The Last Night, Zen Arts’ contribution to Downtown Los Angeles’ Night on Broadway was a roaring success!
As part of an evening of art, culture and entertainment celebrating the 8th anniversary of councilmember Jose Huizar’s Bringing Back Broadway, Zen Arts contributed with its very own intoxicating extravaganza! All ages, free to the public and in an effort to aid in revitalizing Downtown Los Angeles, the Night on Broadway event brought the classic theater experience to anyone who was curious enough to venture onto Spring Street that Saturday Night!
The Orpheum Theatre that housed the spectacle, was a dead ringer for the Zen Arts’ golden twenties theme. The Beaux Arts facade, and detailous interior only further magnified the authenticity that night! Named after Orpheus, the legendary musician, poet and prophet in ancient Greek mythology, Zen Arts did the place justice with live music, poem-inspiring women, and a recollection of what entertainment might have been like a century ago in this city!
The hour-long show that ran five times that night featured a melange of tap, swing, a feathered dance ensemble, a little burlesque, a little circus and lots of magic – and all this to a live ten-piece orchestra!
Donna Hood, professional Los Angeles-based dancer and choreographer, lead an ensemble of identically-dressed dancers adorned in feather and fringe through beautifully arranged numbers. Perfectly synced in motion and to live tunes, the girls showed us the best of burlesque-inspired cabaret!
The five-times-over packed Orpheum Theatre had the pleasure of enjoying Illusionist Seth Grabel’s smooth hand, as he charmed us with an assortment of classic magic tricks!
And if magic wasn’t enough, Zen Arts featured an array of movement artists peppered in-between cabaret vignettes. In the true vaudeville fashion, variety acts such as contortionist Sofie Dossi, breakdancer BBoy Flex and sword swallower Brett Loudermilk, amongst others that were featured, helped lend a modern spin to our otherwise vintage-feeling soiree.
The lobby decor and and dashing 1920’s-styled characters and musicians that accompanied the public at the entrance of the theater were expertly organized by The Grand Artique, a dexterous art and music community based in Los Angeles! The jivin’ Swing Band and old-fashioned newsstand bustling with customers really sent you back to old Los Angeles!
Last, but definitely not least, The No Vacancy Orchestra and their live 10-piece band played the entire soundtrack to the night, featuring vocals by different local talent.
Zen Arts was able to transport each of the five 2000+ audiences that night back into the thick roaring atmosphere of the closing night of a vaudeville show, one hundred years ago today!
Photography by Eleanora Barna and Cherie Steinberg