“DEATH OF A SALESMAN” by ARTHUR MILLER starring ROB MORROW (Tony- and Pulitzer-winning play from the brilliant Arthur Miller has been extended -Aug. 25 but don’t wait because five of those shows are already sold out, this talented ensemble gives this very challenging material all it deserves, Morrow is nuanced and riveting — and will not perform 8/16-17 only — but so is everyone else, Sarah Spitz did an interview with Morrow for her Culturewatch column and Tatiana Blackington James did an excellent review), Thurs-Fri-Sat 8 p.m., Sun 2 p.m., Ruskin Group Theatre, SM Airport, $20-$35.
TONIGHT! — LA PHIL, DUDAMEL, YUJA WANG (love the range of the program, from Barber’s famous, gorgeous Adagio for Strings through John Adams’ well-named Must the Devil Have All the Good Tunes? to Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 driven by acclaimed, charismatic pianist Wang), Thurs, 8 p.m., Hollywood Bowl, $8-$132.
ENDS TONIGHT! — “PAVAROTTI” (haven’t seen it but a reliable source said I must, perhaps it will make us Angelenos appreciate more our gift of another of the world’s greatest tenors, LA Opera’s director Placido Domingo, these cats have lived a life like only Sinatra or Elvis), Thurs, The Royal, W LA;
TONIGHT! — “YESTERDAY” (it would seem the LA Times film critic Justin Chang is one of the few people who didn’t like this movie, even the remaining Beatles’ families gave their rare permission to use the songs, and in his long review pouting that they didn’t make the movie that he wanted made, he then violates the cardinal SPOILER ALERT! rule of Hollywood and reveals, straight off, practically every device and joke in the movie, which I found to be a lot of fun), Thurs-?, The Landmark, West LA;
TONIGHT! — “ECHO IN THE CANYON” (another first-person account of rock and roll history, of and by the creative denizens of Laurel Canyon, no “Lady of the Canyon” herself Joni Mitchell but she moved there in ‘68 and the film covers ‘65-’67, it’s good but Jakob Dylan is not the most dynamic front man and sadly several other really good, more worthwhile music films came and went after only a week yet this one marches on after more than a month now), Thurs-?, Monica Film Center, SM;
TONIGHT! — “DAVID CROSBY: REMEMBER MY NAME” (directed by A.J. Eaton and produced by former wunderkind rock journalist/film producer Cameron Crowe, it coaxes Crosby of The Byrds, Crosby, Stills & Nash and CSN & Young into unflinching candor as he confronts mortality with diabetes, a liver transplant, eight stents and three heart attacks, and assesses the damage of earlier days with a redemptive journey back to music, choosing “living” over “legend” as he attempts to rebuild burned bridges the only way he knows how, by hitting the road with a creative streak of fresh songs and performances), Thurs-?, The Landmark, W LA.
LED KAAPANA (you have to do a little work to get into Hawaiian music but maybe only as much as attending this show because Led is one of the very best, slack key player, terrific vocalist, wear your Hawaiian shirts because he’ll take you there), Fri, McCabes
RACONTEURS, Lillie Mae (the world is cleanly divided into those who think Jack White is a Guitar God and a boundary-busting creative force in rock and blues, and those who wonder how he can even play guitar with his head so far up his pantaloons, shall we say, well I’m in the former camp, try taking a look at the doc “It Might Get Loud,” one of my very favorite-est rock and roll movies, and O say any chance to see what he’s up to is a chance you should take), Fri 8 p.m., Greek Theater, Griffith Park, $40-$90.
TY SEGALL & Freedom Band (it’s been a while since I’ve caught Mr. Segall, he is a ridiculously talented axe man but he goes his own way so his shows are a bit of a gamble but hell, life’s a gamble, right?), Fri 9 p.m., and every Fri in Aug-Sept, Teragram Ballroom, DTLA, $30-$200.
MEET ME AT REED presents THE SANTA MONICA SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA (it ain’t good enough to hear our local crack classical crew, kickin’ it since 1945, in acoustically superb Barnum Hall for free, now you get to lounge in the park on a balmy evening while they serenade you with a sampling of nine from Strauss to Shostakovich, Webber to Copland), Sat 6-8 p.m., Reed Park, SM, free.
24th CENTRAL AVE JAZZ FESTIVAL (oh you gotta go at least once but before you do familiarize yourself with the music and cultural history of Central Ave, if I could go back in time anywhere it might be to the amazing heyday of that music scene, where you could start out at night and go from club to fabulous club till dawn and hear the very best jazz players of the ‘20s – ‘50s who played for the white folks earlier in the evening in other parts of town and then came back to play for themselves, where they could actually get a hotel room at the Dunbar Hotel and eat at a restaurant like a normal person, can’t tell for sure but it still seems to be free but forget about parking anywhere within a mile, follow suggestions at the web site, wander around but don’t miss Barbara Morrison Sat, early, at 12:30 p.m. and Cassandra Wilson closing it down Sun night at 6), Sat-Sun, 11a.m. – 7:30 p.m., Central Avenue between King and Vernon, free.
WILL GEER’S THEATRICUM BOTANICUM presents “THE SKIN OF OUR TEETH” (set in WWII-era New Jersey and the Ice Age — !! — Thornton Wilder’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play from 1942 uses humor, history and mythology to shine a light on man’s primal drive to carry on, it’s oblique, mysterious, confusing, thought-provoking and wonderful and Wilder acknowledges it by occasionally knocking down the fourth wall with lines like, “… that is the DUMBEST line I have ever had to speak in a play!” — I thought it was an adaptation WGTB is famous for but an actor told me nope, every word is Wilder’s, oh my), Sun, 4 p.m. and various Fri-Sat-Sun through Sept. 29, Theatricum Botanicum, Topanga Canyon, $10-$42;
“AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE” (check my CURIOUS CITY column yesterday for some description of this excellently acted, thought-provoking adaptation by Artistic Director Ellen Geer of a classic Ibsen about… a poisoned water supply, and racial tensions, topical enough for ya?), Sun 8 p.m. and various Fri-Sat-Sun through Sept. 28, W.G.’s T. Botanicum, Topanga Canyon, $10-$42.
“MOBY DICK-REHEARSED” (based on Orson Welles’ 1955 adaptation of the novel, it sounds like it requires a lot of “acting,” no whales, no ship — cool!), various Fri-Sat-Sun through Sept. 29, T. Botanicum, Topanga Canyon, $10-$42;
“TWELFTH NIGHT” (they’re known for their mastery of The Bard), various Fri-Sat-Sun through Sept. 28, W.G.’s Theatricum Botanicum, Topanga Canyon, $10-$42;
“A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM” (sure you’ve seen it a bunch, you were probably in it in school, but never by this troupe and never here, where you don’t have to imagine a forest from painted cardboard, fewest performances left so hurry!), Thursdays in Aug, also Sept. 2, W.G.’s TB, Topanga Canyon, $10-$42.
MICHAEL MCDONALD, CHAKA KHAN (some might dismiss this as a pairing of two well-known names from ancient pop-soul charts but those people should sit down and take a good listen, these are two of the best vocalists today or any day), Wed, 8 p.m., Hollywood Bowl, $16-$52.
COMING ATTRACTIONS: PETER ASHER & ALBERT LEE, 8/2, 8/4, PAUL BARRERE & FRED TACKETT, 8/3. McCabe’s, SM; JOHN BATISTE 8/3, KRONOS QUARTET, 8/8, Burton W. Chace Park, MdR, free; LAEMMLE LIVE presents MCCABE’S pop-up, 8/4, SM, free; FARTBARF, Numb.er, 8/15, Levitt Pavilion, LA, free; every Fri-Sat, live bands, mostly country-folk-rock, call for schedule, LA’s Original Farmers Market, free.
Charles Andrews has listened to a lot of music of all kinds, including more than 2,000 live shows. He has lived in Santa Monica for 33 years and wouldn’t live anywhere else in the world. Really. Send love and/or rebuke to him at firstname.lastname@example.org