New Venture Restores Dignity on L.A.’s Skid Row

Putting on clean underwear in the morning probably seems like a simple, obvious expression of personal hygiene. Until it isn’t an option.
“You’re out there and you have the same pair on for weeks, or months,” said Ben Conditt, a formerly homeless man who is now a resident at the Union Rescue Mission in downtown Los Angeles. “You try to wash your underwear in buckets. But as soon as you change it, it’s going to get old when you’re living outdoors. Even if you have a clean pair of socks, you’re putting on dirty old shoes. Continue reading “New Venture Restores Dignity on L.A.’s Skid Row”

CHLA Strives for Hybrid Surgery Suite

Fundraising efforts are currently underway for a new hybrid surgery suite that will revolutionize pediatric cardiac care at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. A recent dinner hosted by Stephen and Chantal Bennett of San Marino honored Dr. Vincent Starnes, co-director of CHLA’s Heart Institute, and raised $50,000. The project now needs an additional $1.7 million in funding to meet its $5-million projected budget. Continue reading “CHLA Strives for Hybrid Surgery Suite”

It’s an Honor: Students to Sing in All-Star Choir

Ten San Marino High School students will lend their voices to a star-studded chorale this weekend in Redlands, having been selected to the Southern California Vocal Association Honor Choir. They’ll be part of an assemblage of 270 choristers who will perform Saturday, Nov. 21, at 7 p.m. in the University of Redlands’ Memorial Chapel. Continue reading “It’s an Honor: Students to Sing in All-Star Choir”

Median Plan Won’t Take Root Yet

Absenteeism and lame-duck status all but paralyzed the City Council in its meeting of last week. A three-man remnant dispatched a few housekeeping items, but weightier issues were shelved for another day. And council.
They’ll become part of the purview of Steve Talt and Dr. Steven Huang, the newly elected City Council members who will assume their roles on Dec. 9, joining Dr. Richard Sun, Richard Ward and Dr. Allan Yung. Continue reading “Median Plan Won’t Take Root Yet”

Dupre’s Fascinating Story of Adversity and Triumph

Photo courtesy Alen Barbosa Wood
India Dupre, at the keyboard, is surrounded by adoring students, including Jessica Mazin, Genny Seto, Shelby Kim, Lauren Halley, Tanvi Chawla, Soren Dziak, Bo Oliver, Nitya Chawla and Axel Frame.

Sometimes, when she’s coaching kids in the neighborhood, imparting important technical pointers and, more crucially, being a booster of the confidence that makes those skills sing, the thought strikes India Dupre: “I was only that little.”
In La Cañada Flintridge, Dupre comes highly recommended. For the past 15 years, she’s worked here as a voice and acting teacher for youth, sometimes directing ambitious productions at the La Cañada Junior Theater and often tutoring pupils privately as they prepare for auditions.
Most of those students don’t know much about Dupre’s personal background beyond the fact that she comes with a cool Australian accent.
Heck, as LCF resident Brent Kuszyk put it, he had to “pry” to get Dupre even to talk about her professional accomplishments after his daughter, Ali, began taking voice lessons from her. So clients might not know that Dupre graduated magna cum laude from UCLA’s School of Theater, that she’s appeared on network TV shows and in video games or, soon, that she’ll be making a short film funded largely by the Kevin Spacey Foundation.
This year, the KSF Artists of Choice program awarded Dupre a grant to help transfer her biographical story from her computer hard drive to the screen.
Dupre will direct the seven-minute “Stripped” as a proof of concept for a full-length feature. She’s set out to tell a tale — with help from La Cañada Junior Theater actors Stella Bonstin and Bo Oliver — that will teach viewers a lot about a difficult, despicable chapter in Australian history. And about her. Continue reading “Dupre’s Fascinating Story of Adversity and Triumph”

Super-Speed Internet Comes to Crowell

Accessing information online has become increasingly common in the digital age. Connection speeds have escalated and libraries all over the country now feature computers alongside traditional bookshelves. The Crowell Public Library is no different, except patrons at San Marino’s information hub will now be placed directly at the forefront of this technological trend, thanks to a new Internet system. Continue reading “Super-Speed Internet Comes to Crowell”

Reviewing Election Successes

For two challengers in last week’s City Council election, status as an outsider carried considerable weight. But a little money didn’t hurt, either.
Steve Talt and Dr. Steven Huang each raised in excess of $33,000 in campaign funds for the race, according to disclosure documents on file with the city clerk. They handily unseated the two incumbents, Mayor Eugene Sun and Councilman Dennis Kneier. Continue reading “Reviewing Election Successes”