6 Weekend Picks: Shakespeare’s ‘Pericles,’ American Contemporary Ballet and more


Looking for something to do this first weekend in August? Our Weekend Picks include the latest at the Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival, American Contemporary Ballet premiering a piece set to music by Schubert, and musical group Black Pumas playing KCRW’s “Summer Nights” series. If you’re feeling festive, there’s the Ojai Playwrights Conference New Works Festival, La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest and the annual Festival of the Chariots in Santa Monica and Venice.

The perils of ‘Pericles’

Independent Shakespeare Co.’s annual Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival continues with “Pericles.” Our wayward Prince of Tyre faces all manner of trials and tribulations in this epic adventure partially attributed to the Bard. The Old Zoo at Griffith Park, 4730 Crystal Springs Drive, Los Angeles. 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; other dates through Aug. 30. Free. (818) 710-6306.


A dance to die for

American Contemporary Ballet performs “Death and the Maiden,” artistic director Lincoln Jones’ new work set to Schubert’s chamber-music classic. Fashion Theater at California Market Center, 110 E. 9th St., L.A. 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 2 and 5 p.m. Sunday; other dates through Aug. 11. $45-$105.

Inda Craig-Galván
Inda Craig-Galván is among the writers showcasing new plays at the Ojai Playwrights Conference 2019 New Works Festival.
(Dania Maxwell / Los Angeles Times)

So much drama

The plays are the things at the Ojai Playwrights Conference 2019 New Works Festival. This year’s showcase includes workshop productions of plays by Kimberly Belflower, Kimber Lee, Christopher Gabriel Núñez, Inda Craig-Galván and many others. Zalk Theater, 8585 Ojai-Santa Paula Road, and Matilija Auditorium, 703 El Paseo Road, Ojai. Sunday through Aug. 11. (805) 640-0400. $10, $30; passes, $300.

A musical feast

La Jolla Music Society’s star-studded 34th annual SummerFest — the first in its new home — features big-name performers including cellist Alisa Weilerstein, pianists Inon Barnatan, the Brentano and Ehnes quartets and the Mark Morris Dance Group. The Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center, 7600 Fay Ave., La Jolla. Starts Friday; ends Aug. 23. $28-$99; some free events; passes available.

The Festival of the Chariots
The Festival of the Chariots returns to Santa Monica and Venice on Sunday.
(Samantha Schaefer / Los Angeles Times)

Swing low, sweet chariots

Indian culture takes center stage at the Festival of the Chariots. The 43rd annual event kicks off with a lively procession that includes three ginormous floats, followed by a free, family-friendly shindig that features traditional Indian music, dance and drama. There will also be cultural exhibits and food booths plus activities for the kids. The parade begins at 10 a.m. Sunday at Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, 1855 Main St., and then makes its way to 1401 Ocean Front Walk, Venice, where the festival begins at noon and goes till 7 p.m. Free.

Those summer nights are calling

SXSW buzz band Black Pumas makes its Los Angeles debut as KCRW.FM brings its “Summer Nights” series home to the plaza in front of the station’s new digs on the campus of Santa Monica College. KCRW DJs Anne Litt and Raul Campos will be on hand to spin tunes as part of this all-ages outdoor show. KCRW HQ, 1660 Stewart St., Santa Monica. 7 p.m. Saturday. Free.