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Best Things To Do This Week In Los Angeles And SoCal: May 9 - 12

a visual line drawing and text of an art manifesto
Shantell Martin's new show "The Future," a site-specific installation and exhibition based on a 27-point manifesto, is now on view at Subliminal Projects in L.A.
(Courtesy of the artist and gallery)
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Celebrate Hacks’ new season by checking out Deborah Vance’s tour bus around L.A. Listen to the music of Gen X with Liz Phair. Watch Poetic Justice, 30 years after the L.A. uprising. Listen to John Waters discuss his new novel.

Through Saturday, June 4

Shantell Martin: The Future
Subliminal Projects
1331 W. Sunset Blvd., Echo Park
View Martin’s site-specific installation and exhibition based on her 27-point manifesto for the future of the art industry. (The gallery is open Thursday-Sunday from 12-6 p.m.). Martin and gallery founder, artist Shepard Fairey, also release a collaborative limited-edition letterpress print — available online Tuesday, May 10, 10 a.m. PDT on

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Monday, May 9 - Wednesday, May 11

Deborah Vance’s Tour Bus Experience
Various locations 
HBO Max celebrates the second season of Hacks on May 12 by sending Deborah Vance's (Jean Smart) tour bus driving through iconic L.A. locations loaded with merch and giveaways. The bus tour’s final stops on Wednesday will be at Rocco’s/Heart on the WeHo Strip from 6-9 p.m., featuring a surprise for fans of the comedy series. Other stops include the Original Farmers Market, Venice Boardwalk, Santa Monica Pier, and the Dolby Theatre. Follow @hacks on Instagram for detailed info.

Tuesday, May 10: 8 p.m.

Liz Phair: Don't Holdyrbreath
Walt Disney Concert Hall
111 S. Grand Ave., downtown L.A. 
The L.A. Phil’s Gen X festival continues with headliner Liz Phair, who performs from her extensive catalog, and hosts Ben Gibbard (Death Cab for Cutie), Bethany Cosentino (Best Coast), Remi Wolf, and Vagabon — who reimagine the lamest hits of Gen X.
COST: $45 - $75; MORE INFO

Tuesday, May 10 - Sunday, May 15

OC Live
Various Orange County Venues
Watch live performances by more than 20 music artists over six days and multiple venues. Performers include Flashback Heart Attack, Matt Costa, Rebel ShakeDown, Hot Rod Trio, David Rosales, Fabulous Nomads, Rocket Talk, and Beaux Gris Gris. The series is all ages, with ticket proceeds supporting arts and culture programming from Arts Orange County.

John Waters lifts up his sunglasses in a suit at the Independent Spirit Awards.
John Waters attends the 2019 Film Independent Spirit Awards on Feb. 23, 2019, in Santa Monica.
(Amy Sussman/Getty Images
Getty Images North America)

Tuesday, May 10: 7 p.m.

John Waters in Conversation 
The Aratani Theatre
244 San Pedro St., downtown L.A. 
ALOUD and Skylight Books welcome filmmaker John Waters, who chats with with RuPaul's Drag Race star Ginger Minj about his first novel: Liarmouth: A Feel-Bad Romance. The hilariously twisted tale has all of the filmmaker’s trademarks: sex, crime, revenge, and family dysfunction.

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Wednesday, May 11: 7:30 p.m.

Poetic Justice 
Academy Museum of Motion Pictures
6067 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire
On the 30th anniversary of the L.A. uprising, the museum presents a screening of John Singleton’s sophomore film starring Janet Jackson and Tupac Shakur. It opens with the title card, “Once upon a time in South Central Los Angeles,” and offers a searing portrait of a community trying to rise from the ashes. A post-screening conversation is moderated by Bruce Lemon Jr. with writer Justice Singleton, actor Roger Guenveur Smith, and location manager Kokayi Ampah.
COST: $7 - $10; MORE INFO

Wednesday, May 11: 8 p.m.

The Real Irish Comedy Slam
Hollywood Improv
8162 Melrose Ave., Hollywood
As part of Ireland Week, a showcase of Irish culture, watch standup from Irish comics David Nihill, Sean Finnerty, Katie Boyle, and Mick Thomas — with guest Sheamus, the first Irish world champion in WWE history. There is a two-item purchase minimum at the club. 21+.

Wednesday, May 11: 8 p.m.

Summer Rock Doc Film Series: The Public Image Is Rotten
Regent Theatre
448 S. Main St., downtown L.A.
The theater starts a summer rock documentary six-film screening series this week with The Public Image Is Rotten (on John Lydon and PiL). Come early for a slice at Prufrock, a drink at Loveston, and stay for a post-film conversation with director Tabbert Fiiller. Upcoming films in the series include PJ Harvey:  A Dog Called Money and Rockfield:  The Studio on The Farm (featuring Oasis, Robert Plant, Stone Roses, Charlatans UK, and others).
COST: $12/$60 for the series; MORE INFO

Wednesday, May 11: 7 p.m.

Is This What Democracy Looks Like?
ASU California Center
1111 S. Broadway, downtown L.A.
Zócalo’s latest panel discussion focuses on direct democracy and allowing everyday citizens to enact their own ideas for laws or constitutional amendments. Guests include California Secretary of State Shirley Weber, Public Policy Institute of California president Mark Baldassare, and Initiative & Referendum Institute president John Matsusaka. A hosted reception with complimentary drinks will follow the discussion. This event will also be livestreamed for those who cannot attend in person.

Wednesday, May 11: 7 p.m.

Tracy Dawson: Let Me Be Frank 
Book Soup
8818 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood
The writer, actor, and feminist discusses her book, Let Me Be Frank: A Book about Women Who Dressed Like Men to Do Shit They Weren't Supposed to Do. The collection features trailblazers who disguised themselves as men to do things they were denied as women, from marathoning to mining and escaping enslavement.

Wednesday, May 11: 9 p.m.

The Black Keys
The Troubadour
9801 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood
The duo of Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney perform at the 500-capacity club in advance of their new album, Dropout Boogie, out May 13. In-person tickets for the show go on sale Monday, May 9 here, with fan club sales starting at 9 a.m. PT and general on sale following at 11 a.m. PT. If you can’t get tickets, the event will be livestreamed and rebroadcast.

Headshot of comic Josh Johnson in a grey hoodie sweatshirt.
Josh Johnson headlines two shows at the Bourbon Room.
(Courtesy of the artist)

Thursday, May 12: 7:30 (sold out) and 10 p.m.

Josh Johnson
The Bourbon Room
6356 Hollywood Blvd, 2nd Floor, Hollywood
Because of strong demand, comedian Josh Johnson adds a second Hollywood show. In his new show, Johnson turns a therapy session into an hour of stand-up. This show is 21+.
COST: $20 - $35; MORE INFO

Interior of a Japanese internment camp, with cots, blankets, suitcases and a pair of slippers
The interior of a restored barracks where detainees would have lived is seen at the WW II - era Manzanar internment camp, in Manzanar, California, approximately 230 miles (370 km) northeast of Los Angeles, August 2, 2015. Manzanar, which is now a National Historic Site, tells the story of the over 110, 000 persons of Japanese ancestry, the majority of which were American citizens, who were forcibly detained at ten such camps in remote and desolate parts of the US between 1942 and 1945.
(ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

Through Sunday, Oct. 9

BeHere/1942: A New Lens on the Japanese American Incarceration 
Japanese American National Museum
100 North Central Ave., downtown L.A.
This exhibition places viewers in the middle of WW II-era forced removal of Japanese Americans from their homes. Presented by the Yanai Initiative of UCLA and Tokyo’s Waseda University, the installation draws on historic photographs to recreate the site where thousands of Japanese Americans living in downtown Los Angeles’s Little Tokyo neighborhood were ordered to report before trains and buses took them to the camps. An augmented reality segment invites visitors to become photographers themselves, participating in the scene from May 1942.
COST: $7 - $16 general admission; MORE INFO

Viewing Pick

Aside from watching season 2 of Hacks this week, Hulu drops a five-episode limited series based on a true crime. Jessica Biel plays the titular Candy Montgomery, a suburban Texas housewife and mother who was living life under the radar until she murdered her BFF Betty Gore (Melanie Lynskey) with an ax. The series also stars Timothy Simons, Pablo Schreiber, and Raúl Esparza. Candy’sfirst episode is released on May 9, followed by one episode a day through May 13.

a wooden circular plate with torillas in the middle, surrounded by guacamole, salsas and refried beans.
Alma Cocina de Mexico is now open at The Grove in Los Angeles.
(Courtesy of Alma Cocina)

Dine and Drink Deals

Check out the 411 on restaurant, bar, and food happenings in SoCal this week:

  • Alma Cocina de México, from the Mexico City restaurant group Grupo Hunan, officially opened at The Grove last week. The multilevel restaurant features a ground floor taqueria, cocktail bar, and tiendita, as well as a fine-dining concept on the second floor opening later in May.  
  • The Culver City-based ghost kitchen Krapow is known for its deconstructed Thai dishes and bowls, including the Crispy Chicken Krapow and Ruby Ribeye Krapow bowls made with basil fried rice, Thai chili, garlic, basil, housemade sauce, and topped with a runny sunny-side-up egg, basil chip and cucumber slices. They’ve added two new items in time for AAPI Heritage Month: Oatly Thai Tea and Mango Tropioca.
  • Fia Steak in Santa Monica recently launched a new cocktail program created by author and industry vet Gaby Mlynarczyk, focusing on house-made liqueurs like the blood orange limoncello, which Mlynarczyk calls "sanguecello," and riffs on classic cocktails like the Old Fashioned, made with Lapsang tea. On Sunday evenings, dine under the stars at Fia and enjoy 50% off all signature cocktails all night long.
  • Los Angeles Women in Beer collaborates with local breweries to spotlight women and/or nonbinary professionals in the brewing industry, while raising funds for the nonprofit Pink Boots Society. Available beers include Eagle Rock Brewery’s Bootsy (West Coast IPA, 6.3%); Frogtown Brewery's Sowing Season (West Coast IPA, 6.5%); and Trademark Brewing's My Own Muse (Hazy IPA 7%). Find a list of all beers and breweries available in SoCal.
  • H/t to L.A. Taco for telling us about René Alesandro Coreas’ Walking Spanish pop-up, offering modern twists on Central American cuisine like escargot pupusas — or another filled with mushroom duxelle, herbs de provence, and cheese. Follow them on Instagram for specials and hours.
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