2016 is getting better. With spring comes better movies, better tours, better food events, better parties and baseball. Below are some of the events/products/shows/films that are going to make April YOUR BEST MONTH, even if certain things are sold-out.
No Kings Collective Presents: The Beasts of England – opens April 8
No Kings Collective, the Washington, D.C.-based artist collective, creative agency and BYT faves, partners with [email protected] and Warsteiner, for a two month pop-up featuring one of a kind content and programming April 8 through June 5. The double header pop-ups will kick-off with the first solo show of No Kings Collective co-founder and mixed media artist Brandon Hill in 6 years. “THE BEASTS OF ENGLAND/Animal Farm” will open April 8 (opening reception 7 p.m. to 12 a.m. at 1270 5th Street NE) and run through April 24.
She Who Tells A Story at National Museum of Women in The Arts, Opens April 8
landmark exhibition of more than 80 photographs and a video installation challenges stereotypes surrounding the people, landscapes, and cultures of Iran and the Arab world. BONUS: Keep an eye out for a very special BYT + NMWA event coming your way in May.
A very fancy ticket, yes, but a unique opportunity to both support the Washington Project for the Arts, get your hands on some amazing art, and do some prime time DC art world people watching.
SAAM & BYT Present: WONDER at Night! A Renwick Gallery After Hours April 22
Sold out. Sorry. Add yourself to the wait list (and be on the lookout for more amazing BYT events coming your way, since they ARE coming – for a hint at what’s next, check out the National Museum of Women in the Arts blurb above.).
Bucky F*cking Dent: A Novel by David Duchovny available April 5
David Duchovny has finally finished his full transformation into Hank Moody from Californiacation and we just have to deal with it. This is his second book after Holy Cow and while it’s probably not going to be very good, how can you not love and support the man who plays Fox Mulder? I know in my heart of hearts it’s probably not, but a girl can dream. -Kaylee Dugan
something to food about: Exploring Creativity with Innovative Chefs by Questlove available April 12
You might know Questlove as being the only guy who’s interviewed in more music documentaries than Dave Grohl, sure, but did you know he likes food a lot? Well he does! He’s got a new book full of conversations with various culinary pioneers called something to food about: Exploring Creativity with Innovative Chefs. -Matt Byrne
Hystopia by David Means available April 19
Imagine a world where JFK wasn’t assassinated and the Vietnam War never happened. THIS is that world! I’m not sure why there is so much emphasis placed on the assassination of JFK (read Stephen King’s 11.22.63 and/or stream it on Hulu starring James Franco) but at least two people in this world seem to think this was a life-altering moment in our country’s history. So much so that the fate of America would be changed immensely had it not happened. It will be interesting to see what kind of universe Means cobbles together. -Jenn Tisdale
April is looking like a pretty shiny and big comedy month in DC: Drafthouse Comedy, a brand new venue downtown is opening and the shows feature some of BYT’s favorite people, 202 Comedy Festival kicks off its inaugural edition, taxes are happening and more. To make the most of it, please peruse our very lovely APRIL COMEDY GUIDE:
FIST [email protected] Source ongoing through April 9
I’m really excited about the late rounds of the Washington Improv Theater’s FIST competition, currently running through April 9th. This is the 10th annual edition of FIST, and it is a great (and cost-effective) way to see some of the best local improvisers on any given night – particularly in these late rounds. FIST’s knockout format is dependent on audience votes, giving further incentive for performers to pull out all of the stops with absurd premises and outlandish characters.
D.C. is slowly gaining national recognition as a comedy hotbed, and naturally so; when the majority of your population is as smart, educated, and overworked as DC is, you’re going to have a lot of folks looking for creative outlets and ways to let off steam. Over 100 teams signed up this year, and we’re down to the last 16 – these are all seriously funny, talented people. As an added bonus, your money does good: the DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities will double every dollar you donate to WIT through April 1st. -Jose Lopez-Sanchez
Home Rule Release Party @ Atlas Brew Works April 10
As Justin Cox explained in our Tap Takeover last year, Atlas Brew Works stays above this town’s political fray with one exception: D.C. statehood. Its India Pale Lager, Home Rule, gives you a pretty good sense of where they come down on the issue. And so does the beer’s upcoming release party, which doubles as a fundraiser for DC Vote. The star attraction: Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton bartending. I repeat: Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton will be bartending at Atlas Brew Works on April 10. And any tips given in her direction will go to DC Vote. (Same goes for fellow guest bartender David Grosso.)
If you’re curious about Home Rule, its a single-hop IPL made exclusively with citrusy Waimea hops from New Zealand and pilsner malt. And if you’re wondering what an IPL is, it’s a increasingly popular hybrid of a light lager and the sort of copious hopping you’d find with an American IPA. It’s an unlikely but delicious marriage of styles, and Home Rule – a warm weather release – pulls it off quite well. -Phil Runco
Scout’s Honor: 2nd Annual Beer & Cookie Pairing @ Little Miss Whiskey’s April 14
You like beer. You like cookies. Bringing them together is hardly a Criss Angel mindfreak. So, kudos to DC Metro Girls Pint Out for doing it for you with its second annual cookie-beer pairing. Like last year. DC Brau, Port City, and Flying Dog will be providing the beer, and they’re not dumping their scraps, either. No, they’re bring some A-game off their production lines, including Port City’s Colossal V anniversary old ale, Flying Dog’s new Mint Julep Ale one-off, DC Brau’s delightfully hoppy Brau Pils. All in all, there will be small pours of six different beers, each paired with a cookie, and you get to consume everything for $15. That’s a good deal! Tickets must be purchased in advance, so don’t drag your feet. -Phil Runco
DC Brau 5 Year Anniversary Party April 16
DC Brau will celebrate five years of brewing this month and, oh lord, are they doing it right. On April 16, it’ll throw a party from 1:00 to 9:00 in the brewery’s concrete backyard. It’ll feature five thoroughly ass-kicking bands: The Sword, Kvelertak (WHICH MEANS “STRANGLEHOLD” IN NORWEGIAN), Torche, Serpent Throne, and Loud Boyz. Honestly, just take a moment and appreciate that line-up. It is so far from fucking around. As co-founders Jeff Hancock and Brandon Skall told us in our Tap Takeover, music – especially metal and hardcore – means a lot to them, and they put their money where their mouths are.
Also, I am burying the lede. For its fifth anniversary, DC Brau collaborated with five renowned breweries from around the country on five new beers: an imperial milk chocolate stout (with Tampa’s Cigar City); a three-fruit IPL (with Austin Beerworks); a pink-tinged saison (with St. Louis’ Perennial); a rye double IPA (with Indianapolis’ Sun King); and a dunkel (with our very own Port City). So, yeah, all of that sounds incredible. DC Brau will release a canned collaboration pack, but it only brewed one batch of each beer, so supplies will be limited. If you want to guarantee getting these beers in your stomach, you should just plan on attending the party, where they will be flowing. -Phil Runco
The Boss in theaters April 8
Melissa McCarthy is one of the greatest comedic actors working today. I will always watch any film she’s in, buddy cop movie with Sandra Bullock? Check. Dysfunctional granddaughter to Susan Sarandon? You got it. Wealthy cutthroat business woman framed for insider trading? Done, and that’s what you get out of The Boss. You also get a pretty epic street fighting scene between two warring Girl Scout Troops. I was in the Girl Scouts. That shit is serious. -Jenn Tisdale
Hardcore Henry in theaters April 8
Sometimes a concept is enough to get me to see a movie, even if there’s no way the content could be good. This is one of those cases. Hardcore Henry is a shoot-em-up action thriller, except it’s all told through a first person POV, like a video game. If that’s your scene, this might be your movie. Or you might just get a migraine. -Tam Sackman
Elvis & Nixon in theaters April 15
Character actor extraordinaire Michael Shannon and Kevin “Kevin Spacey” Spacey star as Elvis and Richard Nixon, respectively, in the upcoming film Elvis & Nixon, which is about the time Elvis showed up at the White House and demanded a meeting with the President. This movie looks absolutely nutso. -Matt Byrne
Green Room in theaters April 15
Though I’ve already seen an advance screener of Green Room, I’m very excited for the rest of America to witness this genius horror-thriller which is rooted in punk rock, of all things. It stars Anton Yelchin, Imogen Poots, Alia Shawkat (aka Maeby Funke) AND Patrick Stewart, and while it’s a terrible idea to watch it before, during or after a meal (gore galore, y’all) it’s a pretty rad take on the traditional suspense film. (Think: This Is England on steroids // skinheads are scary AF.) -Megan Burns
Driven to Succeed screening @ Smoke & Barrel April 25
A group of some of the funniest, talented people I know pooled their collective hilarity into a feature-length film called Driven to Succeed and I’m so excited about being able to catch a screening of it in DC. Dire Wit Films makes consistently great movies. Super pumped about the latest addition.
Synposis: When a candidate for state senate threatens the future of the D-rated driving academy “Driven to Succeed,” it’s up to the self-centered owner (Jamaal Jordan) and his staff of moronic, drunk, pill-popping instructors (Chris Kamsch, Kathy Carson & Rick Miller) to save the school…and their jobs! -Jenn Tisdale
Keanu in theaters April 29
It’s clear from their show that Key and Peele were DESTINED to make an amazing film and I haven’t seen a trailer this hilarious in a long time. Keanu is a spin on John Wick (KEANU, GET IT????) except the dog is a kitten and the kitten doesn’t die, but he does have to be saved. If you like Key & Peele, and who doesn’t, then this is THE film to see. I have watched this trailer 15 times. -Jenn Tisdale
Taste of the Nation @ National Building Museum April 4
I talk about this damn event all the time. But why wouldn’t I? It’s at the National Building Museum, easily one of the most beautiful spots in D.C. There are literally hundreds of bites from some of DC’s best chefs. There’s unlimited cocktails and beers. Last year, there was a hella dope bar sculpted entirely out of ice. And, these events raise something like $250,000 for the Capital Area Food Bank, D.C. Hunger Solutions, and Mary’s Center, each of which is an essential partner in the fight to end childhood hunger. Is it expensive? Yes. Is it probably the best food-related event in DC, with enough bites, booze, and altruism to make that ticket worth every penny? Yes. These are an incredible time. Easy choice. -Logan Hollers
Opening of Métier
Finally! Chef Eric Zeibold (of CityZen fame, and now helming the absolutely-crushing-it Kinship) is ready to open his fine dining restaurant, Métier. Located below Kinship, and accessible by private elevator, Métier will offer “a unique and emotional dining experience” (okay…) revolving around a seven-course tasting menu influenced by seasons, travel, culture and history. Also, jackets required. With only 36 seats, this (along with Pineapple & Pearls) is going to be the Spring and Summer’s hot reservation. Métier will be open Tuesday through Saturday for dinner. -Logan Hollers
Spring Sports Fest @ Room & Board April 8
Team DC hosts a Spring Sports Fest at Room & Board where you can learn how to get involved in over 30 LGBT sports clubs and teams in the District. -BYGays
The Naked Magic Show @ Lincoln Theatre April 11
Capital Pride presents The Naked Magic Show at the Lincoln Theatre. It’s pretty self explanatory. -BYGays
Spring Outdoor Movie Night @ Stead Field April 12
Capital Pride hosts a Spring Outdoor Movie Night at Stead Field. You can currently vote on which movie will be shown. Currently, Mary Poppins is beating out Labyrinth. So, you know what to do… -BYGays
Mogwai Atomic available April 1
My love for Mogwai was fairly recently reinvigorated thanks to their dope work on the soundtrack for France’s The Returned (aka one of my favorite TV shows that you should go binge immediately on Netflix). As such, I’m pretty pumped to see what they manage to do on Atomic, which is I believe their ninth studio album and due out TODAY! -Megan Burns
Dance Yourself Clean @ Black Cat April 2
Seems timely that this dance party is coming into town just a few days after LCD Soundsystem’s first shows in five years. Started in Seattle (“the other White Washington”), the dance-punk party has since spread around the country and into Canada, offering a “no-frills dance party” featuring lasers, fog machines, and music by bands that inspired/were inspired by James Murphy’s band. Sounds like a hell of a good time for a Saturday night. -Jose Lopez-Sanchez
Greta Kline’s lo-fi sugar sweet tunes are lovely and intimate– the sweet tea to Courtney Barnett’s unsweetened, unfiltered lyricism with just the same amount of honesty. Fun fact: she’s also the daughter of actor Kevin Kline. -Tam Sackman
Tim Hecker Love Streams available April 8
It’s hard to think of someone who’s done more to bring avant-garde and experimental sounds to the (relative) mainstream in the last handful of years than Tim Hecker, whose harsh, intense, immersive soundscapes push the boundaries of accessibility and musicality. Love Streams, his first album for 4AD and eight full length overall, looks to be his biggest yet, and is, in Hecker’ own words, an exploration of “liturgical aesthetics after Yeezus” and “transcendental voice in the age of auto-tune.” Sounds crazy! -Matt Byrne
M83 can do no wrong in my book, so I’ve already decided (before hearing anything) that I love this record. Am I setting myself up for disappointment? Potentially, I guess, but I’d like to think the odds of a flop are relatively low by now. -Megan Burns
The Coathangers Nosebleed Weekend available April 15
It’s been two years since Suck My Shirt, and I could not be more ready for another Coathangers record to surface. I predict this will be on heavy, heavy, HEAVY rotation in my headphones for at least a few months. -Megan Burns
Kevin Morby Singing Saw available April 15
Kevin Morby’s first two solo albums are both excellent, and the two tracks we’ve heard of his third LP, Singing Saw, are both signs that this Dylanesque auteur has another winner on his hands. This man knows his way around a song, you guys. -Matt Byrne
LE1F + TT The Artist @ U Street Music Hall April 15
LE1F has been on the scene for a few years now – his dancehall bangers that focus on himself as a gay main character have been a successful recipe for originality, and his arthouse music videos have garnered even more attention in recent years. Just try putting “Wut” on at a party and watch a dancefloor open up. MICA grad TT The Artist will be supporting. -Tam Sackman
Houndmouth @ 9:30 Club April 24
I often fear for the future of good ol’ rock and roll, what with the kids and their technology these days (I am 21 years old). But when I listen to Houndmouth’s Little Neon Limelight, it’s like someone is telling me “shhhh, rock and roll will be okay.” Just listen to “15 Years” and tell me that Elvis is really dead. They covered “Runaround Sue” last time they were in town for Landmark Festival, and I still listen to it every day, six months later. -Tam Sackman
Broccoli City and Kingman Island Bluegrass & Folk Festival both on April 30
This is Sophie’s choice for music lovers/mixed race people.
Broccoli City Festival’s lineup is stacked – beyond main attraction Future, the rest of the performers include some of the most exciting upcoming acts in the hip-hop, RnB world: The Internet, Sango, Anderson Paak/BJ The Chicago Kid (who might actually be the same person), and Jhene Aiko, the woman who irrevocably changed the meaning of eating groceries. There’s general good vibes surrounding all of these artists, and all of them have been steadily putting out fire over the last few years.
Kingman Island Bluegrass Festival is white person heaven. Lots of tevas, chacos, and banjos. The sound quality is excellent, the bands are technically amazing, and yes, that is an original vintage Patagonia fleece, thank you very much. I went last year and discovered some of the coolest folk acts from the region, as well as some great local vendors and artisans. Also – this is a dog-friendly festival! Bring your pup out for a day at a national park.
Also, each festival is for a good cause! You can read more about them here (Broccoli City) and here (Kingman Island). -Jose Lopez-Sanchez
Winter blows. It’s cold, it’s dark, and there’s no baseball. The little dudes I coach started their season two weeks ago, but it’s just not the same as seeing the Nats trot back out onto the field. This year brings a significantly reworked team that should battle with the Mets for NL East supremacy. Real talk: last year was a disappointment…I thought 100 wins was a possibility. Instead, we got a monster season from Bryce, an end-of-season choke (literally) by Papelbon, injuries to some key contributors, and massive offensive underperformance up and down the roster. But that was last year. Dusty Baker’s a huge upgrade over Matt Williams, and with a retooled bullpen, additional left-handed bats, and some of the best prospects in baseball waiting in the wings (see you in May, Giolito), the Nats are primed to jump back into the National League picture. Also, playing the putrid Braves and atrocious Phillies 38 times this year should help. Home opener is April 7 at 4:05 p.m., when the Nats start their series with the Miami Marlins. -Logan Hollers
Making a Murderer’s Dean Strang and Jerry Buting @ Warner Theater April 2
This may feel a bit irrelevant but I’m sure we all have a ton of unanswered questions for Dean and Jerry. Plus, there are most assuredly case updates to go through. The most important question being, did Steven Avery do it? The second most important question, did O.J.? YEAH HE DID. Now is your chance to grill America’s hottest attorneys since Matlock. There are two shows, 4 and 8, for twice the true crime. -Jenn Tisdale
Outlander returns April 9 on STARZ
My favorite time traveling Brit is back and this time she and her Scottish Highlander husband are off to 18th century France to save Scotland from certain war. This is season two so I’ll briefly catch you up. It’s post World War 2 England, Claire and her husband have spent years apart. They go to Scotland for a long overdue honeymoon when Claire finds a circle of stones (think Stonehenge but smaller) that somehow transports her back to 18th century Scotland. She is able to survive using her nursing skills (witch!) and marries a Scottish Highlander (there can be only fun!) to stay alive. Bonus round: They fall in love! Now she’s torn between her future past and her past future. That brings us to season two and what I fear will put Claire back into her modern times. But first, they have to save Scotland from itself.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3VtNOjrqeQ
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt returns April 15 on Netflix
Springtime is my emotional kryptonite; whether it’s to do with allergies or the simple fact that tax season bankrupts me EVERY GODDAMN TIME, I’m not sure I’ll never know the true cause of the impending mania. All I know is that April and May are peak times for me to have mega-meltdowns. WHICH IS WHY it is EXTRA great that the second season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt will be premiering on Netflix Friday April 15th; in addition to being SO FUNNY I CANNOT, it is one of the happiest shows on the planet, and I can add it to my arsenal of Xanax-esque TV shows, which include but are not limited to Love and The Great British Baking Show. (Here’s to screen-based self-medication!) -Megan Burns
Catastrophe returns April 8 on Amazon Prime
Helen Hayes and Tony nominated director Ethan McSweeny makes his Studio theatre debut with this riveting, shattering, intimate drama. In the suburbs of Dublin, a long-absent son returns home to visit his ailing mother. But his reappearance—and the welcome he receives—ignites his sisters’ long-simmering resentments and sets the siblings on a collision course over his criminal past.
From one of the writers of HBO‘s Boardwalk Empire and Showtime‘s Masters of Sex comes an unexpected (and funny, insightful and complex) love story of evolving friendship, finding your own path, and the value of family.
Keep an eye out for a behind-the-scenes on this operatic fever dream.