• The Troubling Failure of the Media to Report Accurately on the ISIL Hostage Videos

    When the Associated Press, CNN, the BBC, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Agence France-Presse, MSNBC, Fox News, and the Guardian all concur in their reportage of unambiguous, easily verifiable matters of fact, generally you’re safe in taking it on faith.

    Not always, though, as can be seen from reports on videos released by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). All of these sources—and many more—have stated on numerous occasions that these videos show the beheadings of hostages. But this is simply untrue.

    This is not to say ISIL did not behead these people. The videos do show what appears to be the beheaded bodies of James Foley, Steven Sotloff, David Haines, and most recently Alan Henning. But the question here is not what ISIL has done, but whether the media has accurately reported the facts.

    Those facts are clearly on display for anyone to see. In each video, after giving a speech a masked, British-accented spokesperson for ISIL takes a knife and motions as if he is starting to saw away at the necks of his bound, orange-clad captives. But only in the Henning video does the act appear to be genuine, and in all of them the picture fades to black before so much as a drop of blood is visible, fading back in only once the deed has been completed off-camera.

    ISIL’s willingness to take and murder hostages—including via beheadings—is not in dispute. But does that truth justify fabricating details for the stories?

    Only two possibilities exist for how these fabrications came about, especially considering that they have been oft repeated by each of the media outlets involved: either the authors of the reports didn’t see the videos on which they are reporting, or they did and are choosing to report falsely on what the videos show.

    If the reporters didn’t actually see the videos, this is simply (which is not to say excusably) a form of bad journalism that has become ever more common in the age of the World Wide Web and its 24-hour news cycle. With media outlets tripping all over themselves to stay current, there is a temptation to report that which is being reported elsewhere without taking the time to independently verify the purported facts.

    This practice may not be inherently unethical, so long as the writer admits that the information in question is secondhand and cites the source of the information (especially easy to do online, where one can hyperlink directly to any source). However, more often than not journalists like their reportage to appear as if all of it is firsthand—not to mention the fact that presumably many media outlets are loath to direct traffic to a “competing” outlet. As a result, sometimes media outlets don’t reveal the origin of the information they are passing along.

    Fox News, in reporting on the video featuring Alan Henning, provides an example of how major media outlets sometimes simply crib from others. A side-by-side comparison between the Fox News article, and the Associated Press story on the same subject shows Fox News to have lifted almost all of the AP copy verbatim to construct its own article. For example, where the AP story reads, “This is the fourth such video released by the Islamic State group. The full beheadings are not shown in the videos, but the British-accented, English-speaking militant holds a long knife and appears to begin cutting his victims, who include American reporter James Foley, American-Israeli journalist Steven Sotloff, British aid worker David Haines and now Henning,” the Fox News story echoes the confirmation that the ISIL videos do not show beheadings, despite Fox News’ having published claims to the contary (see, for example, here): “This is the fourth such video released by the Islamic State group. The full beheadings are not shown in the videos, but the British-accented, English-speaking militant holds a long knife and appears to begin cutting the three men, American reporters James Foley and Steven Sotloff and British aid worker David Haines.” (Note that in changing end of the AP article’s sentence, Fox News mistakenly implies that there have been only three videos.)

    While some of the outlets reporting on the content of the ISIL videos may be piggybacking on the misinformation of others, presumably at least some of their writers did indeed view the videos and then consciously chose to misreport what they show. While it may be hard to tell which is the case in blatantly false proclamations like CNN’s “ISIS video shows beheading of Steven Sotloff” and the New York Times“ISIS Video Shows Execution of David Cawthorne Haines, British Aid Worker,” slightly more circumspect phrasings seem to indicate that the latter is in play.

    Consider, for example, the Guardian‘s reportage on the third ISIL “beheading” video. “Militants with the Islamic State jihadi group have released a video that appears to show the beheading of a British hostage, David Haines,” says the article. The use of “appears” appears to be a hedge against the obvious fact that the video does not actually show Haines’s beheading. The irony is that it we know the video doesn’t show Haines’s beheading because the only thing it appears to show vis-à-vis his execution (aside from what seems to be the very real result) is the beginning of a beheading (or perhaps a pantomime of such).

    Other more subtle fabrications can be found in the articles themselves. “In the moments before his death, the 44-year-old Mr. Haines is forced to read a script, in which he blames his country’s leaders for his killing,” reports the New York Times, even though a) there is no telling from the video whether Haines was killed moments, hours, or days later; and b) though it is almost certainly the case that Haines was indeed compelled to read from a script, this is not a verifiable (i.e., from the video) matter of fact.

    In some case the vagaries of the misreportage has led to individual media outlets promulgating conflicting information. On September 2, for example, the New York Times published a story claiming ISIL had posted a video “showing the second beheading of an American hostage in two weeks.” But five days later Times columnist David Carr, in reviewing the same video, notes that “only the beginning is shown and then there is a fade to black.”

    Why such apparently conscious deviations from fact? The cynic would guess that it’s all about selling papers (or whatever is the equivalent in this journalistic epoch). Claiming that the videos actually show beheadings is more sensational—and thereby likelier to attract readers—than being confined to the slightly less lurid reality.

    That the videos do not depict the actual murders has been discussed online, though almost never by any mainstream media outlet. One exception is the Times of London. Within a week of the release of the Foley video, the Times published an article claiming that “forensic analysis” indicates that Foley’s murder “was probably staged, with the actual murder taking place off-camera.”

    The Arabic version of Al Jazeera went further, claiming (as reported by Al Arabiya) not only that the supposed executions were staged, but that Foley likely fabricated his video himself. (Al Jazeera later retracted its “inaccurate article.”)

    While baseless speculation that Foley masterminded the video is not only irresponsible but also despicable, Al Jazeera was correct in pointing out that, as with the other videos in question, the video of Foley does not show his murder, only a staging of it. There seems vanishingly little doubt that Foley, Sotloff, Haines, and Henning were beheaded by ISIL. What is beyond all doubt is that, contrary to what has been widely reported, ISIL has not posted videos showing these beheadings.

    In considering the media’s failure to report accurately on the content of the videos, the media apologist might offer a motivation contrary to the cynic’s. The misreporting may not be mercenary at all (says the apologist): it may simply be the case that, like the rest of us, the media in general revile ISIL and their acts of barbarism—and so why should we bother with scrupulous attention to detail? Does ISIL really deserve that level of care in how we report on them? The bottom line is that they’re murdering people, so who cares whether these videos actually show the murders of the hostages?

    We should all care, and so we should all be disturbed by the media’s nearly universal failure to get the details right. The level of accuracy in reportage should not waver according to subject matter. Distorting details and claiming inferences as facts is work for propagandists and unscrupulous advertisers. Journalists should hold themselves to higher standards, even—and perhaps especially—in cases where our fellow journalists are so unanimously failing to do so that we could easily step over the bar without anyone’s noticing how low it’s been set.

    (Note: The New York Times, Fox News, the Guardian, and CNN were all invited to comment for this article, but none responded.)

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  • 39 Steps is Mysterious Hilarity

     

    By John Farrell

    Any way you look at it, The 39 Steps is a big production.

    Alfred Hitchcock made the film — one of his best — in 1936. It involved everything from the Firth of Forth Bridge (a Scottish landmark) to the London Palladium.

    As a play it is still huge: there are only four actors, and one plays only one role, but as for the others … there are more than one hundred lightning quick costumes changes. (The count is 100, or 120, or 139. Nobody seems to agree.)

    At the Long Beach Playhouse’s mainstage, it is even a bit more complicated, since that theater has a stage in which the audience sits on three sides of the action. So, when the Playhouse announced that it was going to present The 39 Steps as the opening performance of their 86thseason in Long Beach, it raised a question: How would the play be adapted to the theater’s thrust stage, with the action and the stage tricks 10 feet away?

    Director Dale Jones had to solve those problems.

    He had to figure out how to get from London to Scotland and back again convincingly, or at least comically, on what could be an awkward space. Rather than limiting his options, he expanded them with chase scenes run through and around the audience, with delightful comic moments played as close to the audience as possible and with the brilliant assistance of his four co-conspirators. These are comprised of Jeremy Bear, as the unflappable Richard Hannay, Madeleine Heil, as Margaret, Pamela and Annabella, and the two clowns (that’s in the program. It is not a disparagement) who do most of the heavy lifting, Mark Davidson and Michael Chiboucas.

    The story begins in London, where Hannay has recently moved from Canada. He is bored. But soon he is running for his life, with a secret from a dying woman named Annabella about something called, “The 39 Steps,” and a murder charge against him. His only clues leading him to Scotland. Bear is the perfect English gentleman, of course, with his pipe and size 36 suit, his blazing blue eyes (a minor plot point) and the British (but French named) sang-froid that lets him keep his cool even when he is shot. (He survives, of course, or there would be no second act.)

    Heil is perfectly alluring as Annabella, the soon-to-be-murdered international agent and remarkably charming as Margaret, the wife of a Scots farmer, but she is best as Pamela, the woman who Hannay has handcuffed to him for a good part of the second act. She plays tough, but she can be friendly, too, and never descends into hysterics (a perfect example of the Hitchcock blond, which he invented in the film of The 39 Steps. And, she interacts with the audience in a way that is never seen on a regular stage, getting help from the audience when she can’t get her stocking down, drying in front of a movie-screen fire.

    The two clowns are delightful. Davidson is the tall one, and his very thick Scots (and at time un-understandable) accent is hilarious. Chiboucas is the short one, and his face has a fright wig. His performance as Mr. Memory is unforgettable. Together, they portray everything from a hotel-keeper and his wife to the mysterious professor and his wife (it helps to be short). They manage all the set changes, from the train car to the attack with an airplane, with speed and comic dexterity.

    Jones uses a movie screen to keep things running smoothly, with film clips and music provided, along with Hitchcock’s distinctive voice, which is provided by Scott Rattner. While you don’t have to be a Hitchcock fan to appreciate the play, if you are a fan, you’ll notice not too subtle references to other films (“Rear Window” is just one) along the way.

    Hitchcock fan or not, you’ll enjoy every minute of “The 39 Steps,” one delightful laugh after another.

    Tickets are $24, $21 for seniors, and $14 for students. Performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., and at 2 p.m. Sundays, through Oct.25.

    Details: (562)494-1014www.lbplayhouse.org
    Venue: Long Beach Playhouse Mainstage Theater
    Location: 5021 E. Anaheim, Long Beach

     

     

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  • Educating Rita is Life, Literature, a Smash

     

    By John Farrell

    Educating Rita was written by playwright Willie Russell more than three decades ago and turned into a movie.

    You might expect it to be a bit stale, but in the hands of director James Rice and the two brilliant actors he has cast for the production at Little Fish Theatre, it is a delight. It is both a story about human aspirations and expectations. It is about life that is lived in the mind as well as in the pub.

    Frank, the grizzled and alcoholic college professor who is slowly drinking his life away and Rita, the 25-year-old would-be student who wants to learn everything to get out of her uncultured life. 

    David Graham is Frank, a slightly paunchy, slightly graying man in sweater vests who keeps bottles of alcohol hidden behind the books in his extensive library. His British accent is perfect; his defeated life is evident from the alcohol and the fact, slowly revealed in the play, that he is a minor, very minor, poet who has resigned himself to academic suicide of a sort. He grades papers and gives lectures and tutorials, lives with a woman who took him in after his wife left him and pretty much has given up on life, — though his mind is still sharp and his tongue witty and even occasionally biting.

    Into his office comes Rita (the astonishing, dynamic and exciting Rebecca Reaney) a young woman who loves a book by Rita Mae Brown, Rubyfruit Jungle, and has decided she wants more from her life than working as a hairdresser and spending nights at the pub. Reaney is dynamic, exceptionally attractive and she has no trouble with the British accent — she is British. But it is more than just the accent that keeps your attention and it’s more than just her slow climb out of her limited life to academic success that captivates. Reaney dominates the stage with her personality from the moment she arrives in Frank’s bookish office, trying to change her life when all her friends and family, even her husband. She wants no more for her or themselves than a few pints and a familiar song.

    Reaney’s delightful Rita might well have overpowered a lesser Frank, an actor unwilling or unable to handle her power in the role, but Graham has no trouble with Rita. She has tremendous energy and enthusiasm; he is a bit burned out, but when it comes to talking about life, about literature, he is every bit as articulate as she. Reaney is the power of young life trying to fulfill itself, Graham, a Little Fish veteran, may be playing a character always a little drunk, but he matches her excitement with his own at finding a student who actually wants to learn, who experiences Shakespeare for the first time and transmits her enthusiasm to him when he has little enthusiasm left.

    This is a play to savor. Performances are delightful, even thrilling, close up and about as personal as the theater can be. See it once, even twice. Learn something about life.

    Tickets are $22 and $20 for seniors. Performances are Wednesdays and Thursdays at 8 p.m., with one Sunday matinee Oct. 19 at 2 p.m.

    Details: (310) 512-6030; www.littlefishtheatre.org

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  • Ghost in the Meadow is Just Not Scary Enough

    By John Farrell

    Ghost in the Meadow is Little Fish Theatre’s Halloween special this year, but it just isn’t scary.

    Despite the best effort of the actors the play is about as frightening as a flu shot: something to get and get over. The premise: a haunted house in the country with two sisters, one of whom sees ghosts. The other is an unbeliever. This has been done to death in the movies and is too predictable to be scary.

    Add to that that Joe Simonelli’s play, directed by Paul Vander Roest, can’t seem to decide if it is a thriller or a romantic comedy. Perhaps it is because it is just written that way, perhaps it is because director Vander Roest didn’t make up his mind about it.

    Two sisters, Sheila and Kylie Roberts (Sylvia Loehndorf and Jocelyn Christiensen) have bought an old house in the country three hours from Manhattan and are just moving in as the play begins. Sheila wants time to paint, and time to find a new life without her boyfriend Julian Shaw (John Haegele). Kylie is excited, too, but apparently not as sensitive to the atmosphere as Sheila.  She sees a boy in the meadow. The boy suddenly vanishes. The door to the attic mysteriously locks. When Julian, a police officer, shows up to try to rekindle his romance with Sheila, he suggests bringing in a psychic, who has helped the police before.

    That psychic is Antoinette, played with a cheerful understatement by Madeleine Drake. She can sense what is going on, at least with the ghosts, and proceeds after a few more locked doors to lay the spirit with Roman Catholic holy water and Protestant prayer. But what she and the rest of the cast can’t do is make the play mysterious. The ghost story should be prominent, but the romantic story comes to the forefront. The ghosts are spooky enough for a Halloween haunted house — perhaps — but hardly frightening. There are just too many laughs and not enough scary bits for the play to work.

    Tickets are $24. Performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. through Oct. 25, with one matinee Oct. 12 at 2 p.m.

    Details: (310) 512-6030www.littlefishtheatre.org

    Venue: Little Fish Theatre

    Location: 777 Centre St., San Pedro

     

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  • Trouble on the Iowa

    By Terelle Jerricks, Managing Editor

    That the USS Iowa is open for the third consecutive year in the Los Angeles Harbor is a victory in itself.

    The floating museum exceeded the Port of Los Angeles’ expectations of 188,000 visitors per year in its first two years, drawing more than 200,000 visitors each year. In 2013, it topped out at 244,000.

    This year, the downtown plaza watercut opened just ahead of the festival of TallShips lead by a giant rubber duck. That  festival drew more than 270,000 visitors during the last three weeks of this summer.

    However, this year’s numbers for the battleship museum are down from the first two years. Despite the summer activity on the waterfront those numbers are still within the expectations of Jonathan Williams, the Pacific Battleship Center’s president and CEO.

    “We are going into our third full year of operations and as expected we are slightly down on year two,” Williams replied in an email correspondence to Random Lengths. “I estimate we will see approximately plus or minus 200,000 [visitors] in year three, which is still above the original market study projections. As mentioned, we have seen a big uptick in group sales and event inquiries the past month, so it is possible that we are plateauing earlier than expected.” (more…)

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  • ILWU Contract May Hinge on TraPac Automation

    How far will new technologies go in replacing the workforce?

    James Preston Allen, Publisher

    The American flag barely flaps in the breeze, when the sun risesbehind the Vincent Thomas Bridge, as seen from Eastview Little League baseball fields atop

    TraPac’s new automated OCR cranes at berths 134-139 can be seen idle with little movement on the docks from that vantage point.

    TraPac recently has  installed and begun testing the new cranes which utilizes a complete optical character recognition (OCR) solution for every entry and exit point of their terminal. The technology would make the terminal fully automated.

    A source told me that the automated cranes there hasn’t been operating for the past two weeks following a health and safety grievance filing by the ILWU. The union claimed that TraPac’s new technology is dangerous following a dozen accidents on that terminal since the automated part of the facility was finished.

    The new automated cranes even showed problems on its inaugural launch, with all the executives on site. An accident was avoided only by the quick use of the override switch by a union crane driver. (more…)

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  • Trouble on the Iowa

    By Terelle Jerricks, Managing Editor

    That the USS Iowa is open for the third consecutive year in the Los Angeles Harbor is a victory in itself.

    The floating museum exceeded the Port of Los Angeles’ expectations of 188,000 visitors per year in its first two years, drawing more than 200,000 visitors each year. In 2013, it topped out at 244,000.

    This year, the downtown plaza watercut opened just ahead of the festival of TallShips lead by a giant rubber duck. That  festival drew more than 270,000 visitors during the last three weeks of this summer.

    However, this year’s numbers for the battleship museum are down from the first two years. Despite the summer activity on the waterfront those numbers are still within the expectations of Jonathan Williams, the Pacific Battle Center’s president and CEO. (more…)

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  • Transforming Feminisms

    “Big Attitude” by Bronwyn M. Towle is part of the Transforming Feminisms exhibition at the South Bay Contemporary Gallery. Courtesy Photo”Big Attitude” by Bronwyn M. Towle is part of the Transforming Feminisms exhibition at the South Bay Contemporary Gallery. Courtesy Photo

    By Andrea Serna, Arts and Culture Writer

    South Bay Contemporary Gallery continues their series of outstanding exhibitions with a new show titled, Transforming Feminisms, a group show featuring 29 artists.

    Addressing the many stages and definitions of feminism, gallery owner and curator Peggy Zask has again demonstrated a clear vision for her art space, formerly known as Zask Gallery.

    Organized feminism began in the Western world in the mid 19th century and has gone through three waves.
    Although it developed out of the anti-slavery movement, first-wave feminism was oriented around the station of middle- or upper-class white women. It involved suffrage and political equality. In the 20th century, second-wave feminism attempted to further combat social and cultural inequalities. Now, third-wave feminism continues to address the financial, social and cultural inequalities, adding a renewed campaigning for the greater influence of women in politics and media.

    The exhibition is a strong display of ‘intersectional feminism.’ The term, which Professor Kimberlé Crenshaw first coined, states that “women experience oppression in varying configurations and in varying degrees of intensity. Cultural patterns of oppression are not only interrelated, but are bound together and influenced by the intersectional systems of society. Examples of this include race, gender, class, ability, and ethnicity.”

    “There is a third movement of feminism that is focusing more on global issues,” Zask said. “The right to choose, equal pay and abuse are the three topics that have not been resolved.”

    The artists participating in this exhibit represent almost every aspect of American culture and society: Jewish, African-American, Chinese, Samoan, Latina, male, female and transgender. All come together to offer their definition of feminism.

    The timely topics that Zask has chosen are as much by fate as by choice. Our news is full of horrific stories of domestic violence around the globe. Women and children are murdered on the street and in their own homes on a daily basis. In 2012 the story of Malia Yousafzai, shot on a school bus in Pakistan, inspired the women’s movement globally.

    Recent reports of NFL player Ray Rice’s assault on his fiancee and Adrian Petersons disturbing punishment of his 4-year-old child have brought domestic violence into the public discussion of culture and abuse. The U.S. Supreme Court’s questionable decision in the case of Hobby Lobby’s protest to provide birth control for employees affirmed the ongoing controversy over reproductive rights, 58 years after the development of the pill. All of these things are reminders that the struggle continues.

    “I am a curator who goes into territory, which is not clear or may be in flux and change,” said Zask, defining her role. ”In contemporary art, I do not begin to think my perspective or knowledge is more important and do not want to influence the artists, only help them to express their ideas on the subject … the answers and nature of the exhibition is what the artists create.”

    A series of questions were sent to all the artists participating in the exhibit, in an effort to ensure that each artist speaks for themselves. The list of questions included:
     Your personal definition of feminism
     Your personal definition of power
     Your personal definition of agency
     Why you identify, or do not identify as a feminist

    The responses are as varied as the individual artists.

    Video artist Yoshie Sakai, says she is an ‘undercover feminist.’ Her video is about her Japanese-American family, who was in an internment camp during World War ll. Years later, her family ended up owning a liquor store. The family’s patriarch insisted that a male heir take over KOKO’s Liquor Store.

    Hatsuko Mary Higuchi’s art also visits her family’s history of internment during the war. Her watercolor, “Sayonara Oksan,” is a deeply personal collage of the generation that chose to remain silent and rebuild their lives following their release from the internment camp. Higuchi was imprisoned, along with her entire family at the age of three. Upon reentry to American life, she never heard the topic addressed in school or at home. Women are credited in her paintings with an extraordinary and unsung role for keeping the families together during and after they were released from the internment camps.

    “Mary’s mission is to bring it out, to talk about it,” Zask said.

    Painter Bronwyn M. Towle submits a full-figured nude titled, “Big Attitude,” epitomizing a large confident woman. Towle is a third-generation Chinese-American and a feminist. Disturbing stories from China of the abandonment of female children due to the One Child Law influenced Towle. Families would leave female infants to die under trees, preferring a male child to perpetuate the family name.

    Artist Anna Rodriguez went from the small community of Maywood, Calif. to earn a masters degree in fine arts from Otis College of Art and Design. As a first generation Mexican-American she observed the differences in the choices available to her versus her female cousins growing up in Mexico. She defines power as the determination to follow your own path without the interferences of others. Feminism is being able to look back in time and appreciate the struggle and fight for what is yet to be done, she said.

    A few of the artists state that they do not identify as feminists, but rather see a world where respect and human rights exist equally for all people.

    Zask noted that the the original concept for the exhibition was about women’s identity, not feminism. In the discussion they concluded that the third wave of feminism has changed the way women view their needs and priorities.

    “As I began talking to the artists involved, I realized that feminism means simply believing in yourself as a woman” said Zask. “I have never identified as a feminist either. The whole idea for the title ‘Transforming Feminisms’ came from the discussions we had before the exhibit.”

    Many of the artists noted that the reality of women in the arts is that needs to represent their lives. The challenges women in the arts face is similar to challenges women face in almost any profession. Marriage, family and child rearing often interfere with professional development, and that brings with it the whole package of gender discrimination.

    The voices calling for an end to the oppression of women around the globe have become impossible to ignore. In the exhibition catalog Christy Roberts Berkowitz quotes Schumacher, a member of the Russian music group Pussy Riot: “There are two reasons why we frighten people. The first thing is that we’re a feminist, female group with no men connected to it, and the second is that we don’t have leaders… Russia has always linked the idea of leadership with some man or other, who can control things, and control women.”

    South Bay Contemporary will be hosting a round-table discussion for artists in the exhibition who will be discussing women’s issues in our global culture and how art plays a role in expression of these issues and ideas. Audience questions and participation will be invited. A discussion with the artists in the exhibit is scheduled for Sat., Oct. 11, from 5 to 7 p.m. The talk will be moderated by feminist scholar, Catherine Scott.

    Peggy Zask will be moving her South Bay Contemporary Gallery from Palos Verdes to The Loft Gallery space in downtown San Pedro at the beginning of 2015. A non-profit has been formed to support her vision of engaging the community in the relevance of contemporary art. This is exciting news for downtown San Pedro as we look forward to her vibrant exhibition schedule participating in the First Thursday Art Walk.
    Details: Transforming Feminism
    Venue: South Bay Contemporary Gallery
    Location: 550 Deep Valley Drive, #261, Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274

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  • RLn ENTERTAINMENT

    Sept. 27
    Gabriel Johnson
    Gabriel Johnson will perform, starting 8 p.m. Sept. 27, at Alvas Showroom in San Pedro.
    Johnson has been very active in the studio scene and has played or recorded with a wide variety of musicians and bands. Cover is $20.
    Details: (800) 403-3447; WEBSITE
    Venue: Alvas Showroom
    Location: 1417 W. 8th St., San Pedro

    Sept. 27
    The All American Boys Chorus
    The Battleship Iowa is proud to present the extraordinary voices of the All American Boys Chorus, from 5 to 7 p.m. Sept. 27.
    Internationally acclaimed, the All American Boys Chorus has performed to standing ovations in Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, as well as on 40-plus tours in the USA and Canada.
    Cost is $20.
    Details: www.pacificbattleship.com/event/detail/204
    Venue: Battleship Iowa
    Location: 250 S. Harbor Blvd., San Pedro
     
    Sept. 28
    The Chris Dundas Group CD Release Party
    The Chris Dundas Group is having its CD release party, starting at 6 p.m. Sept. 28, at Alvas Showroom. Cover is $20.
    Details: 800) 403-3447; WEBSITE
    Venue: Alvas Showroom
    Location: 1417 W. 8th St., San Pedro

    Oct. 3
    Thom Rotella 4tet
    The Thom Rotella 4tet will perform, at 8 p.m. Oct. 3, at Alvas Showroom in San Pedro.
    Details: (800) 403-3447
    Venue: Alvas Showroom
    Location: 1417 W. 8th St., San Pedro

    Oct. 3
    Ceora Winds
    Ceora Winds performs, at 12:15 p.m. Oct. 3, at the First Lutheran Church in Torrance.
    The members of Ceora Winds have played chamber music together for 10 years, performing throughout Southern California and across the country.
    Details: (310) 316-5574; www.palosverdes.com/ClassicalCrossroads/BachsLunchtime.htm
    Venue: First Lutheran Church
    Location: 2900 W. Carson St., Torrance
     
    Oct. 4
    John York
    John York will perform, at 8 p.m. Oct. 4, at Alvas Showroom in San Pedro
    Details: (800) 403-3447
    Venue: Alvas Showroom
    Location: 1417 W. 8th St., San Pedro

    Oct. 4
    Susie Glaze & Hilonesome Band
    The Grand Annex presents Susie Glaze & Hilonesome Band, starting at 8 p.m. Oct. 4.
    Winner of the Just Plain Folks Music Award, Susie Glaze & Hilonesome band properly deliver folk-inspired stories of love, tragedy and fate.
    Admission is $25.
    Details: (310) 833-4813 www.grandannex.org
    Venue: Grand Annex
    Location: 434 W. 6th St., San Pedro
     
    Oct. 4
    Something’s Funny at the Warner Grand
    Something’s Funny at the Warner Grand. Check it out. Something’s Funny at the Warner Grand is a monthly show featuring four of some of the funniest stand up comedians working. The next show takes place at 8 p.m. Oct. 5.
    Tickets are $10 and $15.
    Details: Tix.com
    Venue: Warner Grand Theatre
    Location: 478 W. 6th St., San Pedro

    Oct. 5
    Portia Caeli Chamber Players
    The Portia Caeli Chamber Players are scheduled to perform, at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 5, at the Warner Grand.
    It will be a night of beautiful classical and contemporary music that everyone will appreciate and enjoy!  General admission is $15 cash at the door.
    Venue: Warner Grand Theatre
    Location: 478 W. 6th St., San Pedro
     
    Oct. 5
    King Washington
    King Washington will perform, at 4 p.m. Oct. 5, at Alvas Showroom in San Pedro.
    Details: (800) 403-3447
    Venue: Alvas Showroom
    Location: 1417 W. 8th St., San Pedro

    Oct. 10
    Richard Sherman Trio
    The Richard Sherman Trio will perform, at 8 p.m. Oct. 10, at Alvas Showroom in San Pedro.
    Details: (800) 403-3447
    Venue: Alvas Showroom
    Location: 1417 W. 8th St., San Pedro
     
    Oct. 12
    Andy Waddell Quintet
    The Andy Waddell Quintet will perform, at 4 p.m. Oct. 12, at Alvas Showroom in San Pedro.
    Details: (800) 403-3447
    Venue: Alvas Showroom
    Location: 1417 W. 8th St., San Pedro

    Oct. 17
    Kei Akagi & Jason Harnell Duo
    The Kei Akagi & Jason Harnell Duo will perform, at 8 p.m. Oct. 17, at Alvas Showroom in San Pedro.
    Details: (800) 403-3447
    Venue: Alvas Showroom
    Location: 1417 W. 8th St., San Pedro
     
     
    Oct. 10
    Dustbowl Revival
    Throughout October 2014, the Grand Annex presents four installments of the Annex Jazz Festival.
    The fun starts at, at 8 p.m. on Oct. 10, when the Grand Annex presents the Dustbowl Revival.  Awarded the “Best Live Band in LA” in 2013, the band is quickly rising on the folk charts.  Known for their energetic live sets, the Dustbowl Revival merges jug-band, gospel, swamp blues and the hot swing of the 1930s to form a spicy roots cocktail.
    Admission is $25.
    Details: (310) 833-4813; www.grandannex.org
    Venue: Grand Annex
    Location: 434 W. 6th St., San Pedro

    Oct. 11
    Matt Gordy
    The Grand Annex presents Matt Gordy, a Los Angeles-based drummer, percussionist, composer, and arranger, at 8 p.m. Oct. 11.
    He returns with his sextet to the Annex stage after a tour in China, leading up the U.S. Jazz Delegation at the Changsha Music Festival.
    Admission is $25.
    Details: (310) 833-4813; www.grandannex.org
    Venue: Grand Annex
    Location: 434 W. 6th St., San Pedro
     
    Oct. 17
    Grace Kelly
    The fun continues, at 8 p.m. Oct. 27, with Grace Kelly at the Grand Annex.
    A saxophone player since the age of 10, Grace Kelly has hit the jazz world by storm.
    Admission is $25.
    Details: (310) 833-4813; www.grandannex.org
    Venue: Grand Annex
    Location: 434 W. 6th St., San Pedro

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  • RLn ANNOUNCEMENTS: Sept. 26, 2014

    Sept. 27
    Overturn Citizens United
    The Environmental Priorities Network invites you to attend a public forum on “Overturn Citizens United,” which will take place at 9 a.m. Sept. 27, at the Pacific Unitarian Church.
    Three outstanding speakers will discuss how we can strengthen our democracy and reclaim it from corporate dominance.  They are Michael Tucker, a coordinator for Move to Amend.  John Smith, a Southern California Common Cause organizer, and Alison Hartson, a California State Director of Wolf PAC.
    Details: (310) 545-1384; lklight@verizon.net
    Venue: Pacific Unitarian Church
    Location: 5621 Montemalaga Drive, Rancho Palos Verdes

    Sept. 27
    Prescription Drug Collection
    The Long Beach Police Department is participating in the Drug Enforcement Administration’s National Pharmaceutical Take-Back initiative, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 27, at Long Beach Memorial Hospital.
    This initiative seeks to prevent increased pill abuse and theft through the collection of potentially dangerous expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs. The event will offer a drive-thru service that is free and anonymous. The driver of the 25th, 50th, 75th, and 100th participating vehicle will be awarded a pair of Aquarium of the Pacific tickets.
    Details: (562) 570-7221; www.dea.gov (more…)

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