Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Your Week Ahead: Dec. 13 to 19, 2022

Beatles on the Beach brings Monkee business to Delray, and a Polish Oscar hopeful opens in Boca. Plus, Pentatonix, Soweto Gospel Choir and more in your week ahead.


What: Pentatonix

Where: Hard Rock Live, 1 Seminole Way

When: 8 p.m.

Cost: $31-$175

Contact: 866/502-7529, seminolehardrockhollywood.com

The joyous quintet Pentatonix has carved a chart-topping niche in the sometimes-square style of a cappella music, lifting the vocal genre to popular heights through beatboxing, verbal percussion and faux-strings, and other high-wire acts of vocal dexterity in addition to their soaring voices. From the inception of this Texas-based group, holiday music has been integral: Including compilations, Pentatonix has released no less than seven holiday albums since 2014, from religious carols to secular pop classics to renditions of children’s favorites. This tour, subtitled “A Christmas Spectacular,” will showcase many of them. Arrive early for opener Girl Named Tom, the folk trio that broke that mold by becoming the first three-piece to win on “The Voice” (season 21).


What: Opening day of “EO”

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

When: Show times pending

Cost: $9-$12

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

Director Robert Bresson’s “Au Hasard Balthazar” (1966), an episodic narrative that follows a donkey through its often-inhumane life from one owner to the next, remains one of the most impactful films I’ve ever seen, and a landmark in movie history. Now, legendary Polish director Jerzy Skolimowski has captured the spirit of Bresson’s 1966 classic with his acclaimed new film “EO,” which also follows the travails of a grey donkey through the humans who love and abuse it. Not for the faint of heart but—and I’m guessing—not as abjectly depressing as Bresson’s original, “EO” is Poland’s entry for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, and its Rotten Tomatoes ranking is an enviable 95 percent. Catch it at least through Dec. 22.


Mickey Dolenz

What: Beatles on the Beach

Where: Downtown Delray Beach

When: Various event times

Cost: $54.50 two-day pass

Contact: beatlesonthebeach.com

It’s all Fab Four this weekend at founder Daniel Hartwell’s dizzyingly comprehensive Beatles extravaganza, returning for the first time since 2019. The Old School Square Pavilion is once again the event’s grand central, with Monkee Micky Dolenz—with whom we spoke way back in 2020—headlining Friday’s concert lineup with a promised set of both Monkees and Beatles favorites. Saturday night will be capped with Liverpool Live With Orchestra, an elaborate, symphonic multimedia production, conducted by Maestro Thomas Servinsky, that will focus on material from Sgt. Pepper’s, Abbey Road the White Album. Opening acts include exciting Beatles tributes from Finland, Brazil, Israel and Venezuela. This is just a small slice of the celebrity entertainment on tap, which actually begins Thursday with activities throughout Boca Raton and Delray Beach, and concludes on Sunday with a Beatles trivia and concert at Crazy Uncle Mike’s, followed by a menorah lighting for the first night of Chanukah at Old School Square Pavilion. Visit the website for complete details.


What: Gianni Organ Trio: “GOT the Holiday Soul”

Where: Arts Garage, 94 N.E. Second Ave., Delray Beach

When: 7 p.m.

Cost: $45-$50

Contact: 561/450-6357, artsgarage.org

Expect to hear many of your holiday favorites at this spirited and upbeat performance by one of today’s top jazz organists/pianists. Leading this time from the organ, Dr. Gianni Bianchini and his longtime guitarist and drummer will perform a carol-filled set in the styles of traditional swing, jazz, blues and funk, all in the service of, in Bianchini’s words, “celebrating the joy and cheer of holiday music.” Bianchini has studied or recorded with many of the jazz world’s luminaries, including Jeff “Tain” Watts, Arturo Sandoval, Joshua Redman and Jason Marsalis, and he’s particularly fond of playing at Arts Garage: His forthcoming debut LP as an organist was recorded right here back in 2019.


What: Soweto Gospel Choir

Where: Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach

When: 7:30 p.m.

Cost: $35-$65

Contact: 561/832-7469, kravis.org

Whether singing African spirituals or American pop tunes, the Soweto Gospel Choir emphasizes music’s singular power to heal. A spreader of freedom from its 2002 inception—its career highlights include performing at the first 46664 concert for Nelson Mandela—the South African choir has won three Traditional World Music Grammy Awards and has collaborated with artists including Robert Plant, U2 and Peter Gabriel. Except a soul-stirring experience complete with multipart harmonies, a swaying rhythm section and traditional African dress. Next Monday is the first of a two-night stint for the Choir at the Kravis; you can also catch them Tuesday, Dec. 20.

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

John Thomason
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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