All entries by this author

The Art of Bookmaking at Narrow Books

February 6, 2010 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Books and Lectures

In the heyday of Kindle and Google Books, print literature often goes the way of the handwritten letter – which is to say, the digital way.  Narrow Books, owned and operated by LA locals Christopher Lepkowski and Mark Dischler, goes the way of literary art.
With bindings and paper to give a stationery enthusiast goosebumps, titles [...]



Neil Gaiman at UCLA Live

February 5, 2010 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Books and Lectures

The film adaptation of his Coraline is Oscar-nominated for Best Animated Feature Film, his Graveyard Book won 2009’s Newbery Medal, and his bees won him a blue ribbon for honey in the county fair.  Neil Gaiman, ladies and gentlemen, is a talented man.
During his appearance at UCLA Live on Feb. 4, Gaiman assured the audience [...]



Low-tech Dance at Anatomy Riot

January 15, 2010 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Theater and Dance

The genius loci of modern dance in Los Angeles can certainly be found at Anatomy Riot.  On Monday night, Riot #35 (which was more like a peaceable gathering) brought familiar faces from companies and improv jams alike to MiMoDa, a studio venue in West LA.  There were no programs, and this reviewer took no notes.  [...]



iDfest Explores Improv Dance

January 10, 2010 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Theater and Dance

At the close of Friday night’s performance, an LA Improv Dance Festival director thanked the attendees, pointing out that the show had demonstrated where the art of improv dance has been going lately.  Jones Welsh (of Making Faces Productions) is correct.  From the blurry intentions of a meandering group demonstration to the spot-on dance culture [...]



Los Angeles Ballet’s ‘Nutcracker’

December 24, 2009 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Theater and Dance

When Lev Ivanov first choreographed “The Nutcracker” in 1892, the parameters of classical ballet decided a great deal for him.  A gesture system, theatrical conventions, and the arrangement of the grand pas de deux came from tradition and from his mentor, Marius Petipa.  Even the story, based on E.T.A. Hoffman’s, was something Petipa commissioned to [...]



Dance Happening Downtown

November 14, 2009 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Theater and Dance

This weekend, REDCAT is presenting a 1960s performance re-created. In much the same vein, Hana van der Kolk is presenting something new. “Once More, Again, One” is reminiscent of the original postmodern performances. But it stands on its own as a remarkable piece of work, freshening the live arts scene in a unique and contemporary [...]



Dance Review: ‘parades & changes, replays’

November 12, 2009 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Theater and Dance

“Parades & changes, replays” is low-tech.  It is also very, very colorful.  If you’ve studied postmodern art, music, or dance, it’s best that you head to REDCAT for one of the performances this week.
When Anna Halprin first presented the piece in 1965, then “Parades and Changes,” it made quite a stir: nudity was a novelty, [...]



Dance Review: DV8 at UCLA Live

November 7, 2009 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Theater and Dance

It is an art to let an audience forget about “dance” or “performance” and instead submerge it in a vision so thorough, so absolutely clear-sighted that town hall meeting, support group, feature film, and personal journal meld into each other onstage.  It is this art that makes DV8 Physical Theatre so much greater than the [...]



November Dance Around LA

November 5, 2009 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Theater and Dance

If there’s one thing LA has to brag about in the arts, it’s range: local groups, global tours, and venues large and small around the city consistently offer a variety of events, suiting tastes from silly to serious. The dance calendar for early November seems especially packed. If you’re looking for a performance, look to [...]



R. Crumb and Upcoming Events at UCLA Live

November 2, 2009 | By Colleen M. McLellan | Category: Books and Lectures

What are comics?  The Sunday funnies are one thing; franchised superheroes are certainly another. Between World War II and the rise of television, a pastiche of super-heroism and sexy, gory pulp fiction made the heyday of widely read comics, but the period was quickly censored into obscurity.
R. Crumb, UCLA Live’s most recent literary guest, is [...]