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'Jeopardy!' question sheds light on 'Rock of Ages' -- the hymns, not the musical

It was the "Jeopardy!" response heard 'round social media. 

On Monday's broadcast of the answer-and-question TV game show, returning champion Choyon Manjrekar delivered an incorrect response to an answer that has since gone viral, providing social media commentators with much to laugh and snark over.

The Final Jeopardy answer was: "A Christian hymn and a Jewish holiday hymn are both titled this, also the name of a 2009 Tony-nominated musical."

Manjrekar's response was: "What Is 'Kinky Boots'?" His incorrect reply provoked chuckling from host Alex Trebek and the audience, but the contestant had the last laugh, winning the evening's game.

The correct reply was "Rock of Ages," the jukebox musical about '80s hair-metal bands that began its life in Los Angeles and later opened on Broadway in 2009, running for close to six years.

"Rock of Ages" is also the title of a well-known Christian hymn that dates to the 18th century, with words by Augustus Toplady, an Anglican reverend from England.

The...

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Why MOCA is honoring artist John Baldessari at Saturday gala

Saturday night's gala for the Museum of Contemporary Art will honor artist and board member John Baldessari, with cocktails, dinner and a performance by R&B singer Janelle Monáe at the Geffen Contemporary in Little Tokyo. 

The fundraiser comes shortly after museum Director Philippe Vergne begins his second year at MOCA. Last year’s gala celebrated his March 2014 arrival as well as the museum’s 35th anniversary.

Vergne said Baldessari's close relationship with MOCA was something he wanted to recognize this year.

“John -- he’s on the board and has been extremely committed to MOCA over the years,” Vergne said. “The more time I’ve spent with him, and around him, I just think his influence runs so deep in the community. As we were thinking of honoring artists, we all agreed that he was the perfect place to start.”

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Guest expected at the gala include actors Jim Carrey, Marisa Tomei and Patricia Arquette, architect...

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Barbra Streisand donating John Singer Sargent painting to LACMA

In years to come, the general public will be able to say "Hello, gorgeous!" to a rarely seen John Singer Sargent portrait that has remained out of the public eye for much of its existence.

Barbra Streisand will be donating a Sargent painting from her private collection to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in recognition of the organization's 50th anniversary. "Mrs. Cazalet and Her Children Edward and Victor" is a triple portrait painting that depicts members of an aristocratic British family. It dates from 1900 to 1901.

The Oscar-winning actress and singer-songwriter described the oil painting, which stands more than 8 feet tall, as a "perfect" fit for the museum.

"It is a piece that needs breadth and space," she said via email. "It needs to be displayed on a museum wall, and LACMA fits the bill."

Streisand is giving the painting as a bequest and the change of hands hasn't taken effect yet. "I hope not for awhile. It will belong to the museum after I leave this earth," she said.

The...

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Broadway's 2014-15 season hits all-time high in ticket sales

Frank Sinatra isn’t closely identified with the Broadway stage, but producers on the Great White Way were happy to be singing one of his refrains as they released attendance figures for the just-ended 2014-15 season: It was a very good year.

The best on record, in fact, when it came to attendance and box-office receipts, both of which reached all-time peaks, the Broadway League announced Tuesday.

Total attendance was 13,104,078, up 7.3% from last year, and box offices reaped $1.37 billion, a 7.6% increase over the 2013-14 season. Playgoers forked over $104.18 per ticket, on average.

“We’re giving theatergoers what they want, including a variety of musicals and plays, recognizable brands and new shows,” Charlotte St. Martin, president of the Broadway League, said in the announcement.

But producing on Broadway remained a crap shoot despite the record attendance and earnings. Of the 35 shows that were running when the season began last spring, only 14 were still going at its close.

“Wicked”...

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L.A. theater openings, May 31-June 7: Shakespeare, Fringe and more

This week: Two Shakespeare plays in the sylvan confines of Theatricum Botanicum, and the Hollywood Fringe Festival gets off to an early start with a handful of new shows.

The Homecoming Harold Pinter’s dark comedy about family, power, sex and gender. Pacific Resident Theatre, 703 Venice Blvd., Venice. Sun., next Sun., 3 p.m.; Thu.-Sat., 8 p.m.; ends July 26. $25-$34. (310) 822-8392.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream Shakespeare’s beloved fantasy-comedy. Glendale Centre Theatre, 324 N. Orange St., Glendale. Sun., 3 p.m.; Mon.-Tue., 7:30 p.m.; ends June 2. $15-$25. (818) 244-8481.

Lulu Staged reading of Peter Barnes’ adaptation of two Frank Wedekind tragedies. A Noise Within, 3352 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena. Wed., 7 p.m. Free. (626) 356-3100.

Murder for Two Featuring the original two-person cast of the hit Off-Broadway musical-comedy-mystery. Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater, Geffen Playhouse, 10886 Le Conte Ave., Westwood. Wed.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 3 and 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2 and 7 p.m.; ends July...

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Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre has the 'Chinatown Blues'

A beautiful stage is in the eye of the choreographer. For her site-specific performance this weekend, the founder of the Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre will transform a nearly 100-year-old former printing warehouse under renovation in Los Angeles' Chinatown, filling it with a French Canadian jazz quartet and seven contemporary dancers whose puffy brocade gowns, contrasting soft-cotton Chinese pajamas and other brightly colored costumes will swirl together at the in-flux construction site.

“In-flux is what we’re all about,” Heidi Duckler says of her dance company, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.

“As a site-specific company, we’re kind of nomadic because we don’t have a permanent space; we’re always making our work in different places and responding to locations. It’s about constant movement. That’s what makes us alive -- responding to real life, which is always in a state of motion.”

“Chinatown Blues,” which is about the blending of cultures, also features the four-piece,...

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