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Winter Park / Maitland Observer Thursday, Aug. 20, 2015 5 years ago

Josh Garrick: Culture for Your Calendar

There's one week left to experience the best tap-dancing-theater in Florida - the Winter Park Playhouse - present "Dames At Sea."
by: Josh Garrick Columnist

Final week – Now through Aug. 22 – Winter Park Playhouse presents ‘Dames At Sea’

There’s one week left to experience the best tap-dancing-theater in Florida – the Winter Park Playhouse – presenting “Dames At Sea” in a production that perfectly recalls the Busby Berkeley and Ruby Keeler movies of the ’30s. This gorgeous production offers a dream of a cast, the best tap dancing this side of Broadway, and the happiest of endings. The fantastic Michael Edwards directs, Roy Alan choreographs, and Chris Leavy is music director for this stellar production. Highly recommended. Call 407-645-0145 or visit

Final week – Now through Aug. 23 – ‘Heathers the Musical’ at the Dr. Phillips Center

Based on the classic 1989 film, the Florida premiere of “Heathers the Musical” is being presented in a brilliant, must-see production at the Dr. Phillips Center through Aug. 23. Westerberg High is ruled by the hottest – and nastiest – girls in all of Ohio, but misfit Veronica Sawyer and her mysterious boyfriend JD put the Heathers in their place. Director Kenny Howard is to be congratulated on perfect casting for every role in this quirky musical with special mention to Thomas Sanders as JD, Nicole Visco as Veronica, and Lindsey Wells as Heather No. 1. Highly recommended. Call 844-513-2014 or visit

Now through Aug. 31 – Breakthrough Theatre presents musical ‘Nunsense’

I’m not Catholic, but that fact has never kept me from fully enjoying the crazy antics of The Order of the Little Sisters of Hoboken who are forced to hold a fundraising variety show to raise money to bury several sisters (who were accidentally poisoned by their cook). It may sound more Agatha Christie than (author) Dan Goggin, but once these sisters get going, it’s non-stop hilarity. Enjoy the comedic calamity through Aug. 31 at the Breakthrough Theatre in Winter Park. Call 407-920-4034 or visit

Now through Nov. 1 – ‘BAM! It’s a Picture Book: The Art Behind Graphic Novels’

In an Orlando Museum of Art exhibition presenting 80 original illustrations, “BAM! It’s a Picture Book” features the work of five award-winning graphic artists: Mark Crilley, Matthew Holm, Jerrett Krosoczka, Lincoln Peirce and Raina Telgemeier. Today, graphic novels are the fastest growing forms of publishing. From the first graphic novel published in 1842 through last century’s comic heroes – Superman, Batman, and Spider-Man – today’s graphic novels are more varied in content and have a new level of respectability. Visit or call 407-896-4231

Aug 21 to 30 – The Central Florida premiere of ‘Carrie the Musical’

Based on the Stephen King novel, “Carrie the Musical” is a new take on the story of the teen who is so relentlessly bullied at school and tormented at home by her fanatical mother that she is forced to unleash terrifying powers. The creation of Academy Award-winning composer Michael Gore and Academy Award-winning lyricist Dean Pitchford, the show closed on Broadway after five performances, making it the most expensive flop in Broadway history. It was, however, resurrected for a successful Off-Broadway run in 2012. Now Clandestine Arts Artistic Director Derek Critzer has joined with Sylvia Viles to direct the musical’s Central Florida premiere at the ME Theatre at 1300 La Quinta Drive in Orlando. For tickets, visit

Aug. 21 to Sept. 20 –‘Tribes’ at Mad Cow Theatre

Winner of the 2012 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Play, “Tribes” tells the story of Billy, a young, deaf man with a quirky and dysfunctional family. Billy struggles to find his place in his own home, but when he meets a young woman with deaf parents, she teaches Billy about a type of family he never knew. With dark humor and sincerity, Nina Raine’s new play reminds us we don’t get to choose our family and what it means to belong. Call 407-297-8788, ext. 1. ASL interpretation will be offered for performances on Aug. 23, Sept. 4, and Sept. 17.

Aug. 22 and 23 – Truck & Jeep Fest at Convention Center

It’s a free admission event at the Orange County Convention Center at the 4 Wheel Parts Truck & Jeep Fest on Aug. 22 and 23. In addition to the hottest and latest in custom trucks and Jeeps, attendees will enjoy hourly giveaways, product demonstrations, factory pricing, and manufacturer reps on hand to provide info on the $500,000 of on-site inventory. The event runs Aug. 22 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Aug. 23 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit

Aug. 24 to Sept. 30 – Orlando's Magical Dining celebrates 10th delicious anniversary

Magical Dining is truly magical. Beginning Aug. 24 and running through Sept. 30, we get to select from 76 participating restaurants to enjoy three-course dinners for $33. Visit Orlando has lined up more newly opened fine dining restaurants than ever before. There is no better time for foodies to enjoy Orlando, named one of The New York Times' 52 Places to Go in the World. Bottom line – we get to choose among great restaurants and enjoy a three-course meal for $33 from Aug. 24 to Sept. 30. A full list of participating restaurants is available at

Aug. 28 to Sept. 20 – Needle and Thread: New Work by Butch Anthony

Alabama folk artist Butch Anthony has taken up needle and thread to lend a new dimension to his Southern-Gothic art. Antique photographs and reproductions on canvas are embellished with embroidery and a touch of wit to create arresting, and often humorous, images. Jeanine Taylor Folk Art will host an opening reception for his new work on Aug. 28 from 6 to 9 p.m. (coinciding with the Sanford Art Walk). Entry is free. The gallery is located at 211 E. First Street in historic downtown Sanford. Visit or call 407-323-2774.

Aug. 29 – Tamia at House of Blues

The beautiful in every way Tamia will headline with her Love Life tour at the House of Blues in Orlando on Aug. 29 in support of her sixth studio album, “Love Life.” Released on June 9, it debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard R&B chart. “Love Life” was the much-anticipated follow-up to Tamia’s “Beautiful Surprise” of 2012, which earned two Grammy Award nominations. Tamia’s two-decade career is highlighted by six Grammy nominations, 10 top-20 R&B chart songs including her hits “So Into You,” “Spend My Life With You,” and “Stranger In My House.” Tickets at

Aug. 29 and 30 – Florida Kids and Family Expo

From pre-natal to empty nest and everything in between, the Florida Kids and Family Expo is your opportunity to discover what Central Florida has to offer moms-to-be, babies, toddlers, kids, teens and families. Enjoy over 200 exhibitors at the Orange County Convention Center, three stages of live performances (both days), interactive stations, schools, medical info, robotics, birthday entertainment, fitness, safety items, sports facilities, pets, farm animals, day cares, home decor, Orlando Magic, beauty products, security, laser tag, arts and crafts workshops … and more. This is a fun-for-the-whole-family-event. It runs Aug. 29 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Aug. 30 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. For tickets visit

Sept. 1 – Free program for veterans – Keep the spirit of ’45 alive!

VITAS Healthcare, with a reputation for special care for World War II Veterans, will present a free program – Celebrating the Greatest Generation – to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II by honoring local veterans and those who were there to support them. Beginning at 9:30 a.m. on Sept. 1 at the Winter Park Civic Center at 1050 W. Morse Blvd in Winter Park, the free program will feature keynote speaker Lt. Gen. Benjamin Mixon and a USO-style show with the Orlando Big Band. RSVP to Veronica Soto at VITAS Healthcare at 407-599-2534.

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