Tonight is the debut of the West Los Angeles Author’s Club and this literary event opens with Gina B. Nahai, a best-selling author, columnist, and professor of Creative Writing at USC.
This event is sponsored by the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce. “This is one of our new activities in the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce where we are trying to appreciate, illustrate, and illuminate the intellectual, cultural and literary parts of our community” said Elham Yaghoubian, Director and Founder of the Author’s Club. Yaghoubian is very accomplished in her own right. She is also a board member of the Chamber as well as human rights activist, fashion designer and a noted author herself.
“It is a veritable delight to see the coming together of art and commerce, the acknowledgement of the symbiosis between capital and creativity which is the bedrock upon which this city was built and continues to thrive. Telling stories–in film, music, or books–and making s financial success of it is what we do in Los Angeles,” added Nahai.
Nahai’s novels have been translated into eighteen languages, and have been finalists for the Orange Award, the IMPAC Award, the Harold J. Ribalow Award, and the Jewish Book Council’s Fiction Award. She is the winner of the Los Angeles Arts Council Award, the Persian Heritage Foundation’s Award, The Simon Rockower Award, and the Phi Kappa Phi Award. Her pieces have appeared in numerous national and international publications, as well as in a number of literary and academic journals and anthologies. Nahai writer a monthly column for the Jewish Journal of
Greater Los Angeles, and is a three-time finalist for an LA Press Club award. Nahai holds a BA and a Masters degree in International Relations from UCLA, and a Master of Professional Writing from USC.
Her latest novel, THE LUMINOUS HEART OF JONAH S., was a finalist for the Jewish Book Council’s fiction award in 2014.
Acclaimed singer and actress Ha Phuong incorporates striking reds in two classic looks. Her elegant, sleek bun evokes the glamorous Hollywood starlet while her beauty and grace are prominent in Alexandre McQueen shift dress.
Ha Phuong dazzles in this couture lace gown and train complemented by her beautiful Veronica Lake curls. This regal is highlighted by beautiful scenery, which illuminates the fiery tones of the dress.
Acclaimed Pop-Opera recording artist Nick Palance has created the “Coming Home with Nick Palance and Friends” charity gala to benefit OPCC and individuals who are homeless. The glamorous and highly anticipated event will be held on Sunday, June 28, 2015 at 6 pm at the elegant Casa Del Mar Hotel in Santa Monica (1910 Ocean Way, Santa Monica, CA 90405).
This memorable evening will include a red carpet gala reception, seated dinner by Executive Chef Alberico Nunziata in a spectacular ballroom overlooking the sea, silent auction, and an exciting musical program. Hilarious comedian Scott Wood, known as “Mr. Punchline,” will be the emcee for the evening.
As guests sip on premium wines from Peaceland Vineyards, Alma Fria Vineyards, Notre Vin Vineyards and Vinium, they can bid on these fabulous Silent Auction items:
A dress by fashion designer extraordinaire Sue Wong, a wine-tasting weekend in Sonoma County, exquisite prints by Neo-Renaissance artist Giorgio Tuscani, gorgeous clothes by Kyle Richard’s Beverly Hills boutique “Kyle by Alene Too,” gift card to celebrity fashion designer Pol’ Atteu’s Beverly Hills boutique, and fragrant luxurious candles by Lisa Carrier Designs.
Nick Palance, referred to as the “American Bocelli,” is known for his romantic and passionate singing style. Actress Jamie Luner (“Better Call Saul,” “Melrose Place”) will take center stage, along with other special guests on June 28th.
Confirmed guests include: Sue Wong (international fashion designer), Greg Germann (“Ally McBeal”), Sofia Milos (“CSI: Miami), John Maceri (Executive Director, OPCC), Ron Whitaker (veteran rock drummer, played with members of Guns N’ Roses), Renée Taylor (“The Nanny”),
Dr. Estella Sneider (TV & Radio Host, Co-Producer of “Beverly Hills Royal TV”), Amanda Miguel (internationally renowned singer), Diego Verdaguer (internationally renowned singer), Ana Victoria (internationally renowned singer), Marisela (internationally renowned singer), Laurene Landon (“All the Marbles,” “Maniac Cop”), Mel England (“Ron and Laura Take Back America”), Michelle Tomlinson (“Axe to Grind,” “The Cellar Door”), Prince Mario-Max Schaumburg-Lippe from Germany (Actor/TV Host, Co-Producer of “Beverly Hills Royal TV”) Vincent de Paul (award-winning actor and producer of “The Bay” series), Dustin Quick (model), Gloria Kisel-Hollis (producer), Pol’ Atteu (celebrity fashion designer, “Living with the Enemy”), Patrik Simpson (international agent, “Living with the Enemy”), Mario L. Trujillo (Deputy District Attorney, Los Angeles County), Xavier Mejia (Radio Host/Co-Founder LGBT Hero Awards), Hank Garrett (“Three Days of the Condor”), Lois Aldrin, HPC’s own Vida Ghaffari (actress “The Mindy Project” and blogger “So Very Vida”), and Romulo Canizales (executive producer). Invited guests include: Kyle Richards (“Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”), Maria Conchita Alonso (“Return to Babylon”), Congresswoman Linda Sanchez, Mayor of Long Beach Robert Garcia and Senate President pro Tem Kevin De Leon.
Senate pro Tem Kevin De Leon’s office will be presenting Certificates of Recognition to John Maceri, Executive Director of OPCC, as well as to Nick Palance, Sue Wong, Dr. Estella Sneider and Romulo Canizales.
Proceeds from the gala will benefit OPCC (formerly Ocean Park Community Center), which is the largest social services agency on the Westside of Los Angeles. A non-profit organization headquartered in Santa Monica, OPCC provides highly effective, fully integrated services to the most traumatized, vulnerable and needy members of our community—homeless individuals, victims of domestic violence, and at-risk youth. OPCC offers seven core services that provide support in the areas of housing, domestic violence, physical health, mental health, life skills/wellness, income services and substance abuse. All are designed to improve self-sufficiency, restore dignity, and enable our clients to be contributing members of our community, enhancing the quality of life for everyone.
Heralded as an extraordinarily gifted Pop-Opera recording artist and tenor, Nick Palance studied and trained for 8 years under world-renowned opera singer and vocal coach Maestro Hernan Pelayo (Placido Domingo’s mentor). Palance’s repertoire spans seven languages. His career took off when he starred as the lead in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” on the original off-Broadway tour. He also had a tenure with the Canadian Tenors. Palance has toured internationally in concert halls and is well known throughout the country for his uplifting public performances as well as private concerts for prominent individuals including William Shatner, Jerry Bruckheimer, Joe Pesci, and LA Mayor Eric Garcetti.
Nick Palance states, “It has been my passion to help those who are being overlooked. When a person hits hard times and becomes homeless, not only do they lose their place to live and position in society, but they also lose their identity, and it is a difficult, if not impossible, thing to come back from. I created this event to raise awareness and bring like-minded people to make a difference and restore hope to those who need it. Let’s take the ‘less’ out of homelessness.”
Event sponsors: Casa Del Mar Hotel, Westport Construction, Simons and Liebert Foundation, Peaceland Vineyards, Notre Vin Vineyards, Alma Fria Vineyards, SEP Entertainment & Lighting, Rota Mobility, Lisa Carrier Designs, Kyle by Alene Too, Giorgio Tuscani, Sue Wong, Mauricio Umansky / The Agency.
Executive Producers of the event: Nick Palance, Dr. Estella Sneider, Romulo Canizales, Alexandra Radlovic.
LEX–the Los Angeles group who fuse their synth-heavy sound with old school disco beats–will perform an avant-garde fantasy show on Wednesday, July 1 at the Los Angeles Theater Center (514 S. Spring St. Downtown LA 90013; www.thelatc.org/upcoming-shows/lex-showcase-3). The one-night-only performance will feature lighting and stage design from Martin Phillips (Daft Punk) and costumes from the Zamora Sisters.
LEX will perform their self-released their self-titled debut EP, produced by longtime Daft Punk engineer Peter Franco. Franco–who engineered Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories and won the 2014 Grammy Award for “Best Engineered Album” as well as “Record of The Year” for “Get Lucky”–helped hone their synth-heavy sound.
The Los Angeles-based foursome–ALEXIS (vocals, synthesizers), LP (synthesizers), LICIA (bass, synthesizers) and J (drums)–create their modern electro-pop sounds by using all analog vintage synthesizers, and everything is executed live during their performance–without backing tracks or computers onstage.
DATE: Wednesday, July 1
LOS ANGELES THEATER CENTER
514 S. Spring St.
Downtown LA 90013
8:00pm (Show starts)
Michelin starred honorees, James Beard Award winners, Food & Wine Best New Chefs, and 200 wineries, will once again converge on the City of Angels during the annual epicurean jubilee produced by Coastal Luxury Management.
LA Food and Wine Festival in downtown Los Angeles
WHAT: The fifth annualLos Angeles Food & Wine Festival, presented with founding partnersFOOD & WINE and Lexus, is set to feature three-nights and four-days of unrivalled tastings, dinners, lunches, seminars, book signings, cooking demonstrations, and special events, showcasing the finest in food and drink culture.
In past years, the star-studded lineup has included celebrated chefs such as Daniel Boulud, Curtis Stone, Giada De Laurentiis, Rick Bayless, Wolfgang Puck, Nancy Silverton, Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, Thomas Keller, Roy Choi, Michael Chiarello, Michael Voltaggio, Robert Irvine, Guy Fieri, Fabio Viviani, andGraham Elliot, as well as local favorites includingTim Hollingsworth, Michael Cimarusti, Suzanne Goin, Ludo Lefebvre, Jon Shookand Vinny Dotolo, Jessica Koslow, Ari Taymor, Ori Menashe, Josef Centeno, Sang Yoon, Ben Ford, andRay Garcia, to name a few.
Marquee events slated to return includeLive on Grand,Asian Night Market, the Power Lunch series, exclusive chef collaboration meals, andlive musical performances from award-winning artists.
The Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival has supported Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, St. Vincent Meals on Wheels and other L.A. based charitable endeavors.
In the next several weeks, the festival will be announcing confirmed programming and participants for 2015. Please continue to checkwww.LAFW.com for updates!
WHEN: Thursday, August 27 through Sunday, August 30, 2015
WHERE: Headquartered in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles, with main events directly in front of the iconic Walt Disney Concert Hall (with closures along Grand Avenue, between 1st and 3rd street),the 5th annual Los Angeles Food & Wine festival will also feature tastings, dinners, lunches, seminars, cooking demonstrations, and special events located across parts of greater Los Angeles including Downtown, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Hollywood, and more.
PHOTOS: Images of the Los Angeles Food & Wine festival (2014), for pre-event coverage, are available to view.
Guest blog from Monica G. Her review about LA Food and Wine Festival.
The Los Angeles Food and Wine Festival was Fabulous!
Guests had the opportunity to taste celebrity chef’s food bits around the world creations and try different types of wine. They were beef, salmon, pork, crab, salad, fruit creations, desserts, and let’s not forget the wine. My favorite food of Sunday night (and there were many) was Chef Chad Coby. Chef Colby made this awesome pasta with cream sauce and chicken which was DELICIOUS! This “fat” girl went back to his station three (3) yes I said it three times! I couldn’t contain my food cravings. Then toward the end of the night, Chef Colby made this awesome dessert (a type of custard). As I ventured to other food stations, with wine of course, I tried Adrian Giese (Mastro’s Steakhouse Chef) steak. As you all know, this is a FABOULOUS steakhouse, which I had the opportunity to dine at the restaurant in Costa Mesa (it is pricey, however well worth the dining experience). Let’s just say I went back for more steak a few times, as it was cooked medium rare and oh so juicy with a little spice. Bravo Chef Giese! Anytime you need me to sample your new ideas, I am here for you! I encountered another Chef, John Cox who was very funny, (can you believe I tried to sneak to the front of the line?) well the line was long so I had to investigate right? Chef Cox stated, well you have to wait like everyone else, but if you tweet me, I may just “consider” letting you in front. Well let’s just say, I had to go back to the end of the line, but it was well worth the wait, it was DELICIOUS and went back to the end while eating the beef for more. No need to say where’s the beef as it was right there! Next was Joseph Conrad (Bourbon Steak) which was very good. I am going to travel to Glendale, just to try more bourbon steak. Lastly, there were all types of wine. My favorite wine of the night was from Kracher of Austria. I couldn’t get enough of this wine, it was sweet and tasty! Last but not least, “Common” the rapper and actor closed the wine festival with a spectacular musical performance! Everyone was dancing, even an older couple I met!
Well everyone this is my very first blog as the talk show host, Wendy Williams always state “Say It Like You Mean it”, and I did. Until next time, as I sing Diana Ross “I’m coming out” as a blogger that is!
Though we are in the summer, actress Ha Phuong brings out the bold colors of the fall with her elegant couture style. She shines in an exquisite lace burgundy jumpsuit by Stella McCartney, who is also an activist and philanthropist like HP. Her hip Christian Louboutin heels make the whole ensemble look sultry yet refined.
HP looks sleek and glamourous in this bold Prabal Gurung dress, which accentuates her slim figure. She tops the outfit off with Stuart Weitzman patterned heels.
On June 18, 2015, grant and award-winning journalist, talented actress and voiceover artist, Vida Ghaffari, received a special honor for her career achievements by the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce at Delphi Greek Restaurant.
Roozbeh Farahanipour, the Chamber’s President and the owner/operator of popular Delphi Greek restaurant, which is located at 1383 Westwood Boulevard, bestowed this honor upon HPC’s own Vida, who is quite the roving reporter and working actress and voiceover artist extraordinaire! This multi-talented artist received a Certificate of Appreciation on behalf of the City of Los Angeles for all her hard work and dedication to the city, which was signed by 5th District Councilmember Paul Koretz. In addition to the Chamber holding this event in her honor, she also received an honorary membership to the Chamber. “I was truly honored by Roozbeh and the Chamber to receive this incredible commendation, especially as it’s one of the largest and oldest Chambers in Southern California. There is a real sense of community here and the Chamber does such a great job in fostering that community. I’ve covered their events for a while and it’s a great thing to see as a journalist in such a vast metropolis like Los Angeles,” said Vida.
“When it comes time to honor one of their own, the West Los Angeles City Of Commerce picked the perfect choice. Hollywood stars, as well as, many of LA’s top creative and business icons came out to support and celebrate the amazing, Vida Ghaffari. The Delphi Greek Restaurant in Westwood was literally “standing room only” with those of us who were there to show our love and appreciation for Vida…actress, writer, journalist, and someone who is very community-minded,” said acclaimed actress Suze Lanier-Bramlett.
In addition to distinguished Chamber members and government officials, numerous acclaimed celebrities friends of Vida’s appeared to support her event such as legendary Oscar winner Margaret O’Brien (Meet Me in St.. Louis, Little Women), President of the Southern California Motion Picture Council and actor Randal Malone (Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Dahmer vs. Gacy),legendary character actor James Hong (Kung Fu Panda 3, Mulan), Kate Linder (The Young and The Restless), Reatha Grey (Off Their Rockers, legendary Iranian actress Apick Youssefian (The Keeper: The Legend of Omar Khayyam, Cry of the Village), lifetime member of the Actors Studio Ford Austin (Pearl Harbor, Another World ), Suze Lanier-Bramlett (The Hills Have Eyes, Area 51), Anthony Azizi (Septembers of Shiraz, American Odyssey), and Film Composer David Raiklen (Mia, A Dancer’s Journey, Space Command Redemption). Because of Vida’s long standing relationship with the fashion community, designers such as Shekhar Rahate, Julia Clancey, Rita Mezrahi of Claires Collections, and up-and-coming designer Yuki Yim attended to show their support. This star-studded event also had a regal air with royalty such as HH Prince Maximillian Ferdinand Von Anhalt of Germany, HH Prince Mario-Max Schaumburg Lippe, Nachod of Germany, and HRH Qajar Persian Princess Mandana FarmanFarmaian in attendance. Other VIPs that atteneded were city officials, along with well regarded international, national and local media.
In addition to being a very successful and prolific journalist, Vida is best known for her appearances on the television comedies, Mind of Mencia and The Mindy Project. She will soon be seen in the films Pond Scum, Natural Born Filmmakers, Seeking Valentina and Strangers in a Book, which will screen at popular film festivals such as the FANtastic Film Festival and the Action on Film Festival. She is also about to host an exclusive launch event for her own blog about entertainment and fashion, www.soveryvida.com.
Talented actress and singer Ha Phuong brightens up Beverly Hills with her beautifully bold outfit and brings even more glamour to this ritzy city. This is quite difficult to do as Beverly Hills is a shopping mecca and some of the most fashionable women in the world shop here. She steals the show by strutting through this fashionable city in her Versace outfit. Her beautiful purple peacoat is by French Connection and it really brings out the bright colors in her outfit. Her cute pink booties are by Louis Vuitton and her matching purse is by Versace. Her super chic and elegant glasses are by Svarowski. It’s great to see the bright colors of her outfit juxtaposed by stylish neutral accessories.
“I wanted to wear something that embodied the bright, artistic spirit of Los Angeles, but wanted to also wear something bold and different. I like mixing different colors and styles. I also like mixing high and low designers, so I can inspire all sorts of women with all different budgets to dress well,” said Ha.