Robert Dowd -- Pop Art Money -- See Jan.17 listing
Fri., Dec. 12
"Laemmle Through the Decades: 1938-2008, 70 Years in 7 Days." It must have been an extraordinarily difficult task to select only seven films to represent the rich and diverse history of the Laemmle Theatres chain. But someone did it. For the next week, Laemmle's Royal Theatre in West Los Angeles will screen the seven most iconic foreign-language films to have graced the company's silver screens, each one representing a different decade of its existence. The lineup includes "Children of Paradise" (1945, France), "La Strada" (1954, Italy), "Jules & Jim" (1962, France), "The Conformist" (1970, Italy, France and West Germany), "Fanny & Alexander" (1982, Sweden), "Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown" (1988, Spain) and "Y Tu Mama Tambien" (2001, Mexico). Films will screen several times a day. Through Dec. 18. $7-$10. Royal Theatre, 11523 Santa Monica Blvd., West Los Angeles. (310) 477-5581. http://www.laemmle.com.
Fri., Dec. 12
The Eco Gift Festival. Get ready, get set, go green! The Eco Gift Festival, dubbed "holiday shopping for the soul," is the largest green shopping event in the world, and it's happening here. For three days, more than 200 vendors will offer guilt-free shopping, along with live, eclectic music; a children's stage; on-site shipping, and free gift-wrapping. Arianna Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post, and Shallom Berkman, Jewish founder of Urth Caffe, will be among the speakers. Presented by the Los Angeles Times. 11 a.m. (Fri. and Sun.) 10 a.m. (Sat.) $8.50 (one-day pass); $18.50 (three-day pass). Through Dec. 14. Santa Monica Civic Center, 1800 Main St., Santa Monica. (310) 399-3097. http://www.ecogift.com.
Sat., Dec. 13
"Smokey Joe's Cafe." With a long list of Top 40 favorites, such as "Hound Dog," "Jailhouse Rock," "Yakety Yak," "Stand by Me" and "On Broadway," this musical mishmash of Leiber and Stoller hits is ideally jubilant for the holiday season. Since its 1995 premiere on Broadway, the 39-song revue has been nominated for seven Tony Awards, won a Grammy Award for the legendary duo's songs and featured special appearances by megastars such as Gladys Knight, Gloria Gaynor and Rick Springfield. Starring in this NoHo production of "Smokey Joe's Cafe" are DeLee Lively, Robert Torti and a host of other talented stage veterans. Special performances include tonight's opening night gala and two New Year's Eve shows, one with a champagne reception, the other followed by an all-out party with the cast. 8 p.m. Wed.-Sat. Through Jan. 4. $25-$150. El Portal Theatre, Mainstage, 5269 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood. (818) 508-4200. http://www.elportaltheatre.com.
Sat., Dec. 13
"Citizen of the Planet." German artist Martin Denker has traveled the world over with superstar photographer Andreas Gursky, going behind the scenes at Athens's Olympic Games, car racing in the Middle East and attending worldwide pop concerts. Now Denker is making his U.S. solo exhibition debut, showcasing multilayered digital images that take inspiration from surrealism, pop art and science fiction. 7-9 p.m. (opening reception). Tue.-Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. (regular hours). Benjamin Trigano Gallery, 612 N. Almont Drive, Los Angeles. (310) 550-6802. http://www.benjamintrigano.com.
Sat., Dec. 13
"Moonlight Rollerway Holiday Jubilee." Charles Phoenix is addicted to thrift store shopping. Luckily for us, Phoenix has put together a collection of the goodies he has found. Now, Moonlight Rollerway, which calls itself Southern California's last classic roller rink, is presenting Phoenix and his quirky, retro holiday slide show. The viewing event will be followed by a roller-skating revue spectacular, featuring 75 championship skaters and celebrating the entire year's holidays, including Cinco de Mayo and Valentine's Day. Snacks and an after-show skating party are included. 8 p.m. Also, Dec. 14 at 3 p.m. $35. Moonlight Rollerway, 5110 San Fernando Road, Glendale. (818) 241-3630. http://www.charlesphoenix.com.
Sat., Dec. 13
"Yiorgos Kordakis: Global Summer." Yiorgos Kordakis, a young, up-and-coming photographer from Greece, has taken otherworldly pictures of the seaside that have little to do with the typical shots of children frolicking in the sand or sexy snaps of bikini-clad women. "Like the great Impressionists Monet and Turner, Kordakis captures the haunting atmosphere of sea, clouds and sky in all their entrancing beauty," writes one fan of Kordakis' work. Kordakis has traveled to ocean fronts in India, Denmark, Lebanon and France, among other places. Now in his first U.S. exhibition, he is giving lovers of the sea and photography alike the opportunity to give what some consider average surroundings a second, surprising look. 7-9 p.m. (opening reception). Through Jan. 24 (Tue.-Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m.) Free. M + B, 612 N. Almont Drive, Los Angeles. (310) 550-0050. http://www.mbfala.com.
Sun., Dec. 14
Los Angeles Children's Chorus Annual Winter Concert. There is an Academy Award-nominated documentary about this choir. It has toured Brazil, China, Italy and Poland, among other nations. And since its inception in 1986, the chorus has performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra and the Los Angeles Master Chorale. Approximately 250 talented and dedicated children between the ages of 8 and 12 make up the LACC. The angelic voices of these preteen choristers will bring to life works by composers such as Aaron Copland, Pablo Casals, Randall Thompson and J.S. Bach in a winter concert inspired by literary luminaries Robert Frost, William Shakespeare and others. The program follows the 2008-2009 season theme, "The Poet Sings," and features a varied selection of classical, folk and contemporary pieces. 7 p.m. $24-$42. Pasadena Presbyterian Church, 585 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena. (626) 793-4231. http://www.lachildrenschorus.org.
Sun., Dec. 14
"Responses of the Innocents: American Jewish Artists and the Holocaust." Among the many effects the Holocaust had on its victims and subsequent generations, it inspired artists to create. Three such artists, Jack Boul, Lee Silton and Rifka Angel are spotlighted in this exhibition, which opens today with a discussion of their creative processes and how they were shaped by the events of World War II. Each artist encountered the Holocaust in a different form, Boul came face to face with the extermination camps as a U.S. soldier; Silton incorporated the history into her sculpting, and Angel's art was influenced by the destruction of the home town she left as a little girl. Author and Jewish Journal columnist Gina Nahai will serve as mistress of ceremonies at the introduction of this ongoing exhibit. 2-4 p.m. Through Feb. 27. Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust, 6435 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. (323) 651-3704. http://www.lamoth.org.
Mon., Dec. 15
Reel Talk: "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button." Stephen Farber, film critic for Hollywood Life magazine and The Hollywood Reporter, has been treating audiences to sneak previews of the industry's hottest films for more than 25 years. The veteran film buff concludes this year's preview series with a fascinating film adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald's short story about a man who is born in his 80s and ages backward. Starring Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett and Tilda Swinton, the odd tale is already making waves and is set to hit theaters during prime-time movie-watching season, Christmas. The screening will be followed by a discussion with members of the filmmaking team, including Oscar-nominated costume designer Jacqueline West. 7 p.m. $20. Wadsworth Theatre, 11301 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. (213) 365-3500. http://www.ticketmaster.com.
Mon., Dec. 15
"Hearst the Collector" and Concert With Lucinda Carver, Elizabeth Blumenstock and Inna Faliks. Here's a remarkable fact about William Randolph Hearst, the inspiration for "Citizen Kane": An obituary estimated that the newspaper mogul accounted for 25 percent of the world's art market during the 1920s and 1930s. A major donor to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and a voracious collector, Hearst amassed works as varied as a 42-pound suit of armor made of leather, steel, gold and silver and a lavish mother-of-pearl box from the Louvre that once belonged to French King Francis I. Complementing this remarkable collection is a concert featuring a harpsichordist and music director Lucinda Carver, who will be joined by baroque violinist Elizabeth Blumenstock. Part two will star pianist Inna Faliks, who will treat the audience to modern renditions on Bach. 8 p.m. $18-$30. Exhibit runs through Feb. 1. Bing Theater at LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. (323) 857-6010. http://www.lacma.org.
Tue., Dec. 16
Carrie Fisher presents and signs "Wishful Drinking." It's not easy being an action figure before you can legally drink a beer, but that didn't stop Princess Leia from having one, or two, or many more. Fisher's first memoir, adapted from her one-woman stage show, is a revealing look at her childhood as a product of "Hollywood in-breeding" and her adulthood in the shadow of "Star Wars." After electroshock therapy, marrying, divorcing then dating Paul Simon, a drug addition and a bipolar disorder, Fisher still manages to take an ironic and humorous survey of her bizarre life. Meet Fisher and get a copy of her book signed at this WeHo book haven. 7 p.m. Free. Book Soup, 8818 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood. (310) 659-3110. http://www.booksoup.com.
Thu., Dec. 18
"High School Musical: The Ice Tour." If you're one of the millions who just can't get enough of "High School Musical," the story, music and choreography of the hit Disney movies are coming to an ice rink near you. World-class skaters are set to sing and skate their hearts out, interpreting what has been called a modern-day version of "Romeo and Juliet." The spectacular event now includes a preshow, behind-the-scenes look at "High School Musical 3," accompanied by a high-energy, sing-a-long dance party. 7:30 p.m. $16-$65. Staples Center, 1111 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles. (213) 742-7340. http://www.ticketmaster.com.
Fri., Dec. 19
"Peter Pan." Tinkerbell, Captain Hook, pirates, Indians -- we know the cast of characters well. But how many of us have actually seen a full production of J.M. Barrie's classic fantasy play, "Peter Pan" -- especially one that features the complete musical score by Leonard Bernstein? Composer Alexander Frey -- who helped reconstruct portions of Bernstein's score that had been previously lost for a special CD -- is flying in from Berlin to conduct the live orchestra. 7 p.m. Tue.-Sun. Through Dec. 28. $30-$70; $10 (seniors and students). Lobero Theatre, 33 E. Canon Perdido St., Santa Barbara. (805) 963-0761. http://www.sbtheatre.org.
Fri., Dec. 19
"Tall, Dark, and Chicano Tour." The star of the "George Lopez Show" is a sell-out attraction from coast to coast, but he's especially dear to Angelenos. Named honorary mayor of Los Angeles for his fundraising efforts and one of the 25 most influential Hispanics in America by TIME magazine, Lopez's superstar status is not likely to go away any time soon. But catch him while you can as he regales audiences with his brand of Latino humor that makes people from all backgrounds laugh. 8 p.m. Through Dec. 31. $55-$79. Nokia Theatre, 777 Chick Hearn Court, Los Angeles. (213) 480-3232 or (714) 740-2000. http://www.ticketmaster.com.
Wed., Dec. 24
"49th Annual Los Angeles County Holiday Celebration." Los Angeles' biggest holiday show, featuring 45 groups and 1,200 performers, is a proud tradition -- and it's absolutely free! Running approximately six hours, the holiday extravaganza features the county's cultural diversity. This year's highlights include hip-hop group Antics Performances, South Bay Ballet and Grammy-nominated Lisa Haley and the Zydekats. Audiences will have the opportunity to listen to sounds and see sights from the world over, including Asia, Africa, South America, and the Middle East. For those of you who can't make it to see the event in person, KCET-TV will also be airing the event live. Sponsored by the L.A. County Board of Supervisors and produced by the County Arts Commission. 3-9 p.m. Free. Dorothy Chandler Pavilion at the Music Center, 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. (213) 972-3099. http:www.holidaycelebration.org.
Fri., Jan. 9
"The Art of Blake Edwards." Perhaps he will always be renowned for his cinematic works of art the likes of "Breakfast at Tiffany's," "The Pink Panther" and "Victor/Victoria," but distinguished producer-director Blake Edwards also dipped his creative brush in other mediums, such as painting and sculpture. This retrospective of his work, which spans 40 years, includes pieces created during the height of his career and reflect the same passion and humor seen translated on screen. Presented by Feingarten Galleries and curated by Gail Feingarten Oppenheimer. Through Jan. 31. Pacific Design Center, 8687 Melrose Ave., Seventh Floor, Los Angeles. (310) 657-0800. http://www.thepacificdesigncenter.com.
Fri., Jan. 9
"Breaking Up Is Hard to Do." Whether you have personal memories attached to a Neil Sedaka song or you're just vaguely aware of his enduring hits from numerous pop culture references, you can appreciate and enjoy the bubbly soundtrack of this play. Stringing together 17 Sedaka tunes, "Breaking Up" spins a light-hearted tale about a dumped fiancee and her best friend, who find plenty to sing about at a resort in the Catskill Mountains. The 100 minutes of Sedaka chart-toppers include "Where the Boys Are," "Love Will Keep Us Together," "Calendar Girl" and the ultimate heartache anthem, "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do." 8 p.m. (Thu.-Sat.), 2 p.m. (Sat. and Sun.). Through Jan. 18. $38-$74. Cabrillo Music Theatre, Kavli Theatre, Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, Countrywide Performing Arts Center, 2100 Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. (805) 583-8700. http://www.cabrillomusictheatre.com.
Sat., Jan. 10
"The Flying Karamazov Brothers in 4Play." Although not actually blood relatives, the internationally acclaimed brothers have been performing their eccentric brand of vaudeville since 1973, forming a bond on and off stage that could definitely be called brotherly. Their motto is "I Juggle, Therefore I Am," but the talented foursome do much more than throw swords, apples, fish and skillets in the air. They tell jokes, perform theater, dance, play musical instruments and incorporate technological gadgets into the act, often with the help of the MIT Media Lab. "4Play" is their latest creation, a self-described "kaleidoscopic and passionate" post-modern work that demonstrates how the unexpected is what makes life interesting. 8 p.m. $25-$49. Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, 12700 Center Court Drive, Cerritos. (800) 300-4345. http://www.cerritoscenter.com.
Sun., Jan. 11
"LUMA: Theater of Light." According to the San Francisco Chronicle, LUMA "turns a theater full of adults into a bedlam of kids." Working around the theme of light, the performers create various representations of lighted objects, such as fireflies, computer screen savers and carnival rides using dance, acrobatics, juggling, gymnastics, puppetry and cutting-edge technology. The inventive performance is in the spirit of Blue Man Group and the Swiss troupe, Mummenschanz, though their content is entirely different. Incorporating audience participation, "LUMA" inspires kidlike fascination, slack jaws and googly eyes but is not recommended for children under 5. 2 p.m. $20-$35. Pepperdine University, Smothers Theatre, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu. (310) 506-4522. http://www.arts.pepperdine.edu.
Mon., Jan. 12
Free Introduction to the Theater Classes. Is your kid hamming it up every chance he gets? Does your daughter show a particularly keen interest in dance? If your child belongs on a stage, this is your opportunity to introduce him or her to theater in a free five-week session organized by the talented and experienced folks at Kentwood Players, a community theater group. Their Kentwood Kids program aims to develop children's appreciation of theater, as well as hone their individual talents while providing a fun and positive experience. The only requirement is that your child must be able to follow directions and cooperate with the instructors. Open to children between the ages of 6-18, the sessions are capped at 30, so advanced registration is strongly recommended. Through Feb. 9. Free. Westchester Playhouse, 8301 Hindry Ave., Westchester. (310) 645-5156 (Tue.-Sat., 4-7 p.m. only). http://www.kentwoodplayers.org.
Tue., Jan. 13
John Legend in Concert. Smooth crooner and pianist John Legend hit the U.S. and U.K. Top 30 with his signature song, "Ordinary People," a simple yet emotionally charged ballad that earned him a Grammy. Collaborations with established artists, such as Kanye West, Jay-Z and Snoop Dogg, helped propel Legend into the spotlight, but his soulful sounds and witty lyrics have kept him there. His newest album, "Evolver," was released in October 2008 and features rapper Andre 3000, the crazy-clad half of OutKast, on the first single of the album, "Green Light." Already at the top of Billboard's Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums, "Evolver" includes songs that are "more upbeat than people think John is," according to Andre. Opening for Legend will be Estelle, the British hip-hop singer and rapper best known for her hit single, "American Boy." 7:30 p.m. (doors open). $40-$80. Gibson Amphitheatre, 100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City. (818) 622-4440. http://www.livenation.com.
Thu., Jan 15
"Pippin." A musical featuring sign language? Yep, you read that right. "Pippin," a story about a young man trying to find meaning in his life, combines music, voice, dance and sign language. Set in Charlemagne, the musical takes audiences through battlefields, orgies, revolutions and, finally, a place of love and domesticity. Based on a book by Roger O. Hirson and music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, "Pippin" marks the opening of the Mark Taper Forum's 2009 season. Presented by Center Theatre Group and Deaf West Theatre. 8 p.m. (preview). Opens Jan. 25 and runs through Mar. 15. $20-$62. Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre, Music Center, 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. (213) 628-2772. http://www.CenterTheatreGroup.org.
Sat., Jan. 17
"A Very Special Christmas Special." Comedy Central favorite Jeff Dunham is bringing "a brand new level of hilarity to the holiday season." Dunham, creator of other comedy specials like "Spark of Insanity" and "Arguing With Myself," is already selling out performances, but he isn't doing it alone. He's bringing his stuffed companions along: Peanut, a self-described comic genius; Walter, a curmudgeon, and Jose Jalapeno, to name but a few. Dunham -- with a little help from his friends -- will be providing some relief from the stress the holidays bring. 8:15 p.m. $40-$60. Gibson Amphitheatre, 100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City. (213) 480-3232. http://www.livenation.com.
Sat., Jan. 17
"Robert Dowd: Pop Art Money." In the first posthumous exhibition dedicated to L.A. pop artist Robert Dowd, his highbrow paintings of ordinary objects are once again on display. First exhibited in 1962 at the Pasadena Museum of Art, along with pop art giants Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and others, Dowd's images of money and postage stamps made waves in the art world. But it wasn't just art lovers who took notice. At one point, federal authorities suspected Dowd had counterfeited money -- this despite the artist's habit of shifting scale, making bills as large as 3- to 6-feet wide. Dowd also made a habit of replacing the portrait on the dollar, creating the first "Vincent dollar" or "Picasso dollar." See it all for yourself and relive the art of the '60s. 6-8 p.m. (opening reception). Through April 15. (Tue.-Sun. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.) Free. Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art, Pepperdine University, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu. (310) 506-4851. http://arts.pepperdine.edu.
Wed., Jan. 21
"Minsky's." The world premiere of a racy, romantic musical comedy is coming to town. Set in the roaring '20s and in the age of Prohibition, "Minsky's" features loads of dancing, as well as music from three-time Tony-winning composer Charles Strouse ("Annie," "Applause," "Bye Bye Birdie"). Based on the book by Tony-winning writer Bob Martin, this exciting production brings to life the free-spirit world of con men, flappers and showbiz comedians. 8 p.m. Opens Feb. 6 and runs through Mar. 1. $20-$100. Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre, Music Center, 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. (213) 528-2772. http://www.centertheatregroup.org.
Fri., Jan. 23
"Phantom of the Opera." It's not easy being the follow-up act to the enormously successful L.A. production of "Wicked," which dominated the Pantages Theatre for the past two years. But if any show is up to the task, it's Andrew Lloyd Webber's classic tale of the domineering masked figure and the innocent young soprano. Seen by more than 80 million people worldwide and having grossed an estimated $5 billion, the longest-running show in Broadway history returns to the Pantages for the first time in a decade for a limited five-week engagement. 8 p.m. Tue.-Sun.; through Feb. 21. $19.50-$79.50. Pantages Theatre, 6233 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles. (213) 365-3500. http://www.broadwayla.org.
"Stormy Weather." Lena Horne had the voice, the looks, the grace and the overall talent to succeed. But that wasn't enough. Instead, throughout her 40-year career, Horne was forced to battle the racism that permeated Hollywood. Horne did it, however, with courage and tenacity, opening doors for African Americans nationwide. Now in the opening production of Pasadena Playhouse's 2009 season, Tony- and Emmy-winning actress Leslie Uggams is set to belt out old Horne favorites like "The Lady Is a Tramp," "That Old Feeling" and "From This Moment On" in the production of "Stormy Weather." 8 p.m. (preview). Through Feb. 29 (Tue.-Fri. 8 p.m., Sat. 4 and 8 p.m., Sun. 2 and 7 p.m.). $48-$58. Pasadena Playhouse, 39 South El Molino Ave., Pasadena. (626) 356-7529. http://www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.
Fri., Jan. 23
"Chicago." Chicago Tribune reporter Maurine Dallas Watkins first wrote the play that later became a Tony Award-winning Broadway hit and an Academy Award-winning film. The play was based on the 1924 real-life trials of murderesses Beulah Annan and Belva Gaertner, both of whom were acquitted. Set during the Prohibition era, the Kander and Ebb musical is full of satire, sexy celebrity criminals and catchy tunes, such as "All That Jazz," "Razzle Dazzle" and the steamy "Cell Block Tango." Catch Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart in this Southern California production of a jazzy Broadway favorite. 8 p.m. Also, Sat. 2 p.m. and 8 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. $25-$55. Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, 12700 Center Court Drive, Cerritos. (800) 300-4345. http://www.cerritoscenter.com.
Sat., Jan. 24
Seven in One Productions Dance Concert. If you've become a devotee of dance competitions on television then you know good choreography is key to winning. Tonight, enjoy an eclectic evening of Los Angeles' finest choreographers. Benita Bike, Laurie Cameron, Anna Djanbazian and others will tell powerful stories in movement. Spanish guitar, Korean singing and Middle Eastern moves are just some elements of the night's performances. 8 p.m. $15-$25. Assistance League Playhouse, 1367 N. St. Andrews Place, Los Angeles. (818) 353-5734. http://www.lineagedance.org.
Tue., Jan. 27
Chamber Music Palisades. In a rare West Coast appearance, internationally acclaimed clarinetist Dimitri Ashkenazy, son of great pianist-conductor Vladamir Ashkenazy, is set to perform in the Pacific Palisades, along with Boston-based violist Scott Woolweaver. The program includes works by Schumann, Schmitt, Villa-Lobos, Uhl, Bruch and Bernstein. "Dimitri continues the amazing musical legacy of his father, who has been one of the biggest names in classical music for the past half century" pianist Delores Stevens said. 8 p.m. $25 (Free for students). St. Matthew's Parish, 1031 Bienveneda, Pacific Palisades. (310) 459-2070. http://www.cmpalisades.com.
Sat., Jan. 31
"The One-Man Bollywood Show." Internationally recognized choreographer Nakul Dev Mahajan, best known for his work on the hit talent show, "So You Think You Can Dance," is fusing traditional Bollywood dancing with Western styles for his spectacular one-man show. Mahajan's dance routine will take audience members through a journey of the critical moments in the artist's life. The performance will also benefit the Indian-based nonprofit Pratham, an organization that fights illiteracy by building schools in India. A preshow cocktail reception and post-performance chai and sweets gathering are part of the unique night. 7 p.m. $35-$75. Wadsworth Theatre, 11301 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. (213) 365-3500. http://www.ndmdance.com.
Sat., Jan. 31
"Smucker's Stars on Ice." Founded in 1986 by ice-skating icon Scott Hamilton, the "Stars on Ice" annual tour has won three Emmy Awards for its spectacular display of talent, choreography, costumes and technology. This year's tour boasts reigning ice princess Olympic silver medalist Sasha Cohen, Olympic bronze medalist Jeffrey Buttle and a host of other Olympic, world and national champions. The skaters will take their skills to new heights and perform moves they dare not risk during competitions -- all on a steel blade no thicker than a pane of glass. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, an organization that provides leadership, education, health and arts programs for kids around the country. 3 p.m. $11-$137. Honda Center, 2695 E. Katella, Anaheim. (714) 704-2000. http://www.starsonice.com.
Sun., Feb. 1
"Keshet for Life: 25 Years and Counting." Keshet Chaim Dance Ensemble has been presenting Israeli culture through dance for a quarter century and the American Israeli contemporary dance troupe is only beginning to spread its wings. Under the direction of Eytan Avisar and Genie Benson, the group -- which means rainbow of life -- will showcase their rich shades of talent in classic folk dances, as well as innovative pieces that reflect the current Israeli dance scene. Five new dances choreographed by Israeli Kobi Rozenfeld will be premiered, along with a retrospective of Keshet's favorites. The evening will also include the Middle Eastern sounds of drummers Naked Rhythm and the varied choreographic styles of Avisar, Tsion Marciano, Ilana Cohen and Erica Goldman. 7 p.m. $35-$75. Fred Kavli Theater, Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. (818) 986-7332. http://www.kcdancers.org.
Thu., Feb. 5
"Divorce! The Musical." Just in time for Valentine's Day comes a musical that traces "one couple's hellish journey to un-tie the knot." Creator Erin Kamler -- writer of "The Jews of Calabasas," about Jewish women living in the suburbs of Los Angeles -- brings us the story of Penny and Rich, who learn that in the face of tragedy, sometimes it's just better to laugh your way to recovery. Set in present-day Los Angeles, the musical will strike a chord with singles and couples alike. 8 p.m. (preview). Opens Feb. 14 (Thu.-Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m.) $25-$34. Hudson Main Stage Theatre, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood. (323) 960-1056. http://www.divorcemusical.com.
Fri., Feb. 6
"The Trial of the Catonsville Nine." In 1968, the Rev. Daniel Berrigan, a Jesuit priest, led a nine-person protest during the Vietnam War by setting fire to 378 draft files in Catonsville, Md., and when convicted of destruction of U.S. property, said: "Our apologies, good friends, for the fracture of good order, the burning of paper instead of children.... " Berrigan later wrote a play about the trial in free verse, a style of poetry that doesn't use any of the common poetic devices, such as meter, rhythm or rhyme. A moving dramatization based on actual trial records, this production is directed by Jon Kellam. 8 p.m. (gala benefit). Thu.-Sat. at 8 p.m. Sun. at 2 p.m. Through March 14. $20-$50. Thursday night performances are pay-what-you-can. The Actors' Gang, Ivy Substation, 9070 Venice Blvd., Culver City. (310) 838-4264. http://www.theactorsgang.com.
Sat., Feb. 14
"The Myth of Venus: Alluring Seductress or Allegorical Muse." Do you go to museums, wander around for hours and still feel as if you've learned nothing about art? That's because the little placards next to the paintings only provide a sliver of the history behind each work of art. Spend Valentine's Day delving much deeper into the goddess of love, Venus, and the many paintings depicting her. The four-hour gallery course, one of several offered at the Getty, will take you from the Renaissance to present day, exploring themes of beauty, sexual love and the dichotomy of pure virgin and provocative femme fatale. 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. $20. Getty Museum lecture hall and galleries, 1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles. (310) 440-7300. http://www.getty.edu/visit.
Wed., Feb. 18
"Betrayed." Winner of the 2008 Lucille Lortel Award for outstanding new play and based on journalist George Packer's piece for The New Yorker, L.A. Theatre Works (LATW) production of "Betrayed" is not to be missed. In vivid detail, Packer tells the story of three young Iraqi translators who risk everything for their country. The production will air on LATW's nationally syndicated radio theater series, "The Play's the Thing." 8 p.m. Through Feb. 22. $20-$48. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 827-0889. http://www.latw.org.
Fri., Feb. 20
"Werner Herzog: Requiem for a Dying Planet." In a UCLA Live exclusive, the German director renowned for such films as the 2005 documentary, "Grizzly Man," will discuss his work and his life with moderator Paul Holdengraeber, director of public programs at the New York Public Library. The evening will conclude with a performance of the cine-concert, "Requiem for a Dying Planet," a collaborative work that sets Herzog's documentaries, "The Wild Blue Yonder" and "The White Diamonds," to music by Dutch cellist Ernst Reijseger, Senegalese singer Mola Sylla and the Sardinian choir, Cuncordu e Tenore de Orosei. 8 p.m. $28-$48. UCLA Royce Hall, Westwood. (310) 825-2101. http://www.uclalive.org.
Sun., Feb. 22
Los Angeles Master Chorale Organ Blow-Out. Showcasing the choir and organ in unique ways, conductor Grant Gershon and the L.A. Master Chorale will premiere three new works at this winter concert, including "Dream Variations" by Andrea Clearfield, who was dubbed "the new guard" by The Philadelphia Inquirer and has written pieces for instrumental and vocal soloists, mixed chamber ensembles, chorus, orchestra, film and dance. Also featured will be smart and sassy young composer Nico Muhly's three-movement piece for organ and string quartet, "Expecting the Main Things From You." Director for one of the country's most prestigious choral programs, Steven Sametz, will debut a work dedicated to Gershon. 7 p.m. $19-$124. Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., Downtown Los Angeles. (800) 787-5262. http://www.lamc.org.
Sat., Feb. 28
Batsheva Dance Company in "Max." Batsheva artistic director Ohad Naharin has his own language of movement called "gaga." The gifted dancer and choreographer has been leading Israel's most prestigious dance company since 1990 and crafting increasingly complex and unexpected dance routines. A recent review of "Max" in Australian Stage magazine described the company's newest show as "an abstract work, a sensory journey of no fixed destination" and "a challenging but hugely rewarding work." Last seen at UCLA in 2006, Batsheva Dance Company returns to UCLA Live with intense energy and a rich sensuality, accompanied by original music composed by Maxim Waratt (a pseudonym Naharin assumed for himself). 8 p.m. Also, Mar. 1 at 7 p.m. $28-$54. UCLA Royce Hall, Westwood. (310) 825-2101. http://www.uclalive.org.
"Sustainable Sundays: Different Shades of Green." The Natural History Museum is no longer simply in the business of collecting, conserving and studying artifacts; it is also educating the public about the environment. In a new ongoing series, the museum will dedicate Sundays to helping audiences find specific ways to help the planet. The event will include booths, interactive activities and representatives from environmental groups. Twice during the day, scientists from the museum, as well as guest researchers from Conservation International, will discuss environmental topics. Amphibian conservation officer Robin Moore, representatives from TreePeople and Dr. Lu Zhi, an expert on pandas, are some of the experts lined up for the series. Sundays. Through June 2009. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. $6-$9. Natural History Museum, 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles. (213) 763-3532. http://www.nhm.org.