He may have helped to jump-start the anti–Bill Cosby bandwagon last year with his comments on rape allegations against the comedian, but don't hold that against Hannibal Buress. In the last couple of years, he's become the darling of indie comedy nerds, thanks to three stand-up albums. In a 2014 Comedy Central special, Buress riffed on everything from sex on drugs to life on the road to the freedom of peeing in your own kitchen sink. Buress has had brief writing stints on Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock, a recurring role on Broad City and, since 2012, played sidekick on faux talk show The Eric Andre Show, making guests such as Seth Rogen, Jimmy Kimmel and porn stars feel very uncomfortable. For his current Comedy Camisado tour, he'll be joined by Eric Andre, Thundercat, Open Mike Eagle and Tony Trimm. The Wiltern, 3790 Wilshire Blvd., Koreatown; Fri., Feb. 27, 7 p.m.; $35. (800) 745-3000, livenation.com. —Siran Babayan
The L.A. Phil's new in/SIGHT series for multimedia events gets curiouser and curiouser with the West Coast premiere of a Lewis Carroll "remix." Artist-designer-director Netia Jones' sumptuously surreal take on Alice in Wonderland is a stew of live action, interactive animated projections, far-fetched costumery and madhouse choreography, set to David Henry Hwang's libretto, composer Unsuk Chin's bravely modernist musical score and, fittingly, wittily wicked illustrations by gonzo legend Ralph Steadman (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas). It promises to be a gloriously dotty extravaganza in which you're never sure where you are going to be from one minute to another. Off with your head! Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., dwntwn.; Fri.-Sat., Feb. 27-28, 8 p.m.; $20-$105. (323) 850-2000, laphil.com. —John Payne
When a Japanese-American woman named Iva Toguri became stranded in Japan during World War II, she was forced by the Japanese Imperial Army to serve as a radio broadcaster for its propaganda program. After Japan's defeat, Toguri, aka the infamous "Tokyo Rose," was tried for treason by American government dimbulbs eager to make an example of her assumed treachery. She served seven years of a 10-year sentence in federal prison and was officially pardoned by President Gerald Ford in 1979. This story is re-enacted in Zero Hour: Tokyo Rose's Last Tape, a visually ambitious stage thriller, written and directed by Japan-born photography/video artist Miwa Yanagi. REDCAT, 631 W. Second St., dwntwn.; Thu.-Sat., Feb. 26-28, 8:30 p.m.; $25-$30; students $20-$24, CalArts students/faculty/staff $12-$15. (213) 237-2800, redcat.org. —John Payne
John Carpenter is responsible for a bevy of sci-fi and horror classics, none better than The Thing. The New Beverly is screening it along with Runaway Train, which scored Oscar nods for stars Jon Voight and Eric Roberts, tonight at 7:30. Set on an Antarctic research station, Carpenter's body-horror benchmark is haunted by an alien life-form that invades and kills its hosts, who show no signs of their transformation — the thing can be, and usually is, anyone in the room. Just as wintry is Runaway Train, which concerns a driverless, out-of-control locomotive in Alaska. The New Beverly, 7165 Beverly Blvd., Beverly Grove; Fri., Feb. 27, The Thing at 7:30 p.m., Runaway Train at 9:45 p.m.; Sat., Feb. 28, The Thing at 7:30 p.m., Runaway Train at 5:10 p.m. & 9:45 p.m.; $8. (323) 938-4038, thenewbev.com. —Michael Nordine
"From Enchantment to Eschaton" is artist Dani Tull's first major solo show of new work in his hometown of L.A. in what seems like forever. He's been doing psychologically charged, quasi-ritualistic, performance- and sound-based works with an array of collaborators, and in some out-there locations, such as disused space-lab campuses on mountain hillsides. Despite his penchant for spiritual, interdisciplinary experiences that celebrate the weirdness of Southern California culture, Tull is firmly engaged in the formal conversation about objects of visual art as well. He's making drawings and sculptures and plans to show them in an installation environment. But Tull is Tull, so there will be a special sound performance inside the installation on March 21. LAM Gallery, 913 N. Highland Ave., Hlywd.; Sat., Feb. 28, 6-8 p.m.; free. Exhibition continues Tue.-Sat., 10:30 a.m.-6 p.m., through April 11. (323) 498-5977, lamgalleryla.squarespace.com. —Shana Nys Dambrot
Edgar Arceneaux is a prolific artist with a fluid sense of genre — moving among painting, drawing, installation and video — and a fluid sense of time, too. His favorite thing is to graft together images and ideas from unlikely sources, creating a mild surrealism that enlightens the present reality. Such is the case with A Time to Break Silence, the artist's first feature-length film, an allegorical reimagining of American culture that's a sort of mash-up of Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination and Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, which premiered two days later. It screens as part of "Edgar Arceneaux: Frame Rate," which includes two other video works projected simultaneously. Riverside Studios, 3352 N. San Fernando Road, Glassell Park; Sat., Feb. 28, 7 p.m.; free with online RSVP by Feb. 25. (646) 620-8289, nomadicdivision.org. —Shana Nys Dambrot
The last time we wrote about painter John Knuth, he was showing pointillist paintings made by feeding houseflies watercolor paint and waiting for them to puke onto the canvas. So it's safe to say this artist is not afraid of unconventional materials. This time, it's emergency road flares and survival-kit contents. The flares' deployment in proximity to thermal blankets, for example, creates not only pyrotechnic spectacles (captured against the dramatic backdrop of high desert landscapes in the accompanying video pieces) but also unpredictable, compelling abstract patterns and textures, which end up reading as very good paintings. "Expanding on an expansive subject, Part 5: John Knuth, Desert Dispersion" is the fifth in a nine-part exhibition series exploring how painters are, er, blowing up the genre. Armory Center for the Arts, 145 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena; Sat., Feb. 28, 6-8 p.m.; $5 donation. Exhibition continues Tue.-Sun., 12-5 p.m., through April 10. (626) 792-5101, armoryarts.org. —Shana Nys Dambrot
At the Pacific Pole Championships, pole dancing is more than fashionable exercise, and it's definitely not adult entertainment. Female and male professionals will work poles with the strength of gymnasts and the grace of dancers as they vie for a spot at the upcoming national championship. Competitors in this round come from across the Western United States and include both pole dancers and performers who specialize in lyra, aerial work that uses hoops. While the battles will go on all day, only the evening professional competition is open to the public. Los Angeles Convention Center, 1201 S. Figueroa St., dwntwn.; Sat., Feb. 28, 6:30 p.m.; $35-$75. polesportorganization.com. —Liz Ohanesian
Helped along by Disney's purchase of Marvel in 2009, comics have permeated all facets of pop culture. For those who like to celebrate the writers and artists who put pen to ink, there's the Long Beach Comic Expo, an offshoot of the larger Long Beach Comic-Con. This year's guests include legendary artists Art Adams (X-Men, Excalibur, X-Factor, Fantastic Four, Hulk), Jim Cheung (Young Avengers, Secret Warriors, X-Force, Avengers vs. X-Men), Chris Claremont (X-Men's Days of Future Past & The Dark Phoenix Saga) and many, many more. Yes, there will be actors there — Barry Bostwick of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Spy Hard — and the ever-popular cosplay element as well. Contests, vendors, exhibitors and more round out the fantastic festivities. Long Beach Convention Center, 300 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach; Sat., Feb. 28-Sun., March 1, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; $45 weekend pass, $30 Saturday only, $20 Sunday only. longbeachcomicexpo.com.—Lina Lecaro
"It's a little surreal," local author Cynthia Bond tells L.A. Weekly of finding her debut novel, Ruby, the newest feature of Oprah's Book Club. (It's about to enter The New York Times' best-seller list). Bond describes "putting together the book like a pot of gumbo." Ruby, which follows a troubled woman's return home to rural Texas, is influenced by Bond's own life, the stories of her family and the homeless youth she worked with for 10 years at the L.A. LGBT Center. "I wanted to tell a great story, but I also wanted to help people understand about human trafficking, what's going on right now in L.A. and all over the world," she says. Bond returns to the center tonight for a free reading. Los Angeles LGBT Center's Renberg Theatre, The Village at Ed Gould Plaza, 1125 N. McCadden Place, Hlywd.; Sun., March 1, 7 p.m.; free (suggested donation $10). (323) 860-7300, lalgbtcenter.org. —Sascha Bos
The lovable bigot, the women's libber, the blue-collar African-American family — the 1970s belonged to Norman Lear, thanks to All in the Family, Maude, The Jeffersons and Good Times. In his new book, Even This I Get to Experience, Lear writes about growing up in the Great Depression and fighting in World War II before he became one of the biggest sitcom producers in TV history. He helped create more than 100 shows, nine of which aired simultaneously. As part of Live Talks Los Angeles, Lear discusses his memoir with another comedic heavyweight, Emmy-winning actress Jane Lynch (Glee). (More on Lear's impact on diversity in Hollywood on page 11.) Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica; Mon., March 2, 8 p.m.; $25-$50. livetalksla.org. —Siran Babayan
This week, Los Angeles Ballet and American Ballet Theatre unveil different visions of Sleeping Beauty, each a world premiere. Having already presented Swan Lake and The Nutcracker this season, Sleeping Beauty concludes LAB's trilogy of Tchaikovsky's three ballets. Co–artistic directors Thordal Christensen and Colleen Neary choreographed it after Marius Petipa's 1890 original. ABT's Sleeping Beauty, choreographed by former Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Alexei Ratmansky, is inspired by the 1921 Ballets Russes de Monte Carlo version. ABT runs through the weekend. LAB continues through March. ABT at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa; Tue.-Fri., March 3-6, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., March 7, 2 & 7:30 p.m.; Sun., March 8, 1 & 7 p.m.; $19-$149. (714) 556-2121, scfta.org. LAB at Valley Performing Arts Center, 18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge; Sat., Feb. 28, 7:30 p.m. Also at the Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale; Sat., March 21, 7:30 p.m.; and at UCLA Royce Hall, 340 Royce Drive, Wstwd.; Sat., March 28, 7:30 p.m.; $35.50-$103.50; $29-$83 seniors, students & children. (310) 998-7782, losangelesballet.org. —Ann Haskins
Historian Eric Foner, who consulted on 12 Years a Slave, is a Pulitzer Prize winner for his book The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery. In his most recent effort, Gateway to Freedom: The Hidden History of the Underground Railroad, the Columbia University professor continues his exploration of slavery in the United States, with a focus on little-known heroes who helped facilitate escape routes. Author and Harvard Law School professor Randall Kennedy leads Wednesday night's talk with Foner at Los Angeles' Central Library. Los Angeles Central Library, Mark Taper Auditorium, 630 W. Fifth St., dwntwn.; Wed., March 4, 7:15 p.m.; early arrival recommended; free, reservation required. (213) 228-7000, lfla.org. —Liz Ohanesian
Singer, artist and designer Kim Gordon talks about her new book, Girl in a Band, which chronicles the history of her band, Sonic Youth, and the evolution of alternative music. Gordon traces her roots back to her childhood in L.A. with a father who taught for UCLA, plus her move to New York, the city's no-wave scene and stints in early bands. Gordon also opens up about motherhood, ex-husband Thurston Moore and other alt-music royalty, namely — and to no one's surprise — Courtney Love. Part of Live Talks Los Angeles, the event is moderated by singer Aimee Mann. Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica; Thu., March 5, 8 p.m.; $20-$43 (top price includes Gordon's book). livetalksla.org. —Siran Babayan
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