December 09 Things To Do Around LA

EntToday’s Holiday 09 Calendar of Events
December 09 Things To Do Around LA

Trying to catch the holiday spirit in the Los Angeles area? Here are a few highlights of special celebrations, performances and things to do this December.

The big holiday treat this season is seeing the Grinch in Hollywood! The Dr. Seuss classic How The Grinch Stole Christmas has been turned into a delightful stage musical, presented at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood through December 27, 2009.

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It’s a show about finding the true spirit of Christmas in Whoville, and the whole wonderful little town has come alive with colorful sets and “Who” characters.

Among the high-energy performers is five-time Emmy winner John Larroquette (Night Court) as “Old Max,” the Grinch’s dog who reminisces about that fateful Christmas. Larroquette sings, dances and wags his tail.

But the fellow who grabs the spotlight (and everything else) is hidden under layers of shaggy fur– Stefan Karl as the grumpy green Grinch. Karl is well known to youngsters who watch him play Robbie Rotten on Nickelodeon’s Lazy Town. And a lot of young Hollywood stars are showing up to see him in the show.

Romi Dames of Hannah Montana fame was there on opening night, along with Devon Werkheiser (Ned’s Declassified), BooBoo Stewart (Twilight Saga: Eclipse), Molly Quinn (Castle and A Christmas Carol) and a charming new Australian actor Nathan Coenen (the teen cutie has lots of fans Down Under thanks to his Sleepover Club series).

There are 16 original songs in the Broadway musical version, faithfully based on the Dr. Seuss book. But the classic tune “You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch,” from the much-loved animated special, is also in the show and the audience is encouraged to sing along as they enjoy How The Grinch Stole Christmas in Hollywood.

Not to be missed holiday concerts

To lift your spirits for one night only, the “Vox Femina Holiday Voices” concert is being presented, Saturday, Dec. 12 at 8 pm, at the First Congregational Church in Pasadena. It is a unique feel-good concert that is sure to make the season bright.

The internationally known Vox Femina women’s chorus is offering a holiday concert featuring carols and lullabies, both in English and Spanish, and the audience will experience Vox “on the journey to Bethlehem.” The repertoire will include the holiday favorite “Santa Baby” in true Vox Femina style.

The LA-based Vox Femina was founded by Dr. Iris S. Levine in 1997 and has established itself as one of the preeminent women’s choruses in the U.S. It has an exciting schedule of touring performances. Go to www.voxfeminala.org to find out more.

Another great concert to experience the spirit of the yuletide season is “The Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles proudly presents Nutcracker!” at the Alex Theatre, on Brand Blvd. in Glendale, Saturday, Dec. 19, 3 pm and 8 pm, and Sunday, Dec. 20 at 3 pm.

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Continuing its 31st season, the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles is offering a wacky new rendition of the Nutcracker story. Tchaikovsky’s music will be showcased with spectacular dance, and familiar holiday songs that include “We Need a Little Christmas” and many more.

It is a great show for the entire family. Believe me, I don’t care how old or young you are, or what your background is, the GMCLA concert is a pure delight.

For more than thirty years, GMCLA’s singers (numbering about 200 currently) have created wonderful music and great entertainment. Go to www.gmcla.org to learn more.

 “A World of Holiday Dance” will also be at the Alex Theatre in Glendale on Dec. 29th. The magnificent program will include ballet, Folklorico, Hip-Hop, Irish, Armenian and Bollywood presentations.

A wonderful holiday tradition is Bob Baker Marionettes’ Holiday Spectacular, currently celebrating its 48th year! It’s playing at the Bob Baker Marionettes Theatre in downtown Los Angeles. Baker, who served as an animation advisor at Walt Disney Studios after WWII, creates magic with the puppets, and to see them come alive with the flick of the strings is one of the most amazing shows you will see in your lifetime. Go to www.bobbakermarionettes.com to learn more.

2009 Hollywood Christmas Parade

If you can’t visit Hollywood, you can still experience the annual Hollywood Christmas Parade because it has been taped for a two-hour primetime special, ironically called the 2009 Hollywood Christmas Parade/ Live Positively sponsored by Coca-Cola.

It will air nationally on Dec. 10th, with an encore on Christmas Eve, Dec. 24th via MyNetwork TV.

The parade has a few things that will make it extra special this year. Queen of the daytime dramas, Susan Lucci (All My Children) serves as the grand marshal, and many of the most popular soap stars are also a part of the event. Plus Erik Estrada (of CHiPs fame) and TV personality Laura McKenzie (Traveler) serve as the parade broadcast hosts.

The popular fun-loving brothers, Kyle Massey (That’s So Raven) and Christopher Massey (Zoey 101) are the wild and funny parade route reporters.

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Along with celebrities, there are award winning bands from across the country, colorful equestrians, specialty characters and ornate floats. Proceeds from the telecasts of the parade will benefit this year’s official charity Feed The Children, in the spirit of the season.


Margie Barron has written for a wide variety of outlets including Gannett newspapers, Nickelodeon, Tiger Beat and 16 Magazine, Fresh!, Senior Life, Production Update, airline magazines, etc. Margie is also proud to be half of the husband and wife writing team Frank & Margie Barron, who have written together for various entertainment and travel publications for more than 30 years.

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