Saturday, September 23, 2023

Your Week Ahead: March 6 to 12

“Illusionists” bring some comic magic to the Kravis, a local film festival blossoms in its second year, and a string quartet goes pop at the Four Arts. Plus, Spoon, “Brigadoon,” an alternative book fair and more in your week ahead.



What: Boca Raton Jewish Film Festival

Where: Regal Shadowood 16, 9889 Glades Road, Boca Raton

When: Various show times

Cost: $13 per screening

Contact: 561/852-3237,

In only its second year, the Boca Raton Jewish Film Festival is already mushrooming—from just over a week to three weeks, and from 27 films to 40. This year’s lineup includes another engaging mix of features and documentaries—dramas, comedies and thrillers alike—that illuminate aspects of the global Jewish diaspora. On Tuesday, check out the Dutch mystery “The Hero” (12:30); the American comedy “The Gliksmans” (3 p.m.), starring Ed Asner and Cloris Leachman as a couple whose simple trip to the bank spirals into an absurdist fantasy; and “The Body Collector” (6:45 p.m.), about a Dutch investigative journalist’s hunt for an ex-Nazi. View the complete schedule at; it runs through March 24.


What: Opening night of “The Illusionists”

Where: Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach

When: Various show times

Cost: $28-$68

Contact: 561/832-7469,

Those with a fear of drowning might want to schedule a bathroom break during the centerpiece of this Broadway box-office smash: a “full-view water torture escape” performed by a master escapologist. Full-view, eh? Take that, Houdini. This is just one trick among many in “The Illusionists,” a fast-paced marriage of the magical and the macabre, the harrowing and the hilarious, that critics have called “the Cirque du Soleil of magic” and “brain-bendingly spectacular.” It’ll be tough to top a Dream Team of conjurers as charismatic and award-decorated as this group, with each member specializing in a different magic genre, from levitation and mentalism to grand illusions. They include “The Inventor,” Kevin James (not that Kevin James), whose innovative theatrics were seen in the movie “Adaptation;” the “Futurist” Adam Trent, who specializes in technology-driven illusions; and Ben Blaque, whose danger-courting crossbow theatrics dropped the jaws of “America’s Got Talent” viewers. The show runs through Sunday.


Brigadoon1.4 (2)

What: Opening night of “Brigadoon”

Where: The Wick Theatre, 7901 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton

When: 7:30 p.m.

Cost: $80-$85

Contact: 561/995-2333,

In Lerner and Loewe’s effervescent, time-traveling classic, a pair of New York tourists stumble upon the titular village in the Scottish Highlands, which materializes only once in a century, and begin to fall under its romantic spell. “Brigadoon” is produced often, but familiarity hardly lessens the impact of this magical musical, whose standards include “Almost Like Being In Love.” The Wick’s rendition, starring Lauren Weinberg and Matthew Taylor with choreography by Lindsay Bell, runs through April 8.


What: Lindsey Mills Album Release

Where: Voltaire, 526 Clematis St., West Palm Beach

When: 8 p.m.

Cost: $8

Contact: 561/408-5603,

In her day job, Lindsey Mills provides the rhythmic bass lines and backing vocals for famed West Palm Beach rockers Surfer Blood. But since 2007, she’s also recorded EPs and albums under her own name, and they should be required listening for both Surfer Blood fans and adventurous new listeners. With a sound as muscular as it is infectious, her latest LP Ecotones will easily win over fans of the Breeders and Rilo Kiley. She’ll play many of its songs at this headlining stint at West Palm Beach’s hippest new club, whose undercard is better than most evening’s main acts. Arrive early for three touring bands: Phoenix electro-poppers Like Diamonds, indie folk act Dreamend, and the cult singer-songwriter Kid Dakota.



What: West Palm Beach Alternative Book Fair

Where: The Box Gallery, 811 Belvedere Road, West Palm Beach

When: Begins at 6 p.m. Friday, 5 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday

Cost: $10 per day, $15 for weekend pass

Contact: 786/521-1199,

All South Floridians who identify as “alternative”—or even the alt-curious among us—will want to explore this novel idea for a local book festival. Guest others from around the block and around the country will discuss their countercultural tomes, from punk to queer culture, at this event, the first of its kind. Co-organized by Palm Beach County art impresario Rolando Chang Barrero and local arts writer Sandra Schulman, the fair will welcome authors such as Tony Arruza (Surfers and Shapers), Paul Zone (Playground: Growing Up in the New York Underground), Pop artist Laurence Gartel (Warhol vs. Gartel), Palm Beach historian Rick Rose and legendary Mudd Club doorman Richard Boch (The Mudd Club Book). The Box Gallery recently announced the addition of Vera King (pictured), wife of a Ramones bassist, who will discuss her memoir Poisoned Heart: I Married Dee Dee Ramone. Live music concludes the festivities on Friday and Saturday night. Visit the Box Gallery’s website for the full schedule.



What: Steve Martin and Martin Short

Where: Broward Center, 201 S.W. Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale

When: 2 and 8:30 p.m.

Cost: $60-$250

Contact: 954/461-0222,

With one excruciating exception, Martin Short never dabbled in standup comedy; by contrast, Steve Martin is one of standup’s wackiest frontiersmen. In recent years, Steve Martin has embraced music as a serious career commensurate with his acting and writing; Martin Short has only dabbled in melody and rhythm. But these undisputed funnymen—and two of film’s “Three Amigos,” we might add—share much in common, including an affinity for the Borscht Belt zinger, the freewheeling variety show, the convivial roast. This performance promises a bit of all of these nostalgic entertainment formats, with the stars sharing extemporaneous conversation, scripted sketches (Short’s Jiminy Glick and Ed Grimley might cameo) and mini concerts, with Martin’s banjo fronting the bluegrass royalty of his Steep Canyon Rangers, and Short’s impressive pipes backed by jazz pianist Jeff Babko.



What: Quatuor Ébène

Where: Society of the Four Arts, 2 Four Arts Plaza, Palm Beach

When: 3 p.m. March 11

Cost: $20

Contact: 561/832-7226,

Formed almost as a lark in the practice rooms of the Boulogne-Billancourt Conservatory in France, Quatuor Ébène has evolved to become one of the world’s most adventurous string quartets. Shattering distinctions between classical, jazz and popular music, the award-winning group has mastered the standards of the string-quartet canon—compositions by Mozart, Brahms, the Mendelssohns and Schubert among them—while exploring unorthodox genres with equal respect and aplomb. Miles Davis, the Beatles, “Over the Rainbow” and the “Pulp Fiction” soundtrack all have received the Quatuor Ébène treatment. The Four Arts program includes a smorgasbord: string quartets by Haydn and Fauré, followed by a “Jazz and Crossover” program to be announced from the stage.


What: Spoon

Where: Revolution Live, 100 S.W. Third Ave., Fort Lauderdale

When: 7:30 p.m.

Cost: $28.50

Contact: 954/449-1025,

In its 22 years of recording, this Austin indie band has evolved from the spiky, staccato post-punk of 1996’s Telephono into the chilly textures and ambient soundscapes of last year’s zeitgeist-capturing Hot Thoughts. Seven records came between these musically divergent albums, each one worth listening again and again, each of them acting as a bridge progressing toward the group’s current sound—dreamy, vibrant and futuristic. The group’s super-tight live shows are as moody and atmospheric as its recorded music. Expect charismatic frontman Britt Daniel and company to span nearly all of their releases at this rare South Florida appearance.

John Thomason
John Thomason
As the A&E editor of, I offer reviews, previews, interviews, news reports and musings on all things arty and entertainment-y in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties.

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