ARTS & CULTURE TO GO 


;Nude Nite

;; There was much ado about Nude Nite Feb. 15-17 in the old Cruises Only building on Colonial Drive. It's an Orlando tradition that has left some wondering if the originally "underground" concept has outgrown its audience: an exhibition of titillating artworks timed to coincide with Valentine's Day. Turns out that peeking at naughty pictures has a timeless appeal.

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; This year, among the more than 200 pieces of artwork by different artists, Herb Piper's nude sports photography game drew the most spectators. You had to match a naked photo of a model with the sport she was participating in. (For the record, that did not look like surfing!)

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; "The Mamorial," described as "an artistic expression of breast cancer survival," was the most emotionally striking. An entire wall was dedicated to chest casts of women, many of them made post-;mastectomy (mamorial.org).

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; There were also the predictable entries, with titles such as "Booby Trap" and "Adam's Apple." The front of the room featured live painting next to a naked woman lying on pillows with naked women on them. Judith Segall's casts of penises made to look like crayons and fire extinguishers were interesting. (Suggestion: We all need to be introduced to her friends.)

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; The staff of the event did not seem very knowledgeable about the art or the event, but many of the artists were hanging around, if you could track them down. While it wasn't the most important art show in Orlando, the premise certainly drew people from all walks of life. Ultimately, sales for the artists weren't happening. So if there is a next year, the invitation list needs to be rich with collectors, served with food and drink to match.

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;(www.nudeniteorlando.com)

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;;— Aya Kawamoto

;;PlayFest

;; Here are a couple of things you need to know. First of all, the official on-paper name for the Orlando-UCF Shakespeare Festival's annual theater event is the Harriett Lake Festival of New Plays, in honor of the generous patron who dropped serious bucks to secure its continued growth. But you'll hear everyone call it "PlayFest."

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; To add to the whatchacallit fun, starting June 1, OSF's name will change to "Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Partnership with UCF." Since that's a mouthful, the nickname that's being officially encouraged is "Orlando Shakes" — even the website will change to

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;www.orlandoshakes.org. From the press release, we quote, "Going forward, Orlando Shakes will be the consistent name for audiences, staff and volunteers to use when they wish to use a shorter moniker." New logo coming soon.

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; So get with it and gear up for PlayFest at Orlando Shakes, starting Friday and continuing through March 4. Patrick Flick, director of new play development, recommends these events for the starting weekend, though every reading, workshop and special event has been carefully chosen to eliminate stinkers, so you shouldn't go wrong no matter what suits your fancy.

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; • The keynote address, "Celebrating New Plays — Off the Cuff with Theresa Rebeck," followed by a reading of her new psycho thriller, Mauritius, directed by David Lee (7:30 p.m. Saturday)

;; • PlayFest Playwrights' Panel, "New Plays: Building on the Past — Imagining the Future" led by Flick and Lee (6 p.m. Sunday)

;; The website, www.shakespearefest.org, is loaded with ticket and show info. See next week's Arts & Culture to Go for our coverage of Weekend No. 1.

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;;— Lindy T. Shepherd

; arts@orlandoweekly.com

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