Every Tuesday beginning June 22 through August 17, 2021, The Music Center (TMC) will provide an opportunity for audiences to experience the third digital season of For the Love of L.A. via Instagram/MusicCenterLA and Music Center Offstage. This series was created in support of the cornucopia of talented L.A.-based artists in the disciplines of music, dance, visual culture and more.

The first two seasons of For the Love of L.A. premiered 48 arts projects, providing the artists with the opportunity to express and reflect on the current world situations around them through their chosen art form and to present them through video, photography, and creative writing.  This year TMC invites the public to “Experience the Diversity of Creative Arts in Los Angeles that Bring Attention to the Vibrant Poetry Scene as well as the Cultural Identities of Asian American Artists”  A community that has experienced extreme prejudice throughout the history of this country but whose trials have been brought to the forefront by the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Each week audiences will find curated programming that includes the commissioned works by newly named L.A.-based artists on both TMC’s social channels and TMC Offstage. Each of the nine artists has a strong and dedicated connection to the Los Angeles performing, visual and literary arts communities

The three curators who identified artists for this year’s For the Love of L.A. include Achinta S. McDaniel (artistic director of Blue13 Dance Company), Jennifer Fukutomi-Jones (arts and culture administrator for City of Glendale), and Luis J. Rodriguez (Poet Laureate of Los Angeles, 2014–2016 and founding editor of Tia Chucha Press and co-founder of Tia Chucha’s Centro Cultural & Bookstore in the San Fernando Valley).

Achinta McDaniel - Photo courtesy of TMC

Achinta McDaniel – Photo courtesy of TMC

The theme chosen by curator McDaniel was titled “Objects in Mirror…” during which the selected artists questioned the preconceptions and misconceptions of South Asian American artists.  The three artists working with McDaniel include Musician Ireesh Lal (July 6) who will explore the ancient concept of Chakras in his music. Lal’s score will be incorporated in the work by dance artists Shalini Bathina and Shreya Patel.  Bathina (June 22) performs as two characters inspired by Ardhanareeswara, the composite of Hindu deities Shiva (male) and Parvati (female); and Patel (June 29) fuses her background in western and classical Indian dance styles to choreograph a piece set to Lal’s “Mvmt IV: Heart Chakra.”

Shalini Bathina FINAL_Shreya Patel_ArtistPromoPhoto
Shalini Bathina - Photo courtesy of The Music Center

Curator Fukutomi-Jones selected three artists who will highlight the hurt and stress caused by the growing number of hate crimes and xenophobia toward Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans. Visual artist and Chinese American Audrey Chan’s (July 13) vocabulary flash card-style artwork will incorporate themes and subjects dealing with AAPI discrimination to raise awareness for the people behind the stories; Indian American musician Aditya Prakash’s (July 20) music will offer allyship and Thai Japanese American musician Tylana Renga Enomoto (July 27) will encourage audiences to embrace activism as a call to action for Angelenos to support the AAPI community.

Rodriguez will showcase the vibrant poetry scene in Los Angeles. Three distinct voices will be heard through original poems and visuals created for The Music Center’s For the Love of L.A. by Shonda Buchanan (August 3), author of five books, including the award-winning memoir, Black Indian; Chiwan Choi (August 10), author of three books of poetry, The Flood (Tía Chucha Press, 2010), Abductions (Writ Large Press, 2012) and The Yellow House (CCM, 2017); and Luivette Resto (August 17), whose two books of poetry Unfinished Portrait and Ascension have been published by Tía Chucha Press. Her third collection is forthcoming from FlowerSong Press.

The list of previous artists and curators who have participated in TMC’s For the Love of L.A. series is long. Just a few include dance premieres from Pacifico Dance Company; Versa-Style Dance Company; Syncopated Ladies; Rangoli Dance Company; L.A. FUSION Dance Theater; and JazzAntiqua. Just a hint of the curators included Marvella Muro (director of programs for Self Help Graphics & Art); Ed Barguiarena (musician/composer/producer); Raélle Dorfan (executive director, Dance Resource Center); and Karen Mack (founder/executive director, LA Commons). One can read more about the incredible L.A.-based photographers, painters, sculptors, musicians, performance artists, singer-songwriters and others by clicking HERE.

WHAT: The Music Center launches the third season of its digital series, For the Love of L.A.

WHERE:  Instagram (@MusicCenterLA) and The Music Center Offstage

WHEN:  Tuesdays, June 22–August 17, 2021


Beginning June 22, 2021, The Music Center will post new works of art on The Music Center’s Instagram every Tuesday through August 17, 2021. The public can get a closer look at each artist through biographies and statements alongside the complete version of their artwork in a digital library on The Music Center Offstage. In addition, the initiative also aims to inspire the public to engage and participate directly by contributing their own For the Love of L.A. creative projects; some audience-generated content has been selected and shared on The Music Center’s social channels. *All artists are subject to change.

To visit The Music Center Offstage website, click HERE.

Written and compiled by Jeff Slayton from The Music Center press release.

Featured image:  2018 Dance Downtown – Bollywood – Dancer Javier Guillen – Photo courtesy of TMC