The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

12 things to do in the D.C. area this week

Don't think “The Big Lebowski” is one of the best films of the past 20 years? “That's just, like, your opinion, man.” The cult classic is honored with screenings and drink specials on Tuesday night. (AP Photo)
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Monday, March 5

Direct Current festival at the Kennedy Center: Don’t think too hard about the theme of the Kennedy Center’s inaugural two-week Direct Current festival. It crosses several disciplines, including dance, film, theater, jazz, electronica and indie music. “The Kennedy Center hasn’t had a festival of new art like this,” says Mason Bates, the institution’s composer-in-residence, who helped spearhead the idea. “It’s about bringing stuff in that people haven’t encountered.” When Bates says “new art,” that can mean more modern works (such as Taylor Mac’s ambitious stage show “A 24-Decade History of Popular Music”) or older pieces presented alongside newer ones in inventive ways (Bates’s classical-meets-electronica rave “Mercury Soul”). Through March 19. Times and prices vary.

Donkey and Goat Winery tasting at Tail Up Goat: Tail Up Goat has one of the most interesting and idiosyncratic wine lists in the city, so when co-owner and beverage director Bill Jensen says he's hosting an event with one of his favorite wineries, your ears should prick up. Tracey Brandt, the owner of Donkey and Goat in Berkeley, Calif., is hosting an informal wine night at the Adams Morgan restaurant. She'll be talking to customers in the bar and dining room, while Tail Up Goat pours her wines by the glass, paired with food specials. No reservations are required to meet a winemaker Jensen calls “a true master of her craft.” 5:30 to 10 p.m. Free; wine and food priced individually. 

Tequila and Mezcal Festival Kickoff Party at Oyamel: Oyamel's two-week celebration of tequila and mezcal begins with a party featuring guided tastings, specialty cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, live music and a “tequila cotton candy” station. 6 to 9 p.m. $49.

Tuesday, March 6

20th anniversary of 'The Big Lebowski': It has been two decades since moviegoers were introduced to Jeff “The Dude” Lebowski, a fan of bowling, White Russians and Persian rugs. A cult classic, “The Big Lebowski” has entered the Library of Congress’ historic National Film Registry. On the film’s anniversary, Alamo Drafthouse at One Loudoun hosts a special “movie party,” giving out props such as inflatable crowbars and offering pre-movie bowling. Reliable Tavern in Petworth is also screening the movie, with a costume contest and drink specials. Times and prices vary.

Wednesday, March 7

Crosshairs Garage Races in Crystal City: Picture the parking garage race scene in “The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift” with bicycles instead of cars, add a dash of “Fight Club,” and you’ve got the five-week Crosshairs race series. Every Wednesday night, experienced cyclocross racers and determined novices pedal their way through a 10-turn course set in an empty underground parking garage in Crystal City. Races are divided by experience level and sex, and the final week includes special competitions for fixed-gear and bike-share bikes. Spectators can get refreshments from food trucks and a cash bar. Wednesdays from 6 to 9 p.m. through April 4. $15 per race for participants, free for spectators.

Krzysztof Wodiczko at the Hirshhorn: After the Feb. 14 shooting in Parkland, Fla., the Hirshhorn suspended the public display of artist Krzysztof Wodiczko's seminal 1988 work “Hirshhorn Museum, Washington DC,” which turns the museum's facade into a public projection screen showing a gun and a candle. After consultations with Wodiczko, the Hirshhorn has decided to restage the work after dark for three nights this week. Through Friday. 7 to 9:30 p.m. Free.

Thursday, March 8

New African Film Festival at the AFI Silver: Featuring 27 films from 20 countries, the 14th annual festival opens Thursday at the AFI Silver with a screening of “I Am Not A Witch.” The feature filmmaking debut of Zambian Welsh actress-turned-director Rungano Nyoni is a genre-bending feminist tale of a 9-year-old girl accused of witchcraft and was one of the most buzzed-about films at last year’s Cannes Film Festival. General admission to screenings, which run through March 18, is $13.

Wade Bowen at Gypsy Sally's: Wade Bowen is as Texas as they come. In 2001, the singer-songwriter left the band West 84 for a solo career, making his own brand of Red Dirt country music. In the wake of the collapse of his deal with Sony, Bowen has bounced back with “Solid Ground,” which honors his home state (he hails from Waco) with a selection of styles the Lone Star State does best, including outlaw rock and classic country. A newfound confidence plays out in the album, “a swagger . . . that [he’s] never had before,” as Bowen puts it. 8 p.m. $17. 

Croatian Wine Tasting at the Embassy of Croatia: Croatia's wines have received increasing attention from forward-looking sommeliers in recent years, but most drinkers still don't know much about the country's wine regions and grape varieties. Get a full introduction at the Croatian Embassy, accompanied by food and live music. 7 to 9 p.m. $50.

Espita Turns Dos at Espita Mezcaleria: The modern Mexican restaurant celebrates its second anniversary with discounted pours of house mezcal and free cupcakes topped with Oaxacan chocolate frosting. Sales of a special roasted cauliflower taco benefit Ayuda, an organization that offers legal services to immigrants in the D.C. area. 5 p.m. Free; food and drink priced individually.

Friday, March 9

“The Wiz” at Ford’s Theatre: Twist of fate: In 2009, “In the Heights” director Thomas Kail, choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler and music director Alex Lacamoire helmed a concert version of the all-black “Wizard of Oz” musical “The Wiz” for New York City’s “Encores!” concert series. Now “In the Heights” is the second musical in the Kennedy Center’s new “Encores!”-style Broadway Center Stage concert series. The seven “Heights” concerts, from March 21-25, are sold out, while a new full production of “The Wiz” — a seven-time Tony winner in 1975 — eases down the road at Ford’s Theatre from March 9 through May 12. Times and ticket prices vary.

Fabulously Funny Females at BlackRock Center for the Arts: The touring comedy show celebrates International Women’s Month with stand-up sets by Veronica Mosey (Comedy Central, “Oprah"), Erin Jackson (“Last Comic Standing”) and Angela Cobb (Broadway Comedy Club). 8 p.m. $17-$25.

— Fritz Hahn, Rudi Greenberg, Michael O’Sullivan, Nelson Pressley, Winyan Soo Hoo and Briana Younger