Calendar for the week

thursday
august 7
Quartetto Gelato: The Coral Gables Congregational Church (3010 DeSoto Blvd., Coral Gables) continues its summer concert series with some sophisticated eclecticism. Toronto-based classical-crossover group Quartetto Gelato -- made up of tenor-violinist-mandolin player Peter De Sotto, oboe and English horn player Cynthia Steljes, violist and accordion player Claudio Vena, and cellist-guitarist-mandolin player George Meanwell -- tackles Ravel and Bach, tangos and operatic arias, and international folk classics with subtlety, wit, and flair. The group's self-titled 1994 debut album earned it National Public Radio's Performance Today Award for debut artist of the year, and its latest release, last year's Rustic Chivalry, has garnered praise for its international (Italian, French, Spanish, Hungarian, Norwegian, and Mexican) musical explorations. Tickets cost $25. The performance begins at 8:00 p.m. Call 448-7421. (GC)

King Chango: Get ready for a musical gazpacho of Caribbean influences with ska-titude to spare. The New York City-based octet King Chango emerged from that city's ska underground last year to cause the kind of buzz that comes from drinking five cafe cubano shots in a row. Drawing its name from the Santeria god of music and festivities, King Chango blends dancehall chants, dub, Latin rhythms, and straight-ahead ska to good effect on its 1996 debut album. Live, the band kicks it up -- literally: The members punt soccer balls into the audience, while frontman Andrew Blanco skanks and mambos across the stage. In May the band rocked la casa at Rose's; tonight King Chango returns to present a free concert at 11:30 p.m. at the Clevelander (1020 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach). Party down and try to catch a soccer ball! Call 531-3485. (GC)

friday
august 8
Tropical Summer Street Fest: It's obvious we're all mourning the near death of our beloved macarena and achingly missing the way we could shake our hips to that catchy Latin beat. But have no fear, a savior is here in the form of the TropiChop. This contender for new dance sensation debuts at the Tropical Summer Street Fest tonight from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. on South Beach, at the corner of Alton Road and Fifteenth Street. The event, sponsored by Pollo Tropical and the Box, will feature performances by reggae band Johnny Dread and the Scarecrows, University of Miami's Sunsations Danceline, and the fully feathered TropiChop dancers, as well as appearances by various team mascots. Along with getting the first scoop on a new craze, you can feel good too: Pollo Tropical will generously donate money to the United Way for every TropiChopper they count. Admission is free for as much music and TropiChopping as you can handle. For more information call 756-6090. (MI)

Tinsley Ellis: Growing up in South Florida, Tinsley Ellis spent hours practicing the blues licks of his guitar heroes, B.B. and Freddy King. When B.B. gave the youngster a broken string from his legendary guitar Lucille during a live performance, Ellis's fate was sealed. He's been playing the blues ever since, to growing acclaim. His 1994 release, Storm Warning, garnered raves from Rolling Stone, whose reviewer wrote that "nonstop gigging has sharpened his six-string to a razor's edge.... Ellis achieves pyrotechnics that rival Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton." Tonight Ellis brings his searing brand of fretwork to the Backroom (16 E. Atlantic Blvd., Delray Beach). He'll be showcasing tunes from his just-released fifth album, Fire It Up, produced by legendary boardman Tom Dowd (Ray Charles, the Allman Brothers, and many others). It's quite a drive, but if red-hot blues warms your blood, don't miss this infusion. Tickets cost $15. Call 561-243-9110. (SA)

1997 NPC Southern States Bodybuilding & Fitness Championships: The buffest men and women on the East Coast hit Fort Lauderdale's War Memorial Auditorium (800 NE Eighth St.) for this nationally televised competition. In addition to men's and women's bodybuilding and aerobics competitions, you can watch the bodybuilding competition for seniors age 65 and older. Watch grandpa flex those quads! Watch grandpa's rheumatism kick in! Watch grandpa get carried off on a stretcher! Master of ceremonies is Mike Katz (a.k.a. Mr. Universe -- what a title to live up to!). Tickets cost eight dollars for the fitness competition at 7:00 p.m. tonight and sixteen dollars for the bodybuilding championships at 6:00 p.m. tomorrow. Call 954-761-5381. (JO)

Rage Against the Machine: Rage against the machine? Sorry, guys, but you are the machine! Any band whose album goes double platinum (that would be last year's Evil Empire), any band that opens up a string of stadium shows for such massive rock and roll whores as U2, and any band that headlines its own arena tour with the likes of Wu-Tang Clan (huge in and of itself) and Atari Teenage Riot (which has a burgeoning cult following) is, in Rage's own view, a big fat sellout to the man. But hate music is getting old, so we can presume that someday soon Rage will be content to recede into obscurity once more. Right! The questionable empire that calls itself Rage Against the Machine comes to the Coral Sky Amphitheatre (601 Sansbury Way, West Palm Beach) tonight at 8:00 p.m. Tickets cost $20. Call 561-795-8883. (GC)

Moonstomp II: Skank to your heart's content tonight at Squeeze (2 S. New River Dr., Fort Lauderdale) as Moon Ska Records presents its second annual Moonstomp tour, featuring a bevy of bands from its roster. On the bill are Skavoovie and the Epitones, Spring Heel Jack (whose 1996 album Static World View has become one of the most well-received discs in the genre in recent years), Isaac Green and the Skalars, the Skoidats, and Inspecter 7 (whose new disc, The Infamous, hits stores next month). This equals about 40 guys in matching suits hopping around with guitars, horns, and big smiles. Tickets to this all-ages skafest cost eight dollars. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Call 954-522-2151. (GC)

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