Los Angeles Things To Do In March 2016

Bruce Springsteen

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. Photo by Joel Berns.

From food festivals and St. Patrick’s Day to Old Pasadena Happy Hour Week, Paleyfest, world class theater and more; find the best Los Angeles things to do in March in our events roundup.

Edited by Christina Xenos

Sex with Strangers
Opening March 1. This compelling two-character drama follows a female novelist and a younger blogger known for his sexual prowess. Their real-life connection is complicated by questions of trust and literary identity, proving that, sometimes, “you can’t judge a book by its author.” Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater, Geffen Playhouse, 10886 Le Conte Ave., Westwood, 310.208.5454. geffenplayhouse.com

Old Pasadena Happy Hour Week
March 1-14. You’ve never been happier in Old Pasadena than during the first two weeks in March when more than 25 restaurants, bars and lounges like Dog Haus Biergarten, Umami Burger, Sushi Roku and many others offer extended happy hour specials daily. Visit website for a detailed list of special and happy hour times. oldpasadena.org

PPLA Food Fare
March 3. Thirty-seventh annual food event—it started as a cooking demonstration with Julia Child—features more than 150 of the city’s best restaurants, caterers, wineries, breweries and more. Taste offerings from venues including Girasol, Jar, Lucques and Rose Café-Restaurant. Proceeds benefit Planned Parenthood Los Angeles. Day session 11 am -2 pm; evening session 6:30-9:30 pm. $150-$250. Barker Hangar, 3021 Airport Ave., Santa Monica, 213.284.3300. pplafoodfare.com

Women Laughing Alone With Salad
Opening March 6. Sheila Callaghan (award-winning playwright and writer for such TV shows as Shameless and United States of Tara) wrote this raw comedy, making its West Coast premiere here, as a response to the ubiquitous, ridiculous advertising image referenced in the title. Through three different female characters—all wrapped up in the same man’s life—Callaghan challenges gender roles and women-shaming. Kirk Douglas Theatre, 9820 Washington Blvd., Culver City, 213.628.2772. centertheatregroup.org

Ciclavia—The Valley
March 6. Several miles of L.A.’s normally congested streets turn into a car-free park for a walk and bike tour of the city. For the first CicLAvia of 2016, the event ventures deeper into the San Fernando Valley, with a route that extends between Pacoima, Arleta and Panorama City, along Van Nuys Boulevard. 9 am-4 pm. ciclavia.org

Hungry Cat Clambake
March 8. Celebrate the 11th anniversary of David Lentz’s flagship restaurant with a Maryland-style clambake, $5 cocktails and more. The clambake is prepared and served in Japanese bamboo steamers filled to the brim with premium Maine lobster, rock crab, mussels, shrimp, New England steamers, steamed potatoes and pork belly. 5:30 p.m. 1535 N. Vine St., Hollywood, 323.462.2155. thehungrycat.com

All Star Chef Classic
March 9-12. The four-day foodie event brings together some of the world’s most celebrated chefs to cook in a “Restaurant Stadium” and “Chefs Tasting Arena” in downtown Los Angeles. Dazzle your taste buds during an expanded list of events with the introduction of two new dinners: “Noche de Masters Dinner” and “East West Masters Dinner presented by East West Bank,” as well as an additional strolling event, the “Global Grand Tasting presented by Melissa’s Produce.” LA Live, 800 W Olympic Blvd., downtown. allstarchefclassic.com

March 11-20. The Paley Center for Media hosts this annual event with screenings and interactive panels featuring creators and stars from top TV shows. This year’s lineup includes Empire, Better Call Saul, The Big Bang Theory, Fear the Walking Dead and American Horror Story: Hotel. Visit website for schedule and tickets. Dolby Theatre, 6801 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 310.786.1000. paleycenter.org

Break Bread
Through March 14. The immersive art installation and programming series kicks off this weekend at the Think Tank Gallery downtown. The collaboration between the gallery and Bay-to-LA artists Scott Hove and Baker’s Son includes 7,500 square-feet of floor-to-ceiling cake mazes, a watercolor ice cream truck and a dining lounge inspired by Cirque du Soleil’s Zumanity. The secret 1950s-style diner in the back serves as a stage for Feastly pop-up food events from local chefs that will fill the calendar during its 30-day run. 939 Maple Ave., 2nd floor, downtown. thinktankgallery.org

Robert Mapplethorpe: The Perfect Medium
March 15-July 31. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and the J. Paul Getty Museum present the major retrospective examining the work and career of one of the most influential visual artists of the 20th century. In an unprecedented collaboration, the two institutions will trace the artist’s working methods and materials, presenting the improvisational, experimental aspects of his practice alongside the refined perfection of his prints. Getty (March 15-July 31), LACMA (March 20-July 31). 1200 Getty Center Drive, L.A., 310.440.7300. getty.edu; 5905 Wilshire Blvd., L.A., 323.857.6000. lacma.org

March 15-20. This Tony-winning musical is back by popular demand for a limited one-week engagement at the Pantages. A stage adaptation of the acclaimed film of the same name, Once tells the story of a street musician in Dublin buoyed by the encouragement of a beautiful young Czech woman. Pantages Theatre, 6233 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 323.468.1770. hollywoodpantages.com

Cherry Blossom Festival
March 12-13. Descanso Gardens welcomes spring—and Daylight Saving Time—with its annual fest featuring origami, food and more. 1418 Descanso Drive, La Cañada Flintridge, 818.949.4200. descansogardens.org

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band
March 15, 17, 19. The Boss is Back He’s played 36 concerts in the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena or the neighboring coliseum and affectionally called the former “the dump that jumps.” Now, the Boss is set to bring down the house once more, this time in more ways than one: Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band’s shows at the sports arena are the last to rock the 57 year-old venue before it closes its doors for good. The concerts support the release of the box set The Ties That Bind: The River Collection (“Springsteen’s best archival release yet,” according to Rolling Stone), a comprehensive fleshing-out of the pivotal 1980 album The River. Audiences will hear an in-sequence, complete performance of the original album, which includes Springsteen’s first top-10 single, “Hungry Heart,” plus other Springsteen favorites. Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena, 3939 S. Figueroa St., downtown, 213.747.7111. lacoliseum.com

Casey’s St. Patrick’s Day Street Festival
March 17. This 43rd annual all-day street festival enlivens downtown Los Angeles with Irish food, games, Irish drink specials (green beer, anyone?) and sets by a live DJ. Headquartered at Casey’s Irish Pub, the street festival takes place in front of the pub. 6-2 am. Free general admission until 3 pm, $10 after 3 pm. 613 S. Grand Ave., downtown, 213.629.2353. 213nightlife.com

Herbie Hancock
March 18. The LA Phil’s Creative Chair for Jazz makes a welcome return for an evening packed with brilliant artistry and musical experimentation. 8 p.m. Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S Grand Ave., downtown. laphil.com

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder
Opening March 22. This acclaimed musical comedy—it earned the 2014 Tony for best musical—arrives at the Ahmanson straight from New York. The play tells the story of Monty Navarro, a distant heir to a family fortune, who opts to take matters into his own hands by killing the eight relatives (all played by the same man) who stand in his way. Ahmanson Theatre, 135 N. Grand Ave., downtown, 213.628.2772. centertheatregroup.org

Westweek 2016
March 23-24. The West Coast’s definitive showcase for global design offers a schedule of informative presentations and events. The event also debuts the latest luxury furnishings and interior resources. This year’s theme is “Mad About Design.” Pacific Design Center, 8687 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood, 310.657.0800. pacificdesigncenter.com

Big Bunny Spring Fling
March 25-27. Get ready for Easter at this “eggciting” fun fair at the L.A. Zoo, where little ones can pet rabbits, do crafts, get their faces painted and more. 5333 Zoo Dr., L.A., 323.644.6001. lazoo.org

The Revisionist
Opening March 29. Oscar nominee Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network) wrote this off-Broadway play—making its West Coast premiere here—about a writer who heads to Poland for solitude to aid his writer’s block but must deal with his 75-year-old second cousin who is eager to connect with her American relative. Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, 310.746.4000. thewallis.org

Leap Before You Look
Through May 15. If restriction breeds creativity, North Carolina’s Black Mountain College—a utopian experiment that operated from 1933-1957—proved that utter freedom breeds creativity as well. The institution is the subject of the Hammer Museum’s exhibition Leap Before You Look, which explores the influence the liberal-arts college—and its students and teachers, who included John Cage, Josef Albers and Cy Twombly—had on postwar culture, art and education through its philosophy of free inquiry and emphasis on both visual and applied arts. 10899 Wilshire Blvd., L.A., 310.443.7000. hammer.ucla.edu

An Act of God
Through March 13. Emmy-winning funnyman Sean Hayes (Will & Grace) takes on his loftiest role yet: He plays God himself and answers some of humanity’s most burning questions in this irreverent, highly acclaimed comedy. Written by The Daily Show alum David Javerbaum, the play arrives in L.A. for the first time after a successful Broadway run. Ahmanson Theatre, 135 N. Grand Ave., downtown, 213.628.2772. centertheatregroup.org

Through March 13. This play by Bess Wohl—making its West Coast premiere here—follows an American woman’s one-night stand in Spain that turns into a complicated game of cat and mouse. Gil Cates Theater, Geffen Playhouse, 10886 Le Conte Ave., Westwood, 310.208.5454. geffenplayhouse.com

The Illusionists: Live from Broadway
Through March 13. Have your mind blown at this spectacular showcase, the best-selling magic show in Broadway history. A roster of incredible illusionists performs death-defying stunts and jaw-dropping magic tricks. Pantages Theatre, 6233 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 323.468.1770. hollywoodpantages.com