L.A. noir: Ronni Chasen suspect dies @ Harvey Apartments, formerly Harvey Hotel, El Cortez Hotel

Architecture & Design · Film
Reprinted from L.A.Times: Ronni Chasen slaying: Suspect shoots himself as police serve search warrant; Suspect had been under police surveillance before he killed himself. December 1, 2010 |  8:34 pm Los Angeles Times A man described as a suspect in the slaying of veteran Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen fatally shot himself at a Hollywood apartment house ...

Aronofsky’s BLACK SWAN: Raw deal for Odile 6

Dance · Film
Seconds into Darren Aronofsky’s psychological thriller BLACK SWAN, the hyperkinetic camera zooms in on a pink pointe shoe. A woman is dancing, but we don’t see her. We see only the impeccable chop-chop of her shoes. It’s a smart directorial move. Cinephiles and foot fetishists are primed for a good time, but dance lovers’ hearts ...

I just love the guy: John Lennon

Music
It’s not his song writing or performance that grabs me, although I like and admire that too. It’s his total artistic nature, flamboyant personality, troubled personal journey, and his bonding with a really wacky Japanese artist that endears him to me. Yes, bonding; John and Yoko were a deeply bonded couple, for better or for worse. LENNONYC, ...

Jack Cole’s modern-dance roots at the Pillow

Dance · Film
Norton Owen, Director of Preservation at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in the Berkshire Mountains, initiated a celebration of the jazz choreographer, Jack Cole in August. In the video below Owen, joined by dance historian Maura Keefe and southern California’s own Larry Billman (at 8:17), discusses Cole’s early career and clarifies his connection to the place ...

From Rio con brio: Musica Angelica returns to Los Angeles 1

Music
I’m looking forward to a marvelous performance by Musica Angelica, the L.A.-based baroque chamber orchestra, just back from a tour of South America, primed to let ‘er rip in Santa Monica and Pasadena performances next weekend. The 20-piece baroque band’s versatile music director, Martin Haselböck, in a previous concert, conducted while singing, balancing on his ...

Meet Natalie Portman’s evil twin, body double Kimberly Prosa 2

Dance · Film
I enjoyed my chat with dancer Kimberly Prosa, one of two body doubles for actress Natalie Portman in Darren Aronofsky’s BLACK SWAN. The film, a psychological thriller with dazzling special effects, opens nationwide December 3. Reports Prosa on her amazing and unexpected first-ever movie experience: “I went to audition at an open call looking for extras to ...

Merce and the midgets 2

Dance
Researching Merce Cunningham Trust trustee and former Cunningham dancer, Patricia Lent, I came across this post-911 story — a sweet tale so well written in the New York Times by Jennifer Dunning. The story concerns a class of P.S. 234 third graders taught by Ms. Lent, then a school teacher. She takes her kids to ...

A heady evening with Hedy Lamarr 2

Film
While he was growing up in Ottawa, Illinois, the film writer Stephen Shearer’s mother told him that in 1939 she and a girlfriend went to the local cinema to see Charles Boyer in “Algiers.” Co-starring with the Frenchman was MGM’s latest European import, Hedy Lamarr. In her first appearance in the film, cinematographer James Wong ...

ROA wrangles the rats of Los Angeles 2

Visual arts
All-Los Angeles materials — gnarly wooden boards, found rubble, discarded t.v. sets, sheet metal — form the foundation for the visiting Belgian artist ROA’s between-the-cracks, garbage-dumpster-at-night art show at the cool New Puppy Gallery. On these outsized flat surfaces, ROA paints precise portraits of critters and vermin. No, not the denizens of the L.A. art ...

The ABCs of being Eli Broad

Architecture & Design · Visual arts
Los Angeles is blessed with a surfeit of alphabet-soup acronyms for its world-class museums, famously, LACMA and MOCA. Both derive from the mother of all art-museum acronyms, MOMMY, er … MOMA. In a Huffington Post blog item, bad-boy Coagula Art Journal editor Mat Gleason posits options for Uncle Eli’s swank new warehouse of contemporary art. ...