Although he didn't make it as a pop singer, seven-time boxing world champion Oscar de la Hoya is keeping his pretty face in the spotlight. This time he's sticking close to the ring, the arena that made him famous. Today the young heartthrob super welterweight promotes fights and produces Oscar de la Hoya Presenta Boxeo de Oro, a Spanish-language boxing program broadcast on HBO-Latino. Tonight's main event -- which takes place at 8:00 at Level, 1235 Washington Ave., Miami Beach -- will feature local lightweight Juan Gomez Trinidad (cousin of Felix "Tito" Trinidad, who twice beat de la Hoya for championship titles) squaring off against Mexico City's Efren Hinojosa in a twelve-round bout for the WBA Latin Americas Championship. Afterward fellow boricua junior welterweight Henry Bruseles takes on St. Louis native Terrell Finger. Also on the card: undefeated Argentine Olympian welterweight Guillermo Saputo and Florida heavyweight Andre Purlette. When not emceeing, de la Hoya will sit ringside among the other glitterati. Tickets range from $35 to $250. Call 305-604-0009. (JCR)
Regret missing the zany King Mango Strut parade last year and wonder why it isn't taped for broadcast? Or did you attend (and maybe participate) and wish you could relive the experience? The King Mango Film Festival at 7:00 and 8:30 p.m. at the Miami Museum of Science and Space Transit Planetarium (3280 S. Miami Ave.) will help your dreams come true. Strut 2002, Antoinette Baldwin and A.J. Nichols's film of the proceedings, will headline the fest. Short movies by other Coconut Grove videographers, including South of Stallonegate by John Dorschner and Glenn Terry, will follow. Admission is three dollars; the flicks are free if you're under five feet tall. Call 305-441-8511. (NK)
Long before e-mail, people used to write letters, some rather steamy. Dancers Andrea Woods and Soulworks offer proof in their latest piece Love Letters, inspired by people's anecdotes of amour, written and spoken. In addition to a quartet of musicians and six dancers, the multimedia extravaganza, part of MDCC's Cultura del Lobo Performance Series, will feature video, photographs, and collages. Showtime is 8:00 p.m. at MDCC North Campus, William & Joan Lehman Theatre, 11380 NW 27th Ave. Tickets cost $15. Call 305-237-3010. (NK)
It has been way more than three long years since Tony Orlando and Dawn let loose their chart-topper "Tie a Yellow Ribbon 'Round the Ole Oak Tree" upon humanity. The sensational singing trio set the tone for pop in the 1970s. Although he may have faded from the spotlight with the likes of Dinah Shore and Merv Griffin, the 56-year-old Orlando still stands strong. In fact he has performed more than 2000 shows in his adopted hometown of Branson, Missouri, where he's been named entertainer and vocalist of the year. Today you get the chance to show the spunky singer how much you still love him when he takes the stage sans Dawn at 2:00 p.m. at the North Miami Beach Performing Arts Center, 17011 NE Nineteenth Ave. Tickets range from $30 to $35. Call 305-948-2957. (JCR)
You wait all year for the chance to be crushed by a crowd and rendered unable to move, think, speak, or breathe. Go for it! The street festival to end all others (and you), Calle Ocho is here. Music, food, people, and myriad product samples await from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on SW 8th Street, between 4th and 27th Avenues. Admission is free. Call 305-644-8888. (NK)
Love and Slavery in Miami may sound like the name of the latest TV drama set down here, but it's really about two buildings currently occupying part of Lummus Park (404 NW Third St.). Love pertains to the Wagner Homestead, built in the 1850s by shopkeeper William Wagner for his wife Eveline and their family. Slavery refers to the William English Plantation Slave Quarters (a.k.a. Fort Dallas), completed between 1842 and 1844 by enslaved Africans owned by the South Carolina planter. The building -- the first-ever Miami structure saved for its historical importance back in 1926 -- has enjoyed many incarnations, including barracks, post office, and tea house. Now through Saturday, April 5, you can tour both properties and see an exhibition exploring their history. Admission is free, but tours are by appointment. Call 305-305-7012. (NK)
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Bet you didn't think South Florida could lay claim to twenty poets, let alone twenty good ones! Well, Tigertail Productions, the folks behind the annual FLA/BRA festival, found them and decided to document their words in Tigertail, A South Florida Poetry Annual. Local literary dynamo Campbell McGrath did the picking and choosing as editor; marvelous Miami artist Carlos Betancourt provided the visuals. A sampling of those set to celebrate the launch of the book tonight with some reciting, autographing, and schmoozing: Nick Carbo, Denise Duhamel, Jeffrey Knapp, Mia Leonin, Adrian Castro, Emma Trelles, and Debra Woolley. Check it out at 7:30 p.m. at Books & Books, 265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables. Admission is free. Call 305-442-4408. (NK)
Nine South Florida artists have toiled for the last seven months, contorting their bodies, mugging for the camera, inventing weird musical instruments, and composing strange sounds, all for your enjoyment. They'll debut those brand-new works beginning tonight at 8:00 when Miami Light Project's locally based festival Here & Now: 2003 kicks off. Among the nine hipsters destined to dazzle you: musician Richard Brookens and actress Barbara Sloan, experimental soundmeister Gustavo Matamoros, butoh dancer Helena Thevenot, and Miami New Times art critic/violinist Alfredo Triff. To give you more bang for your entertainment buck, each performance will be followed by a film made by the likes of Kevin Sharpley, Maria Bures and Lilly Blanco, Chasta Natour and Gilda Pianelli, and Howard Moss. The fun runs through Sunday, March 16, at the Light Box Studio, 3000 Biscayne Blvd. Tickets cost $20. Call 305-576-4350 for details or see "Calendar" for showtimes.(NK)
By Nina Korman & Juan Carlos Rodriguez