Early on in the Argentinean film “El Último Traje” (The Last Suit), which makes its U.S. theatrical debut this week, a deceptively quaint and humorous scene takes place between the film’s protagonist, 88-year-old Abraham Bursztein and his young granddaughter. The little girl refuses to join in a family photo with Abraham surrounded by his many grandchildren. When he cajoles and insists, ..
Gone are the days when filmmakers needed huge budgets, and major movie studios backing them with big bucks to get their films seen, according to two producers who spent decades in Los Angeles, and have now moved their base to Miami Beach. "From a creative standpoint, there are amazing opportunities for filmmakers today," says producer Kevin Chinoy, who, along with producing partner Frances..
Mark St. Germain has achieved ongoing success with small-cast plays involving historical figures in fictional scenarios, and South Florida has been as welcoming to his work as the rest of the country. St. Germain’s “Camping With Henry and Tom,” about a 1920s camping trip involving Henry Ford, Thomas Edison and President Warren G. Harding, was produced in 1996 by New Theatre in Coral Gables..
Mexico City-based theater collective Teatro Ojo's works are constantly evolving. Nothing is ever really finished. That's because they take from every performance. Whatever the audience experiences, observes, feels, and offers feedback, which they highly encourage, all is used, considered, and included in the evolution of the same piece, or introduced into another new work. Two of the ..
“America’s Greatest and Least Known Playwright.”This is how the Cuban-American playwright Maria Irene Fornes is referred to several times throughout Michelle Memran’s documentary “The Rest I Make Up,” which makes its Florida debut this Saturday as part of Miami-Dade College’s Miami Film Festival. Fornes has been called the “Mother of Avant-Garde Theater.” Theater giants like Edward A..
“Once” has always been touched with magic. And as anyone who has seen the sublime new production of the show by Actors’ Playhouse in Coral Gables would tell you, the musical’s spellbinding pull is as powerful as ever. When Irish director-screenwriter John Carney first told the tale of a heartbroken Irish street musician and the spunky Czech pianist who reignites his passion, a 200..
Consider the idea of land in Palestine, and conflict may be the first thing to come to mind. But for Jumana Emil Abboud, the Palestinian landscape evokes other, older, associations – with mythological creatures like water spirits and ghouls. “These stories were told way before 1948,” says the Galilee-born artist, speaking by phone from her home in Jerusalem. She suggests looking back ..
Steven Levenson’s “If I Forget” began its Off-Broadway run a year ago, closing just six weeks before the now 33-year-old playwright won the Tony Award for writing the book of the acclaimed musical “Dear Evan Hansen.” Cut to February 2018, and South Florida already has its own exquisite production of “If I Forget,” thanks to GableStage artistic director Joseph Adler. Levenson’s fun..
In a career that continues to soar two decades after his first play was produced, Michael McKeever has premiered his dramas, comedies and short plays at theaters all over South Florida. Nearly always, he’s involved in those productions as the author, sometimes as an actor, at times as a set designer. The plays get their start here, then go on to productions (sometimes multiple product..
When M. John Richard decided to leave the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in late 2008 to become president and chief executive officer of Miami’s Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, he arrived in South Florida with a vision, myriad ideas and a long-term exit strategy. “I knew in 2008 that I had a 10-year run in my tank,” says Richard, 65, who plans to retire from his Arsh..
Pools are ubiquitous in Miami. They dot the landscape like Jackson Pollock drip paintings. Residents swim or idle the hours away by or in the pool – and dancers of Momentum Dance Company also perform in the pool, as they will on Thursday, June 1at The Betsy Hotel on Miami Beach.
When people of a certain age think of water ballet, they may think of Esther Williams and her movies, many of which were filmed on Miami Beach. Momentum takes what Williams popularized during the 1940s and 1950s and presents it to a new audience. During a phone interview, Delma Iles, founder and artistic director of Momentum, spoke about the upcoming program and of her comfort in the water. “I learned to swim when I learned to walk,” says Iles. Over the past few years Iles has presented water ballet programs on Miami Beach and elsewhere; this is the first time it is being held at The Betsy.
On the program are two pieces, “Water Birds” and a new, untitled work. “Water Birds” is abstractly based on the movements of water birds such as herons, cranes, and egrets. It’s set to a score by Arvo Pärt, who is a composer of classical and religious music. Costumes are bathing suits hand-painted by Iles.
The untitled work is composed of two parts, a duet and a quintet and has more of a dance feel to it. The music is by John Field, a classical composer who is said to have influenced Chopin.
Iles speaks of the process of choreographing a water ballet. She starts by working alone in the pool, then taking it to the studio where she sketches out the outline and patterns with the dancers. Once in the pool the dancers are faced with certain challenges such as weight and the limitations of dancing fast in water. Conquering these challenges makes for a beautiful art form.
Many choreographers have presented works with water in mind -- including George Balanchine’s Balla della Regina that takes place underwater, in a grotto. Last season, Miami City Ballet placed A Midsummer Night’s Dream undersea. There is a growing awareness of the need to protect and live in harmony with the environment; this awareness is making its way into works of art.
Iles water ballet program is also a part of a growing movement to present dance away from the proscenium stage -- and take it to the audience. These site-specific and site-adaptive works allow audience members to become more active participants in the piece. It enables them to determine many factors in the viewing experience, such as viewpoint -- and the opportunity to relax around a pool, which literally can reflect beautiful art.
Momentum Dance Company: An Evening of Water Ballet, Thurs., June 1, 7:00 p.m., The Betsy Hotel pool,1440 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, entranceon Collins Avenue;admission free, 20% off at the restaurant to anyone attending the performance; 844-862-3157; thebetsyhotel.com.
Drummer Dafnis Prieto and pianist Omar Sosa closed this year’s Global Cuba Fest at the Light Box in Wynwood, Miami, with shows on Friday and Saturday, March 16-17 that suggested a sort of mus..
Mention flamenco and the immediate associations are with dancing, singing and the guitar. The piano has a rather tentative history in flamenco. While some scholars include the instrument in p..
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