A Local’s Guide to 10 Must-Attend Events in Los Angeles

A Local’s Guide to 10 Must-Attend Events in Los Angeles

Must Attend Events in Los Angeles: Look, I've lived in Los Angeles my whole life, and there's this electric feeling to it that never fades. It's in the echoes of street musicians, the murmur of sunset gatherings at Griffith Observatory, and the collective gasp as a movie premiere's curtains unveil. It's undeniably LA. 

So, for both my fellow Angelenos and those just passing through, here's a glimpse into the events that, in my eyes, encapsulate the very essence of our city.

Every resident knows that the magic here isn't confined to the iconic Hollywood sign or the Walk of Fame. Yes, they're monumental, but the true essence? You'll find it in the underground art spaces of DTLA, the indie bands resonating through Echo Park, and the myriad of flavors that greet you every weekend at Grand Central Market. 

Hollywood's luster is just the surface. Dive in, and you'll discover a metropolis rich with dreams, tales, and traditions spanning the globe. Having spent a lifetime here, I can vouch that an unexpected delight always awaits. 

Whether you call this place home or you're just passing through, let me guide you to the heartbeat of this city – beyond the glitz and the gatherings. 

10 Must-Attend Events in Los Angeles

1. Joe Hisaishi and La mer Hollywood, August 24, 2023 

Photograph: Courtesy Adam Latham
Photograph: Courtesy Adam Latham

Right in the heart of LA, the Hollywood Bowl isn't just hosting another event – it's setting the stage for a transcendent evening with Joe Hisaishi. 

When the iconic hills of Hollywood stand witness, there's an energy in the air that's hard to describe. Hisaishi, the legend behind those unforgettable Studio Ghibli tunes, is teaming up with the LA Phil to revisit masterpieces like Princess Mononoke and Howl's Moving Castle. 

As someone who's lived and breathed this city, I can tell you: it's going to be one of those nights that sticks with you. It's where our collective memories and music intertwine. Trust me, you won't want to miss this.

2. BLACKPINK Echo Park, August 26, 2023 

Photograph: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty
Photograph: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty

Smack in the heart of LA, Dodger Stadium is bracing for a night where our city gets a hit of K-pop's adrenaline. When BLACKPINK rolls into Chavez Ravine, it's not just another tour stop; it's a cultural mashup that embodies the city's eclectic spirit. 

Fresh from setting Coachella ablaze, this powerhouse quartet is ready to give our city a show like no other. They don't just sing; they tell stories with a rhythm and energy that's infectious. Their sound? It's the perfect blend of timeless artistry and today's chart-topping beats. 

As night falls over our City of Angels, Dodger Stadium is about to shimmer in a way you've never seen, and we're in for an electrifying night. So, let's come together and celebrate the soundtrack of a city that never stops evolving.

3. Metallica Inglewood, August 25-27, 2023 

Image source: Metallica.com
Image source: Metallica.com

Inglewood's The Forum is gearing up for a throwback like no other. Metallica, the legends of rock 'n' roll, are coming home for not one, but two nights of raw energy and nostalgia. 

This isn't just another show; it's a salute to the kind of music that makes your heart race and hands air-guitar unconsciously. We're talking about powerful anthems, the kind that have become part of our city's DNA. 

So, Los Angeles, if you're keen on a break from our usual forward pace, here's your chance. Slide into your worn-out band tees and join me to experience the true heartbeat of rock. 

4. Sigur Rós Griffith Park, August 28, 2023 

Image source: Hörður Óttarson
Image source: Hörður Óttarson

Nestled in the heartbeat of our vibrant city, Griffith Park is preparing for a night that promises to be transcendent. The storied Greek Theatre is set to host Sigur Rós, the ensemble that embodies Iceland's untouched majesty in every note. 

Accompanied by the echoes of the Wordless Music Orchestra, you're in for an experience that's as much about feeling as it is about listening. Los Angeles, take this rare opportunity to trade in our city's hustle and bustle for a serene introspection. 

5. Prosperity Market's Black Business Scavenger Hunt pop-up market Hollywood, August 27, 2023 

Image source: Courtesy Asha Moné
Image source: Courtesy Asha Moné

Hollywood Park is prepping for an event that embodies the essence of unity, culture, and enterprise. Prosperity Market's Scavenger Hunt is more than just a pop-up; it's a spirited homage to entrepreneurship and innovation. 

As you weave through the stalls, let yourself be wrapped up in the energy and the excitement. As the raffle drum spins, remember, this might just be the night the stars align in your favor. 

6. Cinecon Classic Film Festival El Segundo, August 31 – September 4, 2023 

Image source: Revival Hub Los Angeles
Image source: Revival Hub Los Angeles

Nestled in our expansive city lies El Segundo's treasured Old Town Music Hall, a beacon of classic film charm. The Cinecon Classic Film Festival invites you to a cinematic soiree, revisiting the golden age when silent films whispered tales of deep emotions and timeless adventures. 

In our city that's always pushing the envelope, let's take a breather and get lost in enchanting stories. Join in, and let's celebrate the cinematic gems that made Hollywood the dream factory it is today.

7. KCRW Summer Nights, Until September 1, 2023 

Image source: Courtesy Brian Feinzimer
Image source: Courtesy Brian Feinzimer

As the sun bids Costa Mesa adieu, the city gets ready to sway to the rhythm of KCRW's Summer Nights. Trust me, this isn't just any music gig; it's where the heart of LA finds its melody. 

Mingle with locals, groove to a harmonious blend of worldwide beats and homegrown talent, and let the balmy summer air in our city guide your steps. 

8. Cinespia Cemetery Screenings Hollywood, Until September 16, 2023 

Image source: Courtesy Kelly Lee Barrett/Cinespia
Image source: Courtesy Kelly Lee Barrett/Cinespia

In the cinematic heart of our city, the Hollywood Forever Cemetery unfurls a unique canvas. Cinespia's moonlight screenings offer more than a simple movie night; they breathe life into classic tales under a sky sprinkled with stars. It's a genuine Hollywood evening where stories old and new intertwine beneath the sky.

9. Les Misérables Hollywood, Until September 10, 2023 

Image source: Matthew Murphy & Evan Zimmerman
Image source: Matthew Murphy & Evan Zimmerman

Nestled within LA's film-centric core, the Hollywood Forever Cemetery offers an atmospheric setting unlike any other. Cinespia's evening screenings aren't just about playing classics; they're about resurrecting cinematic tales beneath a canopy of stars. 

Here, in the heart of Tinseltown, narratives from golden eras come alive, framed by the vastness of our nights. 

10. Jean-Michel Basquiat: King Pleasure Downtown, Until October 15, 2023 

Image source: Brad Branson
Image source: Brad Branson

Downtown LA, renowned for its vibrant arts scene, is about to be enriched even further with the fervor and complexity of Jean-Michel Basquiat. This isn't just an art show – it's an intimate journey, a chance to delve deep into the whirlwind that was Basquiat's brilliance. 

Walk amidst his creations, feel the narrative behind each line and color, and immerse yourself in an event that celebrates artistry in its rawest, most captivating form. 

This season showcases more than its sun-kissed beaches and iconic landmarks. It's a metropolis bursting with cultural treasures – spanning dance, cinema, music, and art. Whether you frequent the eclectic streets of West Hollywood, lose yourself in Venice Beach's golden haze, indulge in Silver Lake's film passion, or thrive in Downtown's artistry, LA has a story for you.

Why LA's Events Stand Out

Marked by gleaming billboards and sun-drenched avenues, vibrant blends of festivities mirror LA's live energy and skyline, perpetually transforming and brimming with surprises.

Considering things to do in LA today? Or perhaps you're marking down things to do in LA this weekend? These events are more than just about dates and acts. They encapsulate the city's indefatigable spirit. 

From the pulsating rhythms of EDM concerts to the enchanting mystique of LA's Halloween nights, each gathering creates a segment of our shared narrative.

Seasonal Celebrations: A Treat for All 

As every sunset in the City of Angels creates a unique tale against its vast backdrop, each season orchestrates a distinct melody. 

Summers resound with the upbeat tunes of sunlit festivals, while winter evenings shimmer with concerts in LA and resonate with the unique warmth of Christmas events that only this city knows how to execute. Be it a hot topic or a hushed gem known only among locals, every event adds a vibrant hue to our grand tableau.


Navigating through the city's top events, a consistent theme emerges: the pulse of Los Angeles is reflected in its endless celebrations. 

Present today, sparkling tonight, or set to enchant this weekend, every event reveals a facet of LA's eternal magnetism. Dive in, and you won't merely observe things to do in Los Angeles – you'll experience them. 

Whether you're a long-time dweller familiar with spots like Joey DTLA or a traveler seeking memories, or perhaps just passing by the UofSC bookstore, LA's energy promises to leave a vivid impression.

As someone who's evolved alongside LA's dynamic tableau, my advice is simple: don't merely be a spectator. Immerse yourself in these events, sway to their beat, and allow the city's magic to completely captivate you. 

Remember, in Los Angeles, wonder is ceaselessly lurking around the bend, ever-ready to be unveiled.

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