Top Classes in Los Angeles
If you live in or around Los Angeles, you know there is no shortage of things to do and communities to be a part of. The city is home to the second-most people in the nation and has one of America’s richest and most vibrant cultural traditions. Students looking to learn new skills, pick up new hobbies or just have some fun in a structured, social environment have no shortage of options in LA County, and CourseHorse is here to help by collecting all of the best classes to take in LA. Whether you are interested in learning to cook or dance or want to spend time honing a creative skill like painting or knitting, dozens of classes are available. These programs offer courses for beginners and experts alike and are all places where students can find an inviting, social atmosphere to learn new skills and meet new people. Read on to learn more about the many fun courses available in LA to get just a sample of the options open to you.
Cooking is one of the most practical and valuable skills that a person can learn. By learning to cook, you’ll be able to eat healthier and cheaper since you won’t spend as much money ordering out. In addition, learning to cook can reduce stress, make you more attractive to potential partners and help you entertain guests more easily. Cooking is also a good way to expand your palette and perspective since learning how to cook cuisines from different regions and cultures is itself an act of cultural exploration. LA is home to several renowned culinary schools catering to students of all skill levels, so whether you are looking to learn how to dice an onion or create a perfect three-course meal, there is certain to be a cooking class in LA to suit your needs.
Chef Eric’s Culinary Classroom is one of LA’s largest and most well-established culinary education centers and has been servicing the city for over two decades. The school understands that learning to cook at a professional level can be daunting. Chef Eric Jacques Crowley understands and makes it the school's aim to provide students with accessible culinary training. Students will have the opportunity to get hands-on cooking experience in a real, professional kitchen setting, and the skills they learn will be applicable regardless of how far they take their training. New chefs can learn the basics in a course like Knife Skills, in which they learn basic skills like cutting vegetables quickly, advanced skills like deboning a chicken and decorative cutting techniques like batonnet and tourne cuts. In more advanced courses, like the Favorite Fish Recipes class, students will be guided step-by-step through various related recipes. In this course, students will prepare salmon filets, smoked salmon, glazed filets and panko-crusted cod. These courses are an excellent way for students to learn easy but filling meals that they can prepare for themselves or their guests regularly.
LA is also home to a number of different specialty culinary schools that aim to help students learn specific cooking skills. For example, LA is home to VPN America, the American delegation of Associazione Vera Pizza Napoletana, which aims to ensure that the traditions of Neapolitan pizza making are upheld all over the world. This school offers courses for students looking to make pizza in their own homes and classes for students looking to have their pizzerias accredited by the Associazione Vera Pizza Napoletana. In the Basic Pizza Course, students will learn how to hand make and prepare a pizza on a home stove or in a wood fire oven. Students will learn the history of pizza making and what makes a Neapolitan pizza special. Then, they will get hands-on experience preparing the dough, hand tossing the pizza, topping it with traditional ingredients and cooking it in a high-heat oven. In the Professional Pizza Course, students will spend five intensive class sessions learning how to make large amounts of on-demand pizzas, oversee a kitchen environment, and work with cheesemongers to ensure the best quality of ingredients. The course concludes with a formal exam and interview with AVPN experts to determine if you have sufficient knowledge and skills to become a certified professional Neapolitan pizza maker.
Similarly, Cakery by Syd is an established bakery and cake decorating company that has operated for over 31 years. They offer a range of classes, including courses centered around artistic cake decoration and more traditional dessert-baking skills. Since these courses take place in a full-service bakery, students will get hands-on experience creating and decorating desserts, and they will be able to purchase supplies for future cakes (or just already prepared cakes) at the end of the course. In The Art of Cake Decorating, students will learn how to plan, construct and decorate elaborate designs to adorn cakes. Students will get hands-on experience using icing and fondant to create edible works of art that can impress guests, and students will get insight into how to transform these lessons into marketable skills. Cakery by Syd also offers a range of traditional baking classes, such as the Learn to Make Macaron Cookies class. As the name suggests, in this class, beginners will learn to prepare Macaron cookies, make and apply the fillings and toppings that make the cookies delicate and delicious and cook the cookies just long enough to ensure that they are light, fluffy and perfectly finished (neither too stiff nor too brittle). All of the ingredients you need are provided in these courses.
Students interested in learning home cooking skills can also enroll in a Cook LA Cooking School course. These classes offer students the opportunity to learn hands-on culinary skills and recipes covering a variety of cuisines and styles. There are also significant opportunities for students with dietary needs or restrictions to enroll in specialty courses or to modify existing recipes to fit their needs (such as making a dish vegan or gluten-free). In the Sushi Making course, students will learn how to prepare sushi rice, make both nigiri servings and handrolls and work with various ingredients to prepare single and multi ingredient dishes. Students will also have the opportunity to sample some sake as a pair to the sushi they are making. If you are looking for a meat-free option, the Meatless French Vegetarian course will introduce you to a range of classic French dishes that fit a vegetarian lifestyle. Students will learn how to make flaky mushroom or tomato cheese tarts (using guyere or goat cheese), French country ratatouille with goat cheese and either a dark chocolate mousse or vegan chocolate avocado cupcakes.
Perhaps you are interested in a food or drink course but you are less interested in the process of learning to cook. If that is the case, you may want to consider enrolling in a taste course. These classes will see students sampling a collection of wine, cheese, beer, chocolate or spirits and learning how these delicious foods and drinks are produced. These courses tend to be taught by experienced professionals with years of training in their craft, ensuring that students will leave the course with a better understanding of the subject of their tasting class. These classes also give students the opportunity to sample new things and discover whether or not a given tasting experience is going to be right for them. Given that it is a center of international commerce and industry, LA is home to a wide variety of different kinds of tasting courses.
If you are interested in wine (or you want to learn how to be interested in wine), Mt. San Antonio College offers a range of courses that will introduce you to the complex world of wine. Taught by a professional sommelier, in these courses, students will sample a collection of wines curated around a certain theme. For example, students can enroll in The Wines of Tuscany to learn about wines of the Tuscany region of central Italy. In this class, students will sample six wines of different ages and varieties from the region while learning about the history and traditions of wine-making in Italy. This course will introduce students to the ways in which differences in climate, geography, and soil produce different grapes, leading to wines of similar profiles and styles tasting differently as a result of where in the world they are grown (helping them understand why wines are often organized by region rather than style). Students can hit a bit closer to home with the Sonoma County Wines course, in which they will learn what California brings to the table as one of the world’s largest producers of wine. Students will sample a Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Zinfandel, among other rotating wines to see what the climate and soil of Sonoma County produces.
If you want to learn mixology, TalkTales Entertainment offers a Make Cocktails Like an Expert! Mixology course every week. In these courses, students will gather together in a social setting and spend an hour learning how to mix classic and contemporary cocktails. This course will teach students practical skills, like how to make Old Fashioned, Negronis, Margaritas and Whiskey Sours, as well as contemporary cocktails like Paper Planes, Penicillins or Left Hands. In addition to learning the basics of making cocktails, students will also learn the science behind mixology, including details like how to balance ratios, when to shake or stir a drink and when to add bitters, syrups and juices to create certain flavor profiles. Students will even work on an original cocktail in the class and they will leave the session prepared to make their own drinks at home (whether from a recipe book or their own creations). This course does include a rapid fire sampling of three or more mixed drinks, so students should avoid attending on an empty stomach and should prepare an alternative ride home. All of the ingredients and supplies are included with the course.
El Camino College offers a Chocolate Love Tour in which students can sample fine chocolate from all over the world without ever leaving SoCal. In this course, students will visit some of the finest chocolate shops and factories in LA and they will learn about the art and science behind chocolate. Students will sample chocolate from Edelweiss Chocolate, andSons Chocaliters, Teuscher Chocolates, La Scala Restaurant and the event will conclude with an extended tour of Letterpress Chocolate, a bean to bar chocolate factory. Students will sample flavors of chocolates from around the world and learn the industrial processes that are required to get chocolate to the consumer. This course is an ideal experience for any lover of chocolate or anyone interested in the production and varieties of one of the most popular treats on the planet.
Art classes are among the most popular options for students looking for a relaxing new hobby or a social activity. These classes allow students to express themselves creatively and give them hands-on experience, meaning that by the end of the course, you’ll have created a physical object that you can wear or display. These courses range from beginner-friendly training options to advanced courses aimed at students with significant artistic experience and everyone in between. Whether you are interested in learning painting, sculpture, silversmithing, jewelry making or pottery (or any of a number of other plastic arts), you will find the perfect art class in LA through CourseHorse.
Founded in 2021, Element Art Center attempts to create a new artistic community in and around LA that invites beginners and experienced artists to work together in an open and collaborative environment. They teach a range of different artistic disciplines, so the school offers students a range of different options for the kinds of courses that they want to take. For example, you could enroll in their Figure Drawing class and learn the vital skill of sketching and drawing the human figure. In this one-session, three-hour class, students will complete a series of quick exercises using line, shape, and shadow to construct lively forms. Then, students will participate in several long-form modeling sessions in which they will draw live models in various styles and mediums. If you want a more tactical course, you can enroll in the Stained Glass Workshop. In this course, students will learn how to turn recycled glass pieces into vibrant works of art. This course will center on the process of coloring, scouring and sanding glass, and students will learn how to use copper foil to solder different panes of glass together. At the end of the course, students will have created their own personalized pieces to hang and display.
Students can also enroll in courses at the Los Angeles Center of Photography to learn more about the process of taking professional quality photos of everything from people and objects to the LA skyline and the lush California wildernesses. These courses are an excellent way for new hobbyist photographers to learn their way around a camera and for experienced photographers to hone their craft with the help of expert instructors. For example, in the Basic Photography Part 1 course, students with no prior experience in photography can learn the basics of using DSLR cameras and the common features of most consumer digital cameras. Then, students will start to work on the basics of photographic composition as they learn how to use lighting, angles and perspective in their work. Once students are comfortable with the basics of photography, they can enroll in the Meet-Up in LA: Photographing the Venice Canals class. In this two-session hybrid course, students will first meet up over Zoom for a series of lessons on photography techniques and styles. Then, in the second session, students will travel to Venice Beach to put their lessons into practice as they photograph some of the most beautiful locales Los Angeles has to offer. If you miss this course, don’t worry because the Los Angeles Center of Photography offers this course once a quarter, and each course will see students going to a different location.
If you are looking for something less intensive and more sociable, you can enroll in a paint and sip course offered through Brushstrokes + Beverages™. This school offers a range of different paint and sip events that will see students relaxing for an evening of painting and adult beverages. These courses are excellent ways to spend a few hours during the evening relaxing and painting in a low-stress environment. All of these classes follow a similar structure, which sees students being guided through the process of painting one of dozens of different images on prefabricated canvases. Classes range from learning to paint a Tropical Sunset to Beach Days or Van Gogh’s Irises. If the course is held at Brushstrokes + Beverage’s studio, the event is BYOB. If it is held at a location, alcohol will be available for purchase on-site.
If you are looking to learn a practical set of career skills, you may want to consider enrolling in a tech skills class. These courses range from classes covering computer programming and associated languages like Python to classes covering specific applications like Tableau or the Adobe Creative Cloud. Many classes combine multiple related skills into career-focused certificate programs, such as a graphic design course that will teach students multiple different applications used by professional Graphic Artists. These courses are great ways for students to build the career skills they need to enter higher paying jobs or to change their careers entirely. To learn more about all of the tech classes in LA, visit CourseHorse to see a complete catalog.
ONLC Training Centers offers a huge range of short, focused tech training courses covering the applications and programming skills that tech professionals and white-collar professionals are most likely to use. The classes are designed with beginners in mind, and they tend to offer multiple levels of instruction so that students are able to construct their own curriculum best and learn the essential career skills that are right for them. For example, students who just want to learn the basics of working with Excel can enroll in the Excel Tips, Tricks and Timesavers course. In this course, students will learn the basics of working with Microsoft Excel for common data entry tasks and how the application can be used as a time-saving tool for complex projects. This course requires no prior experience with Excel and is ideally suited for students who imagine using the program sparingly in their regular workflow. ONLC also offers introductory computer programming classes, such as the SQL Querying 1: Fundamentals course, which will see students learn how to write basic code in SQL for the purpose of organizing and querying large databases. These skills are essential for anyone working in data science or data analytics and useful for programmers working with large data collections.
Similarly, Los Angeles City College offers an array of introductory courses for students looking to learn foundational tech skills that they can parlay into promotions or career changes. These courses are designed with novices in mind, making them ideal places to start if you are interested in entering into a career field that requires knowledge of specialized programs like Illustrator or InDesign. For example, in the Adobe Illustrator: Training for Everyone course, students will learn the basics of creating evocative vector graphics assets and designs using Adobe’s industry-standard tool. In this class, students will learn how Illustrator is used to create scalable digital images using lines, shapes, arcs and points, and students will get hands-on experience creating their own digital art projects. In the Adobe Photoshop: Training for Everyone course, students will receive similar lessons in Adobe’s other major digital graphic design application, Photoshop. Photoshop is primarily utilized as an image manipulation application, letting users alter aspects of photographs and other similar images to create new content. This skill is used in almost every creative field, and Photoshop skills can be utilized in various hobbyist projects (such as creating posters for events).
Performing Arts Classes
Fairly or not, Los Angeles is often associated with the image of the aspiring actor. Given that it is the home of Hollywood and thus the center of the American film and television industry, there is no shortage of professionals looking to make their big break in the City of Angels. By extension, this means that there is no shortage of schools offering to help train actors and other performers to help them make their big break. While many people think of acting as a natural skill, it is a talent that requires constant training. One of the ways to make this training easier is to enroll in one of the many performing arts classes offered in LA.
If you are looking for traditional acting classes that will teach you time-tested techniques, you can enroll in one of the classes offered by Acting Classes Now. These classes aim to provide students with expert guidance and practical opportunities to practice their skills in live scenes and stage readings. Acting Now designs its classes to allow students to create their own points of view and give truthful and powerful performances. In the Unlock the Actor Within: One Day Acting Workshop, students with no prior experience will have the chance to learn the basics of contemporary acting techniques, such as Meisner, Laban, and narrative styles, and they will get live feedback and instruction from Iris Klein, a professional acting coach with decades of experience working on Hollywood productions. Students looking for a more advanced set of lessons can enroll in the four-session IK Connection Method: Scene Study course. In this class, students will work on techniques for taking advantage of the physical space of the scene and working with their bodies and the bodies of the other actors in the room. This course emphasizes acting as a collaborative art form in which multiple actors play off of one another, and students can expect to spend multiple sessions working with a partner on a single scene.
If you are looking for a chance to refine your comedy skills, you can look at the classes offered through the DBA Flappers University, one of LA’s premiere schools for aspiring stand-up comedians and comedy actors. They offer classes that cover stand-up comedy skills, like how to write and perform jokes and important practical skills, like how to get bookings, work with agents or prepare for television auditions. In the Intro to Stand Up Comedy class, students will work with experienced comedians and instructors to practice the fundamentals of comedy performance and writing. Students will work on writing jokes, mining their own experiences for laughs and connecting with audiences to make a performance feel more intimate. Once you are comfortable with your comedic voice and your first set, you’ll want to enroll in the Branding and Promoting Yourself workshop. In this course, students will learn what it takes to set themselves apart from other aspiring comedians and make comedy into a long-term career option. Students will hear from bookers, agents, managers and comedy club owners to get advice and guidance on how to brand and sell their acts to invested stakeholders. You’ll also learn how to create buzz around your performances so that you can get audiences to pay attention to your work.