Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman discuss Big Friendship

If you weren’t already missing your friends, chances are that months in isolation have you craving Sunday brunches, museum trips, and nights out at the bar. Still, it turns out long-distance friends have a lot to share with the rest of the world. That’s why Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman, hosts of the Call Your Girlfriend podcast, are virtually headed to Sixth & I to discuss Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close. Sow and Friedman are long-distance friends; Sow lives in Brooklyn, while Friedman lives in Los Angeles. (They met, however, in D.C. in 2008.) The roots of Call Your Girlfriend are their cross-country phone calls to discuss, in their words, “the intricacies of pop culture and the latest in politics.” And since the podcast’s launch in 2014, hundreds of thousands of listeners continue to tune in. Perhaps there’s just something universal about missing your friends, about sharing life’s biggest milestones—or everything you need to know about Joe Biden, police abolition, and celebrity gossip—through the telephone. In Big Friendship, Sow and Friedman tackle their own “big friendship,” which they define as a “strong, significant bond that transcends life phases, geographical locations, and emotional shifts.” They also bring in friends and experts to discuss just how relatable their “big friendship” is. If you find yourself with a particularly bad case of heartache, or you’re looking to witness more of Sow and Friedman’s friendship, tune in for a virtual book discussion with Sixth & I. As a bonus, the authors will be in conversation with Mari Andrew, author of Am I There Yet?: The Loop-de-loop, Zigzagging Journey to Adulthood. The virtual book discussion begins July 16 at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are available at sixthandi.org. $10-$31. —Sarah Smith

Telethon for Regional Community Theater

As the coronavirus continues to demand the national center stage, community theaters in the D.C. area are trying to keep their heads above water amid show cancelations. On July 17 and 18, almost 20 theatre companies will host Community Theatre Thrives!, a fundraising telethon to rally donations and ensure that affordable, local, all-volunteer theater is still available in the D.C. region when performers can once again safely take the stage. Because community theaters operate on tight budgets to keep shows accessible, the loss of ticket revenue is a severe blow, and theaters are looking to increase philanthropic income until the pandemic is over. The theaters hosting Community Theatre Thrives!—like Reston Community Players, Silver Spring Stage, and Laurel Mill Playhouse—also hope to spotlight the wealth of artistic talent and passion that makes the vibrant community theater scene in D.C. possible, and to underline what a devastating loss its disappearance would be. The event will showcase the talents of these organizations in a two-day performing arts event, so whether you prefer a matinee or an evening production, you can bring quality, local theater into your computer, your home, and, hopefully, your list of charitable contribution tax deductions. The telethon begins at 6:30 p.m. on July 17 and runs all day on July 18 at theatrethrives.org. Free; donations encouraged. —Ryley Graham