14 culture picks: Birdland benefit with Leslie Odom Jr., the Broad on Basquiat

Randy Rainbow, Rachel Bloom, Maria Bamford and Andy Warhol pictured with Jean-Michel Basquiat
Clockwise from top left: Randy Rainbow, Rachel Bloom, Maria Bamford and Jean-Michel Basquiat with Andy Warhol.
(Randy Rainbow; Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times; Andrew Chin / Getty Images; Richard Drew / Associated Press)

A star-studded benefit to save a beloved jazz club, a “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” watch party and a three-part series exploring artist Jean-Michel Basquiat’s musical influences lead our weekly list of online concerts, streaming theater, virtual art and other culture for your viewing consideration this weekend. Here’s the rundown, all times Pacific.

“Save Birdland: A Celebration of Music, History and Community”
A galaxy of stars — Wynton Marsalis, Elvis Costello, Chita Rivera, Leslie Odom, Jr., Mandy Patinkin, Jeff Daniels, Clive Davis, Matthew Broderick, Ken Burns, Giancarlo Esposito, Bebe Neuwirth, Randy Rainbow and former President Bill Clinton — is set to appear in this virtual benefit for the venerable Manhattan jazz venue. 4 p.m. Sunday; available for one week. Free; donations accepted.

“Time Decorated: The Musical Influences of Jean-Michel Basquiat”
The Broad museum in DTLA launches this three-part series recalling the late artist who rose to prominence in New York City in the 1980s. First up: “Jazz and Bebop” featuring jazz musician Terrace Martin and music by Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and Thelonious Monk. 11 a.m. Thursday; available on demand afterward. Free.,


“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Watch Party”
Series star Rachel Bloom joins cocreator Aline Brosh McKenna and others for a gab-filled look back at the musical sitcom’s Season 3 finale. 1 p.m. Friday. $20; proceeds will pay for cookies for hospital workers.

The genre-hopping essays in ‘I Want to Be Where the Normal People Are’ dish on musical theater, writers’ rooms and awards-season mania.

Nov. 17, 2020

“Masterpiece Moment”
This new series of short videos showcasing curated artworks from museums around the country launches with a piece from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art permanent collection: Mark Bradford’s monumental 2017 painting “150 Portrait Tone.” Available anytime. Free.,,

“Dr. Katz: Live”
Comics Dave Attell, Maria Bamford, Jim Gaffigan and Dom Irrera are the “patients” joining “therapist” and series cocreator Jonathan Katz and original cast members H. Jon Benjamin and Laura Silverman for a second livestream edition of this Emmy-winning 1990s-era animated sitcom. 5 p.m. Sunday. $20.

“Veterans Speak Up”
Chance Theater in Anaheim presents a socially distanced recording of this community-created showcase featuring, and based on, local veterans. Contains adult subject matter. Available through Jan. 31. Free.

“Soldier Songs”
L.A. baritone Johnathan McCullough directs and stars in a filmed version of David T. Little’s new opera inspired by the stories of military veterans. Presented by Opera Philadelphia. Available beginning Friday. Included with $99 season pass; seven-day rental, $25.


“Unmoored Gardens: Shifting Cultural Spaces in Late Imperial China”
Einor Cervone explores the painting, calligraphy and music of the Ming dynasty era in this Zoom lecture. 4 p.m. Thursday. Free with reservation.

“Spittin’ Truth to Power While Light Leaping for the People”
La Jolla Playhouse’s Digital Without Walls festival continues with this intergenerational collaboration from poet Alyce Smith Cooper and musical artist Shammy Dee. Available anytime. Free.

The Orange County Museum of Art and the Newport Beach Film Festival’s “Cinema Orange” series continues with this documentary about married Finnish design mavens Alvar and Aino Aalto. On demand Thursday-Sunday only. Free. Watch at

“Let’s Get Wet ... a Highways Fundraising Event”
Performance artists John Fleck, Kristina Wong and Annie Sprinkle are among those taking part in this benefit for Highways Performance Space in Santa Monica. 7:30 p.m. Saturday through 11:45 p.m. Sunday. $10-$50.

Eighth annual Powers New Voices Festival
The Old Globe in San Diego presents a virtual version of its reading series of new plays. 7 p.m. Thursday-Sunday. Free; reservations required.

The Jupiter String Quartet performs works by Michi Wiancko and Mendelssohn as part of Austin Chamber Music Center’s new “Chamber Connect: Spring Sessions” series. 5:30 p.m. Saturday. Sliding scale, free to $40.

“Under Construction: The Full Lengths”
The Road Theatre Company in North Hollywood kicks off a virtual play-reading series. 7 p.m. Friday, 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; available for 30 days afterward. Free; suggested $15 donation.,

Our recurring coronavirus-era arts-viewing recommendations are posted every Thursday.


11:50 a.m. Jan. 25, 2021: An earlier version of this article included a show that has been rescheduled. “Hi, Are You Single?” presented by Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company in association with L.A.-based Iama Theatre Company will run Jan. 31-Feb. 28.

12:45 p.m. Jan. 22, 2021: The link for the “Cinema Orange” screening of “Aalto” has been updated.