A Night Out

What to Do in L.A. This Week: September 23–29

Photo courtesy of Descanso Gardens

Monday, September 23

Apres Le Deluge: The Buddy Cole Monologues
Buddy Cole endures to this day as one of the more cherished characters from beloved dark sketch comedy TV series Kids in the Hall. So given the times we live in, Scott Thompson, the man/face/spirit behind Cole, created an entire solo show of his character completely going off about what’s going on. Performances slated through October 7. The Lyric Hyperion, 2106 Hyperion Avenue

Tuesday, September 24

Photo by Joshua White/Courtesy of Baert Gallery

“Jebila Okongwu”
Through new paintings and sculptural works, African artist Okongwu critiques stereotypes of Africa and African identity, drawing on symbolism, spirituality and history. His work repurposes ubiquitous commercial symbols, such as banana boxes that retrace old slavery routes among Africa, the Caribbean, and South America. Through November 9. Baert Gallery, 2441 Hunter Street

Wednesday, September 25

Photo courtesy of MUNA/Facebook

Alt-pop trio MUNA make the kind of dark, uplifting music that relies heavily on bold honesty to balance that dichotomy. It’s a highly danceable catharsis in the vein of Robyn, with the tenderness of Mitski and the politics of a punk band—unsurprisingly, it rules. Lodge Room, 104 North Avenue 56, Second Floor

Thursday, September 26

Unlikely Red Carpet L.A. Premiere
Documentary film Unlikely highlights the (many) ways higher education fails its students—particularly minorities—while pointing toward some hope for a better future. A packed panel featuring codirectors Jay and Adam Fenderson, doc subject Tania Gutierrez, and various education officials will follow the screening. Regal L.A. Live, 1000 West Olympic Boulevard

Photo by Robbie Shone/Courtesy of the Broad Stage

Nat Geo Live: Life on the Vertical
Influential mountain climber, friend of Free Solo’s Alex Honnold, and National Geographic writer Mark Synott is next up in Nat Geo’s live speaker series, in which he’ll give a talk along with show footage of some of his harrowing climbs and daring expeditions in the name of science. (Spoiler alert: He lives.) The Broad Stage, Main Stage, 1310 11th Street, Santa Monica

Pun-Off: A Musical Inside the High-Stakes World of Pun Competitions
The way that Matthew Patrick Davis can manipulate both the English language and music, and then twist them every which way into comedic tapestries, is quite amazing. Whether it be political satire or an original musical about the King of Kong documentary, Davis is a musical comedy wizard. Such skills will be put on full display with his latest effort, an original musical that follows high-stakes competitions about puns. The production is choreographed by the Emmy Award–winning choreographer of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Kathryn Burns. UCB Sunset, 5419 Sunset Boulevard

Friday, September 27

Photo courtesy of Robot Chicken/Facebook

Robot Chicken 10th-Season Spectacular: Night of 1,000 Bawks
The stop-motion animation insanity of Robot Chicken is taking a moment to celebrate its upcoming 10th-season premiere with a very special retrospective evening. Its madcap humor and satisfyingly absurd parody of pop culture, often with toys recognizable from childhood, has made it into one of Adult Swim’s longest-running series. Creators Seth Green and Matt Senreich, along with the cast and crew, are slated to appear to share stories and cherish their favorite memories (as well as preview some brand-new Robot Chicken). The Theatre at Ace Hotel, 929 South Broadway

Living a Why Not Life
Singer, actor, and touring member of The Lion King Tonoccus McClain guides the audience through his life experiences and mantra while also making room for the songs that got him involved in theater in the first place. Performances through September 29. The Colony Theatre, 555 North Third Street, Burbank

Saturday, September 28

“Not Just a Kid’s Toy: The Art, Science, and History of the View-Master”
Become a View-Master master at this lecture-slash-exhibition from stereoscopic image expert Eric Kurland, who will be projecting a selection of rare View-Master slides from the archives of his museum, 3-D Space. If you care to share your childhood with the whole class, you can even bring along your own slides to see them on the big screen. Echo Park Film Center, 1200 North Alvarado Street

Photo courtesy of Descanso Gardens/Facebook

Silence at Descanso
Don’t let the name fool you—this music series at Descanso Gardens is contemplative, yes, but far from devoid of sound. Enjoy the last of three Saturdays of different flavors of boundary-pushing experimental music; this evening’s performers include genre splicer Julia Holter playing original works; Lisa E. Harris playing works by deep listening pioneer Pauline Oliveros; and Gloria Cheng performing selected works by John Cage. Descanso Gardens, 1418 Descanso Drive, La Cañada Flintridge

Photo courtesy of Esotouric’s Secret Los Angeles‎/Facebook

Eastside Babylon True Crime Tour
Those looking for a more macabre take on Los Angeles history will relish the latest true crime tour from Esotouric, which guides fans of the sinister throughout East L.A. to the sites of some notorious and bizarre local crimes. Advance tickets necessary. The tour takes off from Urban Radish, 661 Imperial Street

Paula Poundstone
Poundstone has been such an icon in comedy (stand-up, HBO specials, sitcoms, and, now, a podcast called No One Listens to Paula Poundstone) that, perhaps, all you need to see is a brightly and loudly patterned oversize tie to know that you’re in for a night of Poundstone’s precise and clever observations. Theatre at Ace Hotel, 929 South Broadway

Sunday, September 29

Photo courtesy of ICA L.A. (Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles)

“Sadie Barnette: The New Eagle Creek Saloon”
Oakland-based Barnette has her first institutional show in Los Angeles, for which she reimagines the Eagle Rock Saloon, the first black-owned gay bar in San Francisco. It was established by her father, Rodney Barnette, founder of the Compton chapter of the Black Panther Party, and here she resurrects it with her drawings, sculptures, and the 500-page FBI surveillance file kept on Rodney. Opening September 29, 2–6 p.m.; through January 26, 2020. ICA LA, 1717 East 7th Street

Photo courtesy of Tammercise/Facebook

Let’s Tammercise
Comedian Madeline Wager combines a full-on aerobics class with a brilliantly conceived solo show in Let’s Tammercise, which follows an aerobics instructor, Tami, whose life has spiraled out of control. You can choose to be a “tammerciser” or watch. Angel City Brewery, 216 South Alameda Street

Abbot Kinney Festival
Your Abbot Kinney shopping-eating experience is about to get a whole lot more outdoorsy with this one-day extravaganza of food, drink, music, and booths from local vendors. Little ones can head for the kiddie paradise of the KidsQuad, complete with rides, games, and activities, while those 21-plus can make for the big-kid paradise that is any of the three beer gardens. Abbot Kinney (between Venice and Main), Venice