arts

Conservatives won't have Julius Caesar to kick around anymore.

The latest production in the Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park series is closing Sunday — presumably bringing an end to demonstrations outside of the Delacorte Theater but unlikely to quell the raging debates over exactly whom is entitled to free speech, under what circumstances and over the limits of artistic expression. Those debates are not likely to subside, especially as the appetite for creative works tackling an array of political themes continues to grow.

Rakesh Satyal's new novel checks off a lot of boxes, but its charm lies in the fact that it wears all of it various identities so lightly. This is an immigration story, a coming-out story and something of an old-school feminist story about a timid woman learning to roar.

The Sunroom: A Place For Young Miami Poets

May 3, 2017
Priscila Serrano / WLRN

Elementary students from three Liberty City schools spent the last two months meeting once a week to write poetry, and some of it has ended up in some unusual places. Like gas stations. And buses. 

“Poetry asks kids to come up with innovative ideas. It encourages them to think outside the box instead of asking them to zero in on a definition or answer to a test question,” said Laurel Nakanishi, teacher and coordinator of the program that added poetry to the kids’ curriculum.

Nadege Green / WLRN

Michael Brun grew up in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. As a kid, he remembers the pulsing and intoxicating rhythms that washed over the neighborhood every weekend in the form of rara bands--musicians beating drums, blowing handmade horns, clapping and singing through the streets.

Daniel Azoulay / Miami City Ballet

Patricia Delgado was 11 years old the first time she walked into the Miami City Ballet studios to take class. Her sister Jeanette was nine.

Courtesy Dance Now! Miami

Dance Now! Miami’s latest dance piece is a direct response to President Donald Trump.

“Bridges Not Walls” was conceived during the presidential race when the then-presidential candidate Trump repeatedly declared that he would build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

“When Donald Trump came up and made those comments about immigrants, specifically coming from Mexico, we were at that time in the process of creating a collaboration with a Mexican [dance] company and so we thought that that was the moment to respond,” said Dance Now Co-Director  Diego Salterini.

Courtesy Knight Foundation

Miami Arts Week started with good news for the whole region, with the announcements of the winners of the 2016 Knights Arts Challenge. 

The contest, sponsored by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, will give $2.78 million to 44 local  artists and projects aimed at exploring the authentic voices of South Florida and bringing art to neighborhoods from Key West to Palm Beach. All winners have committed to find funds to match Knight's commitment (it's one of the conditions of the grant). 

Lynnette Cantos

At the beginning of each performance, Speakfridays host and founder Robert Lee starts  by reciting to newcomers and regulars alike the night’s catchphrase:

“Can I speak?,” Lee shouts. And the audience responds  with a resounding, “Yes you can.”  Started in 2006, Speakfridays has been a staple of Miami’s underground art and culture scene for the last 10 years. Originally located in a warehouse in the Bird Road Arts district, the show moved to Wynwood last year in search of  larger accommodations.

Art For Your Ears: Subtropics Marathon Airs Experimental Music

Mar 4, 2016
Diego Saldaña-Rojas / For WLRN

  On Saturday, 20 sound art pieces will be performed and displayed at the 24th annual Subtropics Marathon, a six-hour sound art and experimental music event.

"We don't try to pin down exactly the kinds of things these are. We're interested in experimental music, meaning music that is being made today, no matter what it is," said Gustavo Matamoros.

Emily Michot / Miami Herald

On a recent Wednesday morning, a handful of 10th grade English students from Somerset Academy donned 3-D glasses and stepped into Elizabethan London.

Their tour guide warned them to watch out for rats carrying plague.

 

“This is so cool,” the students murmured as they stood outside the Globe Theater—a virtual rendering of it, anyway.

Miami New Drama

In Jewish folklore, a golem is a creature fashioned of clay and animated by magic.  To Michel Hausmann, the golem is less a Yiddisha Frankenstein's monster than a dark knight.

“It’s a Jewish Superman,” says Hausmann. “It’s the ancestor of all superheroes.  When you don’t have the strength to fight your enemies, you create this creature to do the fighting for you.”

But what happens after it defeats your enemies?

“Then YOU become the enemy,” posits Hausmann.

Nadege Green / WLRN

It's YoungArts Week in Miami.

That means young artists from across  the country (dancers, writers, singers, filmmakers, visual artists and more) are in town  performing and exhibiting their work. In between, they get the opportunity to take master classes and workshops with leading artists in their fields. The events are taking place at the YoungArts Campus and the New World Center. 

More and more, I eschew end-of-year best-of lists for the simple reason that they're arbitrary and imply a comprehensiveness on which they can never deliver. What works for me is to compile a list that reflects some of the enormous gratitude I feel for getting to enjoy other people's work and art — one that doesn't even pretend to define what is best, but simply to share some of the abundant good stuff I run into.

Not long ago, Kathleen Franz was sifting through the archives at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History. Franz is a curator there, and she was working on an exhibit about the history of American advertising.

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