One of the Cygnet Theatre Co.’s more successful productions in 2011 was “Little Shop of Horrors,” which featured 7-foot long, 6-foot wide puppet Audrey II, a larger-than- life man-eating Venus flytrap. The oversized puppet was really the star of the show that ran in Old Town. Well, the premiere episode of A&E’s “Shipping Wars,” which aired Jan. 10 tells the back story behind Audrey II and its overland journey to San Diego from Monkey Boys Productions, the designer which rents out the prop to performing arts groups like Cygnet. There’ll will be lots of repeats of this interesting program, so journey on over to aetv.com for more details, and future air dates … Point Loma Nazarene University says its graduates posted the state’s 3rd highest pass rate at 58.5 percent on the 2010 CPA exam, according to the national agency that administered the tests. PLNU came in number one among private and Christian universities, while UC Berkeley ranked No. 1 with a 60.2 percent pass rate and UCLA No. 2 with a 58.6 percent pass rate. However, PLNU graduates had the highest average score on the exam, according to a spokeswoman … Janssen Labs, a unit of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Pharmaceutical Cos., holds an official open house Jan. 16 in San Diego showcasing its life science innovation center. The new lab will give entrepreneurs access to equipment and site services providing a more cost efficient way to speed commercialization of scientific research. That’s good news for a sector in which entrepreneurial activity is slowing due to the lack of interest on the part of venture capitalists … The La Jolla Festival of the Arts has named veteran San Diego business consultant Ted Pena and partner Don Ludwig to serve as managers of its 26th annual event set for June 23-24 on the UC San Diego campus. Pena and Ludwig, a former SeaWorld executive, are behind the Encinitas-based consulting firm The Visio Group — veteran members of the Torrey Pines Kiwanis Club, one of the prime drivers behind the annual event. The two will manage myriad details that go into putting on one of the most popular art shows in the region … Jon Mangini, who owns Basic Urban Kitchen + Bar in East Village and URBN Coal Fired Pizza in North Park, is teaming up with local architect Graham Downes and chef Jo Ann Plympton to launch Gang Kitchen, a 5,000 square-foot Asian-themed eatery opening this summer in the Gaslamp. Stay tuned for details …. Finally. The La Jolla Music Society opens this season’s Latin Jazz Series with Arturo O’Farrill Afro-Latin Septet at the Birch North Park Theatre Jan. 27. O’Farrill won a Grammy for best Latin jazz album in 2009, so this performance will be well worth the price of admission. For details and ducats, head on over to lajollamusicsociety.org. Seeya!
Tom York is contributing editor of the San Diego Business Journal. If you have interesting tidbits, send them to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.