Tag Archives: entertainment

Virtual Games to Stay Connected

By Gina Samec

Edited by Natalie Grace Sipula

minute read]

Whether you have moved back to LA or have remained at home for the fall semester, we are all adjusting to the disconnection we feel from our friends who may be thousands of miles away. While Facetime or a Zoom call is a great way to catch up with friends, we are severely limited in the activities we can do together. There’s always Netflix Party for when you want to wind down at the end of the night and watch a movie with friends. However, if you are trying to find more engaging activities to do with friends, virtual games are the perfect solution. Below are some virtual games I have enjoyed playing with friends who I do not get the privilege of seeing in person anymore. 

Photo by Dylan Ferreira on Unsplash

Kodenames:

This game is perfect for friends who are good at guessing what the other person is thinking. This spy game involves two teams which are each led by a spymaster. The spymaster gives one word clues to their teammate to help them figure out the secret identities of agents. However, the spymaster has to be careful that their clue isn’t misinterpreted because one card is the assassin and if guessed by a teammate, it will immediately end the game. Find the link here: kodenames.io

Spyfall:

This game is also spy themed, and any of your friends who are good at lying will master it. In this game, everyone is at a location but one person, the spy, does not know where they are. Each person gets to take a turn asking each other questions to figure out if they know the location without revealing where they are to the spy. At the end of the round, if the spy is not voted out, they win. The game is hosted online at spyfall.app.

Photo by Eliott Reyna on Unsplash

Among Us: 

Similar to Spyfall, Among Us also involves an impostor and is reminiscent of the game Mafia. Taking place in outer space, everyone is a crewmate except for two people who are impostors. While everyone else on the ship is completing tasks, the impostors will be trying to discreetly attack them. Every time a crewmate is attacked, there is an opportunity for people to discuss who they think did it and for people to defend themselves. If at least one impostor survives, they win. You can find the game on the App Store and play on your mobile device.

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Quarantine Watch: The Social Network

[4 minute read]

Run-time: 2h1m

By Natalie Grace Sipula

While on my phone the other day, I accidentally scrolled to the menu that records my daily screen time. To put it lightly, I was shocked by the amount of time I have been spending on my phone lately. I think most of us can relate to an increase in screen time occurring in our daily lives since quarantine began. Technology and social media have connected us in ways that were never thought to be possible, and they allow us to stay contributing members of society even from home. It makes me wonder how we would have reacted to quarantine 15 or 20 years ago, but then, one doesn’t miss something which is unknown to them. That transition to global interconnectedness through technology is truly unique to this generation, and social media has played a large role in that transition. If you are looking for a film to watch at home that explores this very topic, look no further than The Social Network.

Photo by William Iven on Unsplash

Academy award nominated film The Social Network, starring Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake, and many others, directed by David Fincher, traces the development of Facebook from its humble beginnings: Mark Zuckerberg’s college dorm room at Harvard. The film employs a variety of timelines to chronicle the story of Facebook’s creation, the personal lives of its founders, and the ensuing intellectual property lawsuits that plagued Zuckerberg’s young career. It is fast-paced, exciting, and rife with witty banter.

The first time I watched this movie I was struck by the impressive dialogue and pacing. The director shot this film in a way that moves almost as fast as the connections millions of people make on Facebook every day. The dialogue is rapid, the interpersonal relationships between the characters are complex, and the story weaves between the business and personal narratives of its subjects, which are as intense and messy as anyone would expect from college students finding themselves at the forefront of a multi-million dollar idea. Prior to watching, I expected the movie to be more similar to a biopic of Mark Zuckerberg’s life, but it focused on the narrative of his life objectively from multiple perspectives, leaving the viewer to draw their own conclusions about the series of events. This, along with the variety of short scenes taking place in different locations in a non time-sequential order, truly makes you feel like you are piecing together Zuckerberg’s story from pieces of information found in various places on the Internet. It surely leaves a strong impression on the viewer along with questions about the influence media has on our lives.

Photo by Ian Schneider on Unsplash
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5 of the Best Music Venues in Los Angeles

By Michael Neufeld

Did you know that there is an opportunity all over the Los Angeles area to see great musical performances?

Los Angeles is home to the largest music scene on America’s west coast. In fact, many people argue it is the best place to see musical performances in the nation. Many clubs and bars are open late into the night with a host of musical groups performing. Many theaters exist in Downtown LA, Hollywood, and across the rest of the Los Angeles area. With so many venues, there is never a lack of live music to go see. Here are five of the best places to go see music:

1. Greek Theatre

Photo from Wikipedia

The Greek Theatre is one of the more well known music venues in Los Angeles. This outdoor theater is only open during certain months, typically closed during the colder parts of the year. It’s a great place to go see not only musical groups, but comedians and other forms of live entertainment. With its outdoor atmosphere, one can be in a natural setting amongst greenery under the stars at late night performances. The theatre is located in Griffith Park and seats 5,900 people.

2. El Rey

Photo from Wikimedia Commons

El Rey Theatre literally translates to “The King Theatre,” which makes sense when you see its regal interior. This all-ages venue has been home to both world-famous musicians and local, upcoming newbies. Interestingly, the theatre has committed itself to reducing the environmental impact it has. Although El Rey is a standing-only venue, it is a great place to go see shows.

3. Hollywood Bowl

Photo from Wikimedia Commons

You may have heard of this one before. In one episode of the cartoon “Tom and Jerry,” the cat and mouse duo hilariously go back and forth attempting to conduct a symphonic orchestra performing in a cartoon version of this theatre. The Hollywood Bowl is recognizable by its half-dome-shaped interior, though it is an outdoor theatre. Seating 17,500 people, the venue boasts a wide variety of music, from classics like Mozart to newer music masters like Herbie Hancock.

4. The Wiltern

Photo from Wikimedia Commons

This indoor venue features some of the most ground-breaking performances of music in Los Angeles. The Wiltern is recognizable from a distance by its height compared to surrounding buildings. The theatre seats between 1,850 to 2,300 people, depending on if the ground floor is a standing room or not.

5. Walt Disney Concert Hall

Photo from Wikimedia Commons

Home to the Los Angeles Philharmonic, this concert hall is easily recognized by its distinct architecture. Like the Hollywood Bowl, the Walt Disney Concert Hall presents varied music, from the LA Phil to Herbie Hancock. This concert hall features an enormous pipe organ and a gorgeous interior. With over 2,000 seats on all sides of the orchestra, you’ll never have enough to look at, or even listen to. 

Tickets and a calendar for performances for the Greek Theatre, El Rey, the Hollywood Bowl, and the Wiltern can be found on their websites. Tickets and a calendar for the Walt Disney Concert Hall can be found on the LA Phil website.

Featured image by Floyd B. Bariscale on Flickr

Michael is a junior majoring in Jazz Studies at the Thornton School of Music. He lived in Fresno, California until moving to L.A. for college. In his free time, he can be found practicing the trombone, or playing video games. Michael has traveled all around North America, and he loves getting to know new people, listening to stories, and being a friend to others.