Top 10 things to do in Orlando this week: Sept. 11-17
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The Taming of the Shrew
Wednesday, Sept. 11
through Oct. 6
Lowndes Shakespeare Center, 812 E. Rollins St.
If you are at all intimidated by Shakespeare or feel incipient boredom at the thought of a period piece, fear not. The Taming of the Shrew is nothing more than a remake of 10 Things I Hate About You! (Just like Jane Austens Emma is really just the movie Clueless, set in Regency England.) Most battle-of-the-sexes romcoms can trace their plots back to The Taming of the Shrew, the tale of Petruchio, a young man whos come to wive it wealthily in Padua, and Katarina, daughter of a wealthy family whos not interested in submitting meekly to wifedom. The text of the play is wince-inducingly anti-female (not surprising given that it was written around 1590), but most modern productions manage to let Kate give as good as she gets before shes tamed (ugh) as in Cole Porters musical adaptation Kiss Me, Kate and the 1967 Richard BurtonElizabeth Taylor film. This years Orlando Shakes version, directed by Jim Helsinger, transposes the setting from 16-century Italy to the Wild West, so expect plenty of rootin along with a bit of tootin. Preview nights (Wednesday and Thursday) are priced a bit lower and are sometimes looser shows than youll see later in the run; if youre a perfectionist, wait until official opening night on Friday. Jessica Bryce Young
Wednesday, Sept. 11
with Douglas J. McCarthy
The Social, 54 N. Orange Ave.
Listening to Cold Cave is like scrolling through that offbeat Tumblr Goths Up Trees (gothsuptrees.net). If youre drawn more to the sun than black nail polish, youll be thoroughly entertained by an accessible approach to goth-pop. Cold Cave is Matadors latest poster child to darkly croon over bouncy beats. His 2011 release, the heartbreakingly titled Cherish the Light Years, delivered personally contemplative lyrics that inspire the same sort of anguished bedroom dancing as the Cure, especially on songs like Underworld USA. Touring with him is a name easy to gloss over but is in fact a post-industrial prince who was really influential in the 80s, Douglas J. McCarthy. Back then, youd catch him on tour with Depeche Mode (playing Tampa this week), right now hes touring on his first solo album Kill Your Friends. Its a night meant to soothe your soul, dark angels. Ashley Belanger
The Next 20 Years: How Science Will Revolutionize Society and Our Daily Lives
Thursday, Sept. 12
Alfond Sports Center, Rollins College, 1000 Holt Ave., Winter Park
We know what youre thinking: Havent cell phones and email already completely changed the way we live? Absolutely. But trust us, in no way should you undermine the cred of Dr. Michio Kaku. After all, hes not only a theoretical physicist, but also co-founder of the string field theory, an author of two New York Times bestsellers, a radio host and a regular guest on Discovery Channels How the Universe Works. Oh, and hes currently attempting to complete Einsteins unified field theory. (Yes, that Einstein.) And thats why the Winter Park Institute folks invited him to Rollins College this week, because hell enlighten us less on trends like the iPad and Facebook, and more on how physics directly affects all aspects of our daily lives medicine, space travel, computers, jobs and the overall economic climate. Some might say you learn from the past, but you can expect Dr. Kakus lecture to focus on the benefits of the future. Aimee Vitek
People Before Profits Movie Night:Free Angela and All Political Prisoners
Thursday, Sept. 12
Taste Restaurant, 717 W. Smith St.
Once upon a time, Angela Davis Afro and raised fist was as iconic as Ches beret or Gloria Steinems center part and aviators. (Not that anyones activism should be reduced to a fashion statement, but its interesting which images stick around and which fade away.) In the 1960s Davis was a young college professor, an intellectual radical, a member of the Communist Party and a sympathizer with the Black Panthers. But when the perpetrator of a lethal courthouse stickup turned out to be carrying guns purchased by Davis, the FBI slammed her on its 10 Most Wanted Fugitives list and eventually into a solitary cell for almost two years awaiting trial. (An international outcry ensued, and she was found not guilty.) This documentary directed by Shola Lynch, who also profiled presidential candidate Shirley Chisholm in 2004s Unbought and Unbossed played on no screens in Orlando, so this is your big chance to view it with a likeminded crew. A discussion of the film follows the screening in the Gallery at Taste Restaurant. Jessica Bryce Young
Florida Experimental Videos
Friday, Sept. 13
The Gallery at Avalon Island, 39 S. Magnolia Ave.
Screenings of films by Kate Shults, Jim Drain and Clifton Childree, in relation to the current Florida Overtures, Undertones and Subplots exhibition.
Coupled: The Game Show & Game Night
Saturday, Sept. 14
The Abbey, 100 S. Eola Drive
If you grew up in the 70s under the shadow of a latchkey and giant boobs and divorce, then you likely found yourself wondering what would compel newlywed couples into the lair of one Bob Eubanks, the slightly skeezy Newlywed Game host who took leering pleasure in the oft-idiotic incompatibility of coupled sheep. Men are from Mars, women are from Venus, amirite? Well, that exhibitionist tendency is alive today (if even less appealing for the presence of Sherri Shepherd) on the Game Show Network, or you can just experience a reasonable (and less humiliating) facsimile under the capable prodding of local trivia sensation Curtis Earth and Great Dates Orlando. For 90 minutes, six couples will talk behind each others backs and compete for prizes (including a stay at the Bohemian Celebration); after that, couples can play board games like real couples do. And Twister! Love is a strange game, after all. Billy Manes
Bash for Books
Saturday, Sept. 14
Rachel D. Murrah Civic Center, 1050 W. Morse Blvd., Winter Park
This year's fundraising cocktail party for the Winter Park Public Library takes on an Alice in Wonderland theme, complete with silent auctions, gourmet food and casino games.
Galactic Encounter Days
Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 14-15
11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday-Sunday
Orange County Regional History Center, 65 E. Central Blvd.
Obi-Wan Kenobi might believe only a Sith deals in absolutes, but this week the open-air environs of downtowns Heritage Square see an absolute takeover of interstellar proportions, as a horde of Star Wars characters converge at the annual Galactic Encounter Days. Fans of all ages step aside as the 501st Stormtrooper Legion: Vaders Fist trudges in formation into the square, leading into a cavalcade of droids who will roam the parameter. Not only is it a chance to journey through a real-life Tusken Raider village, but the little ones can also nosh on Blue Milk and Wookiee Cookies with Han Solo, while the grown-ups sip Yoda Juice and munch Bantha Brownies alongside Darth Vader in the pilots lounge. With all these characters forced into one place, lets hope the dark side doesnt come out. You might pack a lightsaber just in case. Aimee Vitek
Southern Fried Sunday's End of Summer Shake-Up
Sunday, Sept. 15
various Mills 50 venues
Theyre calling it a shake-up, but we say what better way to shake off the summer than a good ol Southern barbecue? Leave it to Southern Fried Sunday to put together a last hurrah for Floridas cruelest season, assembling a stuttering array of local talent, including bright soul (the Sh-Booms), dirty blues (Lone Wolf), garage rockabilly (the Woolly Bushmen) and breezy folk (Afeefa and the Boy). But it aint all local; theres also some out-of-towners, like New York Citys modern-day troubadour Brownbird Rudy Relic and Nashvilles psych rocker Gavin Shea. For $10 in advance, you get access to all three venues (Wills Pub, Lil Indies, the Peacock Room) and a heaping plate of barbecue. And just in case you need more motivation, some of the door cost will go toward helping the Mustard Seed buy a new box truck to continue their work transitioning families from shelters into homes. Ashley Belanger
Twin Forks, Matrimony
Tuesday, Sept. 17
with What's Eating Gilbert, Keith Michaud
The Social, 54 N. Orange Ave.
The name on everyones mind in this crowd will likely be Chris Carrabba. But instead of rhapsodizing to the sensitive saps, the Dashboard Confessional frontman has found new wind out on the hot trail of young folk-popsters like the Lumineers and the Avetts. His new band Twin Forks self-titled debut EP, released the very day of this show, is a fresh-faced batch of stomp-clapping tunes positively overflowing with skip and sparkle, but pay special attention to North Carolina opener Matrimony. A bright family affair, they too are rising contenders in the new folk scene, with perhaps more depth and authenticity than practically all of the reigning big boys. Theyve already opened here for Langhorne Slim and Matt Pond PA, and each time they lit up the room. Bao Le-Huu