Weekend Picks: OPUS Merriweather’s Unrestrained Return

by Aaron Royce

The annual festival brings interactive art and music to the woods of Columbia, Md.

Jazz group Sun Ra Arkestra performs in the Chrysalis at OPUS 2017. Photo courtesy of Howard Hughes Corporation.

Art and music lovers, prepare yourselves. On October 13, “OPUS Merriweather” will return to the DMV area. Last year’s festivities saw over 15,000 people attend the event, based in the woods of Columbia, Maryland—which featured interactive art and avant garde music for the transcendent dance party.

This year, the festival returns to Downtown Columbia, to create an immersive experience of eclectic music and art. The 2018 festivities are designed to be more mind-bending than years past, featuring a laser cathedral and 16-foot-tall animated owl overseeing the fifty acres of forest and multiple stages.

OPUS saw over 15,000 attendees at its’ festival last year. Photo courtesy of Howard Hughes Corporation.

Sponsored by the Howard Hughes Corporation, OPUS focuses on the inclusion and innovation of various art forms. The musical lineup includes Oneohtrix Point Never, Kadhja Bonet, Sudan Archives, Patrick Higgins and Sophia Brous. Visual arts, of course, will be a focal point. Acclaimed photographer Marilyn Minter will show her vibrant hallucination film, Green Pink Caviar, and Mexican-born Alejandro Almanza will display his kinetic installation piece, Ahead and beyond of everyone’s time, space and rhythm.

Not only a festival, OPUS is also evidence of the cultural shift D.C. has recently experienced. The mix of artistic and musical styles, experiences and backgrounds of those presenting are as diverse as the District itself. Almost half of the artists presenting—many making their DMV debut—are natives to countries outside the US, which adds to OPUS’ drive to be one of the most culturally-aware East Coast festivals. Through its boundary-pushing, provocative selection of artists, this DMV event is one-of-a-kind and takes Merriweather back to its roots.

Guests experience the immersive video Projection Cube at OPUS 2017. Photo courtesy of Howard Hughes Corporation.

Designed to ignite wonder and curiosity, OPUS aims to show how new realities can bloom from various perspectives. With a diverse range of works and experiences to share, it’s sure to do exactly that.

Visit https://opusmerriweather.com to get tickets for the festival. Registration is currently free.

“OPUS Merriweather” takes place on October 13 from 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM

Fireworks lit up the skies to close OPUS 2017. Photo courtesy of Howard Hughes Corporation.

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