Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Meet the Author: Mona Simpson - NEW DATE


Monday March 16th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series continues with Mona Simpson whose powerful new novel, Casebook, is a witty, perceptive story of family life, part coming-of-age story and part detective yarn. The acclaimed and award-winning author of Anywhere But Here and My Hollywood, Simpson’s latest is about a young boy’s quest to uncover the mysteries of his unraveling family. What he discovers turns out to be what he least wants to know: the inner workings of his parents’ lives. And even then he can’t stop searching.

Casebook reveals an American family both coming apart at the seams and, simultaneously, reconstituting itself to sustain its members through their ultimate trial. Mona Simpson gives the reader a boy hero for our times whose story remains long after the novel is over.

Mona Simpson moved to Los Angeles as a young teenager and attended UC Berkeley, where she studied poetry. She worked as a journalist before moving to New York to attend Columbia's MFA program. During graduate school, she published her first short stories in Ploughshares, The Iowa Review and Mademoiselle. She stayed in New York and worked as an editor at The Paris Review for five years while finishing her first novel, Anywhere But Here. After that, she wrote The Lost Father, A Regular Guy and Off Keck Road.
Her work has been awarded the Whiting Prize, a Guggenheim, an NEA grant, a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, the Lila Wallace Readers Digest Prize, Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize, Pen Faulkner finalist, and most recently the Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
This event was previously scheduled for Thursday, March 12, so update those calendars for the following Monday, March 16th at 7:00 p.m. Light refreshments will be served. With wonderful Friends like these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Friday, February 06, 2015

LA OPERA with Singers!


Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro
Sunday, March 15th, 2:00 p.m.

LA Opera is presenting the popular comedy opera that is sure to delight: Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro. The story follows Figaro as his world is turning upside down. On the eve of the wily barber’s marriage to Susanna, Count Almaviva’s wandering eye has landed on the lovely bride-to-be. Servant and master go head to head, and even the Countess herself must spring into battle when she learns of her husband’s plans. Or is she embroiled in a liaison of her own? On Sunday, March 15 in Crowell Library’s Barth Community Room, learn all about this classic opera and enjoy performances by two local singers, Anne Gholson and Cody Lowery, accompanied by keyboards. They will sing selections from Mozart’s opera interspersed with the speaker’s discussion.
Cody Lowry grew up in Pasadena,CA and studied classical voice at Pasadena City College. He's worked with Aram Barsamian, Gail Gordon, and thanks to the Pamela L. Gerard Scholarship, the internationally acclaimed artist Carol Vaness. He has performed such roles as Figaro (Le Nozze di Figaro at PCC), Masetto (Don Giovanni), Don Alfonso (Cosi fan Tutte at The Broad Stage), and Papageno (The Magic Flute at PCC). Anne Gholson obtained her B.A. of Music, with a focus in Vocal Performance at Cal State University of Long Beach. Once her love of opera had blossomed, she performed the role of Zerlina in Don Giovanni and Barbarina in The Marriage of Figaro. Anne has had musical theater roles as Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady, and Vera Charles in Mame.

An opera can sweep you away to foreign lands, take you back in time, dazzle you with pageantry and bring history to life. It is literature, social studies, cultural diversity, multiple languages and most of all, it is exciting! Come explore the world of opera through LA Opera’s education programs. Opera has something for everyone. From the breathless opening notes of the overture to the touching final curtain, Mozart’s comic masterpiece brilliantly bucks the conventions of his time to deliver an ageless message of love and forgiveness. Don’t miss this special treat!

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Meet the Author: Mona Simpson


Thursday March 12th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series continues with Mona Simpson whose powerful new novel, Casebook, is a witty, perceptive story of family life, part coming-of-age story and part detective yarn. The acclaimed and award-winning author of Anywhere But Here and My Hollywood, Simpson’s latest is about a young boy’s quest to uncover the mysteries of his unraveling family. What he discovers turns out to be what he least wants to know: the inner workings of his parents’ lives. And even then he can’t stop searching.

The boy’s amateur detective work starts innocently but quickly takes him to the far reaches of adult privacy as he acquires knowledge that will affect the family’s well-being, prosperity, and sanity.
Casebook reveals an American family both coming apart at the seams and, simultaneously, reconstituting itself to sustain its members through their ultimate trial. Mona Simpson gives the reader a boy hero for our times whose story remains long after the novel is over.

Mona Simpson moved to Los Angeles as a young teenager and attended UC Berkeley, where she studied poetry. She worked as a journalist before moving to New York to attend Columbia's MFA program. During graduate school, she published her first short stories in Ploughshares, The Iowa Review and Mademoiselle. She stayed in New York and worked as an editor at The Paris Review for five years while finishing her first novel. Anywhere But Here. After that, she wrote The Lost Father, A Regular Guy and Off Keck Road.
Her work has been awarded the Whiting Prize, a Guggenheim, an NEA grant, a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, the Lila Wallace Readers Digest Prize, Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize, Pen Faulkner finalist, and most recently the Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

This event is free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served. With wonderful Friends like these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Friends of Crowell Public Library Meet the Authors Series: Christopher J. Lynch: One Eyed Jack


Thursday February 26th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series continues with Christopher J. Lynch, a lover of crime fiction, whose debut novel, One Eyed Jack (Your Secrets Are Safe With Me), is a hard-boiled thriller about a professional blackmailer named “John Sharp,” a man who knows how to keep a secret – for a price. But when a routine case of infidelity takes an unexpected detour, he soon finds himself caught in a tangled web of double-blackmail, commodities manipulation, and trying to rescue the woman that had once been his target.

Some reviews from Goodreads.com:
“This book is entertaining right from the first sentence. You will be drawn in by the humor, the creative writing approach, and of course the subject matter.”
Elizabeth Silver 5 of 5 stars

“This tangled web is a quick read and an engaging novel. I believe it has good writing and a great balance with fascinating incidents and suspense… readers will like the impressive debut novel that Christopher J. Lynch has crafted in an uncertainty of what may or may not happen in this page-turner.”
Jeannie Walker 5 of 5 stars

Los Angeles native Christopher J. Lynch has written for numerous local and national publications and short stories. He recently co-wrote and published an authorized biography of the iconic child actor Ken Osmond, (Eddie Haskell from the TV series Leave it to Beaver) Eddie: The Life and Times of America's Preeminent Bad Boy. Chris is an avid cyclist and a mountain climber with successful summits of Mount Whitney, Mount Shasta, Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, and has recently completed a trek to Mount Everest Base Camp. He counts as one of his greatest accomplishments the successful training and leading of nine blind hikers to the summit of 10,000 foot Mount Baldy, the highest point in Los Angeles County and the third highest peak in Southern California. A documentary film is being made of this adventure. He's a member of Sisters in Crime Los Angeles chapter, as well as Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators.

This event is free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served. With wonderful Friends like these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Tea-One Tasting: The Spectrum of Taiwan Oolongs


Thursday February 19th, 7:00 p.m.

Start the new year off on a refreshing note! Come to Crowell Library on the lunar new year and learn all about the processes that result in the “Spectrum of Taiwan Oolongs.” Every year our favorite Ambassador of Taiwan Tea, Thomas Shu and his lovely wife Josephine Pan, take a group of professionals to Taiwan for a tour that explains the production aspects of oolongs that so many enjoy. Learn about the amazing craftsmanship involved -- the picking, withering, oxidation, fixation, rolling -- every step that results in producing the different types of oolongs. From lush gardens to tea cups! And of course samples will be available to savor!

At past workshops with Thomas, patrons have learned to savor and appreciate teas like fine wines. They explored the aromas of an array of teas that can soothe or stimulate, but always tantalize the taste buds and elevate one’s well being. Thomas Shu has presented tea workshops for almost every university in California and other institutions, such as Princeton, Duke and Harvard. He is a third-generation tea specialist from Taiwan, where his family has been conducting tea business for more than sixty years. He works with many major tea companies and importers from Asia, Europe, and the United States. It was in 2007 that Thomas received the honorary title, “Ambassador of Taiwan Tea,” from Taiwan Tea Manufacturers Association in recognizing his dedication and contributions for the industry. He is one of the founding members and board directors of American Premium Tea Institute, now known as Specialty Tea Institute. Thomas and Josephine are founders of Taiwan Tea Institute in Los Angeles, as well as hosts for Azusa Tea Club, a monthly meet up.

As every year, there are surprises in store: this year it involves a Taiwan puppet show for the celebration of Lunar New Year 2015!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

LA Opera Talk: Gioachino Rossini’s Barber of Seville


Sunday, February 8th, 2:00 p.m.

Dashing Count Almaviva has lost his heart to the spunky Rosina, whose doddering guardian is determined to marry her himself. It’s Figaro to the rescue, as the resourceful barber conjures up wacky schemes and strategies to unite the young lovers. Rossini’s razor-sharp musical wit glints through every scene of this delicious comedy, one of the most playful and popular in the entire operatic repertoire. Learn more about this beloved opera on Sunday, February 8th at 2:00 p.m. in Crowell Library’s Barth Community, when Community Educator BOB EMIRHANIAN will provide facts, insights and audio highlights. This program will be a wonderful introduction to the music and story of the Barber of Seville. Bob will be discussing the composer Rossini and his place in music history, as well as the librettist and playwright Beaumarchais.

Opera is not just magnificent music, dance and theater with astounding sets on a beautiful stage. An opera can sweep you away to foreign lands, take you back in time, dazzle you with pageantry and bring history to life. It is literature, social studies, cultural diversity, multiple languages and most of all, it is exciting! Come explore the world of opera through LA Opera’s education programs. Opera has something for everyone.

Bob Emirhanian taught Economics for over ten years and was a Senior Planner for over 37 years at the State of California Department of Transportation. He has been giving opera talks together with his wife Betty for over 14 years. This program is free and open to all opera aficionados and first timers. Light refreshments will be served.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Learning English


Six Fridays:
February 6, 13, 20, 27 & March 6, 13
1:00-2:30 pm

If you or somebody you know is a beginner in English, and wants to improve, this free six week class will help all participants make progress. Richard Bourell, creator of a 20 DVD set of English instruction and accompanying workbooks, will lead the class. His method is to concentrate on listening and conversation skills so that students can interact in English, building vocabulary and confidence. The class will not dwell on grammar, but will encourage students to learn English through real life situations and dialogs. Study books and DVDs will be furnished for free while they last.

RICHARD BOURELL has been teaching English for almost forty years, locally and globally, and is the author of the Video Language DVD series, and In English, a video and workbook-based ESL series. He has taught for the Los Angeles Unified School District, the American English Institute in Mexico City, the Richard Lewis School of Languages in Paris, Huntington Park Community Adult School and the ELS Language Center in Los Angeles. His students have come from all over the globe: Latin America, the Middle East, Russia, Korea and Japan. Now Mr. Bourell is reaching out to the community and offering his course for free, a fabulous opportunity for patrons of Crowell Public Library, so don’t miss out. Interested learners must register in advance by calling the Library at (626) 300-0777, extension 579.