December 7, 2019

Live Events Holiday Calendar

Anna Abbott; Photo courtesy of Anna Abbott

The Jewish Women’s Theatre will celebrate the Festival of Lights with the cabaret show “It’s a Very Happy Goyisha Hanukkah,” in which Anna Abbott tells the story of her transition from evangelical Christian to Jew in song. “My life really had two different chapters: the Christian world I came from and the Jewish world I’ve fallen in love with,” Abbott explained. “Life changed when I met a Jewish, lesbian comedian. Before I met her, I had only met one Jew in my life. I had to learn a new Yiddish vocabulary, I started eating at delis and I learned how Jews questioned everything.” Performances are Dec. 15 and 17 at The Braid in Santa Monica. The JWT also presents “Three Jews and a Blonde Walk Into the Braid,” a night of stand-up comedy featuring comedians Monica Piper, Cathy Ladman, Sue Kolinsky and Debbie Kasper on Dec. 14. Visit jewishwomenstheatre.org for details. 

“Mandy Patinkin in Concert: DIARIES” presents the acclaimed actor, singer and storyteller with Adam Ben-David on piano at the Musco Center for the Arts at 4 p.m. Nov. 24. “DIARIES” is a marriage of many of Patinkin’s favorite Broadway and classic American tunes, along with selections from his newest recordings on Nonesuch Records, “Mandy Patinkin Diary January 2018” and “Mandy Patinkin Diary April/May 2018.” From Randy Newman to Stephen Sondheim, from Harry Chapin to Rufus Wainwright, Patinkin takes you on a dazzling musical journey you’ll never forget. For more information and tickets, visit muscocenter.org.

The Skirball Cultural Center’s annual Hanukkah festival takes place Dec. 15, featuring performances by Klezmer Juice and Zingarella, Capoeira by Dana Maman and Friends, art and food workshops, and Hanukkah storytelling in English and Spanish. Latkes and sufganiyot will be served. Speaking of Jewish nosh, the Skirball will hold a book talk for “The 100 Most Jewish Foods: A Highly Debatable List” on Dec. 12. Book editor Alana Newhouse, restaurant critic Ruth Reichl, and James Beard award-winner Edward Lee will weigh in on the delicacies. See Skirball.org for more information. 

The klezmer folk-rock band Mostly Kosher and Vox Femina choir led by Dr. Iris Levine will be among 25 groups in the lineup at the 60th annual L.A. County Holiday Celebration, which takes place at the Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion on Dec. 24. Also taking part is the Yuval Ron Ensemble, which is made up of Jewish, Christian and Muslim artists who will perform the Jewish prayer “Hadasa.” The free concert will be broadcast live on PBS SoCal and streamed on pbssocal.org/holidaycelebration. 

The Tapitalists, a tap dance troupe led by Howard Blume and including Nancy Cohen, will perform its show “TAP-water” at the Fremont Theater in South Pasadena on Nov. 15, 16 and 17. Visit purplepass.com/tapwater for tickets.

David Broza Band; Photo courtesy of the Broad Stage

Israeli singer-songwriter David Broza will perform in concert at the Broad Stage on Dec.22, kicking off Hanukkah with a musical mix that includes songs with Middle Eastern and flamenco flair. Visit theBroadStage.org for more information. 

Verdi Chorus; Photo by Tim Bereth

The Verdi Chorus caps its 36th season with the fall concert “Sound and Fury,” performing selections from Verdi (“Otello,” “Il Trovatore”), Puccini (“Turandot,” “Tosca”) and Lehar (“The Merry Widow”). Performances are Nov. 16 and 17 at the First United Methodist Church in Santa Monica. The ensemble includes Robin Van Zak, who makes chuppahs when she’s not singing. Visit verdichorus.org for tickets.

Numi Opera finishes its inaugural season with Erich Korngold’s rarely performed one-act opera, “Der Ring Des Polykrates,” which was banned in Nazi Germany because Korngold was Jewish. Performances are Dec. 19 and 22 at Zipper Hall at the Colburn School in downtown Los Angeles. Visit numiopera.org for more information.

“Little Black Dress” Photo from littleblackdressthemusical.com

From writer Natalie Tenenbaum (Broadway’s “Mean Girls”), “Little Black Dress: The Musical,” featuring comedic songs and stories about women and their favorite LBDs, will run Dec. 3-15 at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City. Visit LittleBlackDressTheMusical.com for tickets. 

The Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust will present several Shoah-themed special events in December. On Dec. 8, “Memories That Won’t Go Away: A Tribute to Children of the Kindertransport” commemorates the 81st anniversary of the life-saving rescue trains. Michele Gold will discuss her book, which tells the story of hundreds of the surviving children, including her mother, Rita Berwald. The event will include a discussion with a Kindertransport survivor and several descendants of Kindertransport survivors. “Healing the Holocaust: A Dialogue Between Authors Michael Berenbaum and G.K. Hunter,” inspired by Hunter’s book “Healing Our Bloodlines: The 8 Realizations of Generational Liberation,” will take place on Dec. 15. Judy Glickman Lauder will appear in conjunction with her photography exhibit, “The Holocaust and the Danish Exception,” to sign her book of the same name.

Jared Gertner; Photo courtesy of Jared Gertner

Jared Gertner (“The Book of Mormon”) joins Michelle Williams and Neil Patrick Harris in the Lythgoe Family Panto version of Snow White in an interactive, family-friendly production at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. “A Snow White Christmas” runs Dec. 13-22. Visit thepasadenacivic.com for tickets.