Flavorpill Guide to the Week’s Top 10 LA Events

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There’s so much going on in the City of Angels, it can be hard to keep track of it all. Thanks to the new Flavorpill, we’re inviting the entire community to make suggestions with its gorgeous city-based culture guide — an open platform where our very own editors and curators meet and mingle with artists, gadabouts, and other tipsters for a limitless variety of both ongoing and one-off recommendations. With this in mind, please enjoy our weekly list of hand-picked event suggestions here on Flavorwire, and in the meantime, be sure to check out the new Flavorpill. We’ll see you there.

Monday, May 6

Tea Study: Tea 101 The seventh annual Tea Lovers Festival continues to expand with a full month’s worth of amazing events, including tastings, tutorials, and other happenings in tea-savvy spots across the city. Begin by learning all about the the history, culture, and health benefits of one of the world’s most popular beverages in Tea 101, a “tea study” at the Bird Pick Tea & Herb’s Pasadena location. From learning all about tea’s ancient origin to its role in Chinese traditions, this fascinating tutorial concludes with a lesson on how to brew the perfect cup of tea. — Erica Marie Liscano

Tuesday, May 7

FILM: Animal Farm (1954) The publication of George Orwell’s allegorical novel Animal Farm coincided with the end of World War II in 1945. Less than ten years later, British animation company Halas and Batchelor adapted the book’s now-famous story into a full-length movie — one of the first animated features ever released in Great Britain. Its highly political subject matter and violent overtones originally garnered the film an X rating, but the British Board of Film Classification has since rated it suitable for all audiences. As part of its regular Tuesday-afternoon free film screenings, the Skirball Cultural Center brings the rare gem back to the big screen. — Tanja M. Laden

Wednesday, May 8

BOOKS: Lian Dolan: Elizabeth the First Wife Lian Dolan’s bestseller Helen of Pasadena was a finalist for Best Fiction in the Southern California Independent Bookseller Awards in 2010. Now, the author is launching her witty new followup Elizabeth the First Wife at Vroman’s Bookstore. The novel tells the story of another Pasadena-based character: an English professor whose bookish, insular life is upended when her former husband — an action-movie star — offers her a summer job at a Shakespeare festival. Elizabeth is torn between her ex, her house-sitter, and Shakespeare himself, who inspires her to write a book that merges modern pop culture with relationships from the Bard’s classic plays. The book compares Hamlet to the fictional Twilight character Edward Cullen, and with chapter titles like “6 Classy Ways to Throw Down an Insult” and “Elizabethan Fashion Dos & Don’ts for the Modern Woman,” the book-within-a-book is a charming, juicy read. — Karin E. Baker

Thursday, May 9

FILM: The Source Family Jim Baker, a decorated Marine and judo expert, probably didn’t known exactly what he was getting into when he opened the Source Restaurant on Los Angeles’ Sunset Strip in the late 1960s. Serving vegetarian fare to celebrity regulars such as John Lennon and Warren Beatty, Baker’s baby blossomed quite organically into a full-blown spiritual movement for wayward hippies. Assuming the name Father Yod (and later YaHoWha), Baker rented a mansion in the Hollywood Hills where his family of followers, mostly teenagers and 20-somethings, partook in meditations, secret rituals, and the recording of rock music. Maria Demopoulos and Jodi Wille have crafted a fascinating documentary chronicling the rise and fall of Father Yod’s experiment in ’70s utopian living. Based on the book by former Source Family members Isis and Electricity Aquarian, the film is skillfully composited from archival footage and interviews with both insiders and outsiders. The Source Family is a riveting film certain to garner a number of supporters. Just look at us, we’re drunk off its Kool-Aid. — Mindy Bond

COMEDY: The Great Debate: Golden Girls vs. Girls

Friday, May 10

FILM: The Real Indies: A Close Look at Orphan Films The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences presents a two-day program of lost-and-found footage, courtesy of New York University and the Orphan Film Symposium. Short-lived flicks with vague origins and uncertain copyrights, orphan films have hovered along the film industry’s periphery, just waiting to be uncovered. Highlights include a newly restored print of Shirley Clarke’s mesmerizing 1967 documentary, A Portrait of Jason, which director Ingmar Bergman apparently called “the most extraordinary film I’ve seen in my life.” Other rare screen gems include Satyajit Ray’s short film Two (1964) and Jon Boorstin’s Oscar-nominated short documentary short about a San Francisco museum, Exploratorium (1974). — Tanja M. Laden

Saturday, May 11

ART: INCOGNITO The Santa Monica Museum of Art’s innovative INCOGNITO benefit, now in its ninth year, challenges the instincts of seasoned art buyers while simultaneously permitting free rein to the personal tastes of amateurs. Hundreds of artists contributed works of identical dimensions and prices to the exhibition. The equalizing principle: their signatures are hidden on the backs of the works, and the buyer only discovers the identity of the artist after the purchase. — Mallory Farrugia

MUSIC: Dante vs. Zombies w/ Persona, Blackfeet Braves, and Levitation Room

Sunday, May 12

MUSIC: Kirk Franklin’s Gospel Brunch feat. Bishop John W. Haynes & Change Those who summon spirituality from live music and Southern-style cuisine will enjoy the House of Blues’ Gospel Brunch, a longtime local ritual that’s re-launching this Mother’s Day, thanks to Grammy-winning gospel artist Kirk Franklin’s new role as curator of the beloved weekly SoCal institution. A tour-de-force lineup of local singers, the gospel music soaks up Saturday night’s liquor with a feel-good tonic of worship that’s powerful, never preachy, and equally as memorable as the spread. — Shana Nys Dambrot

CITY GEM: Maja’s Magic School