Theatre Palisades Youth (TPY) Actors Are Writing Songs and Creating and Performing in YouTube Videos About the Pandemic

Written by Lara Ganz, TP Youth Program Director

"Rehearsals!" "Tech week!" "Cast circles!" "Nine performances over two weekends!" holding hands as we take our bow together... all echos of a distant past... or what feels distant.

It's hard to believe it was only last month when Theatre Palisades Youth's radiant and soulful young cast dazzled sold out audiences with Frozen Jr! 10 days after our final show, it was announced that California was headed into quarantine for two weeks. Those two weeks have since turned into... ??? This is hard. This is heart-breaking and incomprehensible. This is the "new normal".

Real grief needs real joy to counter it and our inspirational community of young actors has risen to the occasion! These young actors are sharing their voices filled with hope and humor... and encouragement!

We look to these resilient children as a reminder of the magic that will happen when we all gather again at our beloved Pierson Playhouse. Please enjoy their videos and share with others who need a smile right now!

Lexi Sexton's "Frozen" Post-Coronavirus Parody

Lexi Sexton has graced the Theater Palisades stage in many memorable roles, Belle from Beauty and the Beast, Tinkerbell in Peter Pan, and Ariel in The Little Mermaid. Most recently she "wowed!" audiences at Elsa in Frozen. Lexi has a recurring role on television in Nickelodeon's The Loud House.

Lexi leads with grace, kindness and humility. She is true leader who is always looking for ways to help support her cast mates, she is the first one to offer to take out the trash or help clean up our many messes! Lexi truly delights in helping others.... Oh yeah, and she can sing!!!

Ella White: Stay At Home! Coronavirus Song

Ella White has been shining in role after role at TPY. She is an incredibly versatile performer and has played Tigerlilly in Peter Pan, Benny in Guys and Dolls, Ariel in The Little Mermaid and most recently charmed sold out audiences as Anna in Frozen Jr.

Ella is always looking for ways to be of service and leads with kindness and empathy. Her open heart allows cast-mates to feel safe and supported. Ella is a triple threat to the 10th power! She sings, she dances, she acts, she writes comedy (seriously clever comedy!), she writes songs (lyrics and music!!! Really clever and soulful songs!), she does improv, and now apparently, she plays the ukulele!

She has taught herself to play ukulele during these past few weeks of quarantine and wrote the music and lyrics to this original song about the Coronavirus pandemic "Stay at Home."

Lara Ganz is currently hosting FREE online theater+creativity ZOOM meetings for TPY. If your child would like to participate, please email Lara at: calrayganz [at] gmail [.] com


JOAN OF ART - A Musical About Love, Winter Fun in Downtown LA, A Thousand Lights at Union Station and A Poignant, Raw, Beautifully Written, Directed, and Acted Film

After you have stuffed yourselves with delicious food, and visited friends and family, here are some fun things you might want to do that does not include eating or shopping.

First up is the return of LOVE ACTUALLY LIVE at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. This is their biggest, record-breaking hit of the holiday season. The multimedia concert celebration of one of the most beloved holiday films of all time is back by popular demand, now as a not-to-be missed Los Angeles tradition.

The team behind LA's award winning series For the Record transforms the theatre into an immersive cinema, where the modern classic written by Richard Curtis is reborn as a revolutionary stage and screen event.

To tell the story, the film and live action seamlessly intertwine throughout the London setting. Iconic scenes on screen share the stage with an all star cast of singers and a 15-piece orchestra as they reimagine the film's hit soundtrack including 'Christmas is All Around' and 'Trouble With Love.'

'Love Actually Live' is a first-of-its-kind theatrical cinema experience. The show runs from November 27th - December 29th. To purchase tickets and for more information visit or call 310-745-4000.

The Wallis-Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts is located at 9390 North Santa Monica Blvd. in Beverly Hills, 90210.

Next up is something fun for the whole family and one of my favorite things to do...ICE SKATING...Growing up in New York City once the winter was upon us, you could find me with my white skates with pink pom poms ice skating at New York's famed Rockefeller Center. It was always a magical, super fun experience even when I'd fall on my butt which I did more times than not.

Now you can lace up your skates and have the same experience as I did at PERSHING SQUARE HOLIDAY ICE SKATING RINK.

Open daily as of November 14th 2019 until January 20, 2020, you won't want to miss this magical winter wonderland that promises to delight all people of all ages. So grab your family, friends, co-workers or a date and visit The Bai Holiday Ice Rink at Pershing Square for festive fun and unforgettable memories.

The is their 22nd Anniversary Season so you know they're doing something right. Also every Tuesday throughout the rink, the season will be dedicated to FROZEN. Ice rink lights will be predominantly blue and every third song played will be from the FROZEN'S original Broadway Cast Recording at 7pm, 8:30pm and 10pm.

For more information go to or call 313-624-4289.


Speaking of Downtown, at Union Station THOUSANDS OF LUMINOUS LIGHTS are setting the stage for a month long holiday celebration which started on Thursday November 21st.

The holiday season Union Station's historic south patio will be transformed into a hub of holiday entertainment with a Luminous Holiday Light Display, a Tree Lighting Ceremony, illuminating a towering tree with thousands of glistening lights as snowdrifts from the sky fall to welcome the holiday season.

Additionally, the station's iconic clock tower will be adorned with a massive 20 foot wide wreath. There will be a month-long series of eclectic Cocoa Concerts and a Holiday Festival and Artisan Market featuring a distinctive diverse performers, artists and artisans from across Los Angeles.

The Union Station Holiday Festival, a pop-up artisan market, rolls into the station's south patio on Saturday December 7th from 10am to 6pm with more than 40 of L.A.'S most sought after artists and artisans, live entertainment, a Beer Garden, food truck favorites and fun, free activities for the kids.

The Cocoa Concert series continues on Friday, December 6 at 6:40pm (Latin beats from the Congas ), Friday, December 13th, 6:30pm (The singing sounds of the HI-FI HONEYDROPS AND Friday, December 20th, 6:30pm (Special Guests to be announced).

There will also be Santa selfies, a Candy Cane Lane where custom neon photo-op will make your season bright alongside a soaring Candy Cane Queen and holiday-themed arts, crafts and interactive games and entertainment.

I'm taking my eleven year old niece there next weekend and I'm probably going to have just as much fun as she will. For additional information on holiday events at Union Station, check out 'happenings' at

Lastly I high recommend one of my favorite films of the year MARRIAGE STORY, written and directed by NOAH BAUMBACH, who is also one of my favorite screenwriters. This 2019 films stars the fantastic Scarlett Johansson and the equally fantastic Adam Driver along with the wonderful Laura Dern, Alan Alda, Ray Liotta and Julie Hagerty.

The film follows a married couple going through a coast to coast divorce. You can see it in theaters around town and it will also be streaming on NETFLIX starting on December 6th. The film received widespread critical acclaim particularly for Baumbach's screenplay and direction as well as the acting of Johansson, Driver and Dern.

MARRIAGE STORY is at times funny, extremely raw and deeply emotional. Driver plays a successful theatre director in New York City. His theatre company is currently producing a play that stars his wife Nicole (Johansson) a former teen film actress. That's all I really want to say about it except that I promise, you will be thinking about this film long after the credits end. I know I was.

I wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving. It's one of my favorite holidays even though I'm a staunch vegetarian. For me it's all about getting together with people that I love and sharing what we are all thankful for. I hope that you all besides having fun and experiencing delicious food, take a moment and reflect on all the things in your life that you are grateful for.