Monday, October 14, 2019 / 8:30 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. / Bootleg Theater
This Toronto-based singing group led by Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman takes a unique approach to the concert experience — and to having a band in general. They travel around, occasionally singing with the likes of David Byrne, Patti Smith and Debbie Harry, but mostly assembling a group of strangers in a room, that being the audience itself, handing everyone lyrics and transforming them into a spontaneous choir that somehow comes out sounding incredible. For this particular show, it’s all 1980s hits. We’re talking Prince, Madonna, Bon Jovi, George Michael, Journey, Whitney Houston. Imagine, a hundred people hitting the high notes on “Living On a Prayer” in glorious unison.
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 / 7–10 p.m. / Walt Disney Concert Hall
The legendary frontman of The Bad Seeds and The Birthday Party has played a key role in modern music since the 1970s and can easily be credited with keeping murder ballads in vogue. The subject of multiple films and academic study, Nick Cave’s done it all, so what’s left but to throw himself at an audience’s mercy.
On this worldwide conversation-driven tour, the Australian musician lets attendees ask questions and request songs, most of which he will oblige, while sharing anecdotes, the meaning behind some of his songs and musings on whatever deep questions posed to him from fans.
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 / 7–11 p.m. / Hollywood Bowl
Ms. Lauryn Hill’s groundbreaking album, “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill” is almost the same age as co-headliner H.E.R., which is both mind-boggling and wonderful. The album still resonates and it continues to pave the way for an artist like the guitar-shredding H.E.R, whose self-titled, full-length debut album nabbed a few Grammys of its own this year. Both artists write songs that tell the truth with grit and beauty. Most of all, their music is the kind you want to keep singing all day long while conquering your insecurities one by one.
Thursday, October 17, 2019 / 7–8:30 p.m. / First Congregational Church of Los Angeles
Zadie Smith discusses her first book of short stories, “Grand Union,” with culture critic and author Viet Thanh Nguyen. Smith has written some great novels like “White Teeth,” “On Beauty” and “NW,” to name a few, but “Grand Union” is her debut collection of short fiction, comprised of 11 new stories alongside some beloved pieces previously published in literary magazines over the years. These stories explore time, place, legacy, dystopia, identity and rebirth, jumping around genres and points of view in an exploration of the modern world.
Friday, October 18, 2019 / 7–11 p.m. / MOCA Grand Avenue and The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA
MOCA’s “The New Wave” showcase brings together films, conversations and performances from storytellers, interdisciplinary artists and cultural movers and shakers for a stimulating weekend that even includes free admission to both the Geffen and Grand galleries. Opening night offers a screening of Annie Silverstein’s film “Bull,” about an unexpected friendship forged on the Texas rodeo circuit, and a conversation with Steven Canals, co-creator and executive producer of “Pose,” a show that juxtaposes NYC’s late ’80s ballroom world, Trump-era luxury and the downtown social-lit scene. The show has the largest cast of transgender actors ever to appear as regulars on a scripted show.
Saturday, October 19, 2019 / 7–10 p.m. / Hollywood Forever
Eight-year-old Haley Joel Osment nabbed an Oscar back in 1999 for his performance in “The Sixth Sense” but honestly the most haunting moment of the whole film belongs to Donnie Wahlberg. The former New Kid on the Block lost 43 pounds to transform himself into the freakiest, most disturbing, inexplicably shirtless home invader — and that was just the first scene.
M. Night Shyamalan will make an appearance for Cinespia’s celebratory 20th-anniversary screening of the spine-tingling film that made us all see dead people and got Donnie Wahlberg in our bedrooms.
Sunday, October 20, 2019 / 7–11 p.m. / Hollywood Palladium
Everyone should see Lizzo on one of several nights she’s spending in L.A. It’s “good as hell” for your overall well-being. Her performance is part twerk fest, part motivational speech and so gosh darn fun and jolly. It’s impossible not to get swept up by all the booty-shaking positivity this woman seeks to impart on the masses via rap and melody. And then she pulls out her flute and it’s like a rainbow beams straight out from her latex-bodysuit-clad heart to wrap around yours. Neo-soul singer Ari Lennox opens the show.