Actors’ Playhouse has been a musical powerhouse for much of its history. Launching its 30th anniversary season at the Miracle Theatre in Coral Gables, the company is revisiting some of that history with a new production of a made-for-South Florida favorite: Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s “Evita.” As it did in 2000 when recent Tony Award winner Rachel Bay Jones starred as Eva Duart..
Playwright Suzan-Lori Parks won the Pulitzer Prize for “Topdog/Underdog” in 2002. But as Zoetic Stage’s superb new production of the play at Miami’s Arsht Center demonstrates, her funny, shocking tale of two brothers struggling to survive is as potent today as it was 15 years ago. Maybe more so, given the country’s deepening divide. Parks’ harrowing drama examines the complex relation..
We are born. We live, have families, grow old. We die, leaving those who loved us to mourn. Playwright Thornton Wilder brilliantly captured the eternal verities of our journey through life in “Our Town,” his 1938 Pulitzer Prize-winning play about life, love and death in a small New Hampshire town at the turn of the 20th century. If you’re at all drawn to theater, you’ve probably ..
“Miami Motel Stories: Little Havana” written by Juan C. Sanchez, directed by Tamilla Woodard, and produced by Juggerknot Theatre Company, is a site-specific, immersive theater experience that interweaves narrative, performance, history and architecture. Nine short plays take place in nine hotel rooms on the second floor of the Tower Hotel, right off Calle Ocho on Seventh Street. Sanchez, ..
Artistic director and founder of Juggerknot Theatre Company, Tanya Bravo, had her first brush with immersive theater in New York City when she met director Tamilla Woodard. Working on the play “Broken City,” Bravo and other actors led audience members on a theatrical journey through the streets of the Lower East Side. “I was so blown away by the concept and the lines that were crossed between ..
We humans do love our rituals. When an extended family gathers for the holidays, familiar traditions promise a comforting respite from an increasingly complex, chaotic world. Still, realistically, troubles and fears refuse to be left behind. They surface like unwelcome guests. So do resentments and stinging remarks born of deep knowledge. With Thanksgiving on the horizon, you wonder: ..
After a tryout run in Chicago, 34 previews and 746 performances on Broadway, and a tour launch in Buffalo, “On Your Feet!” has finally opened in the place where Cuban-born music superstars Gloria and Emilio Estefan made their dreams come true: Miami. At Friday’s red carpet opening at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, with the Estefans and their extended family in atte..
Whether the comedy is high or low, performer-writer Steve Martin has been making moviegoers, “Saturday Night Live” fans and theater lovers laugh for more than half a century – hard to believe it’s been that long, but he started early. Martin’s way with both cerebral jokes and physical comedy is abundantly on display in “The Underpants,” his 2002 adaptation of Carl Sternheim’s once-ban..
Robert Schenkkan’s “Building the Wall” begins as a wary conversation between two strangers: Rick, a white male convict awaiting a likely death sentence, and Gloria, a black female historian and college professor. For 90 minutes, the two talk. She probes; he explains and justifies and slowly paints a picture of a man-made Seventh Circle of Hell. By the time the play ends, the audience ..
Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’ award-winning play “An Octoroon” layers an antebellum melodrama with 21st-century parlance and perspective. The result is an innovative play-within-a-play that skillfully reminds us of slavery’s horrible past and its ever-present legacy. Area Stage Company’s production, thoughtfully directed by John Rodaz, brings together a talented cast to ensure this melodra..
It was only a few decades ago that finding a professional, locally produced performance was an aerobic dance in itself. But after the Miami City Ballet (established 1985), the New World School of the Arts (1987), and the New World Symphony (1988) planted their feet, Miami developed a serious grounding for dance and music. Daniel Lewis, founding dean of dance of New World School of the Arts, then created the Miami Dance Sampler, in an effort to bring companies together to provide a space for them to meet each other and build an audience.
Over time the annual event was renamed the Daniel Lewis Dance Sampler, but its goal remained the same. The Sampler returns this Saturday. “It’s meant to be a showcase of established professional companies,” says Hannah Baumgarten, co-artistic director of Dance Now! Miami, which has been presenting the Sampler for the last seven years. “The event is a season preview.”
This year the Sampler is presenting 11 companies, from the longest established company in Miami, Momentum Dance Company, to the newest, Dimensions Dance Theatre of Miami. Momentum performed in the first Sampler with artistic director Delma Iles performing in the program -- this year, the company is presenting its powerful, contemporary “Dido.”Dimensions Dance, founded by former Miami City Ballet principal dancers Carlos Guerra and Jennifer Kronenberg, is performing excerpts from “Fiebre” (Fever, 1995),with choreography by the late Venezuelan master Vicente Nebrada.
Momentum and Dimensions Dance illustrate the face ofMiami today, where established companies continue to grow and new companies continue to sprout. “Our community, and the culture in Miami, is so strong,” explains Baumgarten.
“More people are doing dance here,” says Lewis. “Miami is ahead of New York City in terms of creativity. New York has become very expensive -- it’s hard to have a company in New York; in Miami you can afford to experiment.”
The 11companies performing offer an opportunity to see some of the best troupes working in the city. And it delivers up plenty of diversity – the line-up includes Atma Yogadance, the Arts Ballet Theatre of Florida, mixed-ability dance company Karen Peterson and New World School of the Arts Dance Ensemble.
For the first time, the Sampler includes a classical Indian dance company, the Association of Performing Arts of India. They are presenting a world premiere titled “Varnam,”choreographed by Radha Kotamraju and Reneeta Basu.
Dance Now! Miami closes the program with “Winter’s Breath” (2014), and the timely and highly poignant “Bridges Not Walls” (excerpt, 2017). “We, as a community, are producing and functioning much more like the international cultural metropolitan city.” comments Baumgarten. Now, the problem is not in finding a professional dance performance but in choosing one – a problem Miami audiences are fortunate to have.
Daniel Lewis Miami Dance Sampler, Saturday, Oct. 21, 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.; New World School of the Arts Dance Theater, 25 NE 2nd St., 8th floor, Miami, tickets: $25 general, $15 students and seniors; dancenowmiami.org
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