Here’s a Nutcracker with a twist. The young production company, What if Works, will present a different take on E.T.A. Hoffmann’s The Nutcracker featuring a string quartet, a special narrative with dance, and artwork by Miami-Dade County’s middle school students. The art will be projected on stage as part of the scenery.
Collective proceeds from the performances at different locales will go toward the Children’s Movement of Florida, the ROXY Performing Arts Center scholarships, and the Hurricane Sandy New York/New Jersey Relief Fund.
Devised and directed by Phillip M. Church, this one-act version of the holiday classic will introduce the newly formed WiW String Quartet in their debut performance under the musical direction of Amernet String Quartet Member Marcia Littley. Musical arrangements are by Carlo Martelli.
The musicians in the quartet are Kyle Meerbott of Coral Reef High School on cello, Meagan Slattery of the Florida International University School of Music on violin, Colin Lee of Westminster Christian High School on viola, and Jorge Vasquez of the FIU School of Music on violin.
“We are very excited about college and high school students working and creating together in a professional world,” Church said. “WiW will be developing more projects with young musicians in the near future.”
All performances are scheduled for 7 p.m. On Dec. 9 the event is at Coral Gables Congregational Church, 3010 De Soto Blvd. in Coral Gables. Cost is $10 and $5 for children under 12. On Dec. 13 it is at Roxy Performing Arts Center, 1645 SW 107th Ave. Cost is $10 for all. And on Dec. 14, the show is at Pinecrest Gardens, 11000 SW 57th Ave. The cost is $10 and $5 for children under 10. For more, call Church at 305-271-1073 or visit www.whatifworks.com.
GIVE MIAMI DAY
Want to help a cause but not sure how to do it? On Dec. 12, for 24 hours, the community of South Florida can join in the inaugural Give Miami Day, hosted by The Miami Foundation. More than 300 local organizations are already registered to participate.
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Miami, South Florida Art Center and American Red Cross of Greater Miami & The Keys are just a few of the groups involved in the Give Miami Day. The Miami Foundation, with support of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, is launching the event to help build a greater Miami through philanthropy.
During the 24-hour fundraiser members givers can search profiles for nonprofits across Miami-Dade at www.GiveMiamiDay.org. They can see the mission, work and impact of each organization. Every donation between $25 and $10,000 received on Dec. 12 through the website will be partially matched by The Miami Foundation.
“From social networks to the media, Miami is abuzz as residents and organizations spread the word about our inaugural Give Miami Day,” Javier Alberto Soto, president and CEO of The Miami Foundation, said in a release. “Our Give Miami site lets donors find and give to organizations doing the work they believe is best for Miami-Dade. It’s a new and easy way to support the causes most important to them.”
Donors can make charitable gifts to local nonprofits beginning at midnight on Dec. 12 and ending at midnight on Dec. 13.
"We’re excited by the prospect of new digital tools making it easier for residents to connect more deeply with nonprofits in the community," said Matt Haggman, program director/Miami at Knight Foundation. "By making it easier to donate online, we hope to merge people’s personal passions with needs in the greater Miami area."
For more information, contact Marianne Maduro, senior program officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BEST BUDDIES GALA
The 16th annual Zenith Watches Best Buddies Miami Gala recently raised $2 million for Best Buddies International, dedicated to creating opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The star-studded event, held at Marlins Park, was sold out.
Lobbyist Ronald L. Book, a long-time Best Buddies International Board member, was honored with the “Spirit of Leadership” award, the group’s highest accolade, for “great leadership, generosity and spirit in supporting the organization’s mission.”
Organizers also announced at the event the inaugural Best Buddies Challenge: Miami, to take place in 2014. The Challenge will feature various cycling routes through Miami’s scenic neighborhoods, led by Tour de France pro Christian Vande Velde. The Challenge will be open to all ages and abilities, and will conclude with a party and concert.
Jean-Frédéric Dufour, CEO of Zenith Watches, served as vice chair of the gala, which featured a Russian theme celebrating Best Buddies’ expansion into the country. For more information, visit www.bestbuddies.org, facebook.com/bestbuddies or twitter.com/bestbuddies.
OPEN MIC NIGHT
Help support a young theater company at Miami Acting Company’s Open Mic Night. Entertainment will include singers, songwriters, rock bands, standup comics, actors and more. The fun is from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Dec. 15, at the Performing Arts Exchange (PAX), 337 SW Eighth St. in Miami. Tickets are $15 donation in advance, $20 at the door, through email@example.com.
Proceeds will help provide quality, low cost theater productions in the community. The next production is Man of La Mancha, scheduled for Pinecrest Gardens on April 5-7, 2013.
Meet British contacts for business or social networking. The British Network, hosted by the British Bureau, welcomes non-Brits also. The next gathering is from 6:30-9:30 p.m., Dec. 11 at The News Lounge, 5580 NE Fourth Ct.
The meeting is free. Buy your own refreshments. The Union Jack British newspaper, British license plates, and membership details are available at the event. Check in with British Bureau’s Patricia Kawaja for an ID sticker when you arrive. Future meeting dates in 2013 are Jan. 16 and Feb. 12 at the same location.