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Pencil This In: First Friday @ NHM, Dublab @ Silent Movie Theater

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Photo of Downtown LA @ night by sfxeric via LAist’s flickr pool.

Photo of Downtown LA @ night by sfxeric via LAist’s flickr pool.
The Natural History Museum mixes music and science tonight for its First Friday series. The museum’s celebrating the life and work of Charles Darwin all year, and it’s reflected in the tours and discussions. At 5:30 and 6 pm there will be tours of the Vertebrate Paleontology Collections with Dr. John Harris, NHM Chief Curator of Vertebrate Paleontology, followed by “Lucy's Legacy: The Quest for Human Origins” with paleoanthropologist Dr. Donald C. Johanson. The live music kicks off at 7 pm courtesy of Wolfmother and The Ruby Suns and DJs in the African Mammal Hall. Tickets are $9.

Dublab takes over the Silent Movie Theater tonight at 8 pm with the “Dublab Labrat Matinee VI: Selections From An Astral Projectionist.” Yes, they know that matinees usually happen in the afternoon, but they also know the rules were meant to be broken. Get ready for rarely seen music videos (Animal Collective, Daedelus, Flying Lotus, Lucky Dragons, Nite Jewel, Rainbow Arabia...), new dublab VisionVersion films (“Adventure,” “Busdriver,” “Rio en Medio,” “Erlend Oye”...), comedy clips (Bob Odenkirk, Tim & Eric, Zach Galifianakis...), and out-there animation and other surprises. There’s a post-films party that features a live performance, plus Labrat DJs playing soundtrack selections on the Cinefamily Spanish patio. And they’ll also provide some free beer, too. Tickets are $14.

Tonight is MOPLA’s (Month of Photography LA) closing party features the final in the series of four outdoor projections. “PRO'JEKT LA: In the Stills of the Night - Portraits of the LA famous and infamous” showcases the work of Gary Lee Boas, Patrick Hoelck and Mark Hunter aka The Cobrasnake. The event begins at 8 pm at Digital Fusion in Culver City.

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International City Theatre in Long Beach brings a newly discovered comedy by Mark Twain to the stage. Is He Dead? is about a struggling artist who stages his own death to drive up the values of his work. “As the riotous scheme unfolds and crazy complications ensue, Twain poses daring questions about fame, greed and the value of art, poking his signature, mischievous fun at everyone involved.” Tonight, a reception with Mark Twain scholar Dr. Shelley Fisher Fishkin, who discovered the unpublished manuscript, precedes the show at 7 pm.

The nonprofit Para Los Niños is celebrating Cinco de Mayo a little early tonight with its annual fundraiser “Celebrando La Vida…A Night in San Miguel de Allende at 6:30 pm at The Gilmore Adobe (behind The Grove shopping mall). The evening includes dinner, dancing, strolling mariachis, a DJ, tours of the adobe, a cigar lounge, cabañas, and live and silent auctions. Proceeds from the $150 ticket price support Para Los Niños programs, which serve thousands of children, youth, and families living in poverty in Southern California.

Tonight the Santa Monica College John Drescher Planetarium presents a special look at Saturn & the Moon. Observers, through a variety of telescopes, to take a "farewell" look at the north side of Saturn's rings. “Every 15 years, a ‘ring plane crossing’ occurs where Saturn's rings appear edge-on as viewed from Earth. This crossing will occur later this year. Saturn, like the Earth, has a tilted axis, so observers view an alternating sequence of the "north" and "south" side of the rings during Saturn's nearly 30-year orbit around the Sun.” If it’s cloudy tonight, the entire event will be indoors with some great images. The feature show begins at 8 p.m., and is preceded by "The Night Sky Show" at 7 p.m. Tickets are $5 each or $9 for the "double bill." There are discounts available for seniors and children.

Today’s the last day to submit your pet photography portfolio for “UnPawsed,” a national pet photography contest to find the next fine art pet photographer. Royal/T and The UnScene will choose five finalists and one winning artist to receive his or her own art exhibit in Royal/T's Pop-up Store for three weeks, with the exhibit opening on May 30 during Culver City’s Artwalk. The submission fee is $25.

*Pencil pick of the day