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BOO 2012

Arts & Culture - Staff Picks

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"Symphony," 1989, by Paul Marco


Orlando Puppet Festival
orlandopuppetfestival.com

For almost eight years, Ibex Puppetry (run by Heather Henson, daughter of Muppets creator Jim Henson), has pulled strings at its annual marionette affair. Last year's fest turned into a citywide puppet takeover, with a puppet art show downtown, musical puppet shows at Altamonte Mall's Pinocchio's Marionette Theater, the Handmade Puppet Dreams film series, adult-oriented content at Urban ReThink's Action Puppet Force slam and a Muppet Movie singalong with Henson herself.

 

Best shimmy shake-up

City's burlesque scene gets creative

Within the last year, a barrage of pasties and fishnets has given some of our favorite dimly lit nightspots a hefty dose of glittery pizzazz. A handful of scantily clad burlesque troupes work it in places like Taste, the Stardust Lounge and Bombshell's Tavern, and some, like Skill Focus: Burlesque, take it to new levels. We've seen those women decked out in elaborate costumes that appeal to a pretty wide variety of fan fetishes – superheroes, comic-book characters, pirates and even Star Trek characters.

Best world premiere

Satchmo at the Waldorf
satchmoatthewaldorf.com

Wall Street Journal theater critic Terry Teachout, scholar-in-residence at the Winter Park Institute at Rollins College, had long wanted to write a play about Louis Armstrong: about the disconnect between the private, complicated man and his grinning public image. Local theatrical éminences grises Rus Blackwell and Dennis Neal, both founding members of the Mad Cow Theatre company, had long wanted to collaborate on a one-man play. After a 45-minute staged reading, before which Teachout had no intention of producing the play in Orlando, Neal and Blackwell knew this was the play – and Teachout knew that he'd found the director and actor to bring his first play to life. The play has since been produced in New Haven, Conn., Lenox, Mass., and Martha's Vineyard, Mass., but it all started here.

Best local mirror

15 Views of Orlando, various authors

Burrow Press; 184 pages; $15
burrowpress.com

Sometimes artists have a tendency to focus on the bright-lights big cities, to get obsessed with what's happening in New York and Paris and Tokyo to the exclusion of their own backyards. But the best never forget their roots. With that in mind, local publisher and litblog Burrow Press commissioned 15 short stories about the city for their 15 Views of Orlando anthology; the end result is wonderfully strange, beautifully written, instantly familiar to residents and totally alien to any theme-park tourist or casual conventioneer.

Best of Orlando 2012
  • Local Color - Reader' Picks This year's Best of Orlando issue was written, edited, tallied, combined and compiled with the blood, sweat and tears of Marcus Griggs, Holly V. Kapherr, Faiyaz Kara... | 7/18/2012
  • Local Color - Staff Picks Gracing the cover of Orlando Weekly's 2012 Best of Orlando issue is no sweat, when you're Jose Melendez. Better known as Orlando's Mr. Gold, Melendez is the... | 7/18/2012
  • Goods & Services - Reader' Picks Best adult entertainment store 1st Fairvilla Megastore, 1740 N. Orange Blossom Trail, 407-425-6005; 7631 | 7/18/2012
  • Goods & Services - Staff Picks Nameplates! Doorknockers! Gucci bamboo hoops! Cuban links, herringbones, dookie ropes! Medallions! Dog tags! Caps and grills! On strictly utilitarian... | 7/18/2012
  • Food & Drink - Reader' Picks Best Caribbean 1st Bahama Breeze, multiple locations, bahamabreeze.com 2nd Mama Millie's, 12273 University Blvd., 407-382-3570, mamamillies.com | 7/18/2012
  • Food & Drink - Staff Picks Best attention-grabber beverage Beet & green apple juice from Café 118 | 7/18/2012
  • Music & Nightlife - Staff Picks If you're afraid of heights, stay away: Aptly named after its striking 180-degree view of downtown Orlando, this chic sanctuary sits at the top of Amway Center's... | 7/18/2012
  • Music & Nightlife - Reader' Picks Best Club DJ 1ST Baby Lac, @djbabylac 2ND Lemy Currey, facebook.com/lemycurrey 3rd Jimmy Joslin, facebook.com/JimmyJoslin | 7/18/2012
  • Arts & Culture - Reader' Picks Best Arts Event/Festival 1st The Orlando International Fringe Theater Festival, orlandofringe.org 2nd Winter Park Sidewalk Art Festival, wpsaf.org 3rd Nude Nite Art Exposé, nudenite.com | 7/18/2012
  • Arts & Culture - Staff Picks Best public art that doubles as a weapon "Symphony," 1989, by Paul Marco Mennello Museum of American Art 900 East Princeton Street 407-246-4278 mennellomuseum.com If you've ever thought of an "ice knife" as the perfect murder weapon (it melts! No finger | 7/18/2012
  • Sports & Recreation - Reader' Picks Best billiards hall 1st Sportstown Billiards, 2414 E. Robinson St., 407-894-6258, sportstownbilliards.com 2nd Cue-Phoria Billiards and Café, 2050 Semoran Blvd., Winter Park, 321-972-1867, cuephoria.com 3rd Trick Shots Billiards, multiple locations | 7/18/2012
  • Sports & Recreation - Staff Picks First word we received about this Gaelic jumble of a sport was when Orlando Hurling Club hosted their Clash of the Ash tournament last September. | 7/18/2012
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