Founded in 1974, L.A. Theatre Works (LATW) is a non-profit media arts organization whose mission is to present, preserve and distribute significant classic and contemporary plays through audio recordings. Originally named “Artists in Prison,” the organization used theatre as a tool for creative expression by incarcerated men and women. In 1985, LATW began producing audio recordings of plays, which can now be found in some 11,000 U.S. libraries. The group’s catalogue consists of over 400 plays by classic and notable playwrights, many recorded by famous film and TV actors. In 2012, LATW began releasing e-books and apps as well, which accompany the audio performances – which are staged locally at UCLA’s James Bridges Theatre – and allows a user to read the text of a play as they listen to the recording. The company also tours nationally.
Built in 1929 as one of the first four original structures on UCLA’s campus in Westwood, the two towers of Royce Hall are now the defining image of the school. Named for California-born philosopher Josiah Royce, the looming brick building is modeled after Milan’s San Ambrogio Church. In the many decades since its introduction, the popular events space has undergone seismic retrofitting, and now boasts some 1,800 seats, nearly all with perfect sightlines to the deep stage. The annual events calendar features a variety of fine art performances with world-class talent ranging from speakers to dance to contemporary and classical music. Entertainers use the stage to tell stories and jokes, radio personalities bring their live shows through Royce Hall, and students have the opportunity to witness never-before-seen productions throughout the year. Patrons can customize their own subscription packages, and students receive discounts to every event.
Lawn-bowling statistics don't dominate newspaper box scores, but the sport is hardly an unknown phenomenon. The game’s English roots stretch as far back as the 13th century, and today, lawn bowlers can be spotted in locales as distant as South Africa and New Zealand. Primarily a game of finesse, lawn bowling rewards teams of three for their accuracy as they read the manicured terrain and gently heft a three-pound ball toward a small, distant target.
Ever since Holmby Park Lawn Bowling Club was founded in 1927, it has embraced the social aspect of the sport, currently welcoming 120 members from the surrounding community. As the only lawn bowling club in the city of Los Angeles according to Westwood-Century City Patch, the HPLBC organizes matches across two separate playing fields, accommodating as many as 96 players at a time. The club loans equipment to new members so they can get a feel for the game before buying their own supplies, and instructors arrive in the late morning to dole out pointers and help newcomers learn the fundamentals. Plenty of benches and shaded areas allow players to relax in between throws or enjoy a quick refreshment before the next match. Click here for an ATVN feature about the Holmby Park Lawn Bowling Club.
From 18 studios scattered around Los Angeles, Lori Moran Music Studios’ armada of instructors offers all-ages voice, piano, guitar, violin, and composition classes. With teachers who have worked on films such as Dreamgirls and Dance Flick, world-touring operatic productions, and Grammy-nominated choral CDs, the school can cater to virtually every musical taste—from classical to jazz to pop. Students choose the emphasis of their lessons, whether they want to work on their public performance skills, write their own songs, sight-read scores, or simply be able to play musical chairs during a power outage. Many will also get the chance to show off in recitals, concerts, and showcases.
As a studio singer, Angela Michael has worked with artists such as Rod Stewart and recorded for movies such as Get Him to the Greek. At Angela Michael Music, she lends her professional experience to aspirant vocalists through lessons that help clients train their ears, increase their range, and improve their pitch. Other staff members lead lessons that cover choreography, pop songwriting, and home-studio setup.
The Improv Space is a multifunctional comedy laboratory that both teaches and performs unscripted humor. Catch one of the troupe-hosted shows ($5–$10), such as the seasoned cast of Robert Downey Jr. Jr. performing Hometown Interview on Friday nights at 9:30 p.m. In this show, the cast interrogates an audience volunteer for tidbits about their hometown experiences to use as inspiration for a fully improvised comedy show, then the volunteer returns to his seat to apologize to his friends for using their real names.