Watching for the Watchers 

Folkloric Christmas celebrations in Northridge and Orange, a poet and a choreographer collaborate downtown, a jukebox musical with a GoGo’s dance party in Pasadena, Nutcracker ballets return live, more SoCal dance online this week, and a peek at what’s coming next.

Live This Week

Dancing poetry

Inspired by the poetry of Claudia Rankine and in collaboration with the poet, choreographer Will Rawls and a quartet of performers explore Rankine’s consideration of racial history and surveillance in What Remains. REDCAT at Disney Hall, 631 W. 2nd St., downtown; Thurs.-Sat., Dec. 9-11, 8:30 pm, $25, $20 students. Info, tickets & Covid protocols at REDCAT.

a figure in red tights next to a music stand
Claudia Rankin & Will Rawls’ “What Remains.” Photo courtesy of the artists

One is free, the other not so much so

Evoking Mexican holiday celebrations, two venues present Noche Buena with the dancers of Ballet Folklórico de Los Ángeles, music by Mariachi Garibaldi de Jaime, and singer Lupita Infante. At The Soraya, 18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge; Sat., Dec. 11, 3 pm, free w/reservation at The Soraya. Also at The Musco, Chapman College, 415 Glassell, Orange; Sun., Dec. 12, 7 pm, $33-$78. Info, tickets & Covid protocols at the websites.

The stage is filled with mariachi musicians and Mexican folkloric dancers in blue swirling skirts.
Ballet Folklórico de Los Ángeles. Photo by Luis Luque

Variety line-up

Actors, musicians, and the dancers of Lineage Dance Company take the stage in the Third Annual Lineage Follies. Performers include individuals with neurological diseases and the evening includes a panel with several neurology experts. Lineage Studios, 920 E. Mountain St., Pasadena; Sun., Dec. 12, 5 pm, $10. Info, tickets & Covid protocols at Lineage Dance Company.

four dancers in a web of blue and green scarves
Lineage Dance. Photo courtesy of the artists

Go-Gos going going gone

Music of the 1980’s LA band The Go-Gos fuels Head Over Heels, a jukebox musical loosely based on The Arcadia by Sir Philip Sidney. The venue reopened with its first live performance filled with dancing on more than just the stage.The theater has been reconfigured to afford the audience a choice of onstage or theater seating as well as a general admission ticket to an open floor area inviting an audience-fueled dance party as part of the performance.  Just a few more shows live at Pasadena Playhouse, 39 S. El Molino, Pasadena. Tues.-Sat., 8 pm, Sun., 7 pm, Sat. & Sun., 2 pm, thru Sun., Dec. 12, $30-$106. Info, tickets, and Covid protocols at Pasadena Playhouse.

Performers in old-style clothing
Head Over Heels.
Photo by Joan Marcus

Globe dancing

Shoppers can enjoy some seasonal dance as high-kicking ladies of The Beach Belles & a Ballerina in a Snow Globe perform at Santa Monica Place, 395 Santa Monica Place, Santa Monica; Fri.-Sun., Dec. 10-12, 3 to 7:30 pm, then daily, Fri., Dec. 17-24, 3 to 7:30 pm, free. Santa Monica Place.

3 dancers in fur-trimmed blue costumes
The Beach Belles. Photo by Mathew Tucciarone

Post-modern rituals

The first-ever retrospective of the work of choreographer and video artist Blondell Cummings: Dance as Moving Pictures includes videos, interviews, and photographs continue at Art+Practice, 3401 W. 43rd Pl., Leimert Park; Wed.-Sat., noon-6 pm, to Feb. 19, 2022, free. Research guide at Getty Research Institute, exhibition at Art+Practice.

A woman in a white dress holds a frying pan
Photo by Blondell Cummings

Museum moves

Performance and dance are the metier of several artists in both of this museum’s big fall exhibits, Witch Hunt and No Humans Involved at UCLA Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood; Tues.-Sun., 11 am-6 pm to Jan. 22, 2022, free no reservation required. Details and Covid protocols at Hammer Museum.


This Week’s Major Nutcrackers Opening

A dancer leaps across the stage
Los Angeles Ballet’s “Nutcracker”. Photo by Reed Hutchinson.
  • American Ballet Theatre at Segerstrom Center for the Performing Arts, Costa Mesa;  SCFTA
Ballet dancers in white costumes face backstage
American Ballet Theatre. Photo by Gene Schiavone

(See “The ‘Nuts’ Are Back” for full list of 2021 Nutcrackers)


A Peek at Next Week

Danza Floricanto/USA Navidad en el Barrio. Casa del Mexicano, E.LA; Sat., Dec. 18, Danza Floricanto or 213-466-2611.

Mexican folkloric dancers and musicians fill the stage
Danza Floricanto/USA. Photo by Frank Sandoval

Celtic Angels at Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, Cerritos, Wed., Dec. 22, Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts

New Dance Films: Live & Online

Out of the box

Anyone who has not had the good fortune to enjoy a live performance of Versa-Style Dance Company’s exuberant Box of Hope, have a chance for the next best thing as the troupe offers a one-night-only stream on YouTube, Thurs., Dec. 9, 7:30 pm, @versatylela, Versa-Style Dance Company.

A dancer squats holding a red box in front of a group of dancers who are in different poses seeming to recoil.
Versa Style Dance Company. Photo courtesy of the artists

Back for more

In January 2021, LA choreographer Jacob Jonas and his Jacob Jonas/The Company began a weekly roll out of 15 short dance films with artists from around the world under the banner Films.Dance. The project earned boasting rights with many of the films later winning film festival awards. Now comes Films.Dance Round Two, again with dance, dancers, and filmmakers from around the world. The original films, a preview, and e-mail sign up for free weekly film delivery at Films.Dance.

Three dancers lunge toward the camers
“Films.Dance Round 2.” Photo courtesy of the artists

What are you looking for?