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The Best Things To Do In LA And SoCal This Week: Dec. 6 - 9

Illuminated stars, presents, trees and an inflatable Santa Claus on the front lawn of a house
Homes are decorated with Christmas lights in the Hastings Ranch neighborhood of Pasadena on Dec. 18, 2020.
(Frazer Harrison
Getty Images)
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Attend a naughty Drag Queen Christmas. Listen to Amanda Gorman chat about her latest poetry collection. Watch a cinematic tribute to composer Ennio Morricone. Join in LARB’s 10th Birthday Party. Hear from DA George Gascón on his controversial first year in office. Nosh on ceviche, seafood pasta, BBQ and kouglof.

With COVID-19 variants still out there, it's best to check ahead of time for vaccine/testing requirements.

a man and a woman wearing skimpy underwear are inside a snow globe. next to them are a cello and a violin
The Skivvies perform music and sing soaring harmonies in minimalist attire.
(Courtesy of the Laguna Playhouse)

Monday, Dec. 6 - Tuesday, Dec. 7; 7:30 p.m.

The Skivvies: Say It Ain’t Snow
Laguna Playhouse
606 Laguna Canyon Rd., Laguna Beach 
Lauren Molina and Nick Cearley return to the playhouse for two nights of holiday-themed undie-rock. (Not indie rock.) The duo perform stripped-down tunes while stripped down to their skivvies. Expect wild, fun, crazy harmonies. But no pants.
COST: $51 - $61; MORE INFO

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Tuesday, Dec. 7; 8 p.m.

Judd Apatow and Friends
Largo at the Coronet
366 N. La Cienega Blvd, Beverly Grove
The writer and director brings a few famous friends to the Largo in a his birthday benefit show for the nonprofits 826LA and Pacific Pups. While much of the lineup is secret, we know that Beck serves as musical guest.

an illuminated star sits atop an illuminate christmas tree
San Gabriel's 45th annual tree lighting ceremony takes place Tuesday, Dec. 7 starting at 6 p.m. at Plaza Park.
(Courtesy of the city of San Gabriel)

Tuesday, Dec. 7; 6 p.m.

45th Annual Tree Lighting
Plaza Park
428 S. Mission Dr., San Gabriel
Join in the city’s annual ceremony that features food trucks, a photo booth, ornament decorating and live entertainment by Dewey Elementary School, Roosevelt Elementary School Orchestra and Concert Band, Community Services dance classes and the Arcadia High School Choir. The lighting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Santa Claus will visit shortly thereafter.

Tuesday, Dec. 7; 7 p.m.

A Drag Queen Christmas: The Naughty Tour
The Wiltern
3790 Wilshire Blvd., Koreatown
Trinity The Tuck and Monét X Change host the holiday-themed show. They're joined by Ru Paul's Drag Race alums Kylie Sonique Love, Jaida Essence Hall, Shea Couleé, Crystal Methyd, Willam, Brooke Lynn Hytes and Alyssa Edwards.
COST: $35 - $75; MORE INFO 

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Tuesday, Dec. 7; 7 p.m.

How Do We Begin Again?
ASU California Center at the Herald Examiner
1111 S. Broadway, downtown L.A. 
Zócalo’s event series continues with a live, in-person event in its new home venue, the historic Herald Examiner building. L.A. Times columnist Gustavo Arellano moderates a discussion on the do-over, the mulligan, and how we start new chapters in our lives, both individually and collectively. On the panel are artist and co-founder of Homeboy Art Academy, Fabian Debora; TransLatin@ Coalition president and CEO Bamby Salcedo, and UCLA department chair of psychology Annette L. Stanton. The event will also be live streamed.
COST: FREE with registration; MORE INFO

a woman dressed as Elsa from the movie Frozen skates on ice
Disney On Ice presents 'Dream Big' at several venues in Southern California.
(Geo Rittenmyer)

Wednesday, Dec. 8 - Sunday, Dec. 12

Disney On Ice: Dream Big
Honda Center
2695 East Katella Ave., Anaheim
Disney’s heroes hit the ice in this new figure skating show. Families can watch Mickey, Minnie, Miguel, Moana, Elsa, Belle and Genie overcome adversity and take on challenges. The show also makes stops at Staples Center in downtown L.A., Toyota Arena in Ontario and the Long Beach Arena through the end of the year.
COST: Tickets start at $25; MORE INFO

black and white pictures of Frank Stoltze and George Gascón

Wednesday, Dec. 8; 7 p.m.

DA George Gascón’s First Year In Office: A Virtual Conversation
KPCC/LAist Criminal Justice Correspondent Frank Stoltze welcomes Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón for a conversation that marks his one-year anniversary leading the county’s largest local prosecutor’s office. The DA is a polarizing figure. Some hail him for being in the forefront of a nationwide movement to end the draconian policies of a racist criminal justice system. Others believe that his policies will lead to more crime.

Wednesday, Dec. 8 - Monday, Feb. 21, 2022

Brilliance: The Art and Science of Rare Jewels
Natural History Museums of Los Angeles County  
900 W Exposition Blvd., Exposition Park
View the legendary gems the Celeste Diamond, the Pink Starburst and the Blue Splendor of Ceylon, as well as original works created by Robert Procop in collaboration with Angelina Jolie and Brooke Shields. The actors’ collections raise funds for women and children in need. The exhibition is included in museum admission.
COST: $12 - $15 admission; MORE INFO

Ennio Morricone closes his eyes and waves his hand in the air
'Ennio: The Maestro,' directed by Giuseppe Tornatore screens at the Aero on Dec. 8.
(Block2 Distribution)

Wednesday, Dec. 8; 7:30 p.m.

Ennio: The Maestro
Aero Theatre
1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica
Director Giuseppe Tornatore (Cinema Paradiso) spent five years making this homage to collaborator and composer Ennio Morricone. Tornatore traveled the world to interview more than 70 people for the film, including Wong Kar Wai, Bernardo Bertolucci, Quentin Tarantino, Clint Eastwood, John Williams, Hans Zimmer and Bruce Springsteen. The interviews are intercut with fragments of Morricone’s private life, archival footage and clips of films scored by the late composer. This film is part of the Cinema Italian Style series (with both in-persona and virtual screenings).
COST: $8 - $13; MORE INFO

Thursday, Dec. 9; 7:30 p.m.

Overdue Comedy 
The Glendale Room
127 Artsakh Ave., Glendale
The newish comedy club welcomes Jasmine Ellis (Drybar Comedy) and Kristal Adams (Netflix), who host some of their fave stand-up comics each month. This show’s lineup includes Niles Abston, Holly Brown, Monique Moreau and headliner Fatimah Taliah (Life In Pieces, Goliath).

Thursday, Dec. 9; 5 - 6 p.m. PT

LARB’s 10th Birthday and Anthology Release Party
Los Angeles Review of Books hosts an an evening of toasts, readings and appearances by lit luminaries Jody Armour, Reza Aslan, Margaret Atwood, Steph Cha, Victoria Chang, Sarah Chihaya, Kaya Genç, Dean Rader and Lynne Thompson. Giveaways include autographed book bundles, event tickets, book club memberships and an autographed vintage typewriter from Tom Hanks’ collection.

Thursday, Dec. 9; 8 p.m.

Collection Plate Comedy
Fourth Wall Cafe
5220 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood
The live comedy show features rising local comics and encourages the audience to tip the performers they enjoy. Hosted by Chris Gardner, it features sets from Sasha Boggs, Brinan Weeks, Jenn Gonzalez, Mike Moody, Rebecca Rush, Ketra Long and headliner Mateen Stewart. You can Venmo tips @collectionplatecomedy but cash tips are strongly encouraged.
COST: $5 - $10; MORE INFO

Thursday, Dec. 9 - Sunday, Dec. 12

Filmocracy Fest 2021 - Hybrid Festival 
Lumiere Music Hall
9036 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills
The second edition of the festival presents a robust slate of 32 films, a mix of features, shorts and social impact documentaries. The majority of in-person screenings take place at the Lumiere Music Hall in Beverly Hills, while other films are offered online. The screenings on Dec. 12 take place at Boomtown Brewery in downtown L.A., and are followed by the festival’s awards ceremony. The event begins with Richard Yelland’s The Birth of the Endless Summer, which tells the story behind the popular documentary The Endless Summer by Bruce Brown. It closes with Meat the Future.
COST: $7 - $12 per screening; MORE INFO

Amanda Gorman sits in front of bookshelves stacked with books that are organized by color
In this screengrab, Amanda Gorman speaks at the 33rd Gloria Awards: A Salute to Women of Vision - VIRTUAL EVENT on May 19, 2021 in New York City.
(Theo Wargo
Getty Images Ms. Foundation for Women)

Thursday, Dec. 9; 6 p.m.

Amanda Gorman with Dr. Elizabeth Alexander
Online event
Writers Bloc and the Skirball present a livestream conversation with author, poet and activist Amanda Gorman, who discusses her latest book of poetry, Call Us What We Carry, with poet and scholar Dr. Elizabeth Alexander.
COST: $5 - $32; MORE INFO

Thursday, Dec. 9 - Friday, Dec. 10; 8 p.m.

Courtney Barnett
Theatre at Ace Hotel
929 S. Broadway, downtown L.A. 
The Australian singer-songwriter plays two nights in support of her most recent release, Things Take Time, Take Time. Bartees Strange opens both nights.
COST: $29.50 - $69.50; MORE INFO 

TV/Streaming Pick

Diff’rent Strokes and The Facts of Life 
The ABC television special Live in Front of a Studio Audience returns on Tuesday for live re-creations of episodes from classic sitcoms. The all-star cast of Diff’rent Strokes features John Lithgow as patriarch Mr. Drummond, Kevin Hart as Arnold and Damon Wayans as Willis. Ann Dowd will play Mrs. Garrett (housekeeper then house mother) in both shows. Playing the roles of the prep school girls in The Facts of Life are Jennifer Aniston as Blair, Gabrielle Union as Tootie, Allison Tolman as Natalie and Kathryn Hahn as Jo. The shows air on Tuesday at 8 p.m. and streams the next day on Hulu and online.

Dine and Drink Deals

a plate of pasta with mussels, clams, squid and a light tomato sauce
Celebrate Feast of The Seven Fishes with a special off-menu pasta, Spicy Arrabbiata di Mare, at L’antica Pizzeria’s da Michele in Hollywood.
(Courtesy of L’antica Pizzeria da Michele)

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

  • L’antica Pizzeria da Michele in Hollywood has created its own twist on the traditional Italian Feast of the Seven Fishes dinner. The restaurant offers a themed pasta that encapsulates Christmas custom. The spicy arrabbiata di mare pasta includes branzino, scallops, calamari, shrimp, clams and mussels ($35); $10 of each special pasta sold will be donated to the nonprofit A Place Called Home.
  • Domenico’s on the Lake, the oldest restaurant in Long Beach, has expanded into Orange County with a new location in Mission Viejo. The menu features steaks, seafood, pizza and Italian dishes such as clams linguine, angel hair shrimp fresco and gnocchi.
  • The Shops at Sportsmen's Lodge in Studio City is now open to the public. The retail center features restaurants and eateries including Civil Coffee, HiHo Cheeseburger, Keisuke Ramen, Tocaya Modern Mexican, Ushi Ushi, Kismet Rotisserie, Tuesday’s Sweet Shoppe and Van Leeuwen. Tocaya's grand opening, on Wednesday, features $5 bowls and an all-day happy hour with $5 margaritas, $6 glasses of wine, $3 cervezas and select bites starting at $2.
  • CevicheStop in Culver City holds a Ceviche and Quinoa Festival on Monday, Dec. 6, 6 - 9 p.m. Watch a live cooking experience then taste five different ceviches, three quinoa plates and two pisco cocktails ($65 - $75). 
  • Pitchoun at the Beverly Center celebrates National Pastry Day (Thursday) all month by offering kouglof, a brioche pastry made with raisins and rum then topped with almonds and powdered sugar. 
  • The Los Angeles Times publishes its annual 101 Best Restaurants list on Tuesday and in honor of the new list, the Times is holding a launch event that night at 7 at City Market Social House in downtown L.A. Participating restaurants include: Alta Adams, Angry Egret Dinette, Bavel, Burritos la Palma, chi SPACCA, Chifa, Evil Cooks, For The Win, Found Oyster, Phenakite, Pizzana, Post & Beam Restaurant, Republique Restaurant and Republique Cafe Bakery, Rossoblu, and Spoon & Pork, among others. The 21+ event runs $150-$175 and includes unlimited tastings and pours. 
  • Glenwood Smokehouse BBQ in Glendale opened several months ago and has finally received its liquor license. Now, diners can wash down Central Texas style BBQ dishes such as brisket, pulled pork, hot fried chicken and corn fritters with beer, wine and cocktails. Happy hour and brunch are forthcoming.  
  • Coastal California-inspired restaurant The Terrace, at the Thompson Hollywood, now offers breakfast and lunch on the rooftop of the recently opened hotel. Take in views of the Hollywood Hills and downtown L.A. while noshing on dishes including shakshuka, smoked salmon tartine and chicken paillard. 
Got an event in Southern California you want us to consider for one of our event roundups?
Send us the basic info — who, what, when, where, cost, URL and event description — at least a week in advance. We can't guarantee your listing will make it to publication but we'd love to read your pitch.

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