Princess Superstar, The Audition, Jay Anthony and more

Thursday • 15

JAY ANTHONY It's a fact that there are not enough public spaces around town to expose the talents of local artists. So it's no wonder that art exhibitions pop up in out-of-the-ordinary venues such as AKA Lounge, where Anthony's "erotic art" will be celebrated with a public reception (along with works by Wm. Volker and J.A. Sala). Actually, Anthony's art is right at home in a club, because that's where he says he found the inspiration for his psychedelic digital photographs, which are almost always focused on the female form. As the Baltimore-bred and -schooled artist writes in his artist statement: "When I moved to Orlando in 1999, techno music inspired me to capture that feel of energy, sound and color." (7 p.m.-10 p.m. at AKA Lounge; free; 407-540-9947)

Friday • 16

GRANDMA LEE Everyone deserves some grandma-love during this holiday time of year. And for some sad bastards (ages 21 and up), the only way they'll get it is to catch the semi-abusive comedy routine of Grandma Lee, a real little old lady from Pasadena. This now Florida-based granny got as far as the final rounds in last year's Last Comic Standing auditions in Tampa, so she's no slouch at delivering a repertoire that dissects family life and other day-to-day dealings from the perspective of a wizened elder. Her reviews are peppered with such phrases as "sassy," "ballsy" and "not offensive." Too bad on the latter or else we'd be right at home. (with Dan Niblock; 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Bonkerz Comedy Club, Altamonte Springs; $8; 407-629-2665)

SNOWFLAKE BALL There's no need to be cold and lonely, at least not tonight, even if you have two left feet. But you do have to dress up and smell nice at this annual ballroom-dance party sponsored by the funsters at USA Dance and open to all ages and skill levels. The dreamy night is dedicated to movin' and groovin' in the body-to-body contact that's socially acceptable in partner dances (you know, swing, tango, cha-cha, salsa, waltz and foxtrot). Instead of calling it "having sweaty sex with your clothes on," the party police consider this stuff a "social grace." (7:30 p.m.-11 p.m. at Bahia Shrine Ballroom; $8; 407-644-6286)

Saturday • 17

BELCHING PENGUIN It's a given that if you were once in a punk/hardcore band that enjoyed a modicum of success in the '80s, you're gonna reunite – if not for the money, then for some other purpose, charity or otherwise. Keeping in form, Bradenton's Belching Penguin have re-formed for a night to celebrate the 20th anniversary of ¡No Clubs Presents!. ¡No Clubs Presents! were the first to bring acts like Suicidal Tendencies through lovebug land way back when. For those keeping score, we asked for this local band to reunite some months back, so you have us to thank – though you'll need to plan a road trip to hear your faves from Draft Beer … Not Me, as the show is going down in Tampa. Maybe the next nostalgia-fest could happen closer to home. Declared Ungovernable, we're looking in your direction. (with Pseudo Heroes; 7 p.m. at The Orpheum, Tampa; $7; 813-248-9500)

MAKULU There are no sugarplum fairies in this dance drama presented by the fledgling contemporary troupe U-Turn Dance. Rather, Makulu tells the story of the annual migration of wildebeests across the Serengeti desert as they follow the rain that brings fresh grass to feed upon. Makulu is the name of one pregnant wildebeest left behind by the traveling herd when she stops to give birth, as is typical. But nature does take care of its own in this happy-ending story, as Makulu's sister wildebeests "begin to separate from the pack one by one, forming a living trail of breadcrumbs that allow the new mother to find her way back to the herd." Nonetheless, Makulu and her newborn must fight their way through predators – cheetahs, lions, wild dogs – and other dangers before they return to the safety of their own. This isn't the first time U-Turn has performed Makulu, and their experience led them to the decision to add documentary-style video footage and narration to this production for better comprehension of this out-of-the-ordinary marriage between nature and interpretive dance. (2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday, 4 p.m. Sunday at University of Central Florida, Theatre UCF; $15-$20; 407-823-1500)

Sunday • 18

THE AUDITION Until about four years ago, Victory Records was synonymous with tough-guy bands. If we dared to go to a concert billed as "The Victory Tour," we'd ask someone to punch us in the face 25th Hour-style prior to the performance, in hopes that rampaging hooligans would steer clear of an already-bleeding target. If we were rendered comatose at one of those 1999 Hatebreed/Integrity concerts – a very real possibility – and awoke this summer to see "Victory Tour 2005" on the marquee outside the hospital window, we might have been painkiller-addled enough to risk further injury by checking out the current crop of hardcore bruisers. But this year's lineup, including Aiden, The Hurt Process and The Audition, shared more musical similarities with Michael Jackson's 1984 Victory tour than anything involving Warzone. The Audition's honeyed harmonies, cloying hooks, mildly propulsive pace and cutie-pie membership qualify it for Fall Out Boy-caliber crossover stardom. We're not big on neutered pop-punk, but we might go to this gig so we can finally be crowned "king of the pit" at a Victory band's show: The competition figures to be unfathomably wussy. (with Plain White T's, Spitalfield, Social Ghost; 6 p.m. at The Social; $12; 407-246-1419)

PRINCESS SUPERSTAR What the hell happened here? The saucy, foxy, deck-shredding Princess we knew and loved has up and gone all high-concept on us. Behind her new look (which could best be described as "President of the Klaus Nomi fan club") is a story, and that story is told on her new album, My Machine. Yes, the brash scenester has made her concept album, and it's appropriately insane: something about the future (duh) and a bunch of people who look just like Princess Superstar saving the world from being soulless. Yeah, whatever. Just play the records, lady. You know that's why we love you. And hey, aren't you the one who said "DJs are not rock stars"? (with Alexander Technique; 10 p.m. at The Social; $8; 407-246-1419)

Wednesday • 21

HEART OF DARKNESS CHRISTMAS SHOW Returning to his native New York may have mellowed comic Greg Barris, but somehow we doubt it. See for yourself when this Orlando escapee and four other stand-ups (including host Warren Durso) favor the Orlando Improv with The Heart of Darkness Christmas Show, an evening of comedy that just might rocket everybody in the room to the top of the "naughty" list. Having made his bones in O-town with Orlando International Fringe Festival hits like The Greg Barris Rock Anthology, Barris is currently plying his trade in the New York comedy underground, continuing to flout any taboo that comes his way. Exhibit A: A clip that's posted on his website ( has him one-upping the nation's wiggas, declaring that he's taken black-cultural envy to new heights – by contracting sickle-cell anemia. What's he going to do for an encore – bust out in a verse of "White Christmas"? (9:30 p.m. at Orlando Improv; $10-$12; 321-281-8000)

Contributors: Jason Ferguson, Micky Michalec, Andrew Miller, Steve Schneider, Lindy T. Shepherd

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