Florida Culture for the Week of January 30 by Josh Garrick

by Josh Garrick / Jan 30, 2012 / 0 comments

Florida Culture for the Week of January 30 by Josh Garrick

Behind the Scenes with the Artistic Director

The charismatic Artistic Director of the Orlando Ballet invites us to an evening that is one part master class and one part mixer – which equals one evening of fun. Artistic Director Robert Hill promises to take his audience-of-friends on a journey through the creative vision behind his hit ballet series Battle of the Sexes. The evening is called Orlando Ballet Uncorked!, (love the sound of that), a night of behind-the-scenes entertainment on Monday, January 30. Giving us an inside look at his ballets from the point of view of the man who created them, Hill will discuss topics including WHY he chose to integrate classical ballet with rock and techno music. Patrons will also get a look at the “making of a male ballet dancer,” in anticipation of the opening of Billy Elliot the Musical from the Broadway Series. Orlando Ballet Uncorked! takes place January 30 at 7 pm at The Abbey at 100 S. Eola Drive in Orlando. The $25 ticket price includes a glass of wine. Call 866.468.763 or visit abbeyorlando.com


Robert Hill

Robert Hill



(Truly) Extraordinary Tables

Some of the most spectacular tablescapes ever to inspire shouts of “Opa” are being created as a benefit for Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Central Florida.  On Thursday and Friday (Feb 2 and 3 from 10 am to 8 pm), and Feb 4 (10 am to 3 pm) we are invited to ‘tour’ these amazing tables, enjoy a Greek pastry, and raise money for Ronald McDonald House. Last year’s tables included a handmade Love Boat and a 10-year tribute table to honor the firefighters who died on Sept. 11.  Each year hosts go above and beyond to create unique tables, and WE get to see them in person, proving that photos don't begin to do them justice. The perfect ‘exhibit’ for decorating fanatics, brides-to-be, wedding planners and interior designers, after we ‘tour the tables we can shop in the Aegean Market Place for Greek pastries, desserts and specialty coffees. ‘Take Home’ appetizers, meals and gifts are available. Admission for the tour is $10, which includes a Greek pastry. For advance tickets, call Joyce Yarbrough at 407.774.2744.  At the Holy Trinity Conference Center at 1217 Trinity Woods Lane in Maitland.


Tables - Love Boat





The Musical Rites of Spring

Works by visionary composers who changed the course of musical history will be performed by the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra when Maestro Christopher Wilkins leads the Orchestra in a Legendary Composers concert on February 4 at 8 pm at the Bob Carr PAC in Orlando. “The entire course of musical history changed when the world accepted the genius of Beethoven. His 6th Symphony (the Pastorale) joins Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, which changed ‘ballet music’ forever. These works represent two opposing views of nature: one bucolic, the other utterly terrifying,” says Maestro Wilkins. “Beethoven's “PastoraleSymphony is one of the most enticing musical landscapes in history, while The Rite of Spring seems more like the eruption of a volcano.“ Even those unfamiliar with orchestral music will recognize the works from Disney’s 1940 animated film Fantasia. Call 407-770-0071, or visit orlandophil.org





Igor Stravinsky

Igor Stravinsky



Faces of HIV: Exhibit

The Florida Department of Health recently unveiled Faces of HIV, a project that tells the stories of Florida residents living with HIV through over-sized portraits, interviews and personal journals. The ‘art exhibit on wheels’ will be at the University of Central Florida, 400 Central Florida Boulevard on Feb 3 from 9 am to 5 pm and Downtown Orlando at Lake Eola Park (near the Amphitheater) on Feb 4 from 9 am to 5 pm. Portrait-Participants address how they became infected and how they dealt with the diagnosis, as well as their relationships, effects of HIV on the body and more. This uniquely personal glimpse into the lives of those living with HIV was created to promote awareness and understanding about the disease. Visit wemakethechange.com/faces


Faces of HIV



Molly Chism at Art & History Museums - Maitland

The new exhibit at Art & History Museums – Maitland (A&H) will present the work of artist Molly Chism in an exhibit titled EMERGE!  Opening on February 3 (from 6 to 8 pm) and continuing through April 15, the exhibit will be presented in the Maitland Art Center Galleries at 231 W. Packwood Avenue, Maitland.  Chism, a former Artist-in-Action at the A&H, is a graduate of UCF. She has exhibited her ‘emotionally-charged,’ dream-like landscape paintings across Florida. Call 407-539-2181 or visit ArtandHistory.org 


The Dead Meat Convention

The Dead Meat Convention



Writers at Rollins

Five writers will visit Rollins College in February as part of the 2012 Winter with the Writers, A Festival of the Literary Arts. The free talks are open to the public and will take place in Rollins’ Bush Auditorium on four consecutive Thursdays, beginning Feb. 2. A highlight of the series is 3-time Pulitzer Prize-nominee Carl Hiaasen. Readings begin at 7:30 pm and free parking is available in the SunTrust Garage. 

Speakers include:

Carl Hiaasen – Feb. 2:  An investigative journalist for The Miami Herald, Hiaasen is the best-selling author of Star Island, Nature Girl, Tourist Season and Skinny Dip.

Mihaela Moscaliuc – Feb. 9: Romanian poet Mihaela Moscaliuc’s poetry collection Father Dirt (2010), won the Kinereth Gensler Award, and in 2011, she was presented a Glenna Luschei Prairie Schooner Award.

Ilya Kaminsky – Feb 9:  Kaminsky is the author of Dancing in Odessa, named Best Poetry Book of 2004 by Foreword Magazine. He also co-founded Poets for Peace.

Paula McLain – Feb 16: McLain is the author of The Paris Wife, best-seller on The New York Times list and on lists in Canada, Ireland and Italy.

Chimamanda Adichie – Feb 23: Adichie is the author of Half of a Yellow Sun and Purple Hibiscus, and was named one of today’s 20 most important fiction writers under 40 years of age by The New Yorker.

Visit rollins.edu/winterwiththewriters


Rollins Winter Writers




FilmFest in Winter Garden

Since the beautifully renovated Garden Theatre in historic Winter Garden reopened in 2008, community leaders have hosted a series of inventive and original plays, concerts, and movies. Now the Theatre is set to introduce the first-ever StarLite Film Festival, set to run from February 2 to 5. This Recession-Era micro-budget film festival will screen and promote a series of feature-length films that were produced for a total budget of less than $100,000.  Workshops and an Awards Ceremony are part of the Festival with the ‘winning’ Foreign and Domestic films being shown again on Sunday, Feb 5.  From the light-hearted Fast Romance to the temptations of Suicider, tickets are an affordable $5. “The tools available to independent filmmakers are completely different now than what they were even ten years ago,” says Festival Producer Michael Poley. Visit starlitefilmfest.com. For tickets call 407.877.4736 or visit gardentheatre.org.


Starlite Film Festival





Josh Garrick is the Florida Arts Editor for Wandering Educators