TUE 3/30

"He is exactly what he says he is: He does it for the money and he gets 'em off," quips actor Tom Wopat (above) about dastardly lawyer Billy Flynn, a part he just stepped into for a road tour of the hit musical Chicago. (At 8:00 tonight the production begins a 6-day run at the Jackie Gleason Theater of the Performing Arts, 1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach.) The Dukes of Hazzard co-star has been working steadily since the demise of the popular TV show in the Eighties, doing TV gigs, recording CDs, but most surprisingly wowing folks with major roles in Broadway musicals Annie Get Your Gun and 42nd Street. Centering on a sensational murder trial, Chicago debuted on Broadway as a minor hit in 1975. Today the show is a smash, never more relevant. "It's about media manipulation," notes Wopat. "Perception as truth, kind of apropos for these dangerous times we live in." Performance times vary. Tickets range from $20 to $60. Call 305-673-7300. -- By Nina Korman

Flippin' the Bird

An Albatross soars briefly

FRI 3/26

Unknown bands: They are often lousy and indulge in lengthy sets fit only for Fugazi's back catalogue. Or they play way-shitty Latin rock. Or disgruntled with audience turnout, they berate a sound guy at Churchill's and van-it back to New York. With songs under 60 seconds that emit hot rainbow squirts of Locust-lite quality, Philly's An Albatross shares none of the above anti-qualities. Led by feral frontman Edward Gieda III, they are often heralded as succinct and entertaining. Backing this rep is the recent EP We Are the Lazer Viking, 8 minutes of noise-but-not-for-the-sake-of produced by Wharton Tiers (Dinosaur Jr., Sonic Youth). Abrasively violent like a cannibal devouring Fruit Roll-Ups, lots of hyper melodies via synths and spacey Farfisa organs rinse the mess, and then repeat. An Albatross performs as part of the 305 Fest at the Alley, 1748 NW 35th St. Call 305-638-4404 or visit www.305Fest.tk. -- By Hunter Stephenson

Popsicle Diva

SUN 3/28

So this is what happens to Mouseketeers when they grow up. They surround themselves with image makers, monkey-bar in neurotic swings through endless looks, and milk their 15 minutes of fame for what it's worth. Our girl Britney may be trying too hard. She's really not cool enough to pull off the kind of glam and legendary status of her alleged hero, Madonna. Nonetheless it might be fun to see her try. Spears's Onyx Hotel tour makes as many promises as a high school tease after a homecoming dance. It's all very nice, but will she deliver? Milkshake girl Kelis opens the show. Gates open at 7:30 p.m. at the American Airlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd. Tickets range from $40 to $76. Call 786-777-1000. -- By Juan Carlos Rodriguez

Enriching Entertainment

Gals kick up their heels to help

FRI 3/26

Seven theater-loving women created the Gold-Diggers back in 1976. The nonprofit organization has since grown into an 80-member powerhouse, which presents an annual major musical extravaganza to raise funds for charity. Over the years, more than $1 million has been donated to causes such as the University of Miami School of Medicine's Comprehensive AIDS Program and the Blood Bank at Miami Children's Hospital. This season's production, dubbed That's Show Biz! and featuring a whopping 29 musical numbers, benefits Food for Life Network and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of America. The show goes on at 8:00 tonight and tomorrow, and at 2:00 p.m. tomorrow and Sunday at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts, 174 E. Flagler St. Tickets range from $12 to $40. Call 954-349-6275. -- By Nina Korman

Killer Tunes

Ironic punks return

FRI 3/26

Formed in 1980, Gainesville's Roach Motel was possibly Florida's first hardcore punk band. Generating a coarse sound that blended the best of the Dead Boys and Black Flag with a humor streak that rivaled the Angry Samoans, the players were as good as anyone on the national level. Being stuck in the swamps might have contributed to the band's obscurity, or maybe it was the members' reluctance to put down their beer cans? Naturally the roaches scattered just as hardcore boomed and were all but forgotten except by record collector scum and arthritic punkers, undoubtedly the main reasons they've embarked on a reunion tour of the South. Tonight at 10:00 they kick it off at Churchill's Hideaway (5501 NE 2nd Ave.) with A.C. Cobra, the Crumbs, and F. Cover charge is $5. Call 305-757-1807. -- By Margaret Griffis

Musically Gifted

SUN 3/28

Multitalented jazz vocalist Kevin Mahogany can do it all. The Kansas City native learned clarinet and sax as a kid at the Charlie Parker Foundation, then mastered piano, and later developed his swinging Joe Williams-style vocal chops in his university years. Now Mahogany is the latest addition to the faculty at the University of Miami, where at 8:00 p.m. he'll grace the stage of UM's Gusman Concert Hall (1314 Miller Rd., Coral Gables) with the UM Jazz Vocal Ensemble and the UM Symphony in a benefit for the school and WDNA-FM (88.9). Tickets cost $10. Call 305-284-5813. -- By John Anderson

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John Anderson
Margaret Griffis
Nina Korman
Contact: Nina Korman
Juan Carlos Rodriguez
Hunter Stephenson