Rat Pack-ish: Chris Walden Big Band at The Wallis

Music
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Chris Walden is the most ubiquitous musician you’ve never heard of, but whom you’ve heard everywhere. He’s one of the busiest of the current Hollywood composer-arrangers, and just a sampling of his recent album credits includes Michael Bublé, Jessie J., Michael Bolton, and Celine Dion. His film and TV writing is voluminous (your kids hear ...

Long Day’s Journey: a family feud, familiar fodder for Americans

Theater
Every family has its problems. Every problem spurs its drama. I anticipate my upcoming visit to The Wallis to see Eugene O’Neill’s Long Day’s Journey into Night as a microcosm, a kind of deep dive into a Petree dish — a ‘family drama’ the likes of which our nation is undergoing now. A highly controversial ...

A Giselle for the 21st Century

Dance · Fashion
Seen above, the tragic-heroine, “Giselle,” in a contemporary re-make of a woman’s story dating from the 19th century and transferred (rightfully in the 21st century) to the choreographic reins of a woman. The role is delivered with great pathos by the work’s creator/lead dancer Dada Masilo in her “Giselle” on view this weekend at The ...

From South Africa, Dada Masilo’s re-envisioned ‘Giselle’ @ The Wallis

Dance
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She’s messed with Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake, and Carmen. Now comes Giselle. ‘Messed with’ is perhaps a strong term, but South Africa’s Dada Masilo is among a small group of choreographers – notably Matthew Bourne, Akram Khan, Boris Eifman and Mats Ek – with the guts to turn a hallowed narrative ballet into something ...

Denkeschoen: Jeremy Denk in April concert @ the Wallis

Music
Pleased to see that Jeremy Denk, MacArthur ‘Genius’ and Avery Fisher Prize winner, will soon concertize in the intimate Bram Goldsmith Theater of The Wallis in Beverly Hills. A youthful and hugely versatile-and-robust piano stylist, Denk, whom Paul Crewes, artistic director of The Wallis, singles out as, “one of America’s foremost pianists,” will deliver a ...

REVIEW: Michelle Dorrance Dance @ The Wallis 1

Dance · Reviews
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The night before seeing Dorrance Dance at The Wallis in Beverly Hills I binge- watched Astaire and Rogers clips on YouTube. Such elegant technique! Two bodies moving as one in gauzy ballrooms. Dancing as if on air. In the 1930s and ‘40s, Fred and Ginger embodied love and luxury for a generation eager to escape ...

Jose Limon: America’s great immigrant choreographer

Dance · Featured
As the threat of erecting a barrier on our southern border looms, consider the saga of José Limón (1908-1972), a Mexican immigrant who after becoming a son of Los Angeles forged a distinguished forty-year career as one of the dance world’s most noble and magnetic figures. As a pioneering choreographer, Limón unflinchingly examined life’s thorniest ...

It’s cool. You’re cool. So go. AfterParty @ The Wallis.

Language & ideas · Music · Theater
As everyone in Los Angeles knows, it’s not the event. It’s the after party. That’s why a cool new theater package offered by the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Arts stands a good chance of attracting a younger demographic into its cozy theater smack in the center of Beverly Hills. It’s AfterParty @ The Wallis, ...

From “Fame” to “Freeze Frame,” Debbie Allen ties dance to real world

Dance
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Dance critic Gillian Anne Renault anticipates Debbie Allen’s “Freeze Frame” at The Wallis. I first fell in love with three-time Emmy Award-winner Debbie Allen when she choreographed and acted in the 1980s escapist TV series “Fame.” Now, decades later, after a wide-ranging career, she’s taking on big, serious issues far removed from the rarefied atmosphere ...

L.A. Dance Project to dance in L.A.

Dance
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Some are still in a huff about Benjamin Millepied’s decision, in 2014, to leave Los Angeles and L.A. Dance Project, the much-hyped dance collective he co-founded less than two years earlier. But how could he not accept the offer to be dance director of the Paris Opera Ballet, one of the world’s oldest and most ...