Advertisement
 
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsVariety Arts Center
IN THE NEWS

Variety Arts Center

FEATURED ARTICLES
ENTERTAINMENT
July 25, 1986 | RUTH REICHL
"I'm so used to plastic versions of old-timey restaurants," said my friend when we walked into the Variety Arts Center, 940 S. Figueroa St., (213) 623-9100, "that something this authentic doesn't look real to me." Indeed, the center, with its tinsely stage sets, show-biz memorabilia, old posters and autographed pictures is sort of startling in its authenticity. The salad bar is set up on a set from "Hello, Dolly!" and the backdrop from the Johnny Carson show overlooks the room.
ARTICLES BY DATE
BUSINESS
October 4, 2008 | Roger Vincent, Times Staff Writer
A downtown Los Angeles theater that has hosted some of the biggest names in entertainment since the 1920s but struggled in recent decades is once again in search of a white knight -- one who could pay $12.5 million to buy it. The Variety Arts Center was purchased in early 2007 by the former owner of the Pasadena Playhouse, David Houk, who hoped to stage plays and musicals in the historic five-story building at Figueroa and Ninth streets.
Advertisement
ENTERTAINMENT
December 10, 1986 | DON SHIRLEY
"It's Magic!," Milt Larsen's annual "concert in conjuring," has returned to the Variety Arts Center's downstairs theater after a sojourn last year in the smaller Masquers Theatre upstairs. The lineup of talent changes weekly. But on opening night last week, the larger space provided room for the Mums, making their first "It's Magic!" appearance, to stride down the aisles on stilts--and then to juggle enormous inflated balls from aisle to aisle, over the heads of the audience.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 12, 2007 | Lynne Heffley
Former Pasadena Playhouse owner and local real estate developer David Houk has partnered with Robert Abassi of RTI Properties to purchase the Variety Arts Center in downtown Los Angeles from Staples Center owner Anschutz Entertainment Group. The historic Figueroa Street venue, which includes a 1,000-seat main theater, will open after an estimated yearlong renovation of the property that will "hopefully begin within 60 or 90 days," Houk said this week.
NEWS
January 1, 1995 | BRETT MAHONEY
The owners of the Variety Arts Center must take steps to cut down on noise and rowdy behavior after the city zoning board declared the dance club and theater a nuisance. Complaining of gunfire, vandalism, car horns and rowdy crowds, managers of luxury high-rises and area hotels went before a zoning administrator in late October to urge action against the club at 940 South Figueroa St.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 21, 1987 | RICHARD CROMELIN
The Variety Arts Center can be a tough room to warm up: When people get comfy in the theater seats, the place has all the rocking intensity of a freshman psychology lecture. As tedious as crowd-prodding tactics can be, the BoDeans should have resorted to cliches Thursday night if that's what it took to stir things up. As it was, more than half the show was good to great music evaporating in a dispiritingly tame atmosphere.
BUSINESS
October 4, 2008 | Roger Vincent, Times Staff Writer
A downtown Los Angeles theater that has hosted some of the biggest names in entertainment since the 1920s but struggled in recent decades is once again in search of a white knight -- one who could pay $12.5 million to buy it. The Variety Arts Center was purchased in early 2007 by the former owner of the Pasadena Playhouse, David Houk, who hoped to stage plays and musicals in the historic five-story building at Figueroa and Ninth streets.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 3, 1987 | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
The Variety Arts Center downtown, which last year filed for protection under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, will be purchased by an unnamed buyer who plans to "give the place a complete face lift," pending approval from state and county agencies and the nonprofit organization that runs it, said Milt Larsen, president of the Society for the Preservation of Variety Arts Inc.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 21, 1986
Actress Marla Gibbs, currently starring in NBC's comedy series "227," will receive the Frances E. Williams Award on May 4, at the Variety Arts Center, 940 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles. The ceremony is being presented by Black Women in Theatre West, a support group for black women in entertainment. Gibbs is being awarded for her contribution to the arts and community as both an actress and businesswoman. The ceremony will be open to the public. Information: (213) 462-6565.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 12, 2007 | Lynne Heffley
Former Pasadena Playhouse owner and local real estate developer David Houk has partnered with Robert Abassi of RTI Properties to purchase the Variety Arts Center in downtown Los Angeles from Staples Center owner Anschutz Entertainment Group. The historic Figueroa Street venue, which includes a 1,000-seat main theater, will open after an estimated yearlong renovation of the property that will "hopefully begin within 60 or 90 days," Houk said this week.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 24, 2001
The bonds of love, family and country are threatened by politics in "A Mislaid Heaven," Carson Grace Becker's play about passions, miracles, secrets and Celtic legends. The setting is an Irish fishing village, circa 1921, in the months before the signing of the controversial treaty that split Ireland. * "A Mislaid Heaven," Road Theatre Company at the Lankershim Arts Center, 5108 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood. Fridays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 7 p.m. Ends July 15. $15. (818) 759-3382, Ext.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 30, 1999
all day Movies It probably never occurred to Humphrey Bogart that January, 2000 would be his kind of month, but sure enough he is the man of the moment, judging by the programming at two of L.A.'s respected purveyors of cinema.
NEWS
January 1, 1995 | BRETT MAHONEY
The owners of the Variety Arts Center must take steps to cut down on noise and rowdy behavior after the city zoning board declared the dance club and theater a nuisance. Complaining of gunfire, vandalism, car horns and rowdy crowds, managers of luxury high-rises and area hotels went before a zoning administrator in late October to urge action against the club at 940 South Figueroa St.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 19, 1991 | CHRIS WILLMAN
One thing Lenny Kravitz's devotees and detractors can agree on: Despite the not totally unwarranted savaging he's received for being shamelessly derivative, slavishly imitative and outrightly anachronistic, he hasn't taken it too hard. Wednesday night at the Variety Arts Center, opening a sold-out three-night stand, Kravitz was unapologetically derivative, imitative and anachronistic--and (sorry, originality sticklers) pretty good.
NEWS
August 8, 1991 | JACK SMITH
Milt Larsen, proprietor of Hollywood's Magic Castle, is a man who likes a joke. He has tens of thousands of them on file in the basement of the old chateau on a hill above Franklin Avenue. They are part of the Society for the Preservation of Variety Arts library that he moved from the old theater building, at Olympic and Figueroa, when his Variety Arts Center was forced to close on New Year's Eve, 1988.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 9, 1989 | ALEENE MacMINN, Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
The Tom Tom Club has found a home. The New York band, whose scheduled Variety Arts Center engagement was canceled this week when the theater operators failed to secure the required dance permits, will relocate to the Second Coming Club, 850 S. Bonnie Brae St. in the MacArthur Park area. The delayed stint will begin tonight and continue through June 18 (with Monday off). Tickets purchased in advance for the Variety Arts shows will be honored on the corresponding nights at the Second Coming.
Los Angeles Times Articles
|