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This Week in Orlando: Culture Worth The Miles

| July 21, 2010

Byron Walker sculptur's double steel ribbons

Byron Walker's 'Double Steel Ribbons' (© Byron Walker)

Herman’s Hermits Brings Back 60’s Pop

He was a part of the “British Invasion” of the 1960’s and Peter Blair Denis Bernard Noone is still performing as ‘Herman’ of 60’s rock band Herman’s Hermits.  ‘Herman’ will take the stage on Friday, July 23rd at 8 pm – not as a tribute band – this is the man who created the classic hits Mrs. Brown, You’ve Got A Lovely Daughter, I’m Henry the 8th I Am, Silhouettes, There’s A Kind of Hush, Listen People, and The End of the World among many others. Noone was a child actor in British soaps until, at the age of fifteen, he achieved international fame as ‘Herman,’ leading a band that sold over 60 million recordings with 14 singles and 7 albums going “gold.”  Noone went on to star in movies and on Broadway and London stages, eventually guesting on US television shows and as the host of VH1’s My Generation. His fans (called “Noonatics”) are still screaming today just like their mothers did back in the 60’s. Peter Noone will perform for his fans of all ages at The Plaza Theatre at 425 North Bumby Avenue in Orlando. Call 407.228.1220.

Mark Twain to Visit the Winter Park Playhouse


That outspoken icon of American wit and wisdom Mark Twain will be brought to life by veteran local actor Michael Edwards in his original, one-man show Man Is the Only Animal Who Blushes… Or Needs To! from July 23rd to August 1st at The Winter Park Playhouse. “Michael Edwards’ ability to portray Mark Twain is uncanny,” says Roy Alan of The Winter Park Playhouse, “Michael has spent a lifetime studying every nuance of Mark Twain’s speech, movement and appearance making his performance among the most authentic characterizations I have ever seen.” This evening of wit, song and home-spun humor is to be found at The Winter Park Playhouse at 711-C Orange Avenue in Winter Park. Visit or call 407.645.0145.

Family Theatre Festival “Free and On Target”

The Orlando Repertory Theatre – with the support of Target – invites families to a series of free theater performances. With a mission to build family audiences while training young artists, the 4th Annual Target Family Theatre Festival will be held through July 25th, and most performances are FREE! Presenting a variety of performances for young people by Milkshake, Airborne Comedians, Hobey Ford, Miss Lori, and Debi Derryberry, the Festival will also present its own Youth Academy production of the musical 42nd Street. The Orlando Repertory Theatre is at 1001 East Princeton Street in Loch Haven Park.  Visit or call 407-896-7365 for a complete schedule.

Psychological Drama

The Mad Cow Theatre takes on our hot summer nights with some scorching ‘drama’ as they present The Heiress, a psychological play based on the Henry James novel Washington Square. The Heiress is a study in suppressed emotion based on the heightened manners and mores of 1850’s New York, where a lonely widower and his even lonelier daughter live lives empty of emotion. That life is changed completely when a charming suitor comes to woo the daughter, but WHY did he appear so suddenly and what exactly are his ‘intentions?’ Produced around the world on stage and screen, this story of love and betrayal was written by Ruth and Augustus Goetz. Directed by Michael Marinaccio, the cast features Jennifer Christa Palmer as Catherine. The Heiress will be performed from July 23 to August 22 at Mad Cow Theatre, 105 S. Magnolia Ave in Downtown Orlando. Visit or call 407.297.8788

Change the World Drama

“Manners and mores” of a very different time and place will be the subject of yet another play dealing with love and abandonment when The Breakthrough Theatre of Winter Park presents Ntozake Shange’s award winning drama For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf. The play deals with every emotion you can name while providing a no-holds-barred ‘message’ about what it means to be a woman of color in the 20th Century. The play, with stories of abandonment, rape, and domestic violence joins with hope and love to inspire audiences throughout the world.  This is theater that demands to be heard. The production features Charmion Sparrow, Debra Foxx, Evelyn Tyler, Felichia Wright, Kisha Peart, Shellita Boxie, and Vanessa Valdez, and is directed by Daniel Boisrond. Opening on July 23 and running through August 1, visit or call 407.920.4034.

Change the World ART

An Artist who “majored in landscape architecture and minored in art with a focus on sculpture” may be the perfect Artist for a world in which we can no longer think of ‘rubbish’ as trash.  On July 23rd at 6 pm the ever-inventive Lake Eustis Museum of Art will invite the public to an opening for “Natural Reclamation: Byron Walker” including an artist’s talk. Winter Park sculptor Byron Walker reveals his respect for nature in each of his unique pieces as he assembles found objects into unique works of art. Walker uses intelligence, humor (and trash) to ‘provoke’ his viewers into re-thinking their ideas on art and conservation. The exhibit will run through August 22.  The Lake Eustis Museum of Art is at 200 B East Orange Avenue in Eustis.  Call 352.483.2900 or visit

“Strings of Passion”

With music ranging from the Baroque to Romantic works, and including passionate tangos and contemporary jazz, the String Section from the Orchestra has (perhaps) the widest range of music in the repertoire. That ‘range’ will be on display as the Orlando Philharmonic continues its Sounds of Summer Series with Strings of Passion on Monday, July 26th.  Works include Handel’s Trio Sonata, Mendelssohn’s Song Without Words, Dubossarsky’s Romanian Fantasy, Elgar’s Salut d’Amour and more.  Violinist Olga Feroni says, “With a selection of music ranging from Handel to the innovative melodies of American jazz, this will be less a history lesson of great music and more a journey through the creative spirit and passion that has driven all human endeavors since the first creative thought dawned in the minds of our prehistoric ancestors. Music is everywhere in love and life.”  Performing on the program are violinists Olga Feroni, Joni Hanze-Bjela, Julia Gessinger, Shelley Mathews, Olga Kolpakova and Dina Fedosenko, along with pianist Sergei Kossenko. Beginning at 7 pm in the Lowndes Shakespeare Center at 812 East Rollins Street (Loch Haven Park), for tickets and information, call 407.770.0071 or visit

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1 Response for “This Week in Orlando: Culture Worth The Miles”

  1. Cheryl says:

    I highly recommend taking the trip over to Orlando for the “Strings of Passion” performance. I’ve had the good fortune of working with Julia Gessinger, her husband, and Olga Ferroni’s husband for the past five years when they would tour Flagler Co.’s public schools as we “recruited” new members for our free after school strings program. Not only are they incredibly talented and compelling, but wonderful to work with and to know.

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