Calendar for the week

thursday
december 12
1997 World Gold Gymnastics Tour: The Olympics are now a not-so-distant summer memory, but the fever (or the hype) lives on. Gold medalist Kerri Strug and silver medalist Jair Lynch, along with veteran Olympians Nadia Comaneci and Bart Conner, are among the elastic gymnastics stars descending on the Miami Arena (721 NW First Ave.) tonight for the World Gold Gymnastics Tour. Six-medal Russian sensation Alexei Nemov, ten-time Olympic medalist Vitaly Scherbo, Belorussian Olympic gold medalist Svetlana Boguinskaia, and a bevy of Russian and Eastern European gymnasts will also be on hand to present their award-winning routines (in total, the tour features 19 gymnasts with 26 Olympic gold medals between them). Tickets range in price from $15 to $23. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. Call 530-4444.

New World Symphony: Violinist and conductor Pinchas Zuckerman, hailed internationally as one of the world's contemporary musical masters, returns to South Florida to perform three concerts with the New World Symphony at the Lincoln Theatre (555 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach). The program features Bruckner's Adagio from String Quintet, Mozart's Violin Concerto no. 5, and Mendelssohn's Symphony no. 4 (Italian). Performances run tonight and Saturday at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday at 3:00 p.m. Tickets range in price from $17 to $44. A special open rehearsal will also take place today at 10:00 a.m.; admission is $10. Call 673-3331.

Christo at the Lowe: In 1983 internationally recognized artist Christo wrapped several islands in Biscayne Bay in pink plastic. Today the works of Christo return to South Florida as the recently renovated and expanded Lowe Art Museum (University of Miami, 1301 Stanford Dr., Coral Gables) reopens with "Twenty-One Golden Years with Christo and Jeanne-Claude," featuring works from the Tom Golden Collection, the largest assembled collection of the artist's works in the U.S. The exhibition, which runs through January 26, comprises more than 90 drawings, collages, wrapped objects, lithographs, and photographs. Admission is five dollars. Museum hours are 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday; noon to 7:00 p.m. on Thursday; and noon to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. Tomorrow night at 7:00 Christo and Jeanne-Claude will be discussing their artwork at Gusman Concert Hall (1314 Miller Dr., Coral Gables). Tickets cost $12. Call 284-3536 for more information.

Can Can: Oo-la-la, Cole Porter. Who in this century has written more passionately romantic, understatedly intelligent, and universally witty love songs than Porter? Today at 3:00 and 8:00 p.m., Bailey Concert Hall (3501 SW Davie Rd., Davie) presents his Can Can, a musical comedy about love, honor, and the arts that shocked the French upon its debut in 1953. Set in Montmartre in the gay 1890s, Can Can follows the romantic misadventures of high-kicking dance-hall girls, bohemian artists, and a conservative judge outraged by the suggestive dance; it also features Porter classics such as "I Love Paris" and "C'est Magnifique." Tickets cost $30. Call 888-475-6884.

Orange Bowl International Junior Tennis Championships: The most prestigious junior tennis championship in the world celebrates its 50th anniversary this year at the Flamingo Tennis Center (Jefferson Avenue and Eleventh Street, Miami Beach). The tourney helped launch the careers of tennis stars such as Chris Evert, Ivan Lendl, Gabriela Sabatini, Bjsrn Borg, Mary Joe Fernandez, John McEnroe, and Jim Courier. Qualifying matches kick off today and run through Saturday; the tourney begins Sunday and ends on December 22. Play begins each day at 8:00 a.m. Admission is free. Call 673-7761.

friday
december 13
XS Music Fest '96: The local scene looks alive and well as more than a hundred musical acts perform at ten venues in downtown Fort Lauderdale tonight. Among the rock, jazz, blues, ska, punk, country, folk, and percussion bands performing are Diane Ward, Sixo, the Holy Terrors, the miles, Subliminal Criminal, Midnight Johnny & Smokestack Lightning, Ed Matus' Struggle, Al's Not Well, King 7 and the Soul Sonics, Brian Franklin, the Goods, Love Canal, Rudy, Egg, Lounge Act, the Weeds, Sense, Quit, Piano Bob and the Snowman, Amanda Green, and Motel Mel and the Innkeepers. Venues include the Edge (200 W. Broward Blvd.), Squeeze (2 S. New River Dr.), the Poorhouse (110 SW Third Ave.), and the Downtowner Saloon (10 S. New River Dr.). Admission to this all-ages event is five dollars and covers all venues. See "Clubs," page 97, for a complete schedule, or call 954-537-3612.

Hot and Spicy: Momentum Dance Company performs what is becoming a local holiday classic tonight at 8:00 p.m. at the Hollywood Central Performing Art Center (1770 Monroe St.). Hot and Spicy, Duke Ellington's jazzed-up version of Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker, becomes an Art Deco fantasy (choreographed by artistic director Delma Iles) in which a secretary ventures into a fluorescent underwater dreamland and takes a stroll down sunny Ocean Drive and Lincoln Road. Tickets cost $15 and $20 for adults; $10 for kids. Call 954-924-8175.

Alchemy of Desire/Dead-Man's Blues: The Bridge Theater presents Los Angeles-based playwright/poet Caridad Svich's haunting and passionate story of two young lovers who cannot be separated by war or death, running at the Miami Beach Woman's Club (2401 Pinetree Dr., Miami Beach). Inspired by the death of a friend's brother, Alchemy explores love, loss, and madness as a young woman, isolated in a swampy marsh, grieves over the wartime death of her husband (see review in "Theater," page 69). Tickets cost $18. Performances run tonight at 8:00, Saturday at 5:00 and 9:00, and Sunday at 2:00 p.m. through December 22. Call 886-3908.

NewLife Expo '96: Delve into the world of the spiritual and supernatural as the Broward County Convention Center (1950 Eisenhower Blvd., Fort Lauderdale) hosts the fifth annual NewLife Expo. The event features more than 100 exhibits on alternative medicine, metaphysics, the environment, and UFO and extraterrestrial discoveries, plus lectures by experts on aging, holistic healing, motivation, and other new-age topics. Admission is $12 daily, $20 for a weekend pass. Expo hours are 4:00 to 10:00 p.m. today, 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. tomorrow, and 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Sunday. Call 800-928-6208.

Orange Bowl International Junior Tennis Championships: See Thursday.
Christo at the Lowe: See Thursday.

saturday
december 14
The Velveteen Rabbit: Theatreworks/USA presents its original version of Margery Williams's 1922 tender story about a child and his favorite toy today at 10:30 a.m. at the Jackie Gleason Theater of the Performing Arts (1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach). In this updated musical adaption, a little boy bonds with his toy rabbit after his big brother rejects his company; as the Velveteen Rabbit learns about "toy magic" -- the process of becoming real -- both he and his owner find inner strength. Tickets cost seven dollars. Call 673-7300.

Family SLAM: The arts organization artsfusion resumes its series of spoken word SLAMS tonight at 9:00 at the Haitian restaurant Tap-Tap (819 Fifth St., Miami Beach). Presented in the Miami area since 1993, this event features a friendly competition among literary artists who offer a few short spoken-word pieces, which are judged by the audience. The winners return to face off in Grand SLAM in June. Admission is five dollars. Call 531-7267.

New World Symphony: See Thursday.
Orange Bowl International Junior Tennis Championships: See Thursday.
Alchemy of Desire/Dead-Man's Blues: See Friday.
NewLife Expo '96: See Friday.

sunday
december 15
Public Enemy: The Cinema Vortex film series continues with one of the screen's seminal gangster flicks of the early Thirties. William Wegman's 1931 crime drama Public Enemy, screening today at noon at the Alliance Cinema (927 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach), shoots up the screen with legendary images of James Cagney popping off bad guys and shoving grapefruit in the face of a beautiful woman. The film was meant to deglamourize mobsters, but Cagney looks like he's having such fun (although the irrepressible Irishman did say that same year, "I'm sick of carrying guns and beating up women"). Admission is four dollars. Call 531-8504.

New World Symphony: See Thursday.
Orange Bowl International Junior Tennis Championships: See Thursday.
Alchemy of Desire/Dead-Man's Blues: See Friday.
NewLife Expo '96: See Friday.

monday
december 16
Oblivion: West Point Academy cadet Richard Cox disappeared without a trace on January 14, 1950. For the next seven years, military and civilian investigations were conducted but were closed without resolution. Then in 1985 retired history teacher Marshal Jacobs decided to pursue the mystery as a research project. After more than seven years, Jacobs found a witness that enabled him to crack the case. Tonight at 8:00 Books & Books (296 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables) hosts an evening with Jacobs and author Harry Maihafer as they discuss Oblivion, the book based on Jacobs's investigation. Admission is free. Call 442-4408.

Orange Bowl International Junior Tennis Championships: See Thursday.

tuesday
december 17
Florida Philharmonic: Celebrated composer Keith Pruitt takes his place behind the keyboard and joins the orchestra to perform the world premiere of his latest piano concerto tonight and tomorrow night at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts (201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale). Soprano Camellia Johnson will also be on hand with Pruitt and the orchestra to perform Copland's El Salon Mexico, Barber's Knoxville: Summer of 1915, and Bernstein's Symphony no. 1 (Jeremiah). Performances continue Thursday at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts (174 E. Flagler St.) and Friday at the FAU Auditorium (off Glades Road, Boca Raton). All performances begin at 8:00 p.m. Call 930-1812.

Orange Bowl International Junior Tennis Championships: See Thursday.

wednesday
december 18
Miami City Ballet's The Nutcracker: See this holiday classic presented in grand style as Miami City Ballet offers its million-dollar production of George Balanchine's celebrated version of the holiday classic at the Jackie Gleason Theater of the Performing Arts (1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach). This lavish production boasts spectacular sets, exotic costumes, breath-taking special effects, and of course the talents of MCB's critically acclaimed dancers. Tickets range in price from $19 to $62. Performances run tonight through Monday, December 23, at 7:30 p.m., with a 2:00 matinee on Saturday and Sunday. Call 532-7713 for tickets.

New Punims: The Broward Stage Door Theater (8036 W. Sample Rd., Coral Springs) welcomes a new year with a rollicking musical parody filled with colorful characters that celebrates the humor in Jewish life. New Punims (punim is the Yiddish word for face) was created by Stage Door and Dartmouth Management, who last year produced the comedy Too Jewish?; the new piece gently plays off stereotypes while lovingly honoring Jewish culture through vignettes and musical numbers featuring those renowned film critics "Kishkel" and "Liebert" in Movie Kibbutz, cable-access television star Lady Leah Rosenthal-Smythe, and the Queen of Jewish Country Music, Ms. Deli Pearlman. Tickets cost $16 ($20 after January 1). Performances run Friday and Saturday at 8:00 p.m., with a 2:00 matinee every Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday through February 9 (there will be no performance on December 25, but there is a special 7:00 p.m. performance on December 29). Call 954-344-7765.

Orange Bowl International Junior Tennis Championships: See Thursday.
Florida Philharmonic: See Tuesday.

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