Friday through April 13: Francophonie 2013 Cultural Festival

The wide scope of French language, culture and art goes on display at the 13th annual Francophonie Cultural Festival starting Friday in the District.

"Francophonie" refers to the countries and regions that share the French language. The cultures vary greatly, from Belgium, Quebec and New Orleans to Vietnam, Djibouti and Haiti. While the French language is a common unifier, what each culture brings to the table varies.

"It's not only the French," explained Marie-Helene Zavala, a festival organizer and project manager at the French Embassy. "Francophonie is not only about French culture. It's the Francophonie culture. Of course, there's the French language, but it's not only the French language."

The festival includes a wide range of events, including music, film and theater, spread out over six weeks. The crown jewel of the festival is the Grande Fete on March 22.

"We really want to give a large view and show American people what Francophonie is about, to let them discover what Francophonie is about," Zavala said.

The Francophonie Festival in D.C. is the largest of its kind in the world, taking advantage of the multiple embassies and access to diverse cultural offerings in the city. March 20 is the Francophonie celebration date recognized internationally.

"Many countries do the week of Francophonie, but here we are very lucky because we have some many embassies, so many Francophonie embassies, we can do more," Zavala said.

Info: Admission prices vary; for more information visit

When: See the event website for a full list of dates and times.

Friday: Journopalooza at the Black Cat

This is the fifth annual iteration of this fundraising event. Journopalooza features journalists living fantasy lives as rock stars. Accomplished scribes for major publications and outlets have formed bands such as "Cheaper Than Therapy," "Dirty Bomb," and "Suspicious Package." The show on the Black Cat's main stage is a fundraiser for a pair of nonprofits: Writopia Lab and Reach Incorporated.

Info: $20 in advance, $30 day of;

When: 7:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. music

Saturday: Leprechaun Lap Bar Tour

St. Patrick's Day gets started a little early this weekend with the 12th Annual Leprechaun Lap. Twenty bars on D.C.'s west side. Get plenty of drink specials and party 'til you turn green.

Info: $10 with two canned goods donated to D.C. Central Kitchen, $15 without the donation;

When: Registration is from 1 to 6 p.m. at Mackey's Pub, bar tour runs through 9 p.m.

Saturday: Masta Killa at 9th & Beats

Last week Raekwon appeared at the Howard Theatre. This week, Masta Killa performs at 9th & Beats. At this rate, maybe the entirety of the Wu-Tang Clan will pass through the area piece by piece.

Info: $11 in advance, $15 at the door;

When: Doors at 8:30 p.m.

Sunday: Radiohead Jazz Project at Twins Jazz

The musicians of the Radiohead Jazz Project interpret the music of the experimental English rock act through the "prism of jazz arrangements." For a minute there, you'll lose yourself.

Info: $10 admission and a $10 minimum purchase;

When: 8 and 10 p.m.