Jordan Levin

Visual Arts

Dead art icon’s notebooks offer clues to his genius

Since his premature death in 1988, Jean-Michel Basquiat has not only become one of the world’s most famous artists, but a pop culture icon. The show “Basquiat: The Unknown Notebooks,” at the Perez Art Museum Miami, offers new clues to an artist whose impact on art, race and culture keeps expanding.


Surreal dance stories from Cuba

Surrealistic dance theater from Cuba visits Miami again, with the haunting “Possible Impossible,” from Cuban troupe Retazos and Swedish company Memory Wax. Miami’s Copperbridge Foundation presents another Havana and international dance experiment at Miami Dade County Auditorium on Saturday.


Cuban music hits Miami radio

Miami-based radio chain SBS has launched a Cubanton, or Cuban-style reggaeton, station in Miami. Billboard Magazine reports that Cuban urban acts like Gente de Zona will dominate former pop station Ritmo 95.7 FM.


FamFest celebrates hip-hop culture in Wynwood

FamFest celebrates hip-hop culture and break-dance skills in Wynwood this weekend. Organized by top Miami dance crew Flipside Kings and performer Rudi Goblen, the event features an international dance contest, music groups ¡Mayday! and the Spam AllStars, workshops, DJs, graffiti art displays and more.


Planting Seeds of Peace in Miami

Seeds of Peace has brought teens from conflict-ridden zones in the Middle East, Southeast Asia and the United States to work out differences at a summer camp in Maine since 1993. Now a Miami-raised former counselor for the camp is organizing the first Miami events to raise funds and awareness for the group. Organizers say Seeds’ efforts are more important than ever in today’s divisive atmosphere.

Music & Nightlife

New leader for Jazz Roots

Shelly Berg, the innovative dean of the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music, has taken over the leadership of the popular Jazz Roots concert series at the Adrienne Arsht Center. Founder Larry Rosen passed away last fall. The upcoming season features a tribute to Rosen, Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, pianists Gonazalo Rubalcaba and Chick Corea and a blues show led by Steve Miller.


Former tween dreams Demi Lovato & Nick Jonas grow up

Demi Lovato and Nick Jonas rose to fame as Disney child stars, then crossed over to become adult artists. The pair, who bring their Future Now tour to South Florida Friday, talk about growing up, becoming friends on the “Camp Rock” movies, and canceling their North Carolina concert to support LGBTQ rights.


Pop stars call for action on gun control

Billboard Magazine has gathered almost 200 top music artists and executives to sign an open letter to Congress calling for action on gun control. Famous acts who signed on include Lady Gaga, DJ Calvin Harris, former Beatle Paul McCartney and crooner Barbara Streisand. Editors launched the effort two days after the massacre at the gay nightclub Pulse in Orlando.


Cuban hip-hop deities Orishas reunite

Cuban hip-hop group Orishas, who became international stars in the 2000s with hits like “A Lo Cubano” before splitting in 2009, are reuniting. They have a new song, “Cuba Isla Bella,” and will tour the U.S. this summer, playing Miami on Aug. 20.


Panfilo, Cuba’s famously confused personality, appears in Miami

The famous Cuban TV personality Panfilo appeared in Miami Thursday to promote the launch of CubaMax, a new channel of Cuban television programming on satellite TV’s Dish Network. Actor Luis Silva, who plays the lead character of the show “Vivir del Cuento,” earned attention when President Obama appeared on the program in March.


Gay artists speak out on Orlando massacre

Gay artists and cultural activists in Miami and beyond are struggling to respond to the Orlando nightclub massacre, and their response is being highlighted by the annual Out in the Tropics festival taking place in Miami Beach this week. Even as artists wrestle with sadness, anger and incomprehension, they assert that art can play a crucial role in articulating emotions and leading efforts for change.


A new performance frontier or Facebook theater?

Arts groups are increasingly turning to interactive events that let audiences join performances. Is this the next artistic frontier, or theater for an attention-challenged social media generation? Two recent Miami shows, “little match girl passion” at PAMM and Jay Scheib’s Carmen at YoungArts, show the genre’s potential and pitfalls.


R&B star Miguel brings hybrid identity to Miami Beach

The R&B star Miguel, who is African-American and Mexican-American, has drawn on his hybrid identity to create a genre-busting mix of music that has brought him pop success and critical nods. The L.A. based, Grammy-winning singer of “Adorn” and “What’s Normal Anyway” performs at the Faena Theater in Miami Beach on Friday.


‘The little match girl passion’ an emotional opera experiment at PAMM

Adventurous Miami opera group IlluminArts stages David Lang’s Pulitzer Prize winning chamber opera “little match girl passion,” based on the Hans Christian Andersen story and Bach’s “St. Matthew’s Passion,” this week at PAMM. The event, which features free open rehearsals, is part of a growing national trend to find innovative alternatives to traditional opera.

About Jordan Levin

Jordan Levin


Miami Herald culture & entertainment critic.


Harris reacts to Booker T.'s win over Aquinas

Booker T. Washington football coach Tim "Ice" Harris talks after the Tornadoes win over St. Thomas Aquinas on Aug. 26, 2016.
Andre C. Fernandez
Harris reacts to Booker T.'s win over Aquinas 3:35

Harris reacts to Booker T.'s win over Aquinas

Booker T. wins on last-second pick 4:12

Booker T. wins on last-second pick

Columbus outlasts Miami Jackson 1:51

Columbus outlasts Miami Jackson

Booker T. QB Daniel Richardson talks about his game against St. Thomas Aquinas 1:31

Booker T. QB Daniel Richardson talks about his game against St. Thomas Aquinas