Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Your Week Ahead: Aug. 2 to 8, 2022

A triple bill of blues legends plays Broward, Island City Stage explores the stigma of HIV, and a Southern comedian transcends his trucker hat. Plus, Dream Theater’s Jordan Rudess and more in your week ahead.

THURSDAY

What: Buddy Guy and John Hiatt & the Goners

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

When: 7:30 p.m.

Cost: $39.50-$89.50

Contact: 954/462-0222, browardcenter.org

Buddy Guy, who turned 86 on Saturday, is a blues guitarist of almost matchless quality and legend, mastering traditional Chicago blues and expanding his repertoire and style to encompass electric blues and rock as well. He’s a National Medal of Arts winner, a Kennedy Center honoree and the recipient of eight Grammy Awards, but if the respect from one’s peers is the highest compliment, consider that Eric Clapton once described him as “the best guitar player alive.” See him on this co-headlining jaunt with the versatile folk-blues-Americana singer-songwriter John Hiatt, a musician’s musician whose career has spanned 50 years on the pop-culture margins. Do arrive early for opening act Sonny Landreth, a maestro of the slide guitar.

THURSDAY TO SUNDAY

What: Dusty Slay

Where: Palm Beach Improv, 550 S. Rosemary Ave., West Palm Beach

When: Various show times

Cost: $22

Contact: 561/833-1812, palmbeachimprov.com

From his name to his background to his distinctive look, comic Dusty Slay is almost a parody of a southern entertainer: Long hair, trucker hat, flannel shirt and a childhood growing up poor in a trailer park in Opelika, Alabama. But Slay’s life experiences have proven to be rich fodder for material that cuts across rural America and its cultural touchstones—he holds the honor of being the youngest comedian to ever perform at the Grand Ole Opry—and finds purchase in blue states, too. Dry, laconic and observational, with an old-fashioned and unhurried approach to joke telling, Slay’s success is ultimately an inspiring story of rising above one’s station.

FRIDAY

What: Opening day of “Apples”

Where: Living Room Theaters at FAU, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton

When: Show times pending

Cost: $7-$10.50

Contact: 561/549-2600, fau.livingroomtheaters.com

Greek director Christos Nikou’s debut feature film “Apples” is a brilliant fable perched on the border between science-fiction speculation and documentary naturalism, and it takes place in a familiar enough scenario: in the midst of a global pandemic. This time, though, the virus is neurological. It wipes out random people’s entire memories at any given point, causing irreparable amnesia and turning countless well-adjusted humans into wards of the state. Aris, the movie’s protagonist, is one such fellow, and after he languishes in a hospital for weeks with no family to retrieve him, he is enrolled in New Identity, where he is given a sparsely furnished apartment and daily instructions on how to reemerge into society. Filled with wry absurdities and a deadpan wit, “Apples” is a gift to art-house moviegoers, presenting both the palliative and mournful sides of its central dysfunction. It runs at least through Aug. 11.

What: Opening night of “One in Two”

Where: Island City Stage, 2304 N. Dixie Highway, Wilton Manors

When: 8 p.m.

Cost: $35

Contact: 954/928-9800, islandcitystage.org

Island City Stage’s season-closing production is an important work of minimalist and unpredictable theatre. Three Black men sit an ethereal waiting room; one will be diagnosed with HIV, and prior to each performance, the Island City Stage audience will decide which actor plays the infected character. In addition to a high-stakes dramaturgical experiment, this conceit underlines how arbitrary the spread of the virus can be, altering the lives of some while leaving others unharmed. “One in Two” explores the stigmas associated with being Black and gay in the 21st century, and with monkeypox currently targeting the community of men who have sex with men, the resonance of “One in Two” is eerily profound. The production, starring Kevane La’Marr Coleman, Randall Swinton and Nathaniel J. Ryan, and directed by Delicia Turner Sonnenberg, runs through Sept. 4.

SATURDAY

What: An Evening with Jordan Rudess

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

When: 8 p.m.

Cost: $25-$45

Contact: 954/462-0222, browardcenter.org

It would be a stretch to say that behind every metalhead there is a classical-music aficionado, but Jordan Rudess is one such Russian doll of a keyboardist: Remove the Pink Floydish outer layer, and you get a fanboy for Johann Sebastian Bach. You may hear a bit of both on Rudess’ diverse solo tour. In his day job, Rudess is the keyboardist for progressive-metal titans Dream Theater, a plum gig that has earned him “Best Keyboardist of All Time” honors from Music Radar magazine. But his musical interests are as wide as his abilities are virtuosic. His performances incorporate everything from Dream Theater favorites to classical piano improvisations to covers by David Bowie, Yes and Elton John, with select audience participation encouraged.


For more of Boca’s arts and entertainment coverage, click here.

John Thomason
As the A&E editor of bocamag.com, 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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