Class! John Pizzarelli’s Sinatra tribute at Valley Performing Arts Center

Music
I missed vaudeville. But I am making up for that loss by enjoying the rich artistic mash-ups and performance combos that Thor Steingraber is staging — he’s been inviting multifarious artists to share the stage of the sublimely intimate Valley Performing Arts Center where he is executive director. Anyone lucky enough to toast Frank Sinatra ...

Classical Underground in holiday mood

Music
Classical Underground, the highly personal and pleasantly renegade performance series housed in an loft in the industrial heartland of Los Angeles, has a cozy evening of chamber music on tap Monday night. Sakura, an ensemble of five cellists — Jonathan Dormand, Michael Kaufman, Yoshika Masuda, Peter Myers, and Sarah Rommell — attributes its name to ...

Infectious holiday fun: “Salsa Navidad” at VPAC

Dance · Music
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Oscar Hernandez came of age in the burgeoning New York Latin music scene of the 1970s and ‘80s, when the Fania label recorded many of the greats canonized today: Willie Colón, Bobby Valentín, Pete Rodriquez, Johnny Pacheco, Cheo Feliciano, Larry Harlow, Hector Lavóe, Ray Barretto, Luis ‘Perico’ Ortíz, and Papo Lucca among others. It was ...

Buffalo Bill Cody, Maurice Chevalier, The Police played Bataclan

Architecture & Design · Film · Music
The charming and playful website for the Bataclan Concert Hall lists bookings for rock acts through May 2016. The Chinoiserie-style building dates from 1864, ironically, right when European powers were having imperial adventures in the Far East. Located at the sage address of 50 Boulevard Voltaire, The Bataclan ports a noble history as a cafe ...

Pick your Sugar Plum Fairy NOW!

Dance · Music
Hey, you Sugar Plums and Snowflakes! Stop dancing in our heads, and start whirling ’round the Segerstrom Hall stage. This will occur sooner than you can shake a candy cane. In a real first, Segerstrom Center of the Arts is presenting a big-city-style, lengthy run of American Ballet Theatre’s “The Nutcracker” at the esteemed Orange ...

Happy 100th, Frank! Love, The Wallis

Film · Music
For many he remains forever young, but the truth is Frank Sinatra would turn 100 on Dec. 12, 2015. Honing in on just one aspect of his performance career — his movie-making — The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts is rolling out a screening event of three of Sinatra’s best known films. From ...

Musical happenings in Hanoi

Music
An exotic and fascinating announcement came across the transom: the inaugural concert of the Hanoi New Music Ensemble, which will focus on three generations of Vietnamese composers. The program will include works by Vietnamese composers Kim Ngoc Tran, Nguyen Minh Nhat, Dang Huu Phuc, Dang Hong Anh, Tay Nguyen, and Vu Nhat Tan. Dates and ...

Blowing in the wind with Jacaranda

Music
Nine bagpipes keening on the nearby ocean bluff, and twelve strings in a darkening sanctuary will unleash your imagination and cast a lasting spell of intangible magnitude. So promises Jacaranda in promoting two Los Angeles premieres slated to grace the contemporary classical music society’s 2015-16 season-opening concert. First up, in a free outdoor performance sure ...

What a week! Los Angeles blossoms in the fine arts

Architecture & Design · Dance · Music · Reviews · Visual arts
I’ve inhabited Los Angeles more or less, since 1989. The city’s rich art existence, long undetected, has kept me busy and happy here. There is little doubt, however, that something arts-phenomenal is happening right now in our city. It must be true; the New York Times is sputtering about it all the time. In fact, ...

Review: Diavolo’s “L’Espace du Temps” @ VPAC

Architecture & Design · Dance · Music · Reviews
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Calling Diavolo: Architecture in Motion a dance company is like calling a monster truck a nice vehicle. It’s big. It’s brash. It’s loud. Sometimes it’s brilliant. The LA-based company performed its three-part “L’Espace du Temps” at the Valley Performing Arts Center (VPAC) September 19 and 20. Presented in partnership with the Ford Signature Series, it ...