Almas: A Day of the Dead Celebraton mini-review

In the past 48 hours, Hollywood Gothique has been to Night of the Living Zoo, Drama After Dark, the Heritage Square Museum's Halloween and Mourning Tours, and the Voices of Pioneer Cemetery's Almas: A Day of the Dead Celebration. All are worthy of review in their own right, but we just haven't had time to write anything up, and the first three are closed for the season, so it's not as if our recommendation will mean much until next year. Almas: A Day of the Dead Celebration, however, continues tonight and next weekend at Pioneer Memorial Cemetery in Sylmar, so we wanted to take a brief moment to point out its virtues, before returning later for a fuller assessment.

Essentially, the same virtues are on display for Halloween 2013 that were seen three years ago, when the San Fernando Valley Historical Society presented its first Voices of Pioneer Cemetery Flashlight Ghost Tour: actors portray the dead buried in the (real) cemetery, recounting their stories for the benefit of the living; the history lesson is mingled with mild hints of horror, as the dead shuffle to and fro in the background. If your read our review of that event, you will know basically what to expect, but keep in mind that this Halloween's presentation is all new: different characters, telling different stories.

There are other cemetery tours around Los Angeles during the Halloween season, but the Voices of Pioneer Cemetery is fairly distinctive among them for actually including a little atmosphere along with the history lesson. This year also sees some memorable humor, including a deliberately goof recreation of Plan Nine from Outer Space, parts of which were filmed in Pioneer Memorial Cemetery.

If you're at all interested in historical tours, you should consider checking this one out. Get more information at their website.