Florida Culture for the Week of May 27 by Josh Garrick

by Josh Garrick / May 28, 2013 / 0 comments

Florida Culture for the Week of May 27 by Josh Garrick

Current News – Mad Cow Theatre Receives Major Grant

The economic impact of the Arts in our community was brought home to us as Orlando’s Mad Cow Theatre happily announced the news of a $250,000 grant from Orange County Arts and Cultural Affairs. Mad Cow already has an economic impact of $1.2 million each year, and the increased capacity of their new facility fosters an ever greater impact. Mitzi Maxwell, Mad Cow's Exec Director said, "This funding enables us to present more cultural experiences befitting a world-class community to both local and visiting patrons. Our new Church Street home is a venue that Orange County citizens can be proud of."  Dreamgirls will open June 7 at Mad Cow (See June 7 below) and visit madcowtheatre.com


Now Open – Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin at SeaWorld

Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin is fun, zestfully new, family-oriented and (sshh) educational. Transporting guests into the icy world of the South Pole, the experience is a first-of-its-kind family ride that eases you into the 30-degree world of a huge penguin colony. Gone are the thick glass walls. This is a super-cool, up-close-and personal visit. The opening of a major new exhibit such as this includes an army of talent that includes designers, zoologists, merchandisers, ride technologists, engineers, explorers, animal ‘ambassadors,’ curators, aviculturists, educators, and even chefs – for the penguins and for us, as the new ride also introduces a splendid new restaurant called Expedition Café. Congratulations SeaWorld – it’s a winner! Visit seaworldparks.com



Arts Columnist Josh Garrick congratulating Brian Morrow, SeaWorld’s Corporate Creative Director and Chief Designer on the new Antarctica Experience.


May 28 – Kick off Gay Days – Macy’s style!

Macy's, known for epic events such as Macy's 4th of July Fireworks and the Thanksgiving Day Parade, will build on that 150-year tradition by hosting a Red Carpet Party including music, food and shopping discounts, to celebrate Gay Days in Orlando. Hosted by Steve Erics with performances by Maya Andrews, Sasha Colby and Lineysha Sparx, as part of the week-long Gay Days Celebration, the citywide celebration offers round the clock activities including the party at Macy’s at The Mall at Millenia. Visit gaydays.com


May 31 – Orlando Philharmonic in HI DEF at Full Sail University

The Orlando Philharmonic is building its audience based on exciting new ways to present symphonic music, and their fundraiser on May 31 may top them all. Presented in association with Full Sail University, the Philharmonic will present Symphony in HD: Music of the Night as a live orchestra performance with visual elements created by Full Sail University faculty and students AND a guest appearance by former Broadway ‘Phantom,’ Davis Gaines. Guests at the fundraiser will enjoy a three-course meal and live auction with proceeds benefitting the Orlando Philharmonic. Visit orlandophil.org or call 407-896-6700, ext. 236.



May 31 – Exhibits Open at the Art & History Museums – Maitland
An Opening Reception will be held May 31 from 6 to 8 pm at the Art & History Museums – Maitland (A&H) as they present three exhibits highlighting works of André Smith, artist, architect, and founder of A&H’s Maitland Art Center. The exhibits highlight the prints, paintings, and drawings created by Smith from the 1920s through 1940s. A Recent Acquisitions exhibit celebrates the ongoing addition of works of art to the A&H collection and will include one of my largest works – a photograph printed on aluminum called Three Blessings, which was presented to the Museum by the Kassianides family last November. Call 407-539-2181 or visit ArtandHistory.org


Josh Garrick - Three Blessings


June 2 – The Maitland Symphony Orchestra

The Maitland Symphony Orchestra will present its free annual spring concert on June 2 at 7:30 p.m. at Maitland Presbyterian Church at 341 N. Orlando Ave. in Maitland. Reflecting the concert’s title A Musical Kaleidoscope, it’s an evening of entertainment including Saint-Saen’s Organ” Symphony No. 3, featuring the Church’s powerful Wicks organ. A percussion ensemble will present an interpretation of Clair de Lune; guest soloist Rob Ross will sing Bring Him Home from Les Miserables; and the orchestra will delight with a medley of Beatles’ songs and music from Broadway and the cinema. This free concert is sponsored by the Performing Arts of Maitland, and is appropriate for all ages. Visit pamaitland.org/orchestra


June 6 to June 16 – Valencia’s Fat Pig!

What better place than a college theater to balance social commentary with black humor and what better Director to oversee this modern, funny and touching comedy than the always inventive John Didonna?  LOVE is in the air – between an average guy and a plus-sized librarian – and that love is ‘complicated’ by a world in which superficial judgments based on one’s size and shape are the norm. Neil LaBute’s caustic comedy Fat Pig! critiques our Hollywood ideals of beauty while questioning our ability to change what we dislike about ourselves. Presented at Valencia College East, call 407.582.2900 for tickets. A talk-back with cast and director is set for June 14 after the performance.


June 6 – Meet Orlando’s RAW Artists

RAW events are multi-faceted artistic showcases with EACH evening featuring a film screening, musical performance, fashion show, art gallery, performance art and a featured hairstylist and makeup artist. Artists are hand-picked local talent including Art from Jose Rivera and Janae Corrado; music from Stork and Joshua Worden; and sculpted, edible CHOCOLATE from Paul Joachim on June 6. Dress code is cocktail attire, and it’s a cash bar at this artistic circus of creativity. Doors open at 8 pm at the Abbey in Downtown Orlando. Visit rawartists.org/Orlando



June 6 – Swan Lake Broadcast LIVE at a Movie Theater Near You

Bringing Tchaikovsky’s famous ballet masterpiece to U.S. movie theaters in a ‘re-interpretation’ from Russia’s renowned ballet company, Swan Lake Mariinsky Live will be broadcast (live) in both 2-D and 3-D on June 6 at 6:30 pm. The ballet will be ‘captured’ at the the historic Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia, the theatre which has provided the world with great dancers since 1740. Led by award winning Artistic Director Valery Gergiev and featuring Mariinsky’s prima-ballerina Ekaterina Kondaurova, this classic ballet will be the first of its kind to use the Academy Award-winning technology created by the Cameron Pace Group for films such as Avatar. Tickets at participating theaters and online at FathomEvents.com



June 7 to July 7 – ‘Dreamgirls’ at Mad Cow

Tickets are selling fast for this highly-anticipated, Tony Award-winning musical that captures the spirit of hope in 1960s Motown when a girl group gets their big break in the music business. Their struggle for stardom is a time-lapse spectacle about the price of show-biz success. Sizzling with disco and R&B soul, Dreamgirls features an ensemble of singing actors in their Mad Cow debut. The show will run from June 7 to July 7. Call 407-297-8788 or visit madcowtheatre.com



June 7 – The Front Bottoms – First Tour as Headliners

They gave up their apartments, bought a van, and slept on couches to dedicate their lives to ‘being’ the Front Bottoms. It worked, and now the Front Bottoms – Brian Sella (vocals/guitar), Matt Uychich (drums), Tom Warren (bass) and Ciaran O’Donnel (keys/trumpet/guitar) have debuted the album Talon of the Hawk leading to their first tour as headliners. They’ll perform at Will's Pub on June 7th sharing their clever word-play delivered through quirky vocals that NPR described as "power punk and a healthy dose of humor.”  Visit willspub.org




Josh Garrick is the Florida Arts Editor for Wandering Educators