September 12, 2013 |
Theater festivals have the potential to galvanize an audience, but in a sprawling city already awash in performance, the importance of sharp curating can't be overemphasized. Radar L.A., an adventurous amalgam of international theater, made a winning debut in 2011 in part because it recognized that L.A. is a unique metropolis and that a replica of New York's Under the Radar Festival just wouldn't cut it. It took more than two years for the festival to return, but the wait promises to be worth it. The program, presented by REDCAT and CalArts in association with Center Theatre Group and a consortium of other partners, features work from Argentina, Mexico, Chile, Colombia, New Zealand and Japan as well as our own backyard.
August 6, 2013 |
For his first solo exhibition in L.A., São Paulo artist Héctor Zamora sutures together two emblems of Southern California consumerism: the single family home and the shopping cart. Nearly filling the gallery at REDCAT, "Panglossian Paradigm" consists of a single sculpture: the wooden frame of a small, six-room house entirely supported by evenly spaced metal shopping carts. An odd and unwieldy structure to be sure -- giving new meaning to the term “mobile home” -- it is a quiet indictment of the American dream.
April 24, 2013 |
An authority on Euripides, Christian Wolff is a retired professor of Greek and Latin classics (along with Marxist literature), having taught at Harvard and Dartmouth for many years. He is also one of America's most unpredictable, most venturesome, most radical (politically and compositionally), most inventive, most satisfying (intellectually, aesthetically and musically) and, at 79, least recognized (at least by America's musical establishment) living composers. In addition to all that, he happens to be the last living musical link to the New York School of composers and artists who gathered around John Cage in the 1950s.
April 18, 2013
For the truly devoted music nerd in your life, the EMP Pop Conference is like summer camp and your favorite college class rolled into one. Writers, professors and pop savants of all stripes gather to present papers and lectures on a huge swath of issues in pop music, from L.A. punk scenes of yesteryear to Kendrick Lamar and the feverish dance form of krumping. Fri.-Sat. at various times at USC and REDCAT. See empla2013.posterous.com to register.
April 5, 2013 |
Bebe Miller is a contemporary choreographer of power and pertinence. But in her multimedia retrospective "A History," she attempts to make navel-gazing into a spectator sport, undercutting her most indelible achievements. This ambitious, overproduced 75-minute exercise opened Thursday at the REDCAT in Walt Disney Concert Hall for a four-day run. "At once an archive and an installation as well as a performance piece," in Miller's words, it enlists text, video, music, title slides and an elaborate scenic environment, but the only indispensable contributions come from Miller company dancers Angie Hauser and Darrell Jones.
March 17, 2013 |
As emcee for the REDCAT Gala on Saturday, Jack Black said he had always hoped his debut at the multidisciplinary theater would include a performance of his “special post, post-modern interpretive dance,” complete with a “big dynamic gymnastic finale.” He pointed out, however, that instead of the usual stage at the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater, the venue that night had tables filling the room wall to wall. “I know that CalArts and REDCAT encourage artists to take risks,” Black said, “but I don't think that injuring the gala patrons is what they had in mind.” For those wondering how the star of “Bernie,” “School of Rock” and “Kung Fu Panda” came to host the gala, Black said he married into the CalArts family.
March 13, 2013 |
A sampling of Los Angeles' spring fundraisers and galas: Saturday (March 16) - REDCAT “CalArts Celebrates 10 Years of REDCAT.” Jack Black emcees; Cynthia Hopkins performs; honors Walt Disney Co. and Catherine Opie at Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater. Tickets from $850. (661) 253-7727. March 20 - Alzheimer's Assn. “A Night at Sardi's” honors Brian Grazer and Jill Gascoine. “Best of Broadway” celebrity revue. Beverly Hilton Hotel. Tickets from $500. (818)
March 8, 2013 |
Spring is, as always, a season for festivals. The big one in Los Angeles this year is the ongoing celebration of the centenary of Benjamin Britten's birth, initiated by Los Angeles Opera. The Los Angeles Philharmonic's weeklong Brooklyn Festival in April is an investigation into how the New York City borough has become a hot spot for young composers. But while festivals take up a lot of the oxygen on the performing arts calendars, there is much else: Christian Wolff As a teen in the early 1950s, Wolff was taken under John Cage's wing and soon became a prominent member of Cage's New York School.
February 23, 2013 |
Two of New York's most prominent experimental troupes, the Wooster Group and Richard Maxwell's New York City Players, have joined forces to tackle a trio of early one-act dramas written by Eugene O'Neill about seafaring men and that vast expanse of briny rootlessness that is their existential home. There are, in short, three contrasting sensibilities at work in this production of "Early Plays," which opened Thursday at REDCAT, where it runs through Sunday. But they are united in their desire to cleanse the palate of theatergoers accustomed to a menu of stale and flavorless familiarity.
February 21, 2013
The Wooster Group and New York City Players tackle Eugene O'Neil's "Glencairn" plays — "Bound East for Cardiff" (1914), "The Long Voyage Home" (1917) and "The Moon of the Caribbees" (1918). Together, the tales of roughousing sailors take on a poignant, lonely resonance. This performance features cast members from both companies directed by Richard Maxwell. REDCAT, 631 W. 2nd St., L.A. 8:30 Thu.-Sat, 3 p.m. Sat.-Sun. $45 and $50. http://www.redcat.org.