Scene & Heard by Heidi Kurpiela

Scene & Heard 09.30.10

Posted September 29, 2010 at 6:00 am

by Heidi Kurpiela

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+ Johnson to ring in the Rover’s birthday
Buzz is already building around AC/DC frontman Brian Johnson’s guest performance Nov. 13, at the Irish Rover Pub.

Johnson, a Bird Key resident, has reportedly rounded up various heavy-metal rockers to join him on stage at the beloved Gulf Gate pub, including Skid Row guitarist Scotti Hill.

Justin Boros, the subject of this week’s A&E cover story, “Light on his Feet,” will open for the band with his new Irish Dance troupe, “Rhythm in the Night.”

According to Boros, the troupe will perform an Irish dance to one of AC/DC’s timeless hits.

Does that mean Johnson will get in on the Irish jig action?

Who knows? The event is still more than a month away.

One thing’s for sure, though: There’s no better way to celebrate a fifth birthday than to have the lead singer from AC/DC and a group of Irish dancers getting jiggy to “Highway to Hell.”

+ ‘Oklahoma’ is the place to be next month
After publishing that the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall and the Asolo Repertory Theatre were enjoying record early ticket sales, Jeffery Kin, artistic director at The Players, wrote to inform us that Sarasota’s oldest performing-arts organization was also swimming in ticket sales.

Subscription tickets are up, and “Oklahoma,” which opens Oct. 21, at The Players, has already been extended an extra week. ’Tis the season to escape to the theater.

+ Say hello to a new contemporary art group
Further proving that there’s strength in numbers, another contemporary art group has formed in Sarasota.
A band of local contemporary women artists has come together to form Artinsight-Sarasota.

Comprised of Gail Rubinfeld, Bettina Sego, Lori Simon, Susan von Gries and Janet Mishner, Artinsight’s goal is to buoy the aspirations of its members in the national market and to promote the visual arts in Sarasota and Manatee counties.

The group’s premiere exhibition, which runs Oct. 1 to Oct. 23, at Living Walls in downtown Sarasota, will coincide with next month’s Festival sARTée, a fringe festival for local arts groups happening during the Ringling International Arts Festival.

Join the group for a cocktail reception at 7 p.m. Oct. 9, at Living Walls, 1311 Main St.

The business-savvy members of Artinsight chose to display their work at the contemporary furniture store to show how art can spruce up your living quarters.

Cunning move, ladies.

Below: Gail Rubinfeld’s work was on display at an Art Center Sarasota event earlier this year.

+ RIAF gets a kick in the ‘Butoh’
It’s hard to describe the kind of dance performance Keren Lifrak has in store for attendees of the Ringling International Arts Festival’s Family Fun Fest.

It’ll be odd and provocative, but not too odd and provocative, because it’s being performed during a family-friendly festival.

Lifrak, a Sarasota wedding planner and former dancer, has rounded up five local dancers to perform a Butoh dance during RIAF’s Family Fun Day.

Butoh, for those of you who are unfamiliar with the style, is a conceptual dance famous for its white body makeup and slow-mo movements.

When Lifrak realized that few people in Sarasota have ever heard of Butoh, much less seen a Butoh performance, she decided to dust off her dance shoes and choreograph a routine.

“It’s a great opportunity to bring something new and exciting to Sarasota that no one has ever heard of,” Lifrak says. “As a dancer, you’re told to point your toes and do pretty movements. This is the complete opposite.”

In true avant-garde Butoh performances, dancers are covered in white paint from head to toe. Usually they’re nude, or partially nude. Parents need not worry. Lifrak promises the dancers will be clothed –– this time.

Below: Keren Lifrak

+ Hot tickets

‘Mind & Mend’: See brushstrokes turn into body strokes at Art Center Sarasota, as Moving Ethos Dance Company presents “Mind & Mend: A Merging of Visual and Performance Art” from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Oct. 1 and Oct. 2. For more information, call 365-2032 or visit

‘Sarasota’s Got Talent’ Finals: Julie Rohr Academy’s Sarasota talent show kicks off its final round of competitions at 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 2, at Sarasota Military Academy. Watch as finalists in youth, teen and adult categories compete for cash prizes and hometown recognition. For more information, call 371-4979 or visit

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