Take a trip "From Tin Pan Alley to Beverly Hills" in an evening of music and reminiscences from some great songwriters. Corky Hale, whose musical career has included playing the harp for Liberace and the piano for Billie Holliday, hosts the Beverly Hills Summer Arts Festival Plaza Sweets series event. Hale will be joined on stage by Academy Award-winning songwriters Barry Mann ("Somewhere Out There"), Johnny Mandel ("The Shadow of Your Smile"), Livingston and Evans ("Mona Lisa"), and other popular tunesmiths like Leiber and Stoller ("Stand By Me"). Free. 8 p.m. 450 N. Rexford Drive, Beverly Hills. Reservations are recommended and can be made by calling (310) 285-1045.
Classical theater in the park continues as a summer staple with "The Misanthrope" in Culver City. If the current political season has you wishing for a bit more honesty, check in with Moliere's leading man Alceste, who vows to speak only the truth regardless of the consequences. Culver City Public Theatre presents this story of love, poetry and too much of a good thing, free at Dr. Paul Carlson Memorial Park. Saturdays and Sundays through Sept. 3. 2 p.m. Corner of Motor Avenue and Braddock Drive, Culver City. (310) 712-5482.
With an artistic producer like Noah Wyle ("ER") and the star power of lead actors Fred Savage ("The Wonder Years") and James Marsters ("Buffy the Vampire Slayer"), The Blank Theatre Company could draw crowds even with simple fare. But the 8-year-old theater company is bringing back one of its most controversial productions for a limited engagement. "The Why" is a darkly comic story about school shootings from a teenager's perspective, written by 19-year-old playwright Victor Kaufold. $15. Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 7 p.m., and Mondays at 8 p.m. through Aug. 28. Hudson Mainstage Theatre, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood. For more information or advance tickets, call (323) 661-9827, or visit www.theblank.com
Some of the biggest names in the contemporary art world, Ed Ruscha, Bruce Nauman and June Wayne, are well known for their lithographs, but they can't make these prints alone. Master printer Ed Hamilton has worked with these and many other artists in the collaborative process, which transforms an artist's idea into a printed artwork. An exhibition on view at the Tobey C. Moss Gallery displays Hamilton's "printer's proofs" of lithographs produced for major artists between 1969-1989. Tuesdays-Saturdays, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Through Aug. 30. 7321 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles. For more information call (323) 933-5523 or visitwww.tobeycmossgallery.com
The value of history and the power of family ties are the subjects of a new portrait exhibition at the Fowler Museum of Cultural History. Photographer Darryl Sivad presents 30 portraits of people holding images of their family members and ancestors. Titled "Twice-Taken Pictures: Ancestral Portraits by Darryl Sivad," the exhibit also includes personal narratives of the subjects, revealing the value these images have in their owners' lives. $5 (adults); $3 (seniors, students and UCLA alumni); $1 (UCLA students); free (visitors under 17, and all on Thursdays). Wednesdays-Sundays, 12 p.m.-5 p.m. Through March 4, 2001. Fowler Museum is on the UCLA campus. (310) 206-5663.
Damian Draghici is a Romanian Gypsy-Jewish musician, a panflute virtuoso known for his fast, complex playing.In concert tonight at the Skirball Cultural Center, Draghici will be joined by three musicians providing a mix of worldmusic sounds. Guitarist Federico Ramos, oud player Ara Dinkjian and South Indian percussionist Trichy Sankaran round out the ensemble playing traditional and original compositions of Middle Eastern, Romanian, and flamenco music. Free. 7:30 p.m. 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 440-4500, or www.skirball.org
Elliot Adnopoz, son of a Jewish doctor in Brooklyn, ran away from home to join the rodeo at the age of 14. After hearing Woody Guthrie on the radio and later studying with the folk great, that Brooklyn boy became Ramblin' Jack Elliott, folk troubadour and a mentor to Bob Dylan. "The Ballad of Ramblin' Jack," a documentary film by Jack's daughter Aiyana Elliott, tells this moving story through interviews, performances from Elliott's still-ongoing tour, and archival footage including Guthrie family home movies. Daily at 4:20 p.m., 7 p.m., 9:40 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday matinee at 1:40 p.m. Through Aug. 31. Landmark's Nuart, 11272 Santa Monica Blvd., West Los Angeles. (310) 478-6379.