Category: Arts & Events

Stella’s Story

Young author raising funds to publish book about foster dog in Venice By Haley Beyer In June 2016, a friend of Anastasia Khromova’s brought a puppy to her sister’s nonprofit dog rescue, “Be a Voice. Adopt a Dog” in Los Angeles. The puppy had been rescued from an animal shelter that had plans to euthanize her after she was diagnosed with Swimmer Puppy Syndrome. This rendered her limbs useless so she could only lay on her tummy with her legs straight out like a starfish. Khromova and her family took it upon themselves to do anything and everything possible to help Stella overcome the disability. They decided to foster her and put her through physical therapy. Most dogs with this rare deformity do not get the chance to fight it. It is especially hard for bigger dogs to learn to walk with Swimmer Puppy Syndrome, but that didn’t stop Stella. Because she is a husky, Stella’s motivation and energy levels were up from the day Khromova brought her home. After coming up with a brace/splint for Stella to wear, she took her first steps in just five days. As Stella learned how to walk and strengthened the necessary muscles, she needed the brace less and less. At two months, Stella couldn’t move on her own, but at four to five months, she could walk and play just like any...

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Judgment-Free Ballet

Professional ballerinas offer virtual and outdoor ballet for all levels By Bridgette M. Redman For all the people that have been too intimidated to take a beginning ballet class as adults, Eliza Tollett has options — both online and outdoors at Dorothy Green Park in Santa Monica. Tollett moved to Santa Monica just before the pandemic, bringing with her a ballet class model that fixed everything she found troublesome about the classes she taught in New York. She creates a judgment-free zone with classes that welcome people of all experience levels, abilities and ages. “I was dancing professionally in New York and teaching to supplement my dancing career,” Tollett said. “I discovered I loved teaching adults, but in general there were a couple of things I felt were not exactly how they should be with adult ballet. There was a lot of judgment — people judging themselves or other people, judging themselves for not being perfect or not being up to the level of the class.” Tollett, who is certified as a personal trainer and a ballet teacher, created a cardio ballet workout taught by professional dancers that emphasized the grace of ballet while truly making it a comfortable zone for all dancers. When the pandemic hit, she quickly pivoted to online classes called “The Ballet Spot” that were taught by ballerinas in New York and Los Angeles. “I’m...

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Celebrating the Literary Community

Beyond Baroque to host virtual gala on May 6, including Amanda Gorman By Haley Beyer After being closed to the public for more than a year, Beyond Baroque is looking forward to celebrating its reopening later this year and supporting the arts, poetry and literature. On May 6, the Venice-based literary arts center will host “Beyond This Moment”, a virtual gala that will include artists and performers showcasing their passion and talent. The event will take place at 7 p.m. on LiveStream via Crowdcast. “I’m most excited to see everyone’s unique perspective in the world of art,” said Quentin Ring, executive director of Beyond Baroque. “It is moving to have such influential individuals who bring diversity in their talents.” Founded in 1968 as an experimental literary magazine, Beyond Baroque is one of the leading independent literary arts centers and public spaces in the United States that is dedicated to expanding the public’s knowledge of poetry, literature and art though cultural events and community interaction. Among this year’s featured guests and performers is Amanda Gorman, the country’s youngest inaugural poet, who is returning in support of Beyond Baroque in the space where she took her first poetry workshop. Other guests will include Pulitzer Prize-winner Tyehimba Jess; Los Lobos founding member Louie Pérez; as well as present and past poet laureates such as Lynne Thompson, Luis J. Rodriguez, Jaki Shelton Green,...

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May Day Celebration

By Bridgette M. Redman May Day is a red letter day for the Wende Museum, an institution that captures and displays Cold War history from the former Soviet Bloc. Not only is May Day the day socialists and communists from the Second International designated as International Workers’ Day, but it marks the day that the Wende is reopening after a year of pandemic shutdown. After its initial Saturday reopening, the museum will be open by reservation only on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Admission is free, but walk-ins can’t be accommodated at this time — and chief curator and director of programming Joes Segal said they have already filled many of the reservation slots. The museum had hoped to reopen last November when they installed new exhibitions, but the surge in COVID-19 cases made that impossible. “We have been planning for it for quite a long time,” Segal said. “We are in a good place. It’s so exciting to get to a point where we can actually receive people.” The Wende welcomes patrons back with a total of four new exhibits: two in the main building, one in the East German guard house and one in the garden. Pivoting during the pandemic Back when the Wende first had to shut down more than a year ago, they immediately turned to online programming. They started a weekly interview series that continues...

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Let the Bad Times Roll

The Offspring reflects current events on latest studio album By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski The Offspring lead guitarist Noodles finds the punk ambassador’s latest album, “Let the Bad Times Roll,” timely. The collection was just about wrapped when the pandemic dawned, but “It’s all inspired by things we’ve seen happen in the world the last few years,” said Noodles about The Offspring’s first new album in 10 years. “The pandemic certainly put it into perspective. There’s so much division in the world right now. People are so angry. There’s a lot of injustices and we’re seeing that play out. The subsequent reaction to the injustices. We touched on this a little on the record and more.” Released April 16, The Offspring’s 10th studio album features the first single and title track “Let the Bad Times Roll.” Written in 2019 and recorded in 2020, the song reflects the country’s ongoing challenges. The tune charted at No. 11 and No. 25, respectively, on the rock and alternative radio charts, and was the No. 1 most-added song on rock radio for two weeks. It has been streamed 4 million times. The SoCal band has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide, won countless awards, and have toured consistently, playing more than 500 shows in the last decade. Besides Noodles, The Offspring features singer Dexter Holland, drummer Pete Parada and new bassist Todd Morse. “Let...

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