Nov. 17th - Yes, we all know how awesome the concerts are at the Hollywood Bowl. So why don't you go check out the concert posters for the Bowl's Poster Art Show, premiering at the Hollywood Arclight movie theatre tonight at 7 pm - there are 13 commissioned posters from the Bowl's 2009 lineup, along with vintage works from the Hollywood Bowl's earlier days. And since you're at the Arclight anyways, check out a movie or stop by Amoeba Music, the coolest record store in all of Los Angeles. Admission is free; the exhibit starts tonight and goes through Jan. 5th, 2010; and if you attend the opening party tonight you gotta RSVP to this email address: firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line RSVP to Hollywood Bowl Poster Show Party 11/17
Nov. 15-20th - Get your art on for free! The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) is celebrating their first 30 years by doing two awesome things: a) putting on an amazing exhibit showing off more than 500 works by over 200 artists (the exhibit goes from Nov. 15th to May 3rd, 2010); and letting you in for no admission charge during their regular hours all this week until Saturday, when the price goes back up to $10/person. MOCA's hours are Mon: 11am - 5pm, closed Tues and Wed., Thurs: 11am- 8pm, Friday: 11am-5pm, and Sat. and Sun.: 11am - 6pm. You should also know that if you miss this free week and don't have $10 to spare, admission is free every Thursday after 5pm as well, so no worries.
I've blogged about this in one of my previous About Town blogs, but if you haven't checked out this venue yet, you really should: The Edison Lounge in downtown LA. Yes, driving and parking there are hellish, but hear me out:
Every Wednesday in November, the Edison hosts DJ Imagika and a group of what they call "Fliers and Eccentriques" for Incandescence: The Dark Side of Light, to entertain you and bring you back to the old days of cabaret-style entertainment - it's $10 to get in, but if you bring an unwrapped, brand new toy in before 9 pm, you get in for free.
Every Thursday from 5-7pm at The Edison, they have a mixologist on hand creating a unique happy time drink - that they sell for only 35 cents. Yes, 35 cents.
And every Friday, they serve FREE grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup, depression-era drinks at depression-era prices, give 25% of the proceeds to a local soup kitchen, and forward on any letters the customers wrote about their feelings on the economy to LA's Congressional reps. Kick ASS.
Maybe tea is more your style - ever checked out the Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens? It's a wee bit on the expensive side - general admission into the gardens is $20 for adults (parking is free) and it's an additional $24.95 to take high tea at the Rose Garden Tea Room, but I've heard the food is amazing. And good GOD but are my nerd senses tingling - two exhibits are on rotating display in their library, and I don't know which one to freak out over more: a) The Ellesmere manuscript of Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales (c. 1410) or b) Original poems, notes, and manuscripts from one of my favorite cranky and bad-ass poets of all time, Charles Bukowski.
I am in nerd heaven.
Also, admission to the Huntington is FREE every first Thursday of the month during its regular visiting hours (10:30 am to 4:30 pm) but you do have to make a reservation for their free days.
Nov. 21st - Dec. 27th - ever wanted to see How the Grinch Stole Christmas, performed live? Sure you did... we all still do. :) If you're in Orange County or the San Diego area, go catch it playing at the Old Globe Theater in San Diego - tickets range from $39.00 to $49.00, and kids aged 3 -17 years cost $20.00 to $30.00. Is the price of admission probably worth it? I'm betting yes.
For those of you who still get all warm and fuzzy when a Christmas tree lights up for the first time - I know I do - The Grove in Hollywood is celebrating their annual Tree Lighting ceremony on Nov. 22nd at 7:30 pm with musical performances and maybe a few celebrities - all you gotta do is pay for parking and somehow withstand spending the rest of your money at the Crate&Barrel store.
If you haven't gotten your fill of museums lately, or you need a place to take visiting relatives over the Thanksgiving weekend, consider this - from Nov. 26th through Dec. 9th, 20 different LA institutions threw this together: Holiday MADness (Membership Appreciation Days). Basically, a bunch of museums and other art institutions in Los Angeles got together and wanted to give back to their membership - so if you're a card-carrying member at any of these museums, you can get in for free on the days listed - AND you get 20% off all merchandise at the museum stores, which we all know is the coolest place to get gifts that nobody else will have.
Thursday, Dec. 3rd - the annual Griffith Park Light Display starts up again! For one night only on the 3rd, bicyclists are the only ones allowed to tour the Crystal Springs Drive light displays - and then for the next two weeks, Friday Dec. 4th through Thursday, Dec. 17th, it's only pedestrians. Finally, beginning Friday, Dec. 18th through Dec. 30th, cars will be allowed to cruise slowly through the brightly lit streets. This is a huge hit with most Southern California residents, so do NOT wait until the last minute to do this one :)
Dec. 5th, Saturday - if you've ever felt particularly crafty during the holidays, hop on down to Descanso Gardens in La Canada and for the (somewhat steep) price of $35, materials and an instructor will be on hand to help you make a beautiful, fresh Christmas wreath to hang on your door and greet your holiday guests.
Whether you celebrate Hanukkah, are curious about celebrating it, or just looking for a really good party, look no further than Fiesta Hanukkah!, which is the Skirball's way of blending Jewish and Latin American traditions into one really awesome party. Join the festivities on Sunday, Dec. 6th and learn how to play Jewish Latin games, taste yummy food, and listen to Latin American bands put their own spin on traditional Hanukkah songs. Adult admission is $10, children under 12 years old are free.
And finally - if you are in a singing mood this holiday season but don't want to get made fun of (or dress up like an extra from Scrooged) this might be just the thing: The Walt Disney Concert Hall puts on two performances of Handel's Messiah - and YOU'RE the chorus! Whether you want to sit in your seat and just enjoy the music or stand up and sing along, you're welcome to either way - just make sure you've got your ticket for either the Dec. 12th, 2 pm performance or the Dec. 20th, 7 pm performance, then sit back, enjoy the soloists and full orchestra on stage, and sing along with all your heart if you feel moved to do so. Tickets start at $24.
So there you go, folks! Long blog, as usual, but tons of stuff to do this holiday season. So go forth, eat, drink, and help others be merry.