Oh He Dead plays Out and About Festival
Oh He Dead plays Out and About Festival; Credit: Ken Grand-Pierre

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Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts just announced the Out and About Festival, a two-day queer music event that will take place June 24 and 25, during the final weekend of Pride Month. Billed as “a celebration of music, nature, and pride,” Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile will headline both nights of the festival.

Produced and programmed by the nonprofit foundation, the festival seeks to highlight LGBTQ artists and to create space for music lovers during Pride Month, while activating the Wolf Trap Park in new ways, though the venue has long hosted queer artists and fans. (For those worrying how they’ll choose between Capital Pride celebrations and Out and About, fear not. D.C.’s official Pride celebrations take place two weeks earlier on June 10 and 11.) Other Out and About stars include Rufus Wainwright, Yola, and Lucius.

“The Out & About Festival captures the spirit of Wolf Trap—we are a community where music and nature are for all to enjoy,” Arvind Manocha, president and CEO of Wolf Trap Foundation, says in a press release announcing the event. Manocha adds that “Brandi is an inspiration to artists and audiences, both for her unmistakable sound and for standing proudly as an icon of the gay community.” 

Bad Moves; Credit: Emily Chow

The festival will have a total of three stages, including the Filene Center and Meadow Stage; the latter will feature two local D.C. bands: Bad Moves and Oh He Dead.

“When we got the email about this show, I think the band text chain almost broke the cell phone network,” Oh He Dead guitarist Andy Valenti tells City Paper. “We sent so many excited all-caps messages and emojis.” 

For the band, who recently sold out the 9:30 Club, playing Wolf Trap is something they’ve been working toward since their creation. That Carlile is the headliner is just the cherry on top. “We consider Brandi to be one of the greatest songwriters on the planet, and we have been dreaming of playing Wolf Trap ever since we started our little D.C. band,” says Valenti. “As proud allies of the LGBTQ+ community, we are so freakin’ pumped to be a part of this festival.”

Out and About Festival takes place June 24 and 25 at Wolf Trap. Tickets for the fest go on sale Feb. 17 at 10 a.m. wolftrap.org. $75–$498.