Top 5 Things to Do in L.A. This Week

Lawrence Brownlee as Tamino in a scene from "The Magic Flute." Photo by Robert Millard

Thanks to a rare calendrical coincidence, Thanksgiving falls on the first day of Hanukkah this year, which should make for some festive holiday fusion. The Skirball Cultural Center, for example, will incorporate Thanksgiving themes and flavors into its annual Hanukkah celebration. But Thanksgivukkah isn't the only interesting combination on the horizon. This week the L.A. Opera presents a fantastical, silent-film-inspired production of "The Magic Flute"; Thomas Dolby performs a high-tech ode to an old English lighthouse; and Ed Fornieles mines the tropes and trash of Hollywood for a pool party like no other. Read on for more.

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Ed Fornieles' 'Pool Party' at MOCA Grand Avenue | Event details
The British artist and provocateur Ed Fornieles has a history of blurring the line between role play and reality, and his latest work continues that exploration while taking on Hollywood culture and cliches. His new eight-hour video series "Pool Party," which will play on MOCA's online video channel, takes the form of a mock reality TV show and features 25 actors who perform an escalating series of events cribbed from such pop-culture sources as dating shows, gossip rags and even teen vampire dramas. This evening soiree, complete with cocktails, will introduce the series ahead of its Friday launch on MOCAtv.

L.A. Auto Show at the Convention Center | Event details
Give Los Angeles' enduring love affair with the car -- OK, maybe it's more a love-hate relationship -- it's only fitting that the city hosts one of the oldest (since 1907), largest (870,000 square feet ) and best-attended (900,000 visitors) auto shows in the world. Attendees at the 10-day expo can get up close and personal, and in many cases test-drive, the latest and greatest vehicles from all the major manufacturers. In addition to all the autos on display, there will be a design gallery full of cutting-edge concepts, a marketplace for gearheads, special events and more.

Thomas Dolby's 'Invisible Lighthouse' at Hollywood Forever | Event details
Growing up in coastal England, the musician and producer Thomas Dolby (he of "She Blinded Me With Science" fame) was captivated by the sweeping beam of the centuries-old Orfordness Lighthouse. Decades later, upon learning the lighthouse was threatened by erosion and set to be decommissioned, Dolby shot his own 50-minute homage to the structure, which he has taken on tour with a live soundtrack, narration and sound effects (with an assist from foley artist Blake Leyh). On Friday he'll perform two shows at the Masonic Temple at Hollywood Forever, each of which will also feature a discussion and an additional short set after the film.

L.A. Opera's 'The Magic Flute' at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion | Event details
It's safe to say you've never seen "The Magic Flute" quite like this -- unless, that is, you've been to the Komische Oper Berlin, where it originated. But this staging, presented by the L.A. Opera, represents the U.S. premiere of an imaginative take on Mozart's classic love story that incorporates large-scale projections of hand-drawn animation and takes visual inspiration from Hollywood's silent-film era. It's the brainchild of Barrie Kosky and the British experimental theater group 1927 -- the latter of whom are making their opera debut.

Hanukkah Family Festival at the Skirball Cultural Center | Event details
This year offers a true once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to celebrate Thanksgiving and Hanukkah together, which will overlap for the first time in nearly 80,000 years. To mark the occasion, the Skirball welcomes families of all backgrounds for a day of holiday festivities, including storytelling from Bill Burnett, live music from ShirLaLa and Golden State Klezmers, interactive workshops, and access to gallery exhibitions. Zeidler's Cafe will also serve Thanksgivukkah treats such as pumpkin-apple soup, latkes with cranberry-apple relish, and stuffed acorn squash.

For more options this week and every week, go to kcet.org/events.

About the Author

Oliver Gettell is a writer and editor based in Los Angeles.

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