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Author Laura Bleiberg

  • Laura Bleiberg

    Senior Editor / Features

    Bleiberg is a veteran newspaper and magazine journalist whose writing has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Orange County Register and LA Weekly. She has specialized in writing about the arts and dance, and was awarded a fellowship to the National Arts Journalism Program at Columbia University in 2001. But she also knows a thing or two about truck pull competitions, and one editor called her a “bulldog” when tackling an investigation. For five remarkable years, she lived a block from the ocean in Old Town Seal Beach, enjoying the views of snow on the San Gabriels while walking on the sand.

 

Orange County's Linda Emond Could Be Bringing Home a Tony

This is a big week for Linda Emond, who will find out at Sunday night's Tony Awards if she wins for best actress in a featured role in a musical for her role as Fraulein Schneider in the acclaimed revival of “Cabaret.” The graduate of Loara High School and Cal State Fullerton is an increasingly sought after Broadway actress (“Death of a Salesman,” starring opposite the late Philip Seymour Hoffman); has had roles written for her by the likes of Tony Kushner and others; and is one of the storied cast members in Terrence Malick’s upcoming movie, slated for release this fall. She’s pictured here with fellow “Cabaret” cast members Danny Burstein (left) and Alan Cumming, and with Burstein (both photos by Joan Marcus). Look for her thoughts on what it was like growing up in Orange County in an upcoming issue. Read more...

Meet Our New Events Editor: Lara Wilson

Meet Lara Wilson, Orange Coast magazine’s new events editor. Choosing each week from among a myriad of arts and entertainment shows, Wilson is your expert guide to the best events in Orange County. Now meet Lara Wilson, dancer and choreographer. Yes, the very same. Wilson, who has a BFA from the esteemed Fordham University-Alvin Ailey School joint program, is co-producing a concert of contemporary dance on April 10 in Laguna Beach. Read more...

Book Worms Unearth 'Flowers, Bees, Words' at Literary Orange

That girl is coming to town. Actress-author Marlo Thomas and writer Ann Hood (“Comfort: A Journey Through Grief”) headline the eighth annual Literary Orange festival—Orange County’s April 5 celebration of authors and books. More than 30 local writers also will participate, with 15 panels scheduled about food writing, travel, fiction, memoir, mystery, nonfiction, crime, and more. Peggy Hesketh, who gave Orange Coast readers book recommendations in our November Hot Pop column (reprinted below!), will talk about “flowers, bees, words”—among other things—with Vanessa Diffenbaugh and Andrew Tonkovich. Read more...

Person of Interest: Slipper-Toed Scene-Stealer

For the third year in a row, David will alternate as naughty brother Fritz in Festival Ballet Theater’s production of “The Nutcracker.” Fritz disrupts a Christmas Eve party in the traditional ballet, but the antics are all an act for the Aliso Viejo sixth-grader, who is polite and serious offstage, especially about classical dance. Read more...

What Does It Take to Dance in Cirque du Soleil's "Totem"?

Featured in Cirque du Soleil’s “Totem,” Hernandez was 10 when an uncle taught him this Native American dance. Two years later he was performing regularly at events such as Lake Forest’s Rancho Days Fiesta. Read more...

Pacific Chorale Releases Recording of Songs by Frank Ticheli

The Pacific Chorale has a long track record of working with contemporary composers and its history with USC’s Frank Ticheli goes back to his first commission from the chorale in 1999. Last week the chorale, with the Pacific Symphony, released on iTunes an album of the composer’s works, “Frank Ticheli: The Shore and Other Choral Works.” The CD comes out Nov. 19. “The Shore (Symphony No. 3)” was commissioned to honor chorale artistic director John Alexander’s 40th anniversary season and it had its premiere last June at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. Other pieces on the recording include “Earth Song” and “There Will Be Rest,” that first commission. Read more...

Art at the Airport: An Exhibition of the Many Faces of Joan Quinn

John Wayne Airport has mounted more than 80 art exhibitions in the terminals since 1990. But these days only ticketed passengers can view them because they’re on the other side of the security divide. While I’ve seen photos of the artwork in the current exhibition, “Joan, Joan, Joan: One Subject, Many Artists,” I’ve not stood inches away from the works, in the flesh, as it were. Nevertheless, I encourage those who have a date with the airport between now and the show’s Jan. 15 closing, to arrive a little early and spend some time with the 200 portraits on the upper level of Terminals A and C. Read more...

‘Flying Saves Lives’ Theme of Airport’s Student Art Contest

Orange County budding artists, from kindergarten-age through 12th grade, are invited to submit their masterpieces for consideration to the 24th annual John Wayne Airport Student Art Contest. All artwork should conform to the theme “Flying Saves Lives.” Contest officials give examples of air ambulances that ferry patients to the hospital; firefighting aircraft used to battle forest fires; and pilots who fly into hurricanes to gather critical information about these dangerous storms. Read more...

Backhausdance Heading to Canada

Backhausdance, Orange County’s most prominent modern dance company, has an “$11,000 in 11 days” fundraising drive underway through Wednesday Aug. 22. The company will be performing in British Columbia, Canada on Sept. 28, its first tour outside the U.S. Founder and artistic director Jenny Backhaus said the money raised will be used to offset the trip's expenses. The program will include the first act of “Incandescent” and “The Elasticity of the Almost,” which was featured in an Orange Coast photo-essay [“Submerged in a Dancing Daydream,” May]. Read more...

Internationally Renowned Dancers to Perform in O.C.

You have two chances this month to see some outstanding dance artists who don’t normally share the stage together. San Francisco Ballet’s Maria Kochetkova and Taras Domitro, and American Ballet Theatre’s Sascha Radetsky and Stella Abrera are headlining the Anaheim International Dance Festival gala on Sat., Aug. 11 at the City National Grove of Anaheim. Presented by Anaheim Ballet (we profiled the co-directors' son Evan Rosenberg earlier this month here) and Chapman University, the three-day festival also includes a free movie screening and question-and-answer session with a special guest—and we’re in luck. The irrepressible Jacques d’Amboise, former principal dancer with New York City Ballet, will be interviewed after a 7 p.m. screening of “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” (in Chapman University’s Folino Theater). Special classes and a student performance are also scheduled. Go to aidancefest.com for more information. Read more...

OC Guides

Guides

OC Guides
  • Best of 2014: Nutty Brûlée

    No one can resist breaking into the sugary crust of crème brûlée, and this one packs an extra surprise with its abundance of silky-smooth chocolate-hazelnut custard below—thanks to the addition of Nutella. This sinful dessert is incredibly rich and best shared with a friend. $8
    704 E. Balboa Blvd., Newport Beach, 949‑673‑7173, theslidingdoorcafe.com

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  • Best of 2014: Honey Bee Chicken

    You’ll fall in lust with the chicken pieces at BBQ Chicken at Diamond Jamboree in Irvine. Fried in olive oil for a crunchy exterior, they’re tossed in a sweet honey sauce making them all the more delicious. $11 to $21

    Read More
  • Best of 2014: New York Pizza

    Seal Beach’s A Slice of New York makes pizza the way it’s supposed to be—with a thin, chewy crust that oozes cheese and can be enjoyed the New Yawker way: folded in half.
    142 Main St., 562-493-4430, asliceofnewyorkpizza.net

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  • Best of 2014: Bird-Watching

    When the throngs of beachgoers are too much, spend a day with the birds. Here, with the wind whipping off the ocean and herons, egrets, ducks, and more soaring above, you'll get a chance to be the amateur ornithologist you never knew you wanted to be. Free
    3842 Warner Ave., Huntington Beach, 714-846-1114, bolsachica.org

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  • Best of 2014: Green Cleaners

    Sold from her website and a refitted retro travel trailer, these earth-safe cleaning products are Marilyn Nowak of Coto de Caza's propriety formulas. Products for laundry, surfaces such as glass and wood - even an ecological drain cleaner - all have dispenser bottles and bulk refills $8 to $48
    Resuming in September at Great Park Farmer's Market, Sand Canyon Avenue and Marine Way, Irvine, 949-292-1648, lilgreenwagon.com

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Style Stuff

  • Hot Shop: Popping With Petals

    Petals and Pop would be at home in a Paris street scene. Blooms and foliage spill onto the sidewalk from old aluminum buckets and vintage German pickling jars. Inside, a floor-to-ceiling library ladder slides along the shelves of this flower and home goods store, providing access to vases, table linens, garden and kitchen tools, specialty chocolates, and cookbooks. Read More
  • Ruffle Some Feathers this Fourth of July!

    We're all familiar with the food truck craze, but now there's a new kind of truck to get excited about. Pekok Within Boutique is Orange County's first fashion truck to hit the streets. The peculiar name is intended to encourage customers to embrace the idea of peacocking, or "Pekoking": using fashion as a means to attract attention and distinguish oneself. The new business is taking part in the Fourth of July event at the Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort and Marina July 4th from noon to 10 p.m. and July 5th from 1 to 10 p.m. Read More
  • Here Come the Brides!

    Looking for wedding inspiration — something that will set you apart from the crowd? Then keep from 12 to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 3, open. That's when Something Lovely Wedding returns to Orange County, with an impressive collection of more than 30 high-end wedding resources here in SoCal. Read More
  • Brea Mall is Home to O.C.'s Second Kiehl's Store

    In addition to getting a newly renovated mall, Brea now has bragging rights to a Kiehl's boutique. Elevating the skin and hair-care routines of loyal customers since 1851, Kiehl's chose The Brea Mall as the lucky landmark to expand the chain's presence, making it the second Orange County location (the other is at South Coast Plaza). Paying homage to Kiehl's East Village New York roots, the store brings a modern Big Apple apothecary to north county, blending antique fixtures with modern neon flair. Read More
  • California Cool: Oliver Peoples Launches WEST Sunglass Line

    This being the land of perpetual sun, it's no surprise that sunglass brand Oliver Peoples decided to launch a new line inspired entirely by coastal California. Read More
 
 
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