Special Features — 03 November 2017
Arts season preview – our critics picks

Our entertainment writers Greg Carannante, Jake Cline, Ben Crandell, Rod Stafford Hagwood and Phillip Valys have sized up the 2017-18 season in the arts, and can’t wait for the shows to go on.

ART

The Norton Museum of Art’s “Spotlight” shows

BRILLIANT: Recent Acquisitions (through Dec. 7), Miss Lucy’s 3-Day Dollhouse Party (Dec. 14-Feb. 4) and Black History Black Futures (Feb. 8-March 18), Norton Museum of Art, 1451 S. Olive Ave., West Palm Beach, 561-832-5196, Norton.org. Admission free.

We’re halfway through the Norton’s $64 million museum makeover, which will bring a sculpture garden, an auditorium and extra gallery space (among other major add-ons) by December 2018. But while the museum kicks up dust, the Norton’s slate of programming will hardly slow down. Four smaller, room-filling “Spotlight” exhibits will debut this season, each with a limited run: BRILLIANT: Recent Acquisitions (through Dec. 7) salutes the vibrant colors found in paper, glass and photography works by Dale Chihuly, Michael Craig-Martin and others; Miss Lucy’s 3-Day Dollhouse Party (Dec. 14-Feb. 4) displays a trio of dollhouses from Jupiter-based collector Douglas Andrews that feature miniature artworks created by art friends Julian Schnabel and Cy Twombly; and Black History Black Futures (Feb. 8-March 18) will focus on works by African-American artists. As always, admission remains free through the end of 2018. — PV

Alex Katz: Small Paintings

Nov. 6-April 8, Boca Raton Museum of Art, 501 Plaza Real,
561-392-2500, BocaMuseum.org. Admission $10-$12.

Before Warhol and the pop-art movement, 90-year-old Alex Katz merged art and fashion with his bright, flat figurative paintings of posh-looking models. The New York-raised painter and sculptor, who bucked abstract expressionism in the 1950s, focused instead on luminous depictions of women with serene faces and dark, expressive eyes, all created with a wet-on-wet speed-painting technique that enables Katz to finish his portraits within hours. Supermodels Christy Turlington and Kate Moss have sat for Katz’s paintings, which he says are inspired by old-fashioned Cinemascope movies. “The pictures are supposed to be lyric, they’re supposed to give you an up,” Katz says, describing his paintings in an interview with the Smithsonian Magazine. “I want to make something that’s sort of like your happier condition. Impressionist pictures are basically that — impressionist painting is a happy lie.” — PV

Frank Stella: Experiment and Change

Nov. 12-July 8, NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale, 1 E. Las Olas Blvd., 954-525-5500, NSUArtMuseum.org. Admission $5-$12.

The NSU Art Museum will mark 60 years as a South Florida cultural touchstone in 2018 with a fitting blockbuster exhibit on abstract-art champion Frank Stella. Aimed at bulking up the museum’s contemporary-art muscle, the show will fill almost every gallery in the museum and delve into the New York icon’s 60-year odyssey as a painter and sculptor, and his interest in history, geography, literature, music and architecture. Stella, 81, is also scheduled to appear at the museum in November, although the exact date is not yet announced. — PV

Art Basel Miami Beach

Dec. 7-10, Miami Beach Convention Center, 1901 Convention Center Drive, ArtBasel.com/MiamiBeach. Ticket prices vary.

Hello again, traffic nightmare. The contemporary-art world converges on Miami and Miami Beach for the 16th time this December, bearing an endless tangle of celebrity-studded rooftop parties, concerts and white-tented art fairs. Don’t bother trying to conquer them all, unless you have a time machine and a flying car. (We’re fresh out of DeLoreans.) Start your adventure with the granddaddy fair at the still-unfinished convention center (renovations should continue through fall 2018, by latest estimates), to be filled with 250 local and international galleries from 30 countries. Then, head to the permanent new home of the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami, a new museum opening Dec. 1 with a major survey of 100 works by 50 artists, including Roy Lichtenstein and others. — PV

The World’s Game: Fútbol and Contemporary Art

April 6-Sept. 2, Pérez Art Museum Miami, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., 305-375-3000, PAMM.org. Admission $12-$16.

If anyone can make a case for the uncommon blend of art and internationally beloved games, it’s the Pérez, which last summer slapped down a dominoes-inspired exhibit. This season, the museum will tackle soccer in a show that will coincide with next summer’s 2018 FIFA World Cup, with 20 mixed-media artists reflecting on the sport’s global influence. Video artists, painters, photographers and sculptors will examine how the spectacle of soccer unites countries and raises issues about globalism, identity, politics and socioeconomics. — PV

BOOKS

Miami Book Fair

Nov. 12-19, Miami Dade College Wolfson Campus, 300 NE Second Ave., Miami, MiamiBookFair.com. Ticket prices vary.

The South’s premier literary festival returns for a 34th year with its expected raft of A-list, mid-list and no-list authors. Veteran journalist Dan Rather opens the event Nov. 12 with a reading from his new book, What Unites Us: Reflections on Patriotism. A host of other journalists, politicians and pundits have joined Rather on the schedule, including MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell (whose new book is about the presidential election of … 1968), Michael Eric Dyson (Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America), Sen. Al Franken (Al Franken, Giant of the Senate) and former Vice President Joe Biden, who will discuss his book Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship and Purpose and likely reduce even the most stoic among us to tears Nov. 18 at the Arsht Center. And if you don’t think punk pioneer Patti Smith will reference the covfefe in chief when she appears at the fair on Nov. 13, you don’t know Patti Smith.

The weekend Festival of Authors is, as usual, stocked with talent, with Jennifer Egan, Claire Messud, Jeffrey Eugenides, James McBride, Chantel Acevedo, Mark Bowden, Colm Toibin and Salman Rushdie among the schedule’s highlights. The Festival of Authors and vendor-rich Street Fair runs Nov. 17-19. — JC

The Society of the Four Arts’
Esther B. O’Keeffe Speaker Series

Jan. 9-March 27, 2 Four Arts Plaza, Palm Beach, FourArts.org. Tickets $35.

The society’s annual speaker series typically features prominent journalists, novelists and public intellectuals discussing new and recent work. The 2018 event is no different, with a calendar that includes screenwriter and novelist Delia Ephron, journalist David Ignatius, art historian Simon Schama and MacArthur “genius grant” winner Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot. — GC

Broward College
Speaker Series

Jan. 24, Feb. 21, March 27,
April 18. All events are
7:30 p.m.,
Broward Center for the Performing Arts, 201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale, BrowardCollegeSpeakerSeries.com. Tickets are $60. 

The fifth season of BC’s popular series, sponsored by City & Shore Magazine, the Sun-Sentinel, Books & Books and SunTrust, will present an intriguingly kaleidoscopic perspective. A political anchor from the conservative network is followed by a foreign affairs journalist from the liberal newspaper. A world-class boxer and dynamic daughter of The Greatest is followed by a veteran bow-tied broadcaster and octogenarian renaissance man. Bret Baier, Fox News’ chief political anchor, leads off Jan. 24 with “Politics and the Atmosphere in Washington, D.C.”; Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman takes on “The Big Trends Shaping the World Today: Economics, Technology & Geopolitics” on Feb. 21; boxing champ, TV host, fitness expert and motivational author Laila Ali will speak March 27 on “Finding Inspiration Against All Odds”; and Charles Osgood, the Emmy Award-winning former host of CBS Sunday Morning, concludes the series on April 18 with “An Evening of Storytelling and Music.” — GC

Palm Beach Poetry Festival

Jan. 15-20, Delray Beach Center for the Arts, 51 N. Swinton Ave., PalmBeachPoetryFestival.org. Tickets $12-$18; admission to some events is free.

The poetry festival enters its 14th year with Ross Gay, Gabrielle Calvocoressi and Phillis Levin among its speakers and workshop instructors. While the festival is heavy on closed workshops, it offers several public events throughout the week, including poetry readings, craft talks and spoken-word performances.— JC

Broward Public Library
Foundation’s Night of Literary Feasts

May 5, Pier Sixty-Six Hotel & Marina, 2301 SE 17th St., Fort Lauderdale, BPLFoundation.org. Tickets cost $175. Admission to LitLIVE! is free, but tickets are required.

This annual fundraiser for the Broward Public Library Foundation boasts a simple, smart concept: Guests pay to attend small-group dinners at restaurants and private homes with visiting novelists and nonfiction writers. The authors get to meet their readers, their readers get to ask them questions, and everyone gets to support the foundation and its myriad literacy programs. The lineup for the 2018 Night of Literary Feast — the foundation’s 30th — includes novelist and essayist Sloane Crosley, romance novelist Elin Hilderbrand, historian Peter Cozzens and retired NBA All-Star Vin Baker. Participating authors will also appear May 4 at LitLIVE!, a free public event taking place simultaneously at Barnes & Noble stores in Fort Lauderdale, Plantation and Pembroke Pines. — JC

DANCE

A Nouveau Nutcracker

Miami City Ballet’s The Nutcracker, Dec. 15-25, Adrienne Arsht Center, Miami; Dec. 28-30, Kravis Center, West Palm Beach; 305-929-7010, miamicityballet.org. Tickets
start at $30. 

MCB’s love affair with George Balanchine heats up for the holidays with an all-new production of the sugar-plum tradition by Cuban-American artistic power couple, Isabel and Ruben Toledo. Their enchanting sets and costumes bring a new glow to the company’s 27-year-old production, but the master’s iconic choreography remains — as does Tchaikovsky’s classic score, performed at every show by The Opus One Orchestra. — GC

THEATER

Dreamgirls

Through Dec. 10, Stage Door Theatre, 8036 W. Sample Road, Margate, 954-344-7765, StageDoorFL.org. Tickets $48.

One of America’s greatest exports, the Motown sound, is mined here for big Broadway hits in a musical comedy that takes great liberties with the glossy story of Diana Ross and the Supremes. Songs that crossed over from show tunes to the top of the charts include And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going and I Am Changing. — RSH

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder

Jan. 9-21, Broward Center for the Performing Arts, 201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale, 954-462-0222, Fort Lauderdale, Broadway.com. Tickets from $35.25. 

The Broadway version of this musical comedy killed, winning four Tony Awards, including Best Musical, in 2014. The fast-paced musical farce is about a distant heir to a family fortune who has to do away with eight relatives (all played by one actor) in order to collect. He also has to contend with his fiancée (who is also a cousin) and mistress (who has other things on her mind aside from romance). — RSH

Reservoir Dolls

Feb. 1-18, Pompano Beach Cultural Center, 50 W. Atlantic Blvd., 954-545-7800, CCPompano.org. Tickets $39 for adults, $19 for students and industry members.

Based on Quentin Tarantino’s 1992 indie film Reservoir Dogs, Outre Theater Company is presenting this play with an all-female cast, which — one presumes — will change the perception and tone of the violence in the story of thieves who gather for a diamond heist, only to be ambushed by one in their number who is an undercover cop. — RSH

CLASSICAL MUSIC

Classical Gas

Symphony of the Americas “Orchestra Meets Jazz” concert, 7:45 p.m., Jan. 9, Broward Center for the Performing Arts, 201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale, 954-335-7002, info@sota.org. Tickets $50-$75. 

The improvisational heartbeat of the jazz idiom may seem inherently out-of-sync with the note-for-note lockstep of the classical orchestra. However, this amalgam of the full symphony with guest artists acclaimed for their jazz chops suggests an intriguing, percussive concert experience — highlighted by a world premiere composed and arranged by Latin Grammy-nominee Rafael Piccolotto de Lima and performed by the symphony’s percussionist, Errol Rackipov, and his jazz group.  — GC

Renée Fleming

8 p.m. Jan. 13, Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach, 561-832-7469, Kravis.org. Tickets from $30. 

A perennial favorite of the South Florida arts season, prolific soprano Renée Fleming created a stir earlier in the year with the acknowledgment that she was saying goodbye to an iconic role, the Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier at the Metropolitan Opera, her home for 25 years. Consistent with her dynamic career, another door opens in the spring when Fleming makes her Broadway musical debut as Nettie Fowler in a production of the Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein classic Carousel. — BC

Seraphic Fire

The Little Match Girl Passion, 7:30 p.m. Jan. 17, St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Church, 2401 SW Third Ave., Miami; 7 p.m. Jan. 18, Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church, 1225 Piper Blvd., Naples; 7:30 p.m. Jan. 19, First United Methodist Church of Coral Gables, 536 Coral Way; 7:30 p.m. Jan. 20, All Saints Episcopal Church, 333 Tarpon Drive, Fort Lauderdale; 4 p.m. Jan. 21, All Souls Episcopal Church, 4025 Pine Tree Drive, Miami Beach, 305-285-9060 or SeraphicFire.org. Tickets $46 and $50. 

Every season, the intrepid Grammy-nominated choral ensemble Seraphic Fire can be counted on to explore profound spaces where the artistic and the spiritual meet, this season exemplified by the company’s January performances of David Lang’s Pulitzer Prize-winning The Little Match Girl Passion. In the opener for Seraphic Fire’s three-part Parables of Passion series, Lang finds in the Hans Christian Andersen story (a poor child, sick and shoeless, is forced by an abusive father to sell matches on the street, where the girl eventually freezes to death) a parable that compares the scorned girl’s fate with the suffering of Jesus. While this landscape may sound bleak, The New York Times described “an ethereal meditation” that was “a poignant and, by the end, consoling piece.” — BC

The Cleveland Orchestra

8 p.m. Jan. 26-27, Feb. 2-3; Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305-949-6722, ArshtCenter.org. Two-concert packages start at $70. 

The esteemed orchestra, now in its 12th season wintering in South Florida, will devote its January concerts to Mahler’s Ninth Symphony, the poignant, existential masterpiece its composer never heard performed before his death shortly after its completion. “[It] is the most heavenly thing Mahler has written … an expression of an exceptional fondness for this earth, the longing to live in peace on it, to enjoy nature to its depths — before death comes,” Viennese composer Alban Berg wrote. Conducted by Franz Welser-Möst, the Cleveland Orchestra’s February concerts will be devoted to an eclectic all-Beethoven program, including his Symphony No. 5, the joyful Symphony No. 8 and the Overture to Coriolan. — BC

The Maestro Returns

Symphonia Boca Raton’s Connoisseur Concert 3 featuring guest conductor James Judd, 3 p.m. Feb. 18, The Roberts Theatre at Andrews Hall, 3900 Jog Road, 1-866-687-4201, thesymphonia.org. Tickets $50-$84. 

Music lovers who harken back fondly to the heyday of the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra will want to welcome Maestro James Judd back to the podium for this chamber orchestra program.

A one-time eminent figure on the South Florida classical landscape, Judd wielded the baton for the regional symphony based in Fort Lauderdale from 1987 to 2001 before moving on to the Israel Symphony Orchestra and, more recently, Daejeon (South Korea) and Slovak philharmonic orchestras. Roman Rabinovich will be piano soloist for this “Emperor” program featuring Strauss, Haydn and, of course, Beethoven’s “Emperor” piano concerto.  — GC

Florida Grand Opera

Florencia en el Amazonas, 7 p.m. April 28, 2 p.m. April 29, 8 p.m. May 1, 8 p.m. May 4 and 8 p.m. May 5, Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 800-741-1010, FGO.org. Tickets $12-$250. 

The first Spanish-language opera commissioned by a major U.S. opera company (Houston Grand Opera in 1996), Daniel Catán’s Florencia en el Amazonas journeys with the passengers of a ship on the Amazon in the early 1900s, including a native opera star looking for lost love. But, inspired by the magical realism of Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez, it is a trip of an entirely different attitude. In-demand Puerto Rican-born soprano Ana María Martínez, who just finished the lead role in Carmen for the Los Angeles Opera, will bring her rich, burnished vocalism and commanding presence to Florencia. — BC

POP MUSIC

Jay-Z

8 p.m. Nov. 12, AmericanAirlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 800-745-3000, Ticketmaster.com. Tickets from $35.

How does a rap icon hold on to his crown as a 47-year-old father of three? Jay-Z went where few, if any, rappers are willing to go, this summer releasing 4:44, an album of astonishing candor, humility and vulnerability that comes clean about his marital troubles, his infidelity (as wife Beyoncé alluded to on Lemonade), the weight of fatherhood and the revelation that his mother is gay. The Los Angeles Times called it “a collection of songs — sly but moving, both intricate and lucid — that we’ll be coming back to for years.” — BC

Lady Gaga

7:30 p.m. Nov. 30, AmericanAirlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 800-745-3000, Ticketmaster.com. Sold out, except for a handful of platinum-level seats starting at $450. 

By the time the Joanne World Tour concludes, it will be 10 years since an unknown Stefani Germanotta arrived in South Florida in mirrored “disco panties,” telling folks at Winter Music Conference 2008 and, a short time later, at Bill’s Filling Station in Wilton Manors, that she had some songs to perform, including one titled Just Dance. Oh, and she wanted to be called Lady Gaga. Arguably the most successful female performer on the contemporary pop-music scene, Lady Gaga sold out all 20 shows on the opening leg of the Joanne tour, named for the No. 1 album that has spawned the hits Million Reasons, Perfect Illusion and The Cure. The sell-outs include her first American stadium concerts at Wrigley Field, Fenway Park and Citi Field in New York, where she filled its 69,000 seats twice in back-to-back shows. Gaga’s fall European concerts were postponed until 2018 due to a bout with fibromyalgia, but at presstime Gaga had not altered the leg of U.S. concerts. — BC

FILM

Fort Lauderdale
International Film Festival

Through Nov. 19, Savor Cinema, 503 SE Sixth St., Fort Lauderdale, and Cinema Paradiso, Hollywood, 2008 Hollywood Blvd., with screenings at several other Broward venues; 954-525-3456, FLIFF.com. Tickets $8-$12 per screening, $450 for festival pass.

How does South Florida’s largest film festival top 2016’s lineup of celebrities, which included Talia Shire, Martin Landau and Rooney singer Robert Schwartzman? Answer: More Burt Reynolds. The Palm Beach-based icon (Deliverance, Smokey and the Bandit) was scheduled to collect a FLIFF Lifetime Achievement Award this weekend (his second); as will actor Karen Allen (Raiders of the Lost Ark, Animal House), as well. Allen will appear for the Florida premiere of her short film A Tree. A Rock. A Cloud on Nov. 18. — PV

The Roots of Rhythm

Rhythms of Africa: Music Around the World, 3 and 8 p.m.
Jan. 20,
Miramar Cultural Center, 2400 Civic Center Place,
954-602-4500, miramarculturalcenter.org.

The rhythm is gonna get you in this vibrant celebration of African rhythms and how they’ve influenced world cultures. Local resident Willie Stewart, former longtime drummer for Grammy-nominated reggae group Third World, beats the drum with a vibrant ensemble accompanied by selected students from Somerset Academy Miramar.  — GC

American Black Film Festival 

June 2018, various venues in Miami and Miami Beach, BFF.com. Festival passes cost $550-$1,025.

If the Oscar-winning, Miami-made drama Moonlight is any indication, films that spotlight the black experience are more popular than ever. Helping to champion African-American films, especially the local kind, is Jeff Friday, who began the festival 21 years ago in Acapulco and moved it to Miami in 2002. The HBO-sponsored festival has showcased high-profile actors, films and TV series in recent years, including premieres of OWN’s Queen Sugar and FX’s Snowfall along with appearances from comedian Kevin Hart and directors Spike Lee and John Singleton. Organizers expect 2018’s lineup to be announced sometime next year. — PV

Popcorn Frights Film Festival

August 2018, O Cinema Wynwood, 90 NW 29th St., Miami, 305-571-9970, PopcornFrights.com. Ticket prices have yet to be announced.

Making a stronger case for quality horror films than the Sharknado sequels, this weeklong fright fest haunted Miami’s O Cinema for its third year this August, with 20 sold-out feature films and a slate of shorts devoted to only-in-Florida horror. The creation of Marc Ferman and Igor Shteyrenberg (also co-founder of the Miami Jewish Film Festival), Popcorn Frights delivered buckets of fake blood and comedy, adding more world premieres and films that starred Daniel Radcliffe and Steven Yeun (The Walking Dead). Organizers expect 2018’s lineup to be announced in the spring. — PV

 

Full events calendar, compiled by
Janis Rogers, online at southflorida.com/events

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