By Michael Goldstein
By Dennis Romero
By Sarah Fenske
By Matthew Mullins
By Patrick Range McDonald
By LA Weekly
By Dennis Romero
By Simone Wilson
FRIDAY, December 5
Harry Shearer (do we really have to explain who he is?) and his lovely wife, Judith Owen (ditto), invite one and all to Judith Owen and Harry Shearer’s Holiday Sing-Along. And if this doesn’t hark your herald or at least deck your halls, then nothing will. Joining the couple will be Julia Fordham, Julianna Raye, Steve Poltz and more, proclaiming their mirthright to sing Christmas carols. This is the show Harry and Judith have been doing in some form since it began in their living room, and now their version of “Christmas With the Devil” has become as iconic as Bing Crosby and “White Christmas.” The Steve Allen Theater, 4773 Hollywood Blvd., Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat., Dec. 5-6, 8 p.m.; $25. (800) 595-4TIX or www.steveallentheater.com.
SATURDAY, December 6
Most of us know a character or two whose eccentricities and offbeat charm make them worthy of documentary. Longtime Laurel Canyon resident Bill Jackson is one of those characters. The man’s a multitalented handyman who never met a project he couldn’t invent some newfangled tool to accomplish (witness the jerry-rigged pulley system he invented to hoist sod into my backyard). Dude invented a genius system so he can eat dinner while having a whirlpool in his bathtub. He’s also among the vanishing breed of true Laurel Canyon hippie, though he prefers the term “freak.” Neighbor Dyanne Asimov spent seven years following Bill around the canyon for her documentary Bill’s Mountain. If you want to meet a beautiful soul (who may look a tad like an ax murderer), check it out. The filmmaker will answer questions after the screening. Occidental College, Weingart 117, 1821 Campus Road; Sat., Dec. 6, 6 p.m.; free. (323) 259-2700.
SUNDAY, December 7
Rob Zabrecky — the name means “abracadabra” sideways — is an amazing magician (aren’t they all?). He’s brought back his popular Millennium Magic IX, “a program of magic and illusion” featuring John Carney, Mike Caveney, Fitzgerald, Tina Lenert, Jonathan Levit, David Lovering (yes, from the Pixies), Max Maven, Joe Skilton, Joseph Tran and more. What more do you need to know? Read on: Theatre West, 3333 Cahuenga Blvd. West, Universal City; Fri.-Sat., Dec. 5-6, 8 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 7, 2 p.m.; $15 & $20. (323) 851-7977 or www.theatrewest.org.
MONDAY, December 8
Having just cried through Year of the Dog with Molly Shannon, I will be first in line for Pet Night With Santa! Yeah for Santa! Yeah for pets! Burbank Town Center, 201 E. Magnolia Blvd., Burbank; Mon., Dec. 8, 6-9 p.m.; free. (818) 566-8617.
TUESDAY, December 9
This week’s cut-and-paste special: Name That Tune with Josh Kun and Leonard Nimoy. “A special night of lost music, excavated memory and forgotten Jewish LPs, as Josh Kun talks with the illustrious Leonard Nimoy. Following is a book signing of Josh Kun and Roger Bennett’s And You Shall Know Us by the Trail of Our Vinyl: The Jewish Past as Told by the Records We Have Loved and Lost. Santa Monica Museum of Art, Bergamot Station G1, 2525 Michigan Ave., Santa Monica; Tues., Dec. 9, 7:30 p.m.; free, resv. required. (310) 586-6488, ext. 11.
WEDNESDAY, December 10
Back when Margaret Cho was funny, she was really funny. Now that she’s not funny anymore, she has more time for her reality TV show and causes like marriage equality. A night of comedy with talented gay comics, including host Ian Harvie, Ant, Alec Mapa, Erin Foley, Jorja Fox and Cho, with music by Jon Brion, benefits Equality California. Largo at the Coronet, 366 N. La Cienega Blvd., West Hollywood; Wed., Dec. 10, 8 p.m.; $30. (310) 855-0350.
THURSDAY, December 11
Longtime peace activist Jerry Rubin is turning 65 and shows no signs of slowing down in saving the trees, the people or whatever else needs saving. He’s throwing himself a Non-Retirement Activist Birthday Party. This is not to be confused with the “60th Birthday Peace Party and Concert” he threw for himself five years ago, though once again, pals Ross Altman, David Zasloff and other political humorists will speak, sing, joke and even karaoke in Rubin’s honor. Let’s let him tell it: “Certainly, I’ll speak, after all, it’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to. There will also be an open mike for the public to sing peace songs or do peace poems — I mean it is an activist party.” What’s his proudest accomplishment? “That I managed to survive thousands of people asking me if I’m the antiwar activist Jerry Rubin from the ’60s. And that events I’ve put on in my nearly 30 years of activism have been honored to get an L.A. Weekly Pick of the Week more than 30 times.” The Gaslite, 2020 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica; Thurs., Dec. 11, 6-9 p.m.; free (cake!). (310) 399-1000.
(*Yes, attentive readers, this headline is a rerun, but the Pulitzer Prize committee added headlines as a category, so we’re breaking it out again.)
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