Myron Hunt’s Wattles mansion to host interior design expo

Architecture & Design
Wattles Mansion, built in 1908, was the original home of Gurdon Wattles, a Nebraska banker who bankrolled much of early Hollywood. The classic Mission Revival masterpiece was designed by Myron Hunt and Elmer Grey, who also designed the Huntington Library, the Rose Bowl and the  Ambassador Hotel, which sadly met its maker via the wrecking ...

In memorium: Robert Osborne (1932-2017)

Film
A life well lived, and a great contributor to our culture. It was my honor to have been interviewed by him, to converse with him at TCM Fest and on the TCM Cruise. And naturally, to spend countless evenings in his company watching movies on Turner Classic Movies. It is a great loss that I ...

Dance double to Merle Oberon

Dance · Film
A revealing story captured in a comprehensive oral history conducted for the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, in 2003, with George and Ethel Martin, the two great Jack Cole dancers. Ethel kicks it off, with a small assist from her husband. Ethel: Jack [Cole] told me, ‘I know Kenny [Williams]’. He was ...

Ratmansky’s frothy ‘Whipped Cream’ casts @ Segerstrom

Dance
There are all kinds of considerations to weigh — and this is great fun for balletomanes — in selecting a ballet performance. The focus of this tough decision is the big world premiere at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Orange County of Alexei Ratmansky’s new full-evening ballet, “Whipped Cream.” The superb Pacific Symphony will ...

Who was Horace Tapscott?

Film · Music
Horace Tapscott (1934–99) was an important but underappreciated jazz musician and community activist blacklisted in the 1960s because of his political affiliations. A poetic new film HORACE TAPSCOTT: MUSICAL GRIOT is a meditation on Black music, art, and activism and the history of Los Angeles. According to the film, during the Watts Rebellion of 1965 ...

California arts leader Craig Watson appreciated

Language & ideas
We recently received notice that Craig Watson will step down from his role as director of the California Arts Council effective April 2017. In his position as the Council’s Director since August 2011, Watson has been responsible for the substantial growth and renewal of California’s state arts agency. He has shepherded the agency’s resurgence, overseeing ...

REVIEW: Lionel Popkin’s ‘Inflatable Trio’ at the Skirball 1

Dance · Reviews
Do you feel that things are changing in ways that make you uneasy? That even our most familiar modes of operating—what political pundits refer to as “norms,” for example public civility—are in upheaval? Choreographer Lionel Popkin has made a dance about this. His charming and successful “Inflatable Trio,” a fun hour-long dance pageant for three, ...

Georgeous & Rita-licious

Dance · Fashion · Film
As Oscar Sunday approaches, we turn to the year when two beautiful young singer/dancers both won Academy Awards for West Side Story. George Chakiris and Rita Moreno, respective winners for Best Actor and Actress in a Supporting Role, appeared stunningly beautiful at the ceremony  April 9, 1962 at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. This is ...

Choreographer Cherice Barton spreads happiness at VPAC

Dance
She’s part of a tribe of young dance makers who hop fluidly between entertainment hot-spots—Las Vegas, L.A.’s Staple Center, Broadway, and Hollywood. Clients include Katy Perry (at the Grammy Awards); George Lucas (in a Disney film); Spider-Man (vaulting above Broadway); and two darling daughters ages three and four. Relishing her return to the ballet world ...

Judy Garland’s admiration for Gwen Verdon’s husband

Dance
Recently researching dance history at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, I came across this nugget from Gwen Verdon. In an interview, Gwen recounted a story with droll wit, Judy Garland once said to me, “Oh your husband has done such a marvelous job!” And I said who??? Because I really did ...