Mizner Park is going to the dogs, tequila and reggae rock the amphitheater, and Boca Stage consorts with a different kind of spirit. Plus, FLIFF, XTC’s Terry Chambers and more in your week ahead.
What: Bark at the Park
Where: South Gazebo at Mizner Park, 327 Plaza Real, Boca Raton
When: 5 to 7:30 p.m.
Four-legged friends are more than welcome—indeed, they are encouraged—at this interspecies party to benefit one of our favorite charities, Tri County Animal Rescue. The $20 admission includes cocktail samples and small-plate appetizers and desserts from Kapow!, Max’s Grille, Crema, Pure Green, Kendra Scott, Penelope and Shaker & Pie; the latter two restaurants will open at Mizner Park in 2023, so Tuesday’s event marks an exclusive sneak preview. The evening also includes music from DJ Johnny Quest, a photo booth for unique pet portraits, caricature artists and the piece de resistance: a pet psychic! So if you’ve ever wondered why your pooch insists on pointlessly digging the couch cushions for minutes on end, this is your chance at some insight. Admission also includes a “doggie bag” of goodies, and the first 50 dogs to visit Cielito Artisan Pops will receive a complimentary mini doggie pop.
What: Opening night of D.C.’s Reflecting Fools
Where: Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd.
When: 7:30 p.m.
Contact: 561/832-7469, kravis.org
It was COVID that killed the Capitol Steps, the decades-long troupe of political satirists originally formed by moonlighting Capitol Hill staffers. The group thrived on live performance, and without any concerts for a year and a half, the funding evidently ran out. But like Lazarus—or perhaps like Joe Biden in the 2020 Democratic primary—the creative minds behind the Capitol Steps have risen from their early demise, forming D.C.’s Reflecting Fools. The name is new, but many of the Steps’ beloved tropes remain: the song parodies, the swift costume changes, the impressions of top politicos, the backward-talking spoonerisms. We live in a far more tribal political climate than we did in the Capitol Steps’ heyday; can a group of ideologically divided ticketholders still enjoy a civil night of bipartisan comedy? Find out this week, with performances running through Sunday.
What: Opening night of “The Thin Place”
Where: Boca Stage, 3333 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton
When: 8 p.m.
Contact: 561/447-8829, bocastage.net
Boca Stage opens its season with this regional premiere from celebrated playwright Lucas Hnath (“A Doll’s House Part 2,” “A Public Reading of an Unproduced Screenplay About the Death of Walt Disney”). The “H” in the writer’s name is silent, unlike the disembodied voices hiding somewhere among the consciousness of Linda in “The Thin Place.” The title refers to an area of space-time in which the veil between the living and the dead blurs. Linda would know: A self-described psychic, medium and spiritualist, she forms a friendship with a younger client who fervently believes in portals connecting the physical and spirit worlds—a dynamic that comes to a head in the show’s spooky and nerve-wracking final act. The production, starring Jacqueline Laggy, Lourelene Snedeker, Kim Ostrenko and Steve Carroll, runs through Nov. 20.
What: Opening night of Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival
Where: Hard Rock Seminole Ballroom, 1 Seminole Way, Hollywood
When: 6:30 p.m. red carpet, 7:30 p.m. movie
Contact: 954/525-3456, fliff.com
The 37th-annual Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival commences in grand fashion Friday night, offering plenty of bang for visitors’ bucks: namely a red carpet introduction, heavy hors d’oeuvres, dessert stations, an open bar and a live concert by the Jersey Girls. Oh, and there’s a movie, of course: The fest’s opening-night film, “American Dreamer,” is a comedy starring Peter Dinklage as a disillusioned college professor who might just find a new lease on life when he moves into a mansion owned by an ailing widow (Shirley MacLaine). Danny Glover and Matt Dillon co-star. Throughout the following nine days, more than 100 regional and world premieres will screen at eight venues throughout Broward County; check the schedule at FLIFF’s website to discover the next indie or foreign-film sensation.
What: EXTC with XTC’s Terry Chambers
Where: Respectable Street, 518 Clematis St., West Palm Beach
When: 8 p.m.
British power-pop giants XTC stopped touring, abruptly, in 1982, when singer-songwriter Andy Partridge infamously suffered a nervous breakdown the night after a performance in San Diego; the last time the group has played together was an appearance on BBC television in 1992. The quartet that is touring Respectable Street Friday is not XTC per se, but it’s pretty darn close. XTC’s original drummer, Terry Chambers, is behind the kit and touring material that hasn’t been played live in 40 years, and he has a crack squad of new-wave musicians to re-create peak XTC, including vocalist Steve Tilling, who toured with XTC’s Colin Moulding; Steve Hampton, who played guitar for Joe Jackson; and Matt Hughes, bassist for Robyn Hitchcock. Their set lists are a glorious compendium of XTC smashes from “This is Pop” to “Senses Working Overtime” to, of course, the tune that gave this venue its name: “Respectable Street.”
What: Sunset Tequila and Mezcal Fest
Where: Mizner Park Amphitheater, 590 Plaza Real, Boca Raton
When: 4 to 10 p.m.
Cost: $25 to $75
With the recent news that there may be a tequila shortage in the near future, there’s no better time to splurge at this first-of-its-kind celebration of “all things agave.” No fewer than 28 spirit providers will be pouring and discussing their creations, alongside five brewers, food samples from eight restaurants, and 16 jewelry/craft/art vendors. The $65-$75 tickets provide access to unlimited tequila and mezcal tastings, while the $25 admission includes no libations, but a cash bar will be available. That price is worth it just for the strong live music schedule, which features such seminal, genre-blending South Florida acts as Spred the Dub, the Resolvers, Xperimento and Artikal Sound System.