Tuesday, May 28
Outstanding in the Field: L.A. River
There was a time when the L.A. River was ignored and even vilified. Now it’s in the process of being restored to a place where natural beauty and urban lives intersect—and a flowing body of water on which people can actually kayak. To celebrate the revitalization, OITF is hosting a sit-down, family-style dinner prepared by chefs Neal Fraser, Austin Cobb, and Zach Pollack. It’s the best way to meet neighbors, break bread, and support initiatives for groups like River L.A. Tickets are $265 per person. Address disclosed after ticket purchase; 4 p.m.
Wednesday, May 29
Flint, Michigan, native Olaniran is more than just a singer-rapper, songwriter, and choreographer—above all and at the nucleus of his artistic identity, he’s also an activist. His bold, experimental music is about soul searching and self-love. More playful than preachy, he’s sure to leave you in a better mood than when you arrived. Zebulon, 2478 North Fletcher Drive; 8–11:59 p.m.
Eve’s Bayou + Daughters of the Dust
Don’t miss out on these two landmark African-American films that bookended the ’90s: Eve’s Bayou conjures up a mystical vibe while peeling back the perfect veneer of a happy Louisiana country family. And the earlier Daughters of the Dust is an essential cultural monument both for its championing of an unsung people (the Gullah culture of the Southeast U.S.) and for being the first theatrical-release film directed by an African-American woman. New Beverly Cinema, 7165 Beverly Boulevard; 7:30 p.m. and 9:50 p.m.
Thursday, May 30
A Bad Year for Tomatoes
This charming and offbeat comedy is about a famous actress hiding in a sleepy New England town who pretends she has a psychopathic shut-in sister living with her to keep her nosy neighbors away. The lie grows and grows to outrageous results. Theatre 40 at Reuben Cordova Theatre, Beverly Hills High, 241 South Moreno Drive, Beverly Hills; 8 p.m.
The Human Element
From a creative team that is no stranger to highly acclaimed, grim documentaries about the deleterious human effect on the planet (The Cove, Racing Extinction, etc.) comes this latest eye-opener about climate change, bound to make you think—or even better, act. A panel with climate change experts will follow the screening. Downtown Independent, 251 South Main Street; 6–9 p.m.
Friday, May 31
“Eva & Franco Mattes: Data Doubles”
Artist duo Eva and Franco Mattes present photographs and objects exploring the Internet as a platform for shaping contemporary life and culture. They’ve been tracking the influence of the ’net since its nascent, near-analog days through the present, discarding precious ideas about privacy and ripping open a conversation about where the banal meets the contextually sublime. The exhibition is open through Sunday, June 23. Team Bungalow, 306 Windward Avenue, Venice
The Whisky Extravaganza
Explore the best that brown spirits have to offer, from the most prestigious single-malt scotch to whiskeys from around the world, at this annual tasting event. It’s more civilized than doing shots in a bar: There’s much to be sipped and much to be discussed with industry leaders. Tickets are $95 for drink and food samplings, or $195, which includes access to the Connoisseur Master Class and an even fancier souvenir tasting glass. City Market Social House, 1145 San Pedro Street; 6:30–7:30 p.m. (master class), 7:30–10 p.m. (tasting)
Saturday, June 1
Taking the wine-tasting experience beyond the bottle, this annual event now offers educational components to breathe new life into what was pretty much a raucous millennial party. That’s not to say it’s less fun: To test your wine mettle, there’s a Pronunciation Bee and Couples Challenge onstage, plus a bubbly bar, scavenger hunt, and photo booths. Pick the brains of local somms, taste wines from all over the world, and maybe walk away with more than a hangover. Tickets are $65 for general admission and $95 for VIP. City Market Social House, 1145 San Pedro Street; 2:30–5 p.m. and 7:30–10 p.m.
This outlandish black comedy by 2017 Humanitas Play L.A. award winner Sigrid Gilmer follows a man at his dying mother’s bedside, as he tries to rewrite her history with the help of writers and a metal band. Unsurprisingly, his mother is less than cooperative. Running through Sunday, June 23. IAMA Theatre Company at Atwater Village Theatre, 3269 Casitas Avenue; 8 p.m.
Sunday, June 2
Grande Marque 27th Annual Champagne Tasting
If there’s one thing better than sipping bubbles under a giant fig tree at the Fairmont Miramar in Santa Monica for an evening, it’s doing it for a good cause. This evening features unlimited samplings of champagne and sparkling wines from around the globe—think: Dom Pérignon, Krug, Salon, and Cristal—plus nibbles from some of L.A.’s best restaurants. Proceeds from the evening go to Food on Foot and the Santa Monica/Malibu Education Foundation. Tickets are $195 per person; $250 after June 1. Fairmont Miramar, 101 Wilshire Boulevard, Santa Monica; 5–8 p.m.
On the surface, this afternoon extravaganza is a celebration of heritage breed pigs. But it’s really just the chance to pig out on food from L.A. and watch regional chefs compete for the title of Prince or Princess of Pork. Along with their creations, there’s sampling of so much other food and drink, including cocktails from bartenders vying for Punch King or Queen. Let’s just say you won’t leave hungry or thirsty. Tickets are $130 for general admission and $200 for VIP. City Market Social House, 1145 South San Pedro Street; 5–7:30 p.m. (4 p.m. for VIP entry)