirts, onesies, and food and drinks, while bands play and food trucks offer refreshment. As a special bonus, DC Brau is releasing a new Russian Imperial Stout on the day of the festival, which might be perfect for the craft beer fan in your life. 2 to 6 p.m. Free. VIP admission at 1 p.m. includes a DC Brau tote bag. $10. — F.H.
This year’s Kennedy Center Honors include a special award for “Hamilton” co-creators Lin-Manuel Miranda, Thomas Kail, Andy Blankenbuehler and Alex Lacamoire. Three days before the ceremony, the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage honors the groundbreaking musical with a free community singalong of favorite “Hamilton” songs, led by “noted DC musical theater performers.” 6 p.m. Free. — F.H.