Redcat Theatre at Disney Hall Celebrates Its 10th Anniversary With Gala Event
By Jay Weston
On Saturday evening, the REDCAT Theatre at downtown's Disney Hall celebrated its 10th anniversary with a gala celebration, which also honored The Walt Disney Company and artist Catherine Opie, the latter a singular American artist (whose talent made her one of CalArts' most influential graduates.) I was delighted to be invited to the event as a guest of the Herb Alpert Foundation. Seated with me at the Alpert table, hosted by Rona Sebastian of the foundation, were many faculty members of CalArts, California Institute for the Arts, the Valencia-located school, which operates the Redcat Theatre. I didn't realize until then that "Redcat" stands for Roy (O) and Edna Disney/CalArtsTheatre, whose son Roy E. had initially funded this theatre, which opened with the hall in November of 2003.
In a live performance, technology typically plays the role of fairy godmother, dressing up the stage with wondrous special effects. But it’s far more interesting when it plays God.
When technology is used to create the art, as opposed to simply jazz up the show, that’s where innovation lies.
From pop concerts to ballet, high-tech effects are usually a secondary feature, worked into the design elements. You remember Beyonce interacting with an army of clones in her animation-enhanced performance of “Run the World (Girls)” at the 2011 Billboards Music Awards. That was a collaboration with media artist Kenzo Hakuta, a Sidwell Friends graduate who studied under video pioneer Nam June Paik.
Liz Meredith and John Somers go epic on five-LP box set
By Bret McCabe
Composer/guitarist John Somers finds ideas for sound pieces in everyday places. Take, for instance, the path encircling Lake Montebello off East 33rd Street. A social worker by day, Somers had a client, “this really neat old woman,” that he used to take for walks around the lake. “We would have these really nice walks and talk about life—not in a deep way,” he says during a weeknight interview. “She would ask, ‘Have you found a girl yet?’ Stuff like that. So I had her in mind when I was thinking of the image I started with, and it evolved from there.”
He’s talking about “Montebello Lake,” a single composition that is split over two sides on a single LP. A collaboration with local violist and composer Liz Meredith, over its 39 minutes “Montebello Lake” parts I and II suggest late-afternoon sunlight slowly drifting into dusk. Meredith’s viola lines trace long drones that capture that levitating twilight when the sun sets yet the sky remains bathed in light. Somers’ guitar textures get smeared into long shadows, and the piece concludes in a ringing tone of night’s arrival, that reminder that dark has imperceptibly swallowed the sky and it’s time to head home.
Catherine Opie Discusses Her Three L.A. Art Exhibits
By Alissa Walker
Photographer Catherine Opie is perhaps best known for her portraits featuring the heavily pierced and tattooed bodies of the LGBT community, or the sweaty, clear-eyed optimism of high school football players. She has captured frozen landscapes littered with pastel-colored ice-fishing cabins and fluid ones bobbing with surfers awaiting their next wave. And for the past 25 years, Opie has documented Los Angeles, where the Ohio native chose to stay after receiving her masters at CalArts, rather than return to the Bay Area, where she'd studied as an undergrad. "I was much more interested in the art scene here," she says. "I felt that in relationship to the city I had a lot more to explore."
Currently, three exhibitions are up at three L.A.-area institutions — WuHo Gallery and Regen Projects, both in Hollywood, and the Long Beach Museum of Art — featuring photographs that show how her exploration of L.A. as both a subject and a backdrop has come to shape her work.
will.i.am is going back to school and furthering his education in computer science.
The Black Eyed Pea is enrolling in a computer science class at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) in Los Angeles in September.
"The future is technology and I want to see kids embrace that," he said about why he is taking the class. "The world doesn't need another musician, it needs another Bill Gates. When I tell kids they should be computer scientists and mathematicians, I'm not just saying that because it's cool to say...In September I’ll be taking a computer science course at CalArts in L.A. because I’m passionate about where the world's going. I'm curious about it and I want to contribute."
Would you like to take computer science classes to improve your knowledge of technology, too? Do you agree with will's stance?
Jack Black Helps Raise $600,000 for Los Angeles' REDCAT Theater
The gala evening, celebrating the performance space's 10th anniversary, honored the Walt Disney Co. and artist Catherine Opie
by Tamara Rawitt
Downtown L.A.’s REDCAT theater celebrated its 10th anniversary Saturday night with a gala dinner hosted by debut master of ceremonies Jack Black and honoring artist Catherine Opie and the Walt Disney Co.
Launched by the California Institute of the Arts inside the Walt Disney Concert Hall complex in 2003, the space -- whose name is an acronym of Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater -- has a mandate to present innovative visual and performance works.
Jack Black's REDCAT debut is a gala for Catherine Opie, Disney Co.
By Ellen Olivier
As emcee for the REDCAT Gala on Saturday, Jack Black said he had always hoped his debut at the multidisciplinary theater would include a performance of his “special post, post-modern interpretive dance,” complete with a “big dynamic gymnastic finale.” He pointed out, however, that instead of the usual stage at the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater, the venue that night had tables filling the room wall to wall.
“I know that CalArts and REDCAT encourage artists to take risks,” Black said, “but I don’t think that injuring the gala patrons is what they had in mind.”
For those wondering how the star of “Bernie,” “School of Rock” and “Kung Fu Panda” came to host the gala, Black said he married into the CalArts family. Black’s wife Tanya Haden studied experimental animation at the California Institute of the Arts, and her father, jazz bassist Charlie Haden, founded the CalArts Jazz Program.
The Downtown theater group honors The Walt Disney Company and Catherine Opie.
By Alexandra Calamari
On Saturday, March 16, 2013, Jack Black hosted the 2013 Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (REDCAT) Gala, which this year marked the 10th anniversary of the groundbreaking group for theater, media, and visual arts. A selection of Los Angeles philanthropists and supporters of the arts joined together to pay tribute to The Walt Disney Company and Catherine Opie at the annual gala event.
One Man Band: Llyn Foulkes Is Bringing His Los Angeles Style to New York
By Dan Duray
At Documenta 13 last summer, the rotunda of the Museum Fridericianum in Kassel, Germany, served as the nexus for the town-sized show, a tightly curated “brain” that featured Giorgio Morandi still lifes hung near actual bottles from Mr. Morandi’s studio and Man Ray’s Object to be Destroyed, a metronome embellished with a photograph of Lee Miller’s eye. Lodged somewhere in the Documenta skull, then, was new work from Los Angeles-based artist Llyn Foulkes, whose art showed in a dark upper hall in the Fridericianum. His retrospective at L.A.’s the Hammer Museum comes to New York’s New Museum on June 12.
A high profile arts institution recently joined the spiking number of free online classes, with the California Institute of the Arts teaming up with Coursera. The rapidly expanding offerer of MOOCs, or “massive open online courses,” is only a year old, but since it started in 2012 it’s grown from partnering with three higher education institutions to now over 60. With their brief, mushroom cloud of a life, it will still take time for the MOOCs to prove to be game changers in the structure of higher education, or if they’ll just fade as a fad.