The Eleven Best Things to Do in Miami This Week

Thursday, August 6 

Soviet Russia has a bad reputation, and though there's certainly a good reason, the historical nation's positive cultural contributions should still be celebrated. What are those, you ask? For one thing, a communist society devoid of religious musings has a lot of time to perfect the art of science fiction. Technology and man's capability to problem-solve with ingenuity were gods in the USSR, so sci-fi was all the rage. The Soviet political ideals may not have stood the test of time, but its cinema does, and come this Thursday night, the Miami Music Club (91 NE 40th St., Miami) will put some forgotten gems on display for An Evening of Soviet Sci-Fi Animation.

Four films, spanning 1979 to 1992 and representing a specialized generation of filmmakers, will screen during an hour of programming. Bite your nails while the cosmonaut struggles to rise from space-sleep as his craft rockets toward Earth. Hold your breath as the giant mecha-dragon torments the poor industrial villagers. Root for the heroes and get swept away in the fantasy; then stay for the discussion and dancing that follow, no conversion to communism necessary.

The event begins at 8 p.m., and admission is free. Call 305-299-5226 or visit facebook.com/miamimusicclub.

This Thursday, Renzo Taddei will deliver a lecture at Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM). Taddei, an assistant professor at the Federal University of São Paulo, directs the university's Sociotechnical and Environmental Interactions Department. His academic work concentrates on the impact of climate change, particularly as it affects government and citizenship. But Taddei is also deeply interested in the technologies of climate change; he has written extensively about geoengineering, an umbrella term used to describe technological interventions meant to halt the increasingly dangerous effects of climate change. With famous advocates such as Bill Gates, geoengineering has become increasingly influential in high-stakes discussions of solutions to stem the proverbial tide.

Taddei will introduce audiences to the concept of geoengineering, particularly "alter geoengineering," his take on the philosophical problems that technological interventions might cause. His talk is in conjunction with artist Marjetica Potrc's installation, The School of the Forest | Miami Campus, commissioned for and currently on view at PAMM (1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami). Potrc's installation draws attention to ecological disasters such as climate change, an issue of particular importance to South Floridians.

Taddei's lecture begins at 7 p.m. Admission is free, but seating is limited to first come, first served. Visit pamm.org

Friday, August 7 

Not many films have as much oomph as Howard Hawks' His Girl Friday. Based on Ben Hecht's play The Front Page, the film follows the relationship between newspaper editor Walter Burns (Cary Grant) and his ace reporter ex-wife Hildy Johnson (Rosalind Russell). After a four-month absence, Hildy returns to the newsroom with news of her upcoming marriage, a union Walter does everything in his power to prevent. Filled with Grant's customary charm and Russell's considerable gumption, His Girl Friday is a rare 1940 portrait of women kicking ass in the workplace, making it a great starter for the Wolfsonian's Ladies Leading Film Series.

Inspired by the hard-working, trailblazing women featured in the special exhibition "Women, Art, and Social Change: The Newcomb Pottery Enterprise," the series is free and open to the public throughout August. His Girl Friday screens Friday at 7 p.m. at the Wolfsonian-FIU (1001 Washington Ave., Miami Beach). Call 305-531-1001 or visit wolfsonian.org

Too often, Americans look with a dispassionate gaze at the rest of the world, not taking the time to really see the character within those far-away countries. Journalists, however, are accustomed to finding the humanity in every scenario, highlighting the overlooked people beneath the headlines and eye-catching controversies. Perhaps this is why journalists make such powerful storytellers, as evidenced by Juliana Barbassa. A former Rio de Janeiro correspondent for the Associated Press, the award-winning journalist has had a career that's led her all over the world, from Iraq, Malta, and Libya to Spain, France, and the United States. It was her home country of Brazil that inspired her debut book, Dancing With the Devil in the City of God: Rio de Janeiro on the Brink, a thoughtful, thoroughly researched portrait of Rio's struggles for change after being thrust into the international spotlight by the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics.

Barbassa helps readers understand what's happening on Rio's streets and with the Brazilian government's preparations for the World Cup and Olympics, as well as its efforts to strengthen the economy and combat organized crime. True to her countrymen, the author doesn't lose sight of those living through the city's tumult.

Barbassa will present her book Friday at 8 p.m. at Books & Books (265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables), and live music will be provided by Brazilian jazz artists Rose Max and Ramatis. Admission is free. Call 305-442-4408 or visit booksandbooks.com
Saturday, August 8

If there's one thing Miami keeps up with, it's trends. We may take a little longer than other big cities to adopt the cool and new, but adopt them we do. However, most of us know little about how these trends originate in our city and the widespread changes to which they contribute. As part of a new ICA Ideas workshop, ICA Miami welcomes K-Hole founders Dena Yago and Sean Monahan, who will develop a body of research over three days during a residency at the museum. K-Hole is a trend-forecasting group of New York-based artists, designers, brand strategists, and writers. Using the specific language of the marketing and advertising industry, K-Hole addresses how brand and consumer experiences are constructed and explores the plausible limits of corporate and consumer strategy. In the tradition of science fiction, Yago and Monahan will look at specific cases of speculative real-estate development, communities, and historical events in Miami and present a video of their research and findings.

The filmed documentation will serve as the company's ICA Miami report. The interactive workshop begins at 2 p.m. Saturday at ICA Miami (4040 NE Second Ave., Miami) and is free with RSVP. Call 305-901-5272 or visit icamiami.org

Just like firefighting and space exploration, ballet is a career many children daydream about. For some lucky little ones, however, taking the stage can be more than youthful fantasy. Miami City Ballet is one of the nation's most prestigious companies, and it's all about nurturing the talent of the younger generation. The ballet's school offers a whole host of options for children and teens, and the troupe will host an open house to give prospective students a look at their onstage future.

Kids and parents will get to tour the MCB building, plus pose with and score autographs from the Strictly Ballet web series cast. Students aged 8 to 18 can even audition for the upcoming season, while kiddos 3 to 6 can dance their way through sample classes. So grab some tights or a tutu for your offspring and help them take their first grand jeté toward those Swan Lake dreams.

The open house runs from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday at Miami City Ballet (2200 Liberty Ave., Miami Beach). Various classes and auditions are scheduled throughout the day. Admission is free. Call 305-929-7007 or visit miamicityballet.org/school.

Kids these days don't get out much. It's all videogames and iPhones, never sandboxes and libraries. That's all right, because as a parent, you have the right to drag them out of the house and force them to have some old-fashioned fun, and your perfect excuse comes every second Saturday of the month with Family Day on Aragon. Family Day is a combined partnership among Gables Cinema, Books & Books, and Coral Gables Museum, and each venue prepares something family-friendly for the day.

Wake your babies up early and take them to see adorable Shirley Temple in the 1937 classic Heidi, showing at 11 a.m. at Gables Cinema (260 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables) — it'll definitely give the kids and the adults a new appreciation for classic cinema. After the movie, walk across the street to the Coral Gables Museum (285 Aragon Ave.) for some fun activities for the kids, like coloring from 2 to 5 p.m., free of charge. Then end your family day next door at Books & Books (265 Aragon Ave.) for a 5 p.m. reading of the children's book Seashells for Lilly, by Easter Huggins Anderson. Visit gablescinema.com, coralgablesmuseum.org, and booksandbooks.com.

For some youngsters, singing, dancing, and acting are way more exciting than canoeing and camping. These are the kids who opt to attend Camp Broadway, the Adrienne Arsht Center's summer camp for future stars.

Miamians can see what the young'uns learned this summer in a grand finale of onstage antics. The kids will perform highlights from two lively productions. All Shook Up is inspired by and features the tunes of the King of Rock 'n' Roll, Elvis Presley. A guitar-playing dude rides into a conservative little city circa 1955, and his music changes everything. In Hairspray, plus-size, dance-aholic teen Tracy Turnblad gets a 1960s town on its toes with her belief in bouffants and civil rights. All in all, it'll be an afternoon of amazing tunes, talented kids, and air conditioning. Beats Camp Crystal Lake.

Showtime is 1:30 p.m. Saturday in the Knight Concert Hall (300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami). Admission is free. Visit arshtcenter.org or call 305-949-6722. 

This is your warning to book a foot massage. You'll need it after all the jumping, grinding, and footwork you're about to let loose when the Rose Max Samba Party comes to life in the backstage Gleason Room at the Fillmore Miami Beach (1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach). It's a lot cheaper than flying to Brazil, but the sweat on your brow and the smile on your face won't be able to tell the difference.

For years, Max and her merry band of musicians have brought authentic samba rhythms and melodies to the South Florida scene. If there's a celebration of Brazilian life or culture, Max and her men are there. The evening at the Gleason Room is sure to be an intimate and electrifying affair, as good for the soul as it will be for the body and mind.

Let the music control your body and take you to far-off places this Saturday at 10 p.m. Tickets cost $19, all fees included. Call 305-673-7300 or visit fillmoremb.com

As October inches closer, Shirley's at Gramps (176 NW 24th St., Miami) is getting ready for Halloween with its series of "After Hours" films. Among them is a showing of Beetlejuice this Saturday. The 1988 black-comedy classic, directed by Tim Burton, follows a recently deceased couple, Adam and Barbara (Geena Davis and Alec Baldwin), who, after a car accident, end up haunting their old country home now inhabited by unbearable yuppies. Desperate to get the new, living residents out of the home, they summon help. Enter the mischief-making Beetlejuice — brilliantly played by Michael Keaton — whose interest in the case goes far beyond helping a pair of fellow ghosts.

Dance and sing with Winona Ryder's Lydia — a true icon of teen angst — during the screening, beginning at 11 p.m. Tickets cost $5 per person. Visit secretcelluloidsociety.com

Tuesday, August 11

This past All-Star Game might've seen two Miami Marlins voted in for starting slots, but because of injuries, there were no Fish on the field — a damn shame. It would've been second baseman Dee Gordon's second appearance at such an event and outfielder Giancarlo Stanton's third dance with the elites of the game. Oh, well, the Fish not catching a break is old news around these parts, but in baseball, it's not over till it's over, and there's plenty of season left for the injury-plagued team. In town as contenders will be another team famous for not catching breaks, the Boston Red Sox, the nervy antagonists of many of South Florida's New York transplants.

The first 10,000 fans through the turnstiles will receive an Ichiro Suzuki T-shirt. The 41-year-old former Mariner and Yankee is enjoying his 14th year in Major League Baseball and is already a South Florida fan favorite. Though the pennant race may not be going the way the Fish want, the Red Sox always put on a strong performance. A win is a win, but this one carries positive psychological undertones for fans and players alike, because wins are in the red and we didn't get to see any in the star-studded event this summer.

First pitch is at 7:10 p.m. Tuesday at Marlins Park (501 Marlins Way, Miami). Tickets cost $30 to $144. Call 305-480-1300 or visit marlins.com

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