Author: rahnepistor

Sight Unseen performs Monster true to intent of Shelley’s Frankenstein

Frankenstein’s monster may have looked amusing, like a stitched up version of Mr. Clean had he just been clipped by a lawnmower, but alas, the Sight Unseen Theatre Group succeeded in reinstating the serious social, political and religious commentary that Mary Shelley intended be in her classic gothic tale of the early 1800s, into its production. Sight Unseen Theatre Group opened its run of Monster, Neal Bell’s theatrical rewrite of Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein, on Friday, October 1st, at the Miles Memorial Playhouse, 1130 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica. Performances will be held at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday until it closes on Halloween, October 31st. Tickets are $20 for general admission, and $15 for students and seniors. Through Neal Bell’s script, director Andy Mitton is able to shed the movieland shallowness and Halloween children’s cartoon appeal that has come to be associated with the Frankenstein story. Depictions of the monster in Shelley’s Frankenstein have come to hold as little social or religious relevance as a cardboard caricature of George Washington on President’s Day or Santa Claus at Christmas time. “Throw out all those preconceptions of Halloween masks and green-faced giants,” writes Mitton about the production. Those masks, in this case, serve only to mask the complexity and meaning of the story. Mitton wanted the production to stand out not for its gimmicky, packaged monster —...

Read More

Jazz world legend Maynard Ferguson gets “Stratospheric” at local festival

Trumpet icon Maynard Ferguson has been around the world with his legendary jazz recordings, pop hits and a half-century of touring, but now he and a number of other distinguished jazz players are getting “Stratospheric” at an upcoming Los Angeles jazz celebration. The four-day Stratospheric Jazz Festival, which will culminate with a performance by the Maynard Ferguson Big Bop Nouveau on the final day of the festival, is scheduled for 10 a.m. to midnight Thursday, 9 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday, and 10:30 a.m. to midnight Sunday, September 30th to October 3rd, at the Four Points Sheraton Hotel, 9750 Airport Blvd., Westchester. Tickets are $325 for an all-inclusive four-day pass or $10-$40 per individual festival event. The event will feature concerts, panel discussions, lectures and film screenings. Ferguson is now 76 years old, full of anecdotes about sharing the stage with Miles Davis like they were yesterday, and hails from a generation where many of its most memorable musical figures are long gone. But one could never guess this from looking at his current tour schedule. He plays about 200 concerts a year, rivaling the energy of any young pop act looking to break its major label debut. Stratospheric will be four days devoted to Ferguson, his abundance of sidemen, and the influence their creations have had on the world of jazz over the years. The Maynard Ferguson...

Read More

Film producer Blake can’t kick his photo tricks in Photoholic exhibit

As a long time film producer and post production man, Billy Blake knows how to hustle the necessary bucks and tie up the necessary ends to bring a film project together. But when the veteran of the film business has his own creative urges, he lets his still photography close the deal. Although he grew up in the motion picture world (his father George Blake was a Hollywood producer/director) and spent most of his professional career thus far in film, still photography has proven to be a habit he just can’t kick. Photoholic, an exhibit of Blake photographs from the early 1970s until the present, opens with a reception at 7 p.m. Saturday, September 18th, at the Universal Art Gallery, 2001 Lincoln Blvd., Venice. The exhibit remains on display through Sunday, November 14th. Imagewise, Blake’s photographs contrast colorful, playful, fantasyland imagery with the often overlooked dregs of everyday urban life. A shot of a dour, gravelly puddle of rain or a partially disrobed homeless woman, making a public spectacle of herself, conflict with angled shots of carousel unicorns or colorful Venice Beach mural backdrops. Eye trickery is Blake’s style of photography. Blake chooses kitschy, catchy subject matter, sometimes playful and childlike, sometimes ominous and mysterious, and shoots as to make the subject a visual puzzle. With Blake’s work, the viewer gets the small picture, so that they might imagine...

Read More

Special jams of the Kids of Widney High

The Kids of Widney High, a rock band consisting of an evolving lineup of students enrolled in the special education program at Widney High School in Los Angels, is scheduled to play a gig at 7 p.m. Friday, September 17th, at Track 16 Gallery, 2525 Michigan Ave., Santa Monica. Tickets are $5. The concert coincides with Track 16’s current exhibit, Radiant Spaces: Private Domain, an exhibition of paintings, drawings and sculptures created by about 60 California artists with “developmental differences,” according to Track 16 Gallery. The purpose of the exhibit is to capture the pure, unbridled expression of artists who may not have had the exposure to or had been influenced by the methods of other artists or the teachings of traditional art education. The exhibit, curated by Elena Mary Siff, seeks to display works that may be immune to cultural imitation. The exhibit itself, however, does not share the immunity. It is based on the concept of “Art Brut,” a term coined by Jean Dubuffet, who said “…creativity in its purest form means rejecting all models.” The exhibit remains on display until Saturday, October 16th. The musical group Kids of Widney High has been performing its inimitable brand of rock ‘n’ roll since 1988, when teacher Michael Monagan came up with the idea for the group as a project of a songwriting class he was teaching. With jams...

Read More

Sweet & Hot Music Festival spices up Labor Day weekend in Westchester

The ninth annual Sweet & Hot Music Festival, a tribute to the jazz sounds of the 1920s to the 1940s, is scheduled for Friday through Monday, September 3rd to 5th, at the Los Angeles Airport Marriott Hotel, 5855 Century Blvd., Westchester. Performance times are 10:30 a.m. to around midnight each day. Tickets are $30 Friday, $43 Saturday, $43 Sunday, and $20 Monday. A four-day festival pass is $80. The performances will take place in eight separate rooms in the hotel. Swing, big band, classic jazz, traditional blues and New Orleans- and Chicago-style jazz are the sounds that make up the Sweet & Hot Music Festival. The festival features tribute acts, modern acts influenced by the sound of the period and even a few old-timers from that era. This year’s event includes performances by Herb Jeffries, Jack Sheldon, Banu Gibson, Ernie Andrews, Rebecca Kilgore, Howard Alden, Hues Corporation, Pieces of Eight and Yoshio Toyama. In addition to the featured acts, there will be a “Friday Night Swing Dance/Battle of the Bands” competition, and a “Saturday Night Dance” featuring Johnny Vana’s Big Band Alumni and guest host Chuck Cecil. About 180 musicians, 20 bands and 40 guest artists will be featured at Sweet & Hot, promoters say. “The name Sweet & Hot is a salute to the bands of the ’20s and ’30s who played ësweet’ dance music or ëhot’ jazz-based...

Read More

Sponsor



Digital Edition

Subscribe


 

Sponsor

PVD link