Naked Magicians and Funny Liberals
FRIDAY, June 2
They’re promising “full-frontal wizardry,” which could be just a gimmicky way of describing any performance. On the other hand, Naked Magicians sports a “sexy siren” host, whose clothing just may be made to disappear. “Will anyone actually get naked?” the press release teasingly wonders. Well, even if nobody does, you still can’t go wrong with a show featuring five-time Magic Castle Close-Up Magician of the Year nominee Andrew Goldenhersh, dazzling manipulation artist Jason Baney and Brit master illusionist Chris Dugdale, a favorite of HRH Queen Elizabeth II. Hudson Backstage Theater, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat., June 2-3, 8 p.m.; Sun., June 4, 3 & 7 p.m.; thru June 10; $25. (323) 960-7726 or www.?nakedmagicians.com.
The California Institute of Abnormalarts’ HiFalutin Festival of Mirth proves once again that L.A. isn’t a city, it’s a sanitarium. The crackpot blowout “dedicated to the psychotic inner child that resides within all of us” features antics from Rasputin’s Traveling Marionettes; the speakeasy jazz stylings of Creekbird, complete with gorillas and jugglers; psychedelic spaz rock from the Radioactive Chicken Heads; burlesque diva Loud Louisa; Colonel Szandor’s Amazing Geek Show; Miss Satanica, whose wide-ranging talents include light-bulb eating and glass dancing (whatever that is); and the “magical” Pussy Power (whoever that is). CIA, 11334 Burbank Blvd., N. Hlywd.; Fri., June 2 (call for time & price). (818) 506-6353 or www.ciabnormalarts.com.
SATURDAY, June 3
While our leaders were busy selling out to the enemies of the public interest, the satirical show Laughing Liberally had a different kind of sellout performance in February at New York’s Town Hall, delighting audiences with its up-to-the-minute commentary on the headlines, interspersed with video and musical segments. Promising to “save democracy one laugh at a time,” the show makes its West Coast premiere this week with a cast that includes Will Durst, Mark Maron, Dean Obeidallah, Rick Overton and Katie Halper. Wadsworth Theater, 11301 Wilshire Blvd., Veterans Administration grounds, Wstwd.; Sat., June 3, 8:30 p.m.; $20-$50. (213) 365-3500 or www.wadsworththeatre.com.
SUNDAY, June 4
When it comes to pets or kids, there’s no contest. At Best Friends Animal Society’s Summer Pet Adoption Festival, you’ll find a companion that will be eternally loyal, loving and grateful to you, won’t throw a tantrum if you don’t shell out for the latest designer jeans, won’t flunk out of college and leave you with the bill, and won’t mouth off at you, ever. Cool! The family-friendly event includes a children’s activity pavilion, dog-agility demos, the Shelter Dog Parade, pet psychics and more. Manchester Park, 7000 W. Manchester Blvd., Westchester; Sun., June 4, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; free. (310) 869-4010.
In 1925, Frank Neuhauser of Louisville, Kentucky, won the first U.S. National Spelling Bee by correctly spelling “gladiolus.” Pooh — way easy by today’s standards. Recent winning words have included “euonym,” “appoggiatura” and “autochthonous.” But don’t worry — at the Southern California Adult Spelling Bee, you’re more likely to be asked words like “absence,” “acceptable,” “acclaim” and “argument.” No brain strain here. Any adult 16 or older can enter, and the winner gets a prize package and a check for $250, to be donated to his or her favorite charity. Bay Shore Church, 5100 E. The Toledo, Long Beach; Sun., June 4, 2 p.m.; $10 advance registration, $15 door (proceeds benefit the Community Action Team). (562) 439-3316 or www.adultspellingbee.com.
MONDAY, ?June 5
Ooh .?.?. get in the mood for 6/6/06 at Satan’s Rockin’ 666 Eve. “Metal and dead girls, porn and punk” are just some of the tasteful offerings on the “Countdown to Hell” program of performance art, readings, video screenings, book signings and, in a veritable explosion of doomsday kitsch, a gallery of black-velvet paintings and “Serial Killer Art.” Special high- ?(or is that low?) light: reps from the “hair-raising” new women’s ?publication Hellraiser Homemaker, and the Ghoulish Burlesque Girls. And don’t you just love the location? Zen Sushi, 2609 Hyperion Ave., Silver Lake; Mon., June 5, 8 p.m. (323) 665-2929 or (218) 365-8463.
TUESDAY, June 6
Remember that truly ’70s band Earth, Wind and Fire? Well, the group’s founding trumpeter, Leslie Drayton, today an in-demand performer, composer and teacher (at Santa Monica College), can sit back and enjoy the world premiere of his new work at Out of Bounds, a concert featuring Pacific Serenades members Gary Gray, clarinet; David Speltz, cello; Phillip Levy and Connie Kupka, violins; and David Walther, viola. The program also includes Brahms’ Clarinet Quintet in B minor, Op. 115, and Haydn’s String Quartet in C major, Op. 33, No. 3, a.k.a. “The Bird.” UCLA Faculty Center, 405 N. Hilgard Ave., Wstwd.; Tues., June 6, 8 p.m.; $29. (213) 534-3434 or www.pacser.org.
WEDNESDAY, June 7
Preparation H? For movie buffs, there’s only one Dr. Strangelove: Peter Sellers, of course. But now L.A. Theatre Works’ award-winning audio series The Play’s the Thing presents the world premiere of Peter Goodchild’s The Real Dr. Strangelove, a tense drama about H-bomb inventors-turned-enemies Edward Teller and Robert Oppenheimer. The performance is recorded live, without sets or costumes — just a good old-fashioned reading in the raw. Cast not confirmed at press time. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., L.A.; Wed.-Fri., June 7-9, 8 p.m.; Sat., June 10, 3 p.m.; Sun., June 11, 4 p.m.; $39 & $45, $20 students. (310) 827-0889 or www.latw.org.
THURSDAY, June 8
It’s what Angelenos do when they want to have a New York moment: The Downtown Art Walk makes believe we’ve got a city made for strolling. The self-guided tour gives you a free peek at MOCA, the Fine Arts Building Gallery, Grey Goose, L.A. Artcore Center, Pharmaka, Los Angeles Center for Digital Art, the Museum of Neon Art and other major downtown art-exhibition venues. For lunch, dinner or drinks, there’s Pete’s Café & Bar, the official Downtown Art Walk Restaurant and Bar. And, hey — be a sport and take public transit. The walk is easily accessible by the Red, Gold and Blue lines, which run till midnight. Thurs., June 8, noon-9 p.m.; free. (213) 624-6212, info & maps available at?www.downtownartwalk.com.
Get the Weekly Newsletter
Our weekly feature stories, movie reviews, calendar picks and more - minus the newsprint and sent directly to your inbox.