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Best Things To Do This Week In Los Angeles And SoCal: May 23 - 26

#IMDboat At San Diego Comic-Con 2018: Day Two with Neil Gaiman holding up a sign that says, 'Bang,' while sitting on a couch.
Author Neil Gaiman, seen above at San Diego Comic-Con 2018: Day Two, reads at the Theatre at Ace Hotel this week.
(Tommaso Boddi
Getty Images)
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Watch musicals created in a single day. Attend a pop-up magazine. Hear from Joe Swanberg about improvised moviemaking. Listen to the former US ambassador to Ukraine talk about her new memoir and the current political situation.

Monday, May 23; 8 p.m.

An Evening with Neil Gaiman
The Theatre at Ace Hotel
929 S. Broadway, downtown L.A.
The author/graphic novelist of The Sandman, Stardust, American Gods and Coraline reads stories and poems and answers questions on stage.
COST: Tickets start at $42; MORE INFO

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Monday, May 23; 7:30 p.m.

The 24 Hour Plays: 24 Hour Musicals
The Bourbon Room
6356 Hollywood Blvd., 2nd Floor, Hollywood
Actors, performers, writers, composers, directors and choreographers from Broadway, film and TV create and perform four brand new short musicals over the course of a single day. Watch the fruits of their labor live on stage. Scheduled to participate are actors Emily Kinney, Andrew Leeds, Angelique Cabral, Shannon Purser, writers and composers Lisa Loeb and Lindsay Kraft and many other creatives and performers.
COST: $49 - $89; MORE INFO

Monday, May 23; 6:30 - 8 p.m.

A Virtual Visit to the Hoffman Candy Company
Join the Art Deco Society of Los Angeles for a look into the history of the L.A.-founded chocolate manufacturer Hoffman Candy Company (established in 1911). Watch ADSLA President Margot Gerber and Elic Hoffman’s grandson Craig Hoffman present photos from the family collection including candy packaging with Art Deco design, association with the Famous Players Lasky and silent film promotions.

Tuesday, May 24; 8 p.m.

School Night
The Sun Rose
8430 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood 
Listen to live sets by S.G. Goodman, a queer indie rocker from Kentucky, and L.A.-based singer and songwriter Daniel Blake. This is a 21+ event.

Tuesday, May 24; 6 p.m.

Marie Yovanovitch: Lessons from the Edge
Writers Bloc and The Skirball Center present the former US ambassador to Ukraine, discussing her new memoir. Yovanovitch, a noted Russian expert, recounts her experience in the Foreign Service, serving in hot spots around the world, her time in Ukraine and dismissal during the Trump Administration.

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Tuesday, May 24 - Wednesday, May 25

Big Hero 6
El Capitan Theatre
6838 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood 
The theater brings back Walt Disney Animation’s action-packed buddy comedy to the big screen in honor of Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) Heritage Month. Watch the friendship between robot Baymax and prodigy Hiro Hamada as they and their group of friends turn into high-tech heroes.

Tuesday, May 24; 7:30 p.m.

Lost & Found at the Movies: Letting Characters Speak for Themselves
Mark Taper Auditorium - Central Library
630 W. 5th St., downtown L.A.
Some great films start with an idea and a script. But others start with a great idea — and then let the directors and actors improvise the dialogue and collaborate on where the story should go. The ALOUD program of the Library Foundation welcomes filmmaker Joe Swanberg, who has followed in the footsteps of other directors like John Cassavetes to Christopher Guest in unscripted narrative cinema. A complimentary reception follows the program.

Wednesday, May 25 - Thursday, May 26 and Saturday, May 28

The Kitchen Table Project: A Time to Gather
Temple Israel of Hollywood
7300 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood
Invertigo Dance Theatre presents a site-specific and interactive live performance created specifically for the temple’s community and Hollywood campus. Weaving together dance, theater and music, the production explores themes of nourishment, heritage and memory through the kitchen table. For the first time since its 2020 inception, KTP is going to be performed before a live audience.
COST: $15 - $30; MORE INFO

Wednesday, May 25; 7:30 p.m.

Nish Kumar: Your Power, Your Control
Dynasty Typewriter
2511 Wilshire Blvd., Westlake
The British comedian returns to the Dynasty for one night only with his acclaimed new show. He’s the (former) host of BBC’s The Mash Report, which is the UK’s version of The Daily Show.

Thursday, May 26; 7:30 - 9:30 p.m.

Hi, High, Hello! Comedy Show
The Studio Lounge at The Artist Tree
8625 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood
Chill, chuckle and smoke out at The Studio Cannabis Lounge at The Artist Tree — L.A.'s only licensed cannabis consumption lounge. Grab a bite to eat and try out any of their 700+ cannabis products while listening to stand up from Craig Conant, Debra DiGiovanni, Asif Ali and Beth Stelling. This show is 21+.

Thursday, May 26 - Sunday, May 29

Star Wars Celebration 2022
Anaheim Convention Center
800 W. Katella Ave., Anaheim
The fan experience doesn’t take place in a galaxy far, far away...but just down the 5 freeway. Celebrate the Star Wars’ universe, including its legacy, new movies, television shows, books and comics. Check out exhibitions, screenings, merchandise, panel discussions, autograph sessions and celebrity guests.
COST: Single-day tickets start at $75; MORE INFO

A crowd watches a darkened stage with one person in the spotlight.
Pop-up Magazine returns to L.A. this week, bringing its Spring 2022 edition to the Theatre at ACE Hotel.
(Jenna Garrett)

Thursday, May 26; 7:30 p.m.

Pop-up Magazine: Spring 2022
The Theatre at Ace Hotel
929 S. Broadway, downtown L.A.
The live multimedia experience returns to L.A. with an issue that features art, music, stories and performance by podcast host Tracy Clayton, author and artist Chanel Miller, 2020 Pulitzer Prize finalist Chloé Cooper Jones and others. The magazines aren’t recorded or livestreamed, so it’s a one-night only experience.
COST: Tickets start at $39; MORE INFO

The leaves of a faux tree are made up of green light boxes
'A Forest for the Trees' is a newly opened immersive exhibition from artist Glenn Kaino.
(Courtesy of the artist)


A Forest for the Trees
Ace Mission Studios
516 South Mission Rd., Boyle Heights
The immersive art show, created and directed by artist Glenn Kaino, together with The Atlantic and Superblue, challenges audiences to reimagine their relationship with the natural world. Experience a forest unlike any other — with animatronic performing trees, illusions of fire that visitors can control with their hands, and multisensory storytelling, music and magic. The show is inspired by The Atlantic’s editorial series “Who Owns America’s Wilderness?,” which launched in 2021 with the cover story “Return the National Parks to the Tribes” written by David Treuer. Open Wednesdays through Sundays. The food and beverage program at the show is directed by Minh Phan of porridge + puffs and PHENAKITE.
COST: $10 - $50; MORE INFO 

Viewing Pick

This limited series was released earlier this month on Peacock, with Emmy Rossum starring as L.A.’s own lady in pink: Angelyne. One of the OG media personalities, Angelyne first gained attention by taking out self-billboards around the city in the ’80s and driving around in her bright pink Corvette. The series also stars Martin Freeman, Hamish Linklater, Michael Angarano, Molly Ephraim, Philip Ettinger, Lukas Gage, Charlie Rowe, Alex Karpovsky, David Krumholtz, Antjuan Tobias and Tonatiuh. All eight episodes are streaming now.

Dine and Drink Deals

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

  • The new LA River Farmers’ Market launches on Thursday, May 26, running weekly on Thursdays from 3 to 7:30 p.m. at Los Angeles State Historic Park. The new market provides fresh, locally sourced foods and community programming to the Chinatown and NELA neighborhoods. The opening festivities include entertainment from Lion Dancers, Plaza de la Raza’s Youth Mariachi, and a Chinese Tea Ceremony.  
  • Miami Hospitality Group’s newest supper club MainRo opened earlier this year in the old Beso space in Hollywood (at the corner of Ivar & Hollywood Blvd.). Bringing a bit of Miami by way of Vegas, the culinary offerings include crispy rice caviar, creamy rock shrimp, hamachi jalapeño, truffle wagyu bites, Colorado lamb rack and a 36 oz. bone-in tomahawk steak. 
  • On Wednesday, May 25 from 5 to 9 p.m., Cassia in Santa Monica holds a Red Boat Fish Sauce event to celebrate the release of Red Boat’s new cookbook. The night features an a la carte menu featuring Red Boat-inspired dishes from Chef/Partner Bryant Ng and Chef de Cuisine Jessica Guilbaud including wok-tossed Bloomsdale spinach, steak tartare and coconut milk mochi donut holes. Red Boat founder Cuong Pham along with his co-authors Chef Diep Tran and Tien Nguyen will be on hand to sign books and chat. At Cassia’s event, 50% proceeds from sales of the Red Boat dishes will be donated to Asian Americans Advancing Justice.  
  • Also on Wednesday, May 25, LOAM at the Ace Hotel in DTLA holds a five-course tasting menu ($90)paired with five natural, organic, and biodynamic wines selected by Westside Winos. Menu highlights include charred snap pea salad, market risotto, grass-fed hanger steak and upside down cake.
  • Danny Hizami of Figueroa Philly has teamed with Henry Arayasirikul of Monty’s Chicken & Waffles to launch a new ghost kitchen in downtown L.A. Grand Food Depot, a one-stop hub of takeout and delivery, is located at 358 W. 38th St., offering cheesesteaks from Figueroa Philly, Monty’s Chicken and Waffles, Mee Dee Thai and Brady’s Bakery, among other purveyors.