The Caldwell Theatre has had a string of back luck this year, with injuries plaguing two its 2010
productions: “The Old Man and the Sea” and “Secret Order.” Both led to some performance cancellations and last-minute casting changes. Last week, there was some concern that one flu-ridden cast member would set back the theater’s newly opened revival of last year’s smash hit “Vices: A Love Story,” but luckily, only last Saturday’s performances had to be canceled. This critically acclaimed production is running at full steam at the Caldwell through Dec. 12. The show, which enjoyed its world premiere at the Caldwell in summer 2009, kicks off the venue’s 2010-2011 mainstage season. Told through incredible dance and mediocre songs, “Vices” delves into our many obsessions, from shopping to texting, chocolate, smoking, alcohol, television, sex and weightlifting, and the negative impacts they can have on a relationship. I wasn’t as enthused by this show as the rest of the South Florida theater press was the first time around, but I’m ready to give it another shot. Tickets are $27 to $75 or $10 for students. Call 561/241-7432.
Every time I think I’ve had my fill of screeching, propagandistic activist documentaries – “Countdown to Zero,” a histrionic doc about nuclear proliferation, and “Tapped,” a myopic screed against the
bottled-water industry being the latest – I see one that really blows me away. “Inside Job,” about the banking crises, is one recent theatrical release that presents facts and analyzes them in a sober manner, and “Cool It,” which opens in most theaters Friday, is an equally persuasive documentary, this time going after the over-the-top fear-mongering that bothered me so much about Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth.” It follows Bjorn Lomborg, global-warming moderate and the controversial author of “The Skeptical Environmentalist,” as he navigates the political war zone of climate-change thought and legislation. He ultimately offers practical solutions that make a lot more sense than energy-saving lightbulbs and even hybrid cars. It’s truly a game-changing film, if seen by the right people.
Having already lit up dance stages in Broward and Miami-Dade, the Miami City Ballet concludes its regional tour of its first program of the 2010-2011 season from Friday to Sunday the Kravis Centerâ€™s Dreyfoos Hall. The spotlighted performance is the company premiere of “Fanfare,” Jerome Robbins’ homage to Queen Elizabeth II, scored to that familiar piece of orchestral education, Benjamin Britten’s “The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra.” George Balanchine’s erotic, Japanese-inspired “Bugaku” and his classical ballet “Theme and Variations” round out the bill. Tickets are $19 to $169. Call 877/929-7010.
At 8 p.m. Friday, enjoy an “Evening With Patti Smith” at the Chapman Conference Center at Miami-Dade College, 300 NE Second Ave. The post-punk iconoclast Smith is one of the headliners at the Miami Book
Fair, and she’ll be reading from and discussing her memoir “Just Kids,” which recounts her deep spiritual and artistic connection to photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. It’s difficult to discuss Smith and her legacy without sounding sycophantic. At 63, Smith still performs concerts, and her career has also encompassed visual art and poetry. Her first three LPs are as essential to your record collection as oxygen is to your body. And just yesterday, Smith won a National Book Award for “Just Kids,” solidifying her acumen in that area as well. Tickets are $10. Purchase them at the fair’s website.