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January 19, 2006



He doesn't look the part

The tattooed, Radiohead-obsessed pianist Brad Mehldau may look more like the bartender at your favorite jazz club than the star performer. But the ferocious young bandleader is giving jazz the populist kick in the pants it needs. His confident, volatile improvisation finds bossa-nova exuberance in the darkest dirges, and his ear for complex melodic narratives makes his technical fireworks all the more evocative. Just ask his collaborators, which have ranged from guitarist John Scofield and saxophonist Wayne Shorter to Willie Nelson and Jon Brion. He brings his trio to the El Rey tonight.

Brad Mehldau Trio at the El Rey Theatre, 5155 Wilshire Blvd, L.A. 8 p.m. today. $27.50. (323) 936-6400.



More Bond than Bard

It's match-making, meddling and mixed signals in Aquila Theatre Company's version of Shakespeare's romantic romp, "Much Ado About Nothing," inspired by such 1960s espionage send-ups as "The Avengers." Robert Richmond directs.

For The Record
Los Angeles Times Friday January 20, 2006 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 1 inches; 69 words Type of Material: Correction
Simon museum concert -- An item in the classical music listings in Thursday's Calendar Weekend implied that a new work by Chinary Ung would receive its premiere at a Southwest Chamber Music concert tonight at the Norton Simon Museum. The work will premiere Feb. 4. Also, the listing said tickets to the concert would cost $28. The concert will be free with admission to the museum, which is $8.

"Much Ado About Nothing," La Jolla Playhouse, 2910 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla. Opens 8 p.m. Friday. $29-$58. (858) 550-1010.* Runs 8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 7 p.m. Sunday, 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Ends Feb. 19.


Now that's the Spirit

Judy Marte impressed critics and audiences in her feature debut "Raising Victor Vargas," earning the actress an Independent Spirit Award nomination for best debut performance as the beautiful teen "Juicy Judy," who charms the title character. Marte made it 2 for 2 with her second film, picking up a Spirit Award nomination for best female lead in the gritty "On the Outs." As Oz, Marte plays a resilient drug dealer struggling to keep her family together in an urban wasteland, one of three teenage girls in the same neighborhood forced to make difficult choices, in directors Lori Silverbush and Michael Skolnik's drama.

"On the Outs," rated R, opens Friday at Laemmle's Fairfax, 7907 Beverly Blvd., (323) 655-4010; and Laemmle's One Colorado, 42 Miller Alley, Pasadena, (626) 744-1224; and the Edwards South Gate 20, 8630 Garfield Ave. (562) 927-4432.


The sounds of Cambodia

Southwest Chamber Music prefaces its upcoming four-concert "Composer Portrait Series" focusing on Grawemeyer Award-winner Chinary Ung with a bonus concert at the Norton Simon Museum. The program will include the Cambodian composer's "Gliding Wind" and "Grand Alap," with traditional Cambodian royal court music completing the concert. The series unfolds at the Norton Simon and the Colburn School of Performing Arts in downtown Los Angeles from Jan. 20 through Feb. 6.

Southwest Chamber Music, Norton Simon Museum Theater, 411 W. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena. 7 p.m. Friday. $8. (800) 726-7147.


The Otis art tradition

In 1918, Harrison Gray Otis, founder and publisher of The Times, donated his MacArthur Park property to the city of Los Angeles to further education in the arts. Years later, the Otis College of Art and Design boasts a notable faculty and an impressive roster of alumni. Some of them, including artists Robert Irwin, Billy Al Bengston, Bruce Yonemoto and Kent Twitchell, will display their works at "Otis: Nine Decades of Los Angeles Art," a survey of the talent trained at the art school from 1926 to 2006.

"Otis: Nine Decades of Los Angeles Art," Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery at Barnsdall Art Park, 4800 Hollywood Blvd., L.A. Opens Friday. (323) 644-6269.

* Hours: noon-5 p.m. Thursdays through Sundays. Ends April 2.



to Asian rhythms

The new Glorya Kaufman Dance Theater on the campus of UCLA presents a compilation of ancient traditions titled "Can You Hear Me? Asian Dance Voices." The program showcases three distinguished dancer/choreographers in residence on the UCLA campus this quarter. Chey Chankethya was trained at the Royal University of Fine Arts in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Bhagawan Ciptoning teaches at the Indonesian Institute of the Arts and makes dances drawing upon Javanese court idioms. Schooled in classical Indian dance as well as contemporary Western forms, Umesh Shetty is the director of the Temple of Fine Arts in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. All are recipients of the 2006 UCLA/Choreographers Arts Management Fellowship.

"Can You Hear Me? Asian Dance Voices," Glorya Kaufman Dance Theater, UCLA campus, Westwood. 8 p.m. Friday. $10 (students) to $16. (310) 825-2101 or



Drummers finally take center stage

Percussionists rejoice! For one night, the many jokes and good-natured barbs you've endured from your bandmates can be laid to rest as the Groove All Stars roll into Cerritos. Finally your craft takes center stage as drumming luminaries such as Dave Weckl, Steve Gadd, Matt Cameron and many others from the worlds of pop, rock and jazz take their turns laying down beats backed by a full band. Non-musicians and practiced air drummers are also welcome, of course.

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