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.
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.
Whole Foods Market's commitment to the interdependent network of sustainable farms and organic producers can be seen in its carefully selected product lines. The homegrown 365 Everyday Value brand makes it easy to eat naturally, organically, and economically. It features an array of items from all product categories, including groceries, vitamins, household items, and more—each manufactured to meet the rigorous quality standards woven into the fabric of Whole Foods Market, which itself is made from 100% alpaca wool.
The Stand’s menu of chili dogs, burgers, and tuna melts evokes classic Americana images of diners and ball games. The eats may be casual, but the staff strives to give them modern style, earning a spot on Gayot's 2012 list of Top 10 LA Hot Dog Restaurants. Upon request, the staff will wrap burgers in whole-wheat buns or lettuce wraps instead of classic buns, and diners also have their choice of beef, turkey, or housemade veggie patties. Gourmet hot-dog and sausage toppings such as garlic mushrooms and corn salsa join traditional fixings such as mustard, sweet pickle relish, and tears from a recently defeated baseball team. To wash it all down, servers blend up 20-ounce chocolate and vanilla milkshakes and tap a rotating menu of draft beers, as well as root beer.