Top 10 Things to do Around LA this Weekend: December 20-22

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Experience Lucent Dossier's new show, "Solstice of the Dreamers," at the Fonda Theatre on Saturday. (Lucent Dossier)

Experience Lucent Dossier's new show, "Solstice of the Dreamers," at the Fonda Theatre on Saturday. (Lucent Dossier)

Friday, December 20


It’s A Wonderful Life @ The Cinefamily (Mid-City West)

I couldn’t believe that my boyfriend had never seen the Frank Capra classic, so I forced him to watch it last Christmas. I wish I waited until this year, though, since the Cinefamily is screening the film in 35mm every day from now until Dec. 26. If you still know anyone that hasn’t seen it or if you could never possibly get enough of George Bailey on your own, tickets are just $12.


“Stomp” @ Saban Theatre (Beverly Hills)

For over two decades, the percussion group has delighted audiences around the world with their creative use of found items, from matchboxes and brooms to garbage cans and Zippo lighters, to fill venues with sound. Their explosive shows incorporate dance, music and theatrical performance for an electrifying experience that audiences of all ages will enjoy.

“Twas the Night Martians Invaded Burlesque” @ Fais Do-Do (West Adams)

Peepshow Menagerie presents a holiday-themed burlesque show with performances from Scarlett Letter, Madeline Sinclaire, Lucky DeLuxe, Holly Rock-It, Japan’s Nikita Bitch Project, New York’s Belle-Morte Baudelaire, Oklahoma’s Holli Would and many more. In addition to the dancers, there is live music and comedy. And, most importantly, the event benefits the Burlesque Hall of Fame/Exotic World museum in Las Vegas.

Saturday, December 21


Lucent Dossier Experience @ The Fonda (Hollywood)

The Fonda is an ideal venue to experience the wonder that is Lucent Dossier up close and personal, and what better night to see them on than the longest of the year, Winter Solstice? The L.A. troupe unveil a new stage show, “Solstice of the Dreamers,” which combines dance, aerial arts, futuristic clowns, electronic and live music from Black 22’s, in a post-apocalyptic vision of the world. Leave reality outside the theater doors, and step into the realm of Lucent Dossier.


“The Nutcracker” @ UCLA’s Royce Hall (Westwood)

I’m not sure if there’s a holiday tradition as universally widespread as attending a performance of the classic ballet, adapted from E.T.A. Hoffmann’s story and set to the famous score by Tchaikovsky. You only need to hear the first notes of the “March” to begin having visions of Christmas dance in your head. The Los Angeles Ballet continues their annual presentation of The Nutcracker with two shows today and two tomorrow ( at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m.).


Ugly Sweater Run @ L.A. State Historic Park (Elysian Park)

It seems like ugly holiday sweater parties are all the rage this year. Why not up the ante and sign up for this 5k that snakes around and through the park? The race begins at 11 a.m., and hot chocolate, Angry Orchard Hard Cider and Sam Adams Winter Lager are going to be served at different stations throughout the course. if you just want to watch, there are photo stations and holiday music at the start and holiday goodies, awards for best mustache, beard and sweater after the race.


The Brian Setzer Orchestra @ Dolby Theatre (Hollywood)

Fronted by three-time Grammy Award-winner Brian Setzer, the 18-piece orchestra celebrates the 10th anniversary of its “Christmas Rocks!” tour with a swinging party at the beautiful theater. With a setlist that is sure to include their own songs, like “Jump Jive an’ Wail,” Stray Cats and other rock ‘n’ roll covers, as well as new twists on holiday classics, the show is sure to put you in a completely festive mood.

Stevie Wonder @ Nokia Theatre (Downtown)

The Motown legend hosts his 18th annual House Full of Toys benefit concert, which collects and distributes toys and gifts to people in need. This year, Wonder has announced that he will perform his 1976 landmark album, Songs in the Key of Life, in its entirety at the show. He has hinted that several of the R&B, soul and jazz greats and musicians who played on the album will join him on stage for all of the songs that many of us know each and every word to, like “Isn’t She Lovely,” “As,” “Sir Duke,” “I Wish” and “Knocks Me Off My Feet.”

Sunday, December 22


Elf @ Aero Theatre (Santa Monica)

It’s hard to believe it’s the 10th anniversary of Jon Favreau’s Christmas comedy that spawned a spaghetti with maple syrup craze, as well as a Broadway musical, and introduced the world to Zooey Deschanel’s pipes. American Cinematheque celebrates the anniversary with a screening of the film that stars Will Ferrell, James Caan, Bob Newhart and Mary Steenburgen as part of their Holiday Spirit on the Big Screen series. Other screenings include Auntie Mame and White Christmas (Dec. 19), the first two Die Hards (Dec. 20), It’s A Wonderful Life (Dec. 20, 21 & 23), The Bishop’s Wife (Dec. 22) and The Poseidon Adventure (Dec. 28).


“The Lion King” @ Pantages Theatre (Hollywood)

If you have family in town visiting this week, this is the perfect place to take them for the 1 p.m. matinee or 6:30 p.m. evening show. I saw the Julie Taymor-directed, Tony-winning musical for the first time at the Pantages, and it was a thoroughly unforgettable experience, complete with birds flying overhead, incredible costumes and an amazing score. You’re guaranteed to start singing along to every song, from ” Circle of Life” and “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King” to “Hakuna Matata” and “Can You Feel the Love Tonight.” Runs through Jan. 12, 2014.

Yuri Shimoda is a Staff Reporter for, covering entertainment, culture and lifestyle.
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