March event celebrates arts in Los Angeles

first_imgThe city is home to more than 2,500 arts organizations – from museums and theaters to musical groups – that create more than 450,000 jobs accounting for $4billion a year for the economy. And, culture and arts appreciation is not just for the highbrow. The Getty Center alone last year drew more than 1.3million visitors, including 90,000 students who got free admission. An additional 300,000 visited the newly opened Getty Villa in Malibu this past year. The monthlong drive to recognize events – schedules are available at – is designed to highlight some of the venues in the city where more than 375 parades, festivals and other events are held each year. “We are taking this one month to showcase what is going on all year long,” said Karen Constine, general manager of the city Cultural Affairs Department. Architect Frank Gehry, whom Villaraigosa praised for taking a “pathway to creativity,” said he has never wanted to work in any other city – even though his designs include some of the most famous modern buildings in the world. “I became an architect in Los Angeles because here you can fly under the radar,” said Gehry, who designed the Disney Concert Hall and is developing the Grand Avenue project. “I like the feeling and character of Los Angeles. It’s the character of the people who live here … and are interested in the connectivity between art and architecture.” Also involved in the campaign are Town Hall Los Angeles, USC, UCLA, Sony Pictures, Art Center College of Design, CalArts and several private organizations. [email protected] (213) 978-0390 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! It could be the waiter or waitress aspiring to be a Hollywood star. The annoying teens down the street with their garage band. Or even the hipsters in the gritty downtown Arts District who sell their wares at weekend shows throughout the city. It could be the neighborhood theater troupe and barbershop quartet. In fact, just about everything but the neighborhood karaoke bar is being saluted as part of a monthlong “Creative LA” celebration of the arts in Los Angeles. “This past week we celebrated the glitz and glamour of the red carpet with the Academy Awards,” Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said at a news conference kicking off the event at the Getty Center. “L.A.’s identity is one where the economy is linked to the entertainment, arts, design and fashion worlds. Every week, people come from all over the country and arrive in L.A. with dreams of fame and fortune on the silver screen. But it is more than that.” last_img read more

Students get 1 more year at Plaza site

first_imgPALMDALE – Palmdale Learning Plaza students get to stay at their school for another year, but they will have to move to another campus the following year under a new plan to deal with overcrowding. The board decided to let the Plaza remain a school of choice rather than convert it to a neighborhood campus, a proposal parents vigorously opposed. “Overall, we are happy with the decision. It was a tough decision,” Plaza Principal Todd Cherland said. “We thank them for considering the opinion of the parents and staff. They found a compromise that solved all the problems.” Under a plan approved Tuesday, Plaza students will stay at their current campus at Division Street and Rayburn Road in the 2007-08 school year, then move to Juniper Intermediate School in the 2008-09 year. Juniper students will move to the Plaza site, and the Juniper campus will be remodeled to accommodate primary-grade pupils. Juniper, which is about 11/2miles northwest of the Plaza school, was originally a K-8 school. When it was converted to an intermediate school, kindergarten classrooms were changed into science labs, district officials said. Scores of Plaza parents showed up at previous board meetings, including a public hearing last week, to protest the option of changing the school from a school of choice, which draws students from throughout the district, to one that has boundaries. They said the plan would dismantle years of effort to develop the K-8 school’s programs, which tie into the academically rigorous International Baccalaureate program at local high schools and have a strong emphasis on performing arts. The Plaza school moved into its $22million campus at Division and Rayburn in September 2005 after having been housed in portable buildings at different schools for about 14 years. Leaving the new facility will not be a major disappointment, Cherland said. “It’s always been the opinion of the staff that the building is not what’s important. It’s what we do inside the classroom,” he said. Trustee Sheldon Epstein said the board was committed to keeping the Plaza’s programs intact. “I’m glad the process involved the community for input. I think it was essential in order to hear the voices of many of the people. The concern was never the facility. It was always the program and the fact they had a passion to keep a family-type school together.” Buena Vista, another K-8 school of choice, will be changed to a K-6 neighborhood school. Some parents didn’t like the idea of Buena Vista losing its seventh- and eighth-graders, interim Superintendent Roger Gallizzi said. Overall, more than 1,900 students will be affected by the changes, officials said. The district announced in February it wanted to redraw attendance boundaries to balance enrollment among campuses. [email protected] (661) 267-5744160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more