Kennedy Center hosts ‘HOORAE Takeover,’ featuring Issa Rae chat with KeKe Palmer

WTOP's Jason Fraley previews the 'HOORAE Takeover' at Kennedy Center (Part 1)

Are you looking for something fun to do this weekend in the nation’s capital?

The Kennedy Center hosts the HOORAE Takeover by HOORAE and RAEDIO Events.

“I started at RAEDIO three years ago and it has been nothing but rewarding and amazing,” Director of Brand Partnerships, Events & Artist Relations Mo Davis told WTOP. “Seeing the vision and the ethos of working together, building community, collaborating across and seeing creativity blossom in full, giving that to people and showing people how they can in turn do that.”

It all kicks off with the “Welcoming Party” on Thursday night.

“Just as a thank you to the lovely sponsors and brands who have agreed to be part of this week, who saw the vision, who wanted to support and lean in, as well as the community partners, the folks who have been so kind and gracious who have welcomed me, welcomed this idea, welcomed Hoorae to the city,” Davis said. Just doing something to show appreciation.”

Friday brings the intimate music series “Pieces.”

“Super excited about that,” Davis said. “‘Pieces’ is a more stripped-down, intimate series giving the audiences a look into the storytelling of the songs. In between the songs there’s different commentaries and stories, leaning in to find out what made this become a thing. … We have great talent … sponsored by Spotify Frequency, their home for Black music expression.”

Friday also invites you to dance at the “No Weird Sh*t Party.”

“We want to bring back the fun when we were all dancing, having fun, not caring about who was doing what, not caring about who was looking at you,” Davis said. “This is a No Wallflower Zone whatsoever. There’s singalongs, there are twerk-offs, we want to see the lashes falling off, we want the walls sweating, but we’re not going to mess up that beautiful establishment.”

Saturday brings “Short Film Saturday.”

“We have two amazing projects we’re going to show,” Davis said. “One is going to be ‘If These Locks Could Talk’ by filmmakers Brittney [Janae] and Jahbrielle [Henning Rayford], who’s also a Howard [University] alum. … We also have a showing from Kid Fury, who is half of the podcast ‘The Read,’ and his partner Michael Troll, so we’re excited to get more into him and his world.”

Saturday also brings the “Find Your People Party.”

“We want people to find their tribe, we literally want people to find your people, because HOORAE is a group of people who found each other, who’ve built each other up,” Davis said. “We want to be a resource and bring people together. People should leave feeling empowered like, ‘I found my next screenwriter, I found my next producer, I found the people who are going to help my dreams come into fruition.”

Sunday brings “The Read Comedy Album Live Preview.”

“RAEDIO, shoutout gang, we are working on a live comedy album with ‘The Read,’ so we wanted to give D.C. a first-look exclusive on that and go into the world of what they can expect from the project,” Davis said. “We also have a special performer on that, Flo Milli, so really excited to see that and have the crowd be hyped and just show people what’s to come.”

It all builds to “A Sip with Issa Rae” where Rae chats with KeKe Palmer.

“We’ve had an array of great former folks who have been on there, from Barry Jenkins to Zendaya to Ava [DuVernay] … really going into the world of these incredible multiple-hyphenates and seeing what their career trajectory has been, what are their triumphs, what are their lows, how they build themselves up … and giving listeners on how you skill yourself and sell yourself.”

WTOP's Jason Fraley previews the 'HOORAE Takeover' at Kennedy Center (Part 2)

Listen to our full conversation here.

Jason Fraley

Hailed by The Washington Post for “his savantlike ability to name every Best Picture winner in history," Jason Fraley began at WTOP as Morning Drive Writer in 2008, film critic in 2011 and Entertainment Editor in 2014, providing daily arts coverage on-air and online.

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