Florida Culture for the Week of January 9 by Josh Garrick

by Josh Garrick / Jan 10, 2012 / 0 comments

Florida Culture for the Week of January 9 by Josh Garrick

Barbara Sorensen at the Orlando Museum of Art
Central Florida may take pride in being the home of Barbara Sorensen, a renowned sculptor known for large-scale works in clay and bronze, as the Orlando Museum of Art presents a retrospective exhibit of her work through April 1. A recent recipient of The Florida Artist of Enduring Excellence award, Sorensen’s sculptures are inspired by Nature and geological forms. Curator Barbara Bloemink says, “Sorensen’s sculpture celebrates the earth’s terrain, metaphorically reminding us of the globe’s wild, natural beauty.” And there is a playful side to this Artist. Her new Dwelling series is made up of brightly painted, large-scale forms which, when juxtaposed to each other, create a kind of adult play-ground. From her early days of "throwing pots" to her present Dwellings, “All are containers of our spirit,” she says, “Although the medium has changed, from clay to resins to aluminum, the vessel is always present.” Topographies will remain on view through April 1.  Call 407 896 4231 or visit OMArt.org.


Barbara Sorenson



Crazy Hedwig is “Angry” Again
Hedwig and the Angry Inch is an outrageous (fictional) rock musical about a German transgender singer that first premiered in 1998 and has, since then, been performed throughout the world and made into a movie. The character of Hedwig is inspired by a divorced U.S. Army wife who moonlighted as a prostitute in her trailer park home with music drawn from the androgynous 1970’s glam rock era of David Bowie and punk rock. It’s been six years since the “internationally ignored song stylist” has been seen in Orlando, and this re-imagined production, directed by Bruce Costella, promises to “blow audiences away like a glam-rock blitzkrieg.” Starring Joshua Eads-Brown as Hedwig, the musical will be presented at The Abbey at 100 South Eola Drive in Orlando through January 23. Visit AbbeyOrlando.com or call 1-866-468-7630 for tickets.


Hedwig and the angry inch



Valencia Pres Sandy Shugart in Concert
Sandy Shugart, President of Valencia College, was recently named the 25th Most Powerful Central Floridian based on Valencia College winning the prestigious Aspen Award as one of the best community colleges in America!  On Saturday, January 14, however, we are invited to see a very different side of President Shugart as he performs as a singer-songwriter at the Garden Theater in Winter Garden. Ranging in style from Americana to alternative country to urban folk, Shugart (as performer) offers an acoustic tour of the emotions with original songs mixed with the occasional cover. His finger-picking style combines with smooth vocals to tell stories that can be amusing, touching, intelligent and engaging. Tickets: $15; $12 students/seniors. $40 Pre-show reception.  Call 407.877.GRDN (4736) or visit GardenTheatre.org


Sandy Shugart



Artists at the Maitland Chamber of Commerce
Lucky for us Art-Lovers that Maria Alvarez Simmons, the new Exec Director at the Maitland Chamber of Commerce, is a true fine art promoter. Now that her compassionate hands are guiding the Chamber, she is joining with Edemuel Mora, Director of Neu America Art Gallery, and artist Marcos Cruz to make the Chamber a new venue to exhibit Art. Beginning on January 13, on every second Friday of the month, the Chamber will provide the opportunity to meet artists, enjoy live music and view new exhibits. Friday’s Opening Reception – from 5:30 to 8:30 pm – is called Nature: Timeless Source of Inspiration and will show the work of local artists who use nature as their main subject. The Artists include Gary Gessford, Donna Frank, Maryse Jupillat, Brandi Renee, Alan Cody-Rapport, Juan Rueda and Jaime Parra. The event is FREE, and the Maitland Chamber is at 110 North Maitland Avenue. Contact msimmons [at] maitlandchamber.com


Maria Alvarez Simmons, Edemuel Mora, Marcos Cruz



Culture & Cocktails on January 13
Maitland is the place to be on the second Friday of every month as the Art & History Museums – Maitland (A&H) invites us to their celebration of art, music, food, friendship at their Culture & Cocktails event (which takes place the second Friday of every month). This Friday, January 13, from 6 pm to 9 pm, Artist Doug Rhodehamel will present his newest installation experience, BLUMP, complete with music to set the tone of the event.  Rhodehamel is internationally known for his paper-bag-mushroom installations, which have been known to appear over-nite in parks and public spaces around the world. In addition artists from Maitland’s Sketch Club will show off their talents as they sketch in the courtyard. Admission to Culture & Cocktails is $5, which includes one drink ticket. Visit ArtandHistory.org or call 407-539-2181





Weddings with a Rainbow Theme
As the debate continues throughout Florida regarding marriage and family rights for the state’s gay and lesbian citizens, the national resource RainbowWedding Network.com will visit Orlando on Sunday January 15 at the Crowne Plaza Orlando-Universal from 1 pm to 4 pm with its tour of ‘Same Love, Same Rights’ Wedding Expos. The Crowne Plaza has come forward as an enthusiastic host for this first-ever gay & lesbian wedding expo in the area. Gay-friendly businesses will participate including ceremony and reception venues, event coordinators, cake decorators, musical entertainment, photographers, formal wear, florists, travel planners and realtors. Having produced 61 Wedding Expos in 20 states since 2003, the Gay & Lesbian Wedding Expo is a timely resource for same-sex couples planning commitment ceremonies, as well as singles, advocates and allies who support equal rights in marriage. Call 866-251-1564 or visit rainbowweddingnetwork.com


same love same rights


gay wedding planners



And NOT-to-be-missed … The CIRCUS!
In one of their most spectacular seasons ever, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey have searched the world-over to create DRAGONS, a once-in-a-millennium event honoring The Year of the Dragon. The cavalcade of circus champions visits the new Amway Center from January 12 to January 16. Tickets are available at ringling.com or ticketmaster.com, by calling 800-745-3000, or at the Amway Center box office 407-440-7900.







Josh Garrick is the Florida Arts Editor for Wandering Educators