What are two of the most oft-heard cliches about South Florida? It's a cultural wasteland, and the Design District is the next cool boom spot. Tonight (Thursday) Power Studios (3701 NE Second Ave., 576-7567) starts the weekly party Madame X to contradict the first and confirm the second. This performance-art extravaganza is hosted by Omar Martinez Thursday through Saturday at the studio, which is more an arts complex than a nightclub. Power Studios's primary intention is to provide artists with a facility to exhibit their work, but they also have a full liquor license and a light menu, which is served in a cozy candle-lit lounge. Madame X will showcase surprise female artists each week, with at least two performances a night. Seating is not abundant, so call ahead if you would like a table. Another extraordinary performance not to be missed is the "diva of song and love" Maryel Epps's Gospel Brunch Sunday afternoon at its new location, Yuca (532 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach, 532-9822). Over the last few years, Epps has made her mark singing with David Bowie, the New York Symphony, and at President Bill's birthday bash. Whether you get your inspiration from her voice, the bubbly, or the Lord above, you're going to want to make this a regular Sunday stop.
Groove Jet, "Groove Girl." Lots of boys taking rides on the wild side and eclectic locals gathering for mayhem and mischief as resident DJs Carlos Menendez and Chilly spin musical fun for everyone. 323 23rd St., Miami Beach, 532-2002.
Marsbar, "Retrospect." The hinterland alternative club hurls musical classics at the paint-it-black crowd, all dressed up and looking for angst. 8505 Mills Dr.(Town & Country Center), Kendall, 271-6909.
South Beach Pub, "Open-Mike Night." Ready to pound your skins, blow your horn, or wale on your ax? Sean the Birdman hosts a night of local talent and homegrown rock and roll adventure. 717 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 532-7821.
Club St. Croix. The Voodoo Lounge inside Club St. Croix is the backdrop for straight-ahead, cool daddy-o, bebop jazz by the Jazzmen Quartet. 3015 Grand Ave. (CocoWalk), Coconut Grove, 446-4999.
Zanzibar, "Latin Rock Night." The Latin masses join forces for some hot and heavy rock en espanol dispensed by DJ Gus. 615 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 861-0509.
Berlin Bar, "Sentimental Journey." Start off your weekend with an exclusive cocktail hour. Vocalist John Reubens (with Niki Blacker at the piano) takes you on a melodic journey to a time when tunes were really tunes, by the Gershwins, Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, and many more. 661 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 674-9300.
Polly Esther's, "Thank God It's Friday." Had a rough week? Everyone drinks for free tonight to ensure that no sour memories of the workweek remain. Seventies rock meets Eighties new wave. 841 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 535-5633.
Sub-Station Six, "Journey of Sound." The House of Ecstasy and Underworld magazine present a night of underground vibrations. DJs Racer X, Thomas Penton, and Arjuna will pump out the trance, jungle, drum, bass, and all other electronica. 4419 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 954-796-8540.
World Resources, "Summer Solstice and Full Moon Celebration." Pagans, moon slaves, and rhythm enthusiasts unite for a tribal ceremony with the band K'in Ahau in celebration of tonight's full moon and summer solstice. 719 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach, 534-9095.
Salvation. Revolving party themes keep you guessing as the largest party for men who love men takes over, with an open bar from 10:00 to 11:30 p.m.; dancemaster DJ Abel is at the wheels of steel. 1771 West Ave., Miami Beach, 673-6508.
Bee Hive, "Hot Wax." No, it's not anything kinky. At least that's not the specific intent. At a minimum, though, things will get hot in the back lounge as the hi-fi pumps out the funk, hip-hop, and acid jazz. 630 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach, 538-7484.
Starfish, "Milk." As Starfish begins to shine after its reopening, David Cordoves presents long-time Beach DJ Luis Diaz spinning some of his favorite tunes from a few of his more interesting past gigs. The music that made Velvet, Boomerang, and the Playhouse infamous will be building another foundation of debauchery. 637 Washington Ave., Miami Beach,534-5420.
821, "Bingo 69." This isn't your grandma's bingo night! Local celebrities call out numbers and a different charity organization cashes in each week. 821 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach, 534-0887.
Society Hill, "Club Soul Clap." DJ Coop D. Ville spins acid jazz, soul, R&B, and funk tunes for fun and frolic in a whole new underworld, with drink specials that will put some soul in your clap. 627 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 534-9993.
KGB, "Home Cookin'." DJ Rad serves up a host of special hip-hop flavors for a laid-back-locals kind of crowd. 637 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 534-5420.
Doc Dammers, "Happy Hour." Complimentary dim sum and cheap sake help de-stress even the busiest executive. 180 Aragon Ave. (Colonnade Hotel), Coral Gables, 441-2600.
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Stella Blue. Bilingual singer/songwriter Pilar and some of South Florida's best musicians put together a quirky and always entertaining show of original tunes about love, life, and hamburgers. 1661 Meridian Ave., Miami Beach, 532-4788.
The Living Room at the Strand, "Midweek Model Mixer." Get over the hump and midweek slump at this model and fashion industry grip and grin. 671 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 532-2340.
-- By Larry Boytano
Send information regarding special "one-nighters" to "Into the Night." Fax material to 571-7678 or call 571-7572.