I don’t know if you’re the kind of person who’s way too hard on themselves, like me, but I’m feeling a bit of regret and I’m trying not to wallow. I missed an opportunity to say yes to the first one on the list here, and as I now have other obligations, will not be able to attend. My hope is to live vicariously through you as you fill the remaining seats. It’s for French born pianist RIOPY, btw, and it’s happening at the Regent Theater in DTLA this weekend. The events that follow are just as exciting, too, including an offbeat evening with Les Sewing Sisters at the Velaslavasay Panorama, a Victorian Christmas at The Ebell, an afternoon Holiday Soiree with the WSHPHS at the Tam O’Shanter, and more. Merry Holiday!
Arts, Culture, and Holiday Stuff
If you love discovering new and very talented musicians, and going out and stuff, then head on down, up, or over to DTLA’s Regent Theater this Saturday, Dec 10 for an evening full of dreamy music from French born pianist RIOPY, whose truth is stranger than fiction, with a backstory for the ages. “Born in rural France in 1983, his mother left home with him when he was six months old, eventually joining a cult, where family ties were discouraged, and obedience to the head guru was paramount. Deprived of any outside culture, young Jean-Philippe taught himself to play on an abandoned piano when he was just two. In his newest album, BLISS, RIOPY explores a state of being where fear does not exist.” And let me tell you, people, his music really does take you to a state of bliss. Tickets range from $18-$40. Doors at 7 p.m./Showtime’s at 8 p.m. Fun Facts: Chris Martin once gifted him a Steinway, his music has been featured in Oscar winning films, ‘The Shape of Water’ and ‘The Danish Girl’, and this is his first headline tour in North America. Lucky us!
Looking for something offbeat to do this week? Well, here is that ‘something’ and it’s happening at the very cool Velaslavasay Panorama Exhibition Hall, Theatre and Garden this Saturday, Dec 10. Located in University Park in the West Adams Historic District, the VP will play hostess to dynamic duo Les Sewing Sisters’, for their Record Read-Release Party. If you’ve never heard of them, we have something in common, and what a wonderful new experience to share together! This unique two-woman group is made up of Lun*na Menoh and Saori Mitome, whose music is composed of sounds from sewing machines recorded and electronically filtered. There’ll also be a screening of the duo’s film Les Sewing Sisters Home Tour – made during the pandemic, Les Sisters traveled to many closets around Los Angeles to perform for and in front of people’s clothes (f*cking fantastic). The event begins at 8 p.m./Doors at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $22, or $10 for Velaslavasay Panorama Enthusiast Society members. See you there!
You could also let JAPAN HOUSE LA continue to be your shelter from the holiday chaos with its new immersive Soundscapes Series designed to complement its current exhibition, LIFE CYCLES: A Bamboo Exploration with Tanabe Chikuunsai IV, while helping you to relax. The series will be getting you zen on again this week with Sound Bathing on Saturday, Dec 10, followed by a Shakuhachi (upright bamboo flute) performance on Sunday, Dec 11. There will be 20 min. sessions at 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. in the JAPAN HOUSE Gallery on Level 2). If you can’t make it this time, no worries, you’ll have several more opportunities to catch a session next weekend on Saturday, Dec 17 and Sunday, Dec 18. These events are free of charge. Yay! Be sure to check out the rest of The House, too. Hours are 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., Mon-Fri and 11 a.m. – 8 p.m., Sat-Sun.
Meanwhile, LACMA’s got a new exhibition to offer all of you art and culture lovers out there, and it’s titled Afro-Atlantic Histories. According to LACMA, the Museum’s latest exhibit, opening on Sunday, Dec 11, “charts the transatlantic slave trade and its legacies in the African diaspora. Through a series of dialogues across time, the exhibition features artworks produced in Africa, Europe, and the Americas in the last four centuries to reexamine—from a global perspective—histories and stories of enslavement, resilience, and the struggle for liberation. The exhibition is organized around six groupings: Maps and Margins, Enslavements and Emancipations, Everyday Lives, Rites and Rhythms, Portraits, and Resistances and Activism. Each section considers the critical impact of the African diaspora reflected in historic and contemporary artworks. This is the only presentation on the West Coast.” Tickets are $16-$20 and free after 3 p.m. (M-F only)/Kids 17 and under are always free. Daily hours vary.
Attention Party People! Please mark your calendars for the Annual Windsor Square-Hancock Park Historical Society Holiday Party, happening this Sunday, December 11. Come soak in the holiday cheer this weekend with the WSHPHS peeps at the historic Tam O’Shanter in Atwater Village. This beloved Scottish restaurant, that was also one of Walt Disney’s faves, celebrated its 100th birthday this year and is thus a fitting venue for a historical society – don’t you think? Roast beef, Yorkshire pudding, fresh salmon, roasted chicken, martinis and rum toddies are on the menu, as is a guaranteed good time. The cost is $75 for Members and $85 for Guests. The festivities will begin nice and early at 1 p.m. (Ahh, I love being home before the sun goes down.) Fun Facts: The Tam was opened in 1922 by the founders of Van de Kamp’s Bakeries and Lawry’s restaurants, its original name was Montgomery’s Country Inn, and it is the oldest restaurant in LA to be operated by the same family in the same location. It was renamed in 1925 after a family favorite Robert Burns poem.
I really do love this time of year with all the singing and bells, and holiday whatnot, and The Ebell of Los Angeles will be bringing all of that back to its venue this year with the Holiday Chorale Concert and Tea on Monday, Dec 12. To celebrate its triumphant return, the Chorale will welcome a new conductor, Yu Hang Tan, and will share the stage with a string quartet from the USC Thornton School of Music, along with keyboard artist Heeseong Lee, for an afternoon of traditional carols and seasonal music, featuring works by Bach, Flecha, Rutter, and Gjeilo. “Experience the joy of community and take in the beautiful music created by one of the longest running female chorales in Los Angeles.” A holiday afternoon tea will follow the concert in the dining room, so be sure to come hungry for luxurious treats, like tea sandwiches and scones, champagne, and a curated selection of teas. The free Concert will begin at 2 p.m. and the Tea at 3 p.m. Tickets are $50 for Members or Member Guests and $70 for Non-Members.
If you’re looking for a fun pre-Christmas gift to give your friends, and or fam, and or significant other, then you’ve come to the right place. The Walt Disney Concert Hall is the venue and A Chanticleer Christmas is the gift that will keep on giving in the form of an a cappella concert this coming Tuesday, Dec 13. The much-celebrated, Grammy-winning, 12-man ensemble/ “orchestra of voices” will make its return for a classic holiday program of a cappella choral music, presented with “stunning clarity, precision, and excellence”. The group’s signature holiday performance includes pre-game shenanigans with drinks and carolers (aptly titled Carolers & Cocktails), that will take place at the WDCH’s Winter Wonderland in BP Hall before the show. Showtime’s at 8 p.m., btw, so don’t get too carried away with the “caroling,” and tickets range from $41-$111.
Finally, The Ebell of LA is another gift that keeps on giving when it transforms itself into a Victorian drawing room for a very Victorian Holiday Performance & Dinner Fête on Thursday, Dec 15. This inspired evening will commence with cocktails and a play – A Christmas Carol with Charles Dickens – to be exact, with actor David Melville of the Independent Shakespeare Company performing his “unique and charming characterization of Mr. Dickens himself.” The performance will be followed by feasting, carols, music, dancing… and magic! Guests will dine on a Dickensian buffet while the DJ, Michael Greenfield, spins old school holiday favorites. Roving Magic Castle magician Tom Frank will also be on hand to dazzle you with his tricks and illusions. Bonus: there’ll be a photo booth with props to capture those soon to be treasured moments. The Schedule: 6 p.m. Cash Bar & Nibbles in the Art Salon; 7 p.m. Performance in the Lounge; 8:15 p.m. Holiday Party & Buffet Dinner in the Dining Room. Outdoor seating available on a first come, first served basis. The cost is $85 Member/Member Guest and $105 for Non-Members.
Your local NC, the Greater Wilshire Neighborhood Council has just one virtual gathering on the books this week and it’s a General Board meeting on Wednesday, December 14. Click here to view the calendar for deets.
And the Mid City West Neighborhood Council has 2 virtual + one in-person meetup starting with a General Board meeting on Tuesday, Dec 13, followed by Mid City’s weekly in-person Wednesday Walks on Wednesday, Dec 14. And the Outreach and Civic Engagement Committee will end the week on Thursday, Dec 15. Click here to check MCW’s calendar for details.
About Julia Christiansen
Julia is a native Angeleno and jack of all trades, having worked in television, visual effects, professional sports, health and wellness, and custom design. She currently resides in El Segundo.