By Hillel Aron
By Joseph Tsidulko
By Patrick Range McDonald
By David Futch
By Hillel Aron
By Dennis Romero
By Jill Stewart
By Dennis Romero
Curated by Ron Athey and Vaginal Davis for Outfest's experimental wing, the second annual Platinum Oasis returns to the Coral Sands Motel. This year's 18-hour performance-art extravaganza is loosely based on the life and work of filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini. Artists from around the United States and Europe will take over the motel complex, with individual rooms featuring videography, experimental sound, salon-style interaction or installation art -- in some cases, all of the above. Davis will emcee a poolside stage for music, spoken word and performance art. Don't miss Catherine Opie's lesbian-separatist tea party, Ann Shelton's women's-prison film installation or Nicole Blackman's performance "The Courtesan's Tales."
Coral Sands Motel, 1750 N. Western Ave., Hollywood; Saturday-Sunday, July 13-14, 4 p.m.10 a.m.; (213) 480-7088.
THE HOLLYWOOD BOWL
Fuss all you want about the noisy crowd two seats over, or the LAPD 'copters overhead; there's nothing like the Hollywood Bowl, and hasn't been since the music began up in Cahuenga Pass in 1922. Highlights this summer: John Mauceri conducting a semi-staged La Bohème(July 21); Howard Shore's big choral cantata drawn from his Lord of the Rings score (Aug. 9 & 10); Esa-Pekka Salonen conducting Beethoven's Ninth (Aug. 8) and Mahler songs with fabulous basso Thomas Quasthoff (Aug. 13); Elmer Bernstein's brand-new Guitar Concerto, with Christopher Parkening (Aug. 27).
Hollywood Bowl, 2301 N. Highland Ave. Season runs July 7September 14; (323) 850-2000.
LONG BEACH OPERA
For two decades Michael Milenski has produced shoestring conceptualized productions of opera fare both known and little known, with mostly exhilarating results. Leos Janacek's romantic folk-tragedy Jenufa is this summer's offering, with Lisa Willson as the put-upon heroine and Andreas Mitisek conducting.
Carpenter Center, Cal State Long Beach; Sunday, June 9, 4 p.m.; Saturday, June 15, 8 p.m.; (562) 439-2580.
At architect Rudolf Schindler's house, where John Cage lived for a time, pianist/composer James Tenney performs Cage's Sonatas and Interludes for Prepared Piano and a recently discovered 1934 score dedicated by Cage to Schindler's wife, Pauline. This is part of the revived musical activities at the house, in collaboration with the MAK Center for Arts and Architecture.
Schindler House, 835 N. Kings Road, West Hollywood; Friday-Saturday, June 28-29, 7:30 p.m.; (323) 651-1510.
LOS ANGELES OPERA
Superconductor Kent Nagano conducts the season's final productions -- both in their company premieres -- a week apart: Puccini's Turandot (with the composer's abandoned final pages in a new completion by Luciano Berio) and a double bill of Bartók's psychodrama Duke Bluebeard's Castle and Puccini's one-act satire Gianni Schicchi. Hollywood's William Friedkin comes aboard to stage the double bill.
The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.Turandot starts May 25 at 7:30 p.m.;Bluebeard/Schicchi starts May 31 at 7:30 p.m.; the two offerings run in repertory thru June 16; (213) 972-800.
Against a backdrop of chaparral and stately oaks in the hills of Topanga Canyon, the region's most venerable leftie theater company, Theatricum Botanicum, enters its 23rd season of outdoor repertory. It starts June 2 with Shakespeare's The Merchant of Veniceand winds up in late October with A Midsummer Night's Dream.Woven in throughout the summer are also Sunday-morning kids' shows, Peter Hall's musical adaptation of George Orwell's Animal Farm(lyrics by Adrian Mitchell, music by Richard Peaslee) and the triple-tiered plot of Jean Giraudoux's stylish comedy The Madwoman of Chaillot.
Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum, 1419 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Topanga; June 2October 19; perfs in rep, call for schedule, (310) 455-3723.
SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL/L.A.: ROMEO AND JULIET
Also in the open air, underground rock band Lava Diva scores the plot as the Capulets and Montagues feud on a music-industry battlefield. Downtown's skyscrapers take in the action as it unfolds below, in Pershing Square. Then the production goes floral at South Coast Botanic Garden, later in the summer.
Pershing Square, 532 S. Olive St., downtown, TuesdaySunday, July 520, 8 p.m.; South Coast Botanic Garden, 26300 Crenshaw Blvd., Palos Verdes Peninsula, WednesdaySunday, July 25August 4, 8:15 p.m.; (213) 481-2273.
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM
East L.A. Classics transfers Shakespeare's comedy of dreams to Mesoamerica, with Aztec spirits and Spanish conquistadors playing out some regional history in the morning air. The costumes are as colorful as tropical plumage and the action as slapstick as Abbott and Costello.
Ford Amphitheater, 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hollywood; May 28, 30 & 31, June 5 & 6, 9:30 a.m.; (323) 461-3673.
THE 10th ANNUAL BLANK THEATER COMPANY NATIONWIDE YOUNG PLAYWRIGHTS FESTIVAL
Among the few local troupes that give fully professional productions to teenage playwrights, Blank Theater Company presents the winners of its 10th national competition, opening a window to emerging theatrical voices.
Hudson Mainstage Theater, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood; opens Thursday, June 6, 8 p.m.; ThursdaySaturday, 8 p.m.; Sunday, 3 p.m.; through June 30; (323) 661-9827.
LOS ANGELES DANCE INVITATIONAL
This year's Los Angeles Dance Invitational, at the Doolittle Theater, will look both back and forward at the local dance scene. Choreographer Dee Dee Wood (The Sound of Music and Mary Poppins) will present a lifetime-achievement award to Chita Rivera, renowned as Anita in West Side Story, Rosie Grant in Bye Bye Birdie and Velma Kelly in Chicago. Joe Cassini will be honored for distinguished teaching, including a tribute performance choreographed by Raymond G. del Barrio. In all, 12 choreographers and dance companies will be featured, including the Ballet Folklorico del Pacifico, TONGUE, Robert Gilliam, Lisa K. Lock and two hip-hop troupes. The Jazz Tap Ensemble's Caravan Project adds its own teen dancers to the forward-looking mix, which also showcases the young ballerina Diane Booth and the flamenco dancer Timo Nuñez-Bellamy, who won Music Center Spotlight Awards. Proceeds benefit GLASS, a nonprofit that helps homeless, abandoned and abused gay and lesbian youth. Gilmore Girls'Liz Torres will emcee.