The expressive fluidity of modern dance is romantically entwined with the intoxicating verses of Chilean poet Pablo Neruda in the Miami Contemporary Dance Company's world premiere of When Words Pour Down. Choreographer and artistic director Ray Sullivan spent months studying the Nobel Prize winner's poetry and was inspired by the desperate passion of Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair, which was written in the shadow of WWI. "I think that because of the similar climate in our world today, I have been called to revisit the beauty and simplicity of the cross-cultural words of these love poems," says Sullivan. Five of the company's regular members will move with the grace and perspicacity of Neruda's words as his poems are heard throughout the theater: "Sometimes I get up early and even my soul is wet/Far away the sea sounds and resounds/This is a port/Here I love you." The flowingly serene costumes and surreal stage sets created by Chilean designer Jorge Gallardo intensify the emotional ambiance of the performance. Experience this sensual poetry in motion tonight and Saturday night at 8:00 at the Byron Carlyle Theater, 500 71st St., Miami Beach. Tickets cost $25 and $30. Call 305-867-4194, or visit www.miamicontemporarydance.org. -- Lissa Oberkreser
Control + Alt. + Plié
For those who relish the world at their fingertips, performers from another part of the planet are bringing their distinctive show Screensavers to South Florida. The Israel Contemporary Dance Company takes the stage with choreography that blends modern dance, music, and projected images. It's an artistic interpretation of computer technology and how individuals build their own personal screen savers when the computers are turned off, according to Vivian Shlesinger-Fulop of Live Concerts, Inc. Her company is cosponsoring the event with the Consulate General of Israel in Miami. "It's a breathtaking performance,'' she says. The troupe features 22 dancers, and its U.S. tour includes tonight's 8:00 performance at the Julius Littman Performing Arts Theater, 17011 NE Nineteenth Ave., North Miami Beach. Tickets range from $20 to $35. Call 305-931-5023, or visit www.ticketweb.com. --Patti RothShakespeare on Speed
Masterpiece theater posthaste
Hamlet, The Tempest, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night's Dream. William Shakespeare is officially credited with writing 37 plays, which are regarded as the greatest in English literature. Because of his heavy subject matter and Elizabethan phrasing, his masterpieces can seem daunting to the average Joe. That's where the Main Street Players come in, ready to turn the bard on his head with The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged). This riotous romp compresses all of Shakespeare's plays -- histories and tragedies included -- into 90 minutes of comedy. See it tonight at 8:00 at the Main Street Playhouse, 6766 Main St., Miami Lakes. Alas, the play closes Sunday, February 20. Tickets cost $8 to $15. Call 1-866-782-4399, or visit www.mainstreetplayers.com. --Patrice Elizabeth Grell YursikArmageddon Afternoon
THUR 2/17 Talk about having a crazy day. First, Marisol gets mugged on the subway. Then, this young Latina finds herself smack in the middle of the Apocalypse, and she must unify society's rejects with an angelic army in order to save humankind. See the urban fantasy Marisol unfold on stage tonight at FIU's Wertheim Performing Arts Center, 11200 SW Eighth St., West Miami-Dade. Tickets cost ten dollars. Call 305-348-3789.