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Home / Life! / Live / Things to do this week: May 20-26

Things to do this week: May 20-26

by F Diaz
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“The world will be saved by beauty,” wrote Fyodor Dostoevsky and we could use a little saving right about now. It’s been a tough week and you might be in need of connecting with your community, and finding beauty and solace in music, theater and the arts. I hope this will help.

Temple City Camellia Festival

May 20-22 | camelliafestival.org 

The lineup of springtime fairs continues with the annual Camellia Festival featuring carnival rides and games, food booths, live music, dance exhibits and specialty booths.

Time Machine: ‘90s Night

Academy LA | 6021 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028 | May 20 | academy.la/tm90s

Let’s go back to the ‘90s with throwback hits ranging from hip hop to pop, and themed cocktails and decor that will have you dancing like it’s 1999.

Riot! At The Disco

1720 | 1720 E. 16th St., Los Angeles, CA 90021 | May 20 | eventbrite.com

We know it’s not just a phase and that you deserve to “riot at the disco” at this emo and pop punk night where DJs will be playing music from My Chemical Romance, Jimmy Eat World, Taking Back Sunday, Fall Out Boy, Good Charlotte and other artists that used to populate your iPod.

Swift & Sour: A Taylor And Olivia Dance Party

The Glass House | 200 W. 2nd St., Pomona, CA 91766 | May 20 | eventbrite.com

What better way to spend a Friday night than by dancing and singing along to the two reigning queens of pop music?

USC New Works Festival

Pasadena Playhouse | 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena, CA 91101 | May 20-21 | pasadenaplayhouse.org

The USC New Works Festival features plays by the graduating MFA in Dramatic Writing cohort of USC School of Dramatic Arts, presented as concert readings with professional actors and directors. This year’s plays include “Kept Man” by Grafton Doyle, “Seven Stage Circle” by Zharia O’Neal and “Strollin in the Dark” by Katrina Richard.

Odd Nights At The Autry

Autry Museum | Griffith Park, 4700 Western Heritage Way, Los Angeles, CA 90027 | May 20 | theoddmarket.com

After a two-year hiatus, Odd Nights returns with 18 food trucks, two emerging bands, inflatables, a full bar, 80 crafters and exclusive access to the museum gallery. Odd Nights at The Autry runs every third Friday from 6-10 p.m. from April through September. 

Just Like Heaven

Rose Bowl Stadium | 1001 Rose Bowl Drive, Pasadena, CA 91103 | May 21 | justlikeheavenfest.com 

It’s only one day but Just Like Heaven will be jam packed with rock and alternative acts like Interpol, Modest Mouse, M.I.A., Franz Ferdinand, The Hives and more.

Taco Madness

Santa Anita Park | 285 W. Huntington Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007 | May 21 | santaanita.com

L.A. Taco is bringing LA’s best taquerias to the San Gabriel Valley, including Taco Madness winner Villa’s Tacos, Sonoratown, Teddy’s, Tacos y Que, Macheen, Los Dorados, and Tacos Don Cuco. There will also be DJs and music from Leche Fonk.

Simu Liu: “We Were Dreamers” Book Tour

El Rey Theatre | 5515 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036 | May 21 | hc.com/weweredreamers 

Actor Simu Liu, star of Marvel’s first Asian superhero film “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” discusses his new memoir. Liu describes the book as “the story of my family that spans over sixty years, from my parents’ journey immigrating from China to Canada through to my own pursuit of the bright lights of Hollywood. This is for all the families of dreamers.”

Pasadena Festival Of Women Authors

Pasadena Convention Center | 300 E. Green St., Pasadena, CA 91101 | May 21 | pasadenaliteraryalliance.org

This annual literary event raises money for literary programs and features Q-and-A sessions with authors, book signings, and meet and greets. This year’s lineup includes New York Times bestselling author Maggie Shipstead (“Great Circle”), Gabriela Garcia (“Of Women and Salt”), Nadia Hashimi (“Sparks like Stars”), Alka Joshi (“The Secret Keeper of Jaipur”), Sarah Manguso (“Very Cold People”), Claire Vaye Watkins (“I Love You but I’ve Chosen Darkness”) and Monica West (“Revival Season”).


A scene from LA Opera’s 2022 production of “Aida.” | Photo by Cory Weaver / LA Opera

Dorothy Chandler Pavilion | 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012 | May 21-June 12 | laopera.org

Giuseppe Verdi’s “Aida” epic love story recounts the tale of two secret lovers from warring kingdoms. “Aida has long been one of the most popular of all operas because it combines sheer theatrical splendor with an enormously touching human drama,” said Christopher Koelsch, LA Opera’s president and CEO. “The visual world that [stage director] Francesca Zambello and [LA-based artist] RETNA have created for this production is completely spectacular, and the incredible cast, under the baton of Verdi master James Conlon, will bring this masterpiece to vivid life.”

Pride Night

Aquarium of the Pacific | 100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach, CA 90802 | May 21 | aquariumofpacific.org

The LGBTQ Center Long Beach and the Aquarium of the Pacific are celebrating the LGBTQ+ community with a family night at the aquarium featuring drag queen storytelling, rainbow animal treats and activities, photo opportunities, and dancing.

Pickwick Vintage Show

ROW DTLA | 777 S. Alameda St., Los Angeles, CA 90021 | May 21 | eventbrite.com

If you’re looking for retro and vintage fashion, the Pickwick Vintage Show features clothes, jewels, accessories and other goods from 45 vendors. 

Y Para Siempre…Marco Antonio Solís

Grammy Museum | May 21-Aug. 14 | grammymuseum.org

Marco Antonio Solís. | Photo by Jorge Mejía peralta (CC BY 2.0)

The Grammy Museum is honoring the multi-Latin Grammy-winning Mexican singer Marco Antonio Solís, who is currently touring with Los Bukis, with an exhibit exploring five major chapters of the artist’s career and life, including his childhood in Michoacán, the evolution of Los Bukis and his solo career.

The Fit Expo 

Los Angeles Convention Center | 1201 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90015 | May 21-22 | fit-expo.com

Fitness and health enthusiasts will not want to miss the largest fitness convention on the West Coast featuring free workouts, cooking demonstrations, live competitions, new health and wellness products, samples and cash prizes. 


The Barker Hangar | 3021 Airport Ave., Suite 203, Santa Monica, CA 90405 | May 21-22 | eeeeeatscon.com

Eeeeeatscon is reimagining food events like music festivals with restaurants as the headliners. The event features a curated selection of local restaurants, imports from across the country, live musical performances, panels from industry leaders and Tony Hawk as a speaker.

‘90s Skate Night

Wisdome | 1147 Palmetto St., Los Angeles, CA 90013 | May 21-22 | bucketlisters.com

Lose yourself skating under a 70-foot dome as projections dance around you and ‘90s tunes set the vibe. Attendees are encouraged to dress up. .


Museum of Latin American Art | 628 Alamitos Ave., Long Beach, CA 90802 | May 21-22, 28 | longbeachopera.org

In this new production of George Frideric Handel’s rarely-performed opera “Giustino,” his glorious music and relevant drama reemerges as a site specific, cinematically driven, wild contemporary production with expanded orchestrations, sound design and installation art. The opera will be presented within the sculpture garden and galleries at the Museum of Latin American Art. A story of fate, destiny, long lost familial relationships and a probing exploration of “conquerors” and their captors, LBO’s “Giustino” will elevate the ambiguities of gender and sexuality already present in baroque opera and examine how stereotypes can be shattered even in the most traditional stories.


Los Angeles Theatre | 6126 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028 | May 23 | los-angeles-theatre.com

The ‘90s indie rock band behind “Harness Your Hopes” reunites once more.

Olivia Rodrigo

The Greek Theatre | 2700 N. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90027 | May 24-25 | axs.com

The singer-songwriter behind the phenomenon that is “Sour” lights up the stage at the Greek with dance hits and tearjerkers like “traitor,” “Good 4 U,” “happier” and “enough for you.”

“Big Hero 6”

El Capitan Theatre | 6838 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, CA, 90028 | May 24-25 | elcapitantheatre.com

Baymax in a scene of “Big Hero 6.” | ©2022 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

The El Capitan Theatre will bring Disney’s “Big Hero 6” back to the big screen in celebration of Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) Heritage Month. “Big Hero 6” is an action-packed comedy adventure that introduces Baymax, a lovable, personal companion robot, who forms a special bond with robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada. When a devastating turn of events catapults them into the midst of a dangerous plot unfolding in the streets of San Fransokyo, Hiro turns to Baymax and his diverse group of friends who transform into a band of unlikely heroes.

Candlelight K-Pop: A Tribute To BTS

Ovation Square Long Beach | 350 Pine Ave., Long Beach, CA 90802 |
May 25, June 22 |

Enjoy your favorite BTS hits like “Butter” and “Dynamite” played by a string quartet shrouded in candlelight.

“Together In Song: A Gathering Of Choral Music”

First United Methodist Church | 500 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91101 | May 25 | pasadenachorale.org

Pasadena Chorale is partnering with Los Angeles Children’s Chorus and Yale Glee Club for a benefit concert to raise funds for Urban Voices Project, a music community engagement nonprofit and performance choir composed of currently and formerly unhoused artists of Los Angeles. “Urban Voices Project does such important work by brilliantly connecting singing with community and wellness,” said Pasadena Chorale Artistic Director Jeffrey Bernstein. “We are deeply impressed by Urban Voices and the example they give of what the arts can offer, and we’re proud and happy to support their work.” Tickets are free and can be reserved online but donations are highly encouraged.

Pasadena Chorale members singing. | Photo courtesy of Pasadena Chorale

Geeks Who Drink Trivia Night

The Mixx | 443 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91101 | May 25 | eventbrite.com

Get your geek on at this mid-week trivia night with happy-hour drinks, music and a cult classic movie playing on the LED wall. 

Queer Coded Art Show: The Shows That Gay’d Us

Player One | 5126 Lankershim Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91601 | May 25 | fb.me/e/1O0Rn7A5D

Joystick, an LGBTQ miker, have partnered once again with Player One, an arcade bar, to host “Queer Coded: An LGBTQ Art Show.” Exploring this month’s theme, “The shows that gay’d us,” the gallery will survey how televesion helped shape a generationof queer people. Proceeds will go directly towards the artists.

Star Wars Celebration

Anaheim Convention Center | 800 W. Katella Ave., Anaheim, CA 92802 | May 26-29 | starwarscelebration.com

There’s still time for jedis and padawans to get tickets for this fan celebration just as “Obi-Wan Kenobi” is set to premiere on Disney+ on May 27. Event organizers promise major announcements, exhibits, screenings, exclusive merchandise to add to your collections, panels,and celebrity guests like Temuera Morrison, aka Boba Fett; Ewan McGregor, that’s right Obi-Wan Kenobi himself; Giancarlo Esposito, who played Moff Gideon in “The Mandalorian”; Anthony Daniels, the man behind C-3PO; Kelly Marie Tran, aka Rose Tico; and many other stars from both the live-action movies and show and the animated series.

The Drop: Sean Paul

Grammy Museum | 800 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90015 | May 26 | universe.com

Grammy-winning singer Sean Paul discusses his eighth album “Scorcha” on the eve of its release.

Dudamel Conducts Beethoven’s 9th

Disney Concert Hall | 111 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012 | May 26-29 | laphil.com

In addition to Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Dudamel will premiere “La Serpiente de Colores” by Mexican composer Francisco Cortés-Álvarez and “Esperanza” by Peruvian composer Gonzalo Garrido-Lecca, both works are LA Phil commissions. 

Renaissance Pleasure Faire

Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area | 15501 E. Arrow Highway, Irwindale, CA 91706 | Through May 22 | renfair.com/socal/

Renaissance Pleasure Faire. | Photo by Fabiola Diaz / Hey SoCal

Huzzah! The Renaissance Pleasure Faire is back this year with its infamous lineup of bawdy and traditional songs, comedy shows (some rated NC-17 just for adults), jousting tournaments, aerial performances, magic shows and actors on different stages, ax throwing, archery, turkey legs, hand pies and more beer than you could ever imagine.

“Archival Intimacies: Queering South/East Asian Diasporas”

ONE Archives at the USC Libraries | 909 W. Adams Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90007
| Through May 29 |

Three artists-in-residence at ONE Archives at USC Libraries, Prima Jalichandra-Sakuntabhai, Vinhay Keo, and Pamila Matharu were invited to develop new works in response to the archive. Jalichandra-Sakuntabhai and Keo’s work investigates the remnants of embodied history, migration, exile, and queerness. Accompanying these works is “Satrang at 25: Queer South Asian Diaspora(s) in Context,” on view at ONE, examining the history of Satrang, an organization supporting queer South Asian communities in Southern California and placing its evolution in the context of broader queer diasporic histories.

LA County Fair

Fairplex | 1101 W. McKinley Ave., Pomona, CA 91768 | Through May 30 | lacountyfair.com

The LA County Fair is back! Fill up on all the fried food you can think of, enjoy some pig racing, scream your lungs out on carnival rides, catch a concert or catch any number of expositions and shows. Personally, I’m looking forward to a Dole whip float and some grilled corn.


A Noise Within | 3352 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91107 | Through June 5 | anoisewithin.org

Sydney A. Mason, Trisha Millerand Cassandra Marie Murphy in “Metamorphoses”. | Photo by Daniel Reichert

Primal storytelling and modern sensibility collide in a sensual re-envisioning of Greek myths, as gods and mortals alike endure love, loss, and transformation—all while immersed in a pool of water on stage— in “Metamorphoses.” Swirling with passion, this multiple award-winning masterpiece mesmerizes with tales of Midas, Orpheus, Aphrodite and more in a funny, whimsical and heartbreaking meditation on the joys and perils of being human. 

Street Art Live

Magic Box LA | 1933 S. Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90007 | Through July 3 | thelume.com

Embark on a multi-sensory trip through the world of street. With 360-degree moving visuals and a curated musical score, you will be immersed in the era and location in which the piece was created like New York, London, São Paulo, Melbourne and Berlin. 

Lee Alexander McQueen: Mind, Mythos, Muse

LACMA | 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036 | Through Oct. 9 | lacma.org

Highlighting fashion designer Lee Alexander McQueen’s tailoring and dressmaking skills, the exhibition examines the different disciplines, imagination, innovation and artistic process that defined McQueen’s career. The exhibition will display McQueen garments from the Collection of Regina J. Drucker alongside artworks from LACMA’s permanent collection.

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