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Pencil This In: Art Show Openings, Jason Reitman's 'Live Read,' Coffee Talk at ALOUD, a Comedy Fest and an Art Crawl

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Now that the days are getting lighter, our inbox is getting heavier with great stuff to do. We sort through these events so you don’t have to, so here’s a list of interesting happenings around LA tonight: a solo art opening from Jesse Hlebo; a Cartwheel ventures art pop-up show; the first Scripted Comedy Festival; a coffee discussion at the Library; Jason’s Reitman’s Live Read and a few other happenings. Check ‘em out:

Family Los Angeles holds an opening reception tonight from 7-9 pm for artist Jesse Hlebo’s solo exhibition Gewalt—a German word meaning both "violence" and "authority" or "established power." His works of sculpture, prints and videos explore the violence that exists in systemic authorities. An accompanying booklet that features images from the show and an article written by Helbo is available exclusively at Family in a limited-edition set of 75. Gewalt will remain on view through April 15.

In honor of Women’s History Month, the California African American Museum (CAAM) in Exposition Park presents the program An Evening with Kathleen McGhee Andersontonight at 7 pm. Anderson is credited with being the first African-American female television writer, getting her start in the writer’s room of Little House on the Prairie in 1981 with the help of late actor Michael Landon. Her other credits include Amen, Benson, 227, Gimme A Break and The Cosby Show. The discussion tonight will be moderated by actor-director Shirley Jo Finney. The event is free, but RSVPs are preferred at 213-744-2024. Parking is $10 in the lot adjacent to CAAM at Figueroa and 39th St.

Tonight at 7:15 pm, ALOUD at the Central Library holds the program and discussion From the Ground Up: Sustainable Coffee Culture. The panelists include Alexandra Katona-Carroll, program manager, Coffee Quality Institute; Jay Ruskey, owner, Good Land Organics; and Angel Orozco, owner and roaster, Cafecito Orgánico. The discussion, which will focus on many aspects of the $100 billion global coffee industry, is being moderated by Peter Giuliano, Specialty Coffee Association of America. Come early to enjoy a complimentary coffee tasting from Cafecito Orgánico. Free, but reservations required.

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Tonight at 7:30 pm, Film Independent at LACMA presents this season’s final installment of Jason Reitman’s Live Read series. A surprise cast reads a script from a seminal film—tonight it’s The Usual Suspects—from the Bing Theater stage. If you follow Reitman on Twitter, he’s mentioned some of the cast members tonight, including Chi McBride, Nick Kroll and Adam Brody. Tickets: $25 for LACMA members, students with valid ID, and seniors (62+); $40 for the general public. Standby tickets (though not guaranteed) may be available. Line forms at 6:30 pm.COMEDY
The first LA Scripted Comedy Festival opens tonight at iOWest. The four-day fest features shows running simultaneously on three stages with competitions, celeb headliners and workshops. The focus of the festival is on all scripted comedy including, sketch, solo, variety, storytelling, stand up, podcasts and short films. Events tonight include Sketch Cage Matches and a late-night storytelling hour. Prices of shows vary between $5-$10.

The first Venice Art Crawl of 2013 is tonight from 6-10 pm. Start at Danny's, located at 23 Windward Ave., to pick up the official VAC map (or download it here) with the evening’s events and locations. Participants can either bike, walk or ride the Red Bull sponsored shuttle to all participating venues.

Singer-songwriter and producer Maia Sharp plays the tiny Room 5 Lounge tonight at 10 pm. Sharp, who just finished a short tour run opening for Bonnie Raitt, will perform songs from her latest full-length solo album, Change the Ending. Adrianne Gonzalez is also playing tonight. Doors at 7:45 pm. Admission: $10. 21+ only.

Elixir is a free variety show that takes over Skinny’s Lounge in North Hollywood tonight. There’s live music by the funk band Funky Monkey plus burlesque, cabaret, comedy, magic and audience games with prizes. On the bill tonight is a dance performance by Cabaret Versatile, Cherry Poppins Caburlesque and magic and comedy by The Great Omar and the whimsical Lady Scoutington, among other acts. Music starts at 7:30 pm and the show begins at 8 pm. Free Stoli Vodka cocktails from 7-8 pm. This is a 21+ event, and Skinny’s is encouraging patrons to dress to impress.

Cartwheel opens its second annual pop-up art exhibition tonight from 7-10 pm with a reception at Project Gallery. The show features the work of eight street/contemporary artists from around the US, many of whom have never shown in LA before: Corey Hagberg, Evo Love; Greg Haberny, Lydia Emily; Lyle Carbajal, RADICAL!, Roy Gonzalez and Scott Michael Ackerman. The show runs through Sunday.

*Pencil pick of the day

Follow me on Twitter (@christineziemba). Or follow Lauren Lloyd—who takes care of Pencil on Wednesdays (@LadyyyLloyd).