July 29, 2004
7 Days In Arts
A talking pig, an African goddess, a tribal mythological creature, the spirit of Michael Jackson and Ken and Barbie. It's not the set-up to a joke, but a list of characters in Evelyne Tollman's play of self-exploration, "The Pig and I," in which a Jewish woman struggles to come to terms with a childhood raised in apartheid South Africa by parents obsessed with external beauty. It runs Fridays and Saturdays, through Aug. 15. 8 p.m. $10. Friends and Artists Theatre, 1866 N. Vermont, Los Angeles. (323) 665-3852.
In Fourteen Hundred and Ninety Two/Did Columbus hide that he was a Jew? According to some theorists, the explorer credited with discovering the New World was no son of a Genoese weaver, but rather, a Jewish Spaniard from Catalonia. "Christopher Columbus: Secrets from the Grave" follows an investigation into his true identity and resting place. Columbus' purported remains, and those of his brother and his son, were exhumed and DNA tested in the hopes of finding some answers. The results air tonight on the Discovery Channel. 10 p.m. www.discovery.com.
Sukke Sukke now. The self-styled "first European klezmer band" Sukke has released their first CD, appropriately titled, "Introducing Sukke." In their liner notes, Yiddish poet Michael Wex describes them as "one of the few contemporary bands playing unhyphenated klezmer, unqualified Jewish music." He goes on to write that Sukke takes its cues from the words of their rabbi, Shmarye Wohltrenner, who told them, on his deathbed, "There is no arrival, only forward movement. Look behind you for the way ahead." And so they do, in 15 tracks of standards and original music in the vein of traditional klezmer, with Yiddish lyrics by Wex. $10.99 www.amazon.com.
Artists John Baldessari and Meg Cranston curate Laguna Art Museum's new exhibition, "100 Artists See God," in which 100 pieces respond to issues of God and religion. Contributors include the Rev. Ethan Acres, Roy Lichtenstein, Leonard Nimoy, Paul Pfeiffer and William Wegman. Whether the weimaraners will make an appearance, you'll have to see for yourself. Through Oct. 3. 307 Cliff Drive, Laguna Beach. (949) 494-8971.
Those in the mood for a little night music should consider Ventura this evening. Rubicon Theatre Company's all-star lineup of rotating narrators features Richard Kline in this week's production of "Side by Side by Sondheim," a revue of Stephen Sondheim's early works sung by Davis Gaines ("Phantom of the Opera"), Teri Ralston ("Company") and Tappan Damiano ("Miss Saigon"). 7 p.m. $25-$45. 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. (805) 667-2900.
Those who have read author Mark Kalmansohn's book, "Nothing Is Too Late: The Hunt For A Holocaust Swindler" will be particularly pleased to learn of his book signing at Brentano's this evening. The book is Kalmansohn's account of his work in investigating and bringing to justice Lucian Kozminsky, a survivor of four Nazi death camps and alleged Nazi collaborator, who swindled more than $1 million from some 3,000 Holocaust survivors. But the wily Kozminsky's story doesn't end there. Official records of his incarceration and subsequent death are riddled with inconsistencies. Show up tonight and ask Kalmansohn to explain it to you. 7 p.m. Brentano's, Westfield Shoppintown, Century City. (310) 785-0204.
The Jewish tattoo taboo doesn't seem to phase Justin Dawson, whose "Tattoo Jew" exhibition comes to Gallery Zel this week. Expect bold tats of Jewish stars and Hebrew letters spelling out the words for mother and father, among other Jewish-themed body art. By appointment only through Aug. 13. Gallery Zel, 1218 1/2 W. Temple, Los Angeles. (310) 613-9170.