Holiday Happenings —Improv Troupe Brings Back Classic Holiday Variety Shows, And More… | BH Courier

Holiday Happenings —Improv Troupe Brings Back Classic Holiday Variety Shows, And More…

L.A.'s Impro Theatre is bringing its "1966 Holiday Variety Extravaganza" to The Broad Stage. Photo by Madison Goff
The cast of A Noise Within's "A Christmas Carol" dance at Fezziwig’s Party. Photo by Craig Schwartz.
City Hall illuminated for the "Grand Park + The Music Center’s N.Y.E.L.A."
Four wise-cracking rats narrate Debbie Allen's "The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker." Photo by Lee Tonks.

Updated: Wednesday, December 14, 2016 – 12:24 PM

Impro Theatre Brings Back Holiday TV Specials Of The ‘60s

LA’s Impro Theatre’s new show, 1966 Holiday Variety Extravaganza, from the creators and performers of Jane Austen UnScripted, comes to The Broad Stage, 1310 11th St. Santa Monica, Thursday-Saturday, Dec. 15-17. Created especially for The Broad, the show is a completely improvised TV holiday show spectacular of yore complete with a five piece 60’s jazz band.

This new, completely improvised spectacular is a tinsel-covered take on the Andy Williams-y, Perry Como-like, and Bob Hope-esque shows of the past. “What makes this style so perfect for Impro Theater is the spirit of spontaneity that these holiday specials had,” said Dan O’Connor, producing artistic director. “Bing Crosby’s doorbell rings and in walks David Bowie, wrapped in a scarf. Andy Williams emerges onscreen with a group of figure skaters on an elaborate winter wonderland set, complete with an ice rink. There is a wonderful chaos to these holiday variety specials that we’ve had so much fun playing around with in rehearsal.”

O’Connor continued, “We’ve all felt a bit taxed by the events of the fall. Now more than ever, we think it’s important to unite on some level. What better way to unite than by laughing together during the holidays.”

Impro Theatre creates completely improvised, full-length plays in the styles of the world’s greatest playwrights, authors and composers.  Without pre-planning or prepared scenarios, the performers combine verbal dexterity and robust physicality to bring character and plot to life in an instant, making each Impro Theatre show unique and unlike any other theatrical experience. 

Tickets start at $32 for three  7:30 p.m. performances. For more information, call 310-434-3200 or visit

One hundred percent of the proceeds will benefit arts education for L.A. youth.

For tickets, visit or call 213-972-8550.

A Christmas Carol Continues At A Noise Within

Classical repertory theatre company A Noise Within, continues its holiday tradition of its production of Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol through Friday, Dec. 23 at its Pasadena theater, 3352 E. Foothill Blvd.

“Remounting our acclaimed presentation allows families to once again take a supremely theatrical journey, and celebrate the transformative power of forgiveness during the holidays,” says Co- Producing Artistic Director Geoff Elliott, who stars as Scrooge. Co-Producing Artistic Director Julia Rodriguez-Elliott adds, “Ebenezer Scrooge’s rebirth from miserly curmudgeon to the epitome of love and generosity affirms our faith in the potent goodness of humanity during this beloved time of year.”

The “enchanting” production features original music by Ego Plum.

Remaining performances are Friday-Saturday, Dec. 16-18 and Wednesday-Friday, Dec. 21-23.

For tickets, $25 and information, visit or call 626-356-3100, ext. 1.

Debbie Allen’s Take On The Nutcracker Features Wise-cracking Rats

Tisha Campbell (ABC’s My Wife and Kids) stars in Debbie Allen’s The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker at 1  and 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday, Dec. 16 and 17 at the Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

Written, directed and choreographed by Allen, a member of the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts board of directors, the family-friendly show features wise-cracking rats who take over the story, whisking audience members  on an adventure through Candy Cane Land, The Rainforest, Bollywood, Egypt and more.

Produced by the Debbie Allen Dance Academy, in association with The Music Center and The Annenberg Foundation, the show has additional choreography by Terry Beeman, Giana Jigarhan, Kim Hale, Elza Prado, Karen McDonald, Eartha Robinson, Evan Williams, Chantel Heath, Deepa Patel, Cathie Nicholas, Kevin Harris, & Trey Knight.

In addition to Campbell, the cast features Clifford Williams of Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Kristopher Nobles, Tichina Arnold, Carlo Imperato, Allen, and Destiny Wimpye  as “Kara.” 

Filipino Advent Mass Tradition Continues At Good Shepherd

The Filipino-American & Ethnic Parishioners of the Church of the Good Shepherd of Beverly Hills will celebrate “Simbang Gabi 2016” at 7 p.m., Monday, Dec 19 at the church, 504 N Roxbury Dr., at Santa Monica Boulevard.

“Simbang Gabi” is a Filipino pre-Christmas advent mass tradition held for the fourth time this year with the Ethnic parishioners of the parish community.

Bishop Oscar A. Solis, the first Filipino bishop in the archdiocese of Los Angeles and currently the head of the San Pedro pastoral region, will be the main celebrant. Church pastor, Fr. Ed Benioff and other Filipino priests will co-celebrate with the bishop. Philippine Consul General Adelio Angelito Cruz is also set to attend

The Philippine Chamber Singers of Los Angeles will be the choir for the occasion.

A catered and pot-luck reception follows after the mass in the church hall.

Ring In The New Year At Grand Park + The Music Center’s N.Y.E.L.A.

L.A.’s one-of-a-kind event to ring in the new year, Grand Park + the Music Center’s N.Y.E.L.A, will be held from 8 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 31 to 1 a.m., Sunday, Jan. 1, throughout all of Grand Park and on The Music Center Plaza, plus adjacent streets, with a footprint from Hope to Spring Streets, and from Temple to Second Streets.

The free event will feature latin, funk, soul, hip-hop, disco and global music on three stages, DJs and dancing throughout the night; large scale inflatable art; and 3D digital video mapping on City Hall along with an integrated light show to count down to the new year.

There will also be free photo booths and a wide range of food vendors.

The countdown will transform the west facing facade of City Hall, enveloping the iconic building with a series of colorful, geometric and multi-dimensional animated light projections that reflect the event’s theme “The Sky’s The Limit.” For the third year, the countdown and projections will be created and designed by Garson Yu, artistic director, and his Emmy award-winning design agency yU+co.

For more information, visit or