There seems to be something for every taste in the lineup of events slated for fall.
From politics, with a visit by former Vice President Joe Biden, and music, with one music fest in Glendale and another in Eagle Rock, to author Salmon Rushdie, once condemned to death for his writings by Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini, and Jane Kaczmarek appearing at the Pasadena Playhouse, Fall 2017 has something for everyone when it comes to theater, dance, literature, music and visual presentation.
As Arts Editor Carl Kozlowski points out, fall is a great season for book lovers. Rushdie, whose latest tome is titled “The Golden House,” will visit Vroman’s Bookstore on Sept. 15, followed soon thereafter by left-leaning Hollywood veteran Ed Asner and Emmy-winning sitcom writer Ed Weinberger, who teamed up to write “The Grouchy Historian: An Old-Time Lefty Defends Our Constitution Against Right-Wing Hypocrites and Nutjobs.” They’ll be at Vroman’s on Oct. 25.
Other authors slated to appear locally include former LA Times book critic David Ulin, astronaut Scott Kelly and televangelist Joel Osteen, among many others.
Just as important as the authors are the people — especially kids — who read their work. The Pasadena Loves YA teen book festival presents 20 Young Adult genre authors in a series of panel discussions and book signings on Sept. 16 at the Pasadena Central Library. The library will then give local authors a chance to shine at its 5th Annual Author Fair during the latest edition of ArtNight Pasadena on Oct. 13.
In a kind of political theater, former Vice President Joe Biden will be in town to take the stage at the Ambassador on Oct. 25 as part of the Distinguished Speaker Series, followed by Bill Nye, aka “The Science Guy,” aka Planetary Society executive director, on Nov. 29. At the “real” theater, patrons will be thrilled to see a sequel to “Late Night Catechism,” with the premiere of Sierra Madre Playhouse’s “Til Death Do Us Part: Late Nite Catechism” by Maripat Donovan with March Silvia, opening Sept. 22.
Jane Kaczmarek will be at the Pasadena Playhouse starring in Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town” from Sept. 26 to Oct. 22, the popular Wicked Lit ensemble returns to help us get in the Halloween spirit, and A Noise Within and Theatre@Boston Court offer world premiere productions this season.
The two biggest “don’t miss” dance events of the season, so says longtime PW reviewer Jana J. Monji, are the latest production of “The Red Shoes,” premiering at the Ahmanson on Sept. 15, and the annual Victorian Grand Ball at Pasadena Masonic Hall, on Nov. 25. Of course, “The Nutcracker” is a favorite every Christmas, and the Alex Theatre this year is offering two separate versions of the Tchaikovsky classic, one on Dec. 9-10, and the other on Christmas Eve.
As PW writer Rebecca Kuzins reports, the Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena Museum of California Art, the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens and USC Pacific Asia Museum are among 70 Southern California cultural institutions participating in “Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA,” a series of thematically linked art exhibits supported by grants from the Getty Foundation. As a result, Rebecca informs us, a broad range of Latin American artwork –– from 15th-century depictions of nature to 21st-century performance pieces — will be the focus of exhibitions opening this fall at these four Pasadena-area museums.
For its contribution, the Norton Simon Museum’s entire collection of modeles — the first and only set of bronze figures cast from Edgar Degas’ original wax and pastel statuettes — will be displayed from Nov. 10 through April 9.
On a somewhat lighter note, “She Bends: Women in Neon” will open on Sept. 17 at Glendale’s Museum of Neon Art, featuring neon artworks by more than 20 women artists.
In the world of music, local aficionados would stand for nothing less than a top-notch lineup of bands, and they will get just that at the 18th annual Eagle Rock Music Festival, this year set for Oct. 7.
Before that, on Sept. 16, be sure not to miss the 2nd Annual Open Arts & Music Festival in Glendale, featuring a diverse lineup that includes Run River North, Buyepongo, DUCKWRTH, Boogaloo Assassins, Wondem, Yavaran, El Santo Golpe and DJ Monalisa.
Of course, what would the Pasadena fall arts scene be without ARTNight, this year set for Friday, Oct. 13. At this twice-yearly celebration, art lovers are transported to and from galleries, museums and informal and impromptu performance spaces across town.
If the litany of stellar events and performance that we’ve presented here does not fill your artistic dance card, it’s likely nothing ever will. Oh, well. We know we can’t make you have fun, but at least we tried.