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Birth of Venice and early days

Venice in Films

Actors, Filmmakers and Writers in Venice live or lived

Actors, Filmmakers and Writers in Venice hung out

Venice on TV

Program of the 1978 Venice Festival at the Fox Venice Theater

The Fox Venice Theater

Tale of the Fox
(from Free Venice Beachhead)

1981 Resistance Celebration Schedule

1981 Resistance Celebration Articles

The Rhythm of Venice Beach

University of Venice


Beats film

Venice - Ocean Park

Showbiz Comes to Venice

Spoken Word

Annual Events


Institutions, Organizations, Foundations

Publishers etc.

Rubber Tramps of

Vector Supercar

Paul Tanck on
Venice-related films

The Venice Walk

JJ for President



Venice in Theater, Theater in Venice,
Other Performance Art


The Lady Who Cried Fox
Written by Edward Clinton, this farce about sex and jealousy in Venice was to have been performed at the renovated Venice Pavilion in early 1982. It may or may not have happened.

Merchant of Venice
In 1994, director Peter Sellars disturbed theatergoers with a production of the venerable Shakespeare work, set in the contemporary Venice of California, with black characters substituting for Jewish, and Latino characters substituting for Italians. The stage effects included Rodney King video footage.

Beach Head
by Bill Oxendine, comedy (seen by the webslave, actually very funny) that explores the question of how to be hip in the 80s. The main characters are a couple in their mid-thirties. The kids spike the wine with acid (LSD).

Prisoner of Venice
by Douglas Johnson - was at Zephyr Theater that's all I know.

Pen to Paper
an evening of original stories based on the theme "A Love Letter to Venice CA"
Pacific Resident Theater 2003
Readers: Orson Bean, Brett Cullen, John Kertis, Dominic Hoffman, Chris Mulkey, Tom Wright

Ed Pearl - founder of the legendary Ash Grove night club in LA. It burned in 1974, and soon afterward Pearl moved to Venice and in his words "organized an incredible week-long performance of Brecht's "Mother" at the Fox Venice," selling out the 850-seat theater for every show.

Venice Rendezvous - Eric Vollmer and the Voice In The Well Ensemble - performance arts solute to the Venice Centennial, invoking through spoken word, music and narrative Sarah Bernhardt, Aimee Semple McPherson, Edward Biberman, Venice Beats, Jim Morrison and others who helped to imagine this place into existence - and shed light on its novel past.

Number Our Days - Barbara Meyerhoff’s book about the Jewish community became first a documentary film, then a play, adapted for the stage by Suzanne Grossman. Reviewer Joie Davidow doesn't much care for the stage version. She says, "These Jews survived the pograms and Nazi camps only to be castrated at the hands of their own artistic grandchildren." In another paper, Jack Viertel says it lacks craftsmanship. "This is a play that seems constantly to be scanning the horizon for plot and theme, and it will grab at anything."

Prelude to a Death in Venice - Actually this play is part of a longer 4-hour work called "Shaggy Dog Animation" written by Lee Breuer. It is not known whether the city referred to in the title is our Venice. These things are known: It seems to be about a man at a California roadside pay phone at night, talking on the phone and/or to a ventriloquist dummy. Breuer and his wife lived in Southern California in the Sixties. In the early 80s Breuer lived at Rose and Speedway for a time and was recipient of a MacArthur Foundation "genius" grant in 1997


Dr. Geek
self-described "wordologist", boardwalk performer for kids, giving them useful lessons. Bo Diddley said "He's what I called an authentic rapper. I never heard him use one cuss word and he's always saying something positive."

LA Connection
Improv troupe, which at various times included Victoria Jackson, Kato Kaelin, Jon Lovitz Taylor Negron.
In 1977 one configuration of LA Connection could often be found performing on the boardwalk

Major Mars
In 1953-54, actor Bob Burns appeared as this character, presenting interactive skits involving audience members, for the Revell Models company

A Venice native exported some beach comfort to Burning Man, the facility described as "a full-service pit stop for your chakras. Hand made sno cones (spiked on request), a slip-n-slide, space/psychedelia soundtracks, and pillows will quickly become your afternoon stop fixation"

held a "Pro-Meat" demonstration, gave out free Slim Jims, entertained children with a puppet show starring a rotisserie chicken, and provoked the Beach’s resident militant vegetarian, Jingles, to threaten to kick their asses.

Naked Bike Ride
June 16, 2004 - unknown what group this was, but the nude bike hike didn’t come off quite as planned. The LA Times reported "They were met at Venice Beach by a heavy contingent of police, so they rode naked under their clothes".

Cacophony Society
They do a whole lot of things all over the place, and Venice Beach seems to be a favorite venue.
"Red Tide" involved many Cacophonists in Santa Claus outfits descending on Ocean Front Walk
"Spreading the Word" - Poetry disguised as religious tracts distributed in wake of the annual Hard Krishna parade
"Venice Beach Fracture Party" - High-fashion orthopedics booth on Venice boardwalk offering image-enhancing plaster bandages
"Fun with Mud" - booth extolling the virtues of the lowly mudpie, with demonstrations and giveaways
"Save Money! Die Early!" - Absurdist protest march on the Boardwalk


© 2004 - 2012 Pat Hartman
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