Thursday, April 21
Generally, if the centerpiece of somebody's new book is a story about the author's first colonoscopy, I'm content to leave it on the shelf: Reading about such an ungodly procedure means puncturing the bubble of avoidance and denial and accepting that it exists. But David Sedaris is not just any author. If anybody can find new avenues to illuminate the unpleasantries, absurdities, and vagaries of modern life, it's Sedaris, one of our country's foremost humorists and the reigning champion of the short-form essay. No subject has proved off-limits for the North Carolina native, who turns 60 this year—meaning that, yes, he not only survived his first colonoscopy but found it, according to his latest collection, Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls, "remarkably pleasant." Other stories — memoirs and fiction pieces alike — in Sedaris' book include reminiscences of his father's unorthodox dinner attire, visiting the inner sanctum of a European taxidermy shop, and experiencing (gasp!) socialized medicine in France. The book is nearly two years old, but Sedaris is continuing his exhaustive world tour of readings, proving once again that there's no better voice to transmit David Sedaris stories than Sedaris himself. A Q&A and book signing will follow.
The reading begins at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Parker Playhouse, located at 707 NE Eighth St., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $64.99 to $73.05. Call 954-462-0222, or visit parkerplayhouse.com.
It's not often that pop culture as a whole gives outer space its fair share of adoration. (Fans of Star Trek or Seth MacFarlane and Neil deGrasse Tyson's pairing for Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey can speak to this.) The fictional daughter of Ernest Borgnine and Ethel Merman, drag performer Varla Jean Merman has taken note of this lack of celestial inspiration and created the latest galaxy-far-far-away-inspired show, Varla Jean Merman's Big Black Hole, now on tour and arriving Thursday at the Amaturo Theater at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts. Merman gleefully relies on double-entendres, innuendos, and witty one-liners peppered in with her geek-speak on the galaxies, so expect no Uranus joke to be off-limits. Billed as a "space odyssey cabaret," the show features songs accompanied by pianist Gerald Goode, video projections, and lots of pop-culture treatment of the cosmos. Previous shows have featured Merman's covers of Katy Perry's "Extraterrestrial" and George Michael's "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me." Varla Jean Merman's Big Black Hole is presented by Mark Cortale and performed by Jeffery Roberson.
The Broward Center is located at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, 201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Showtime is 8:30 p.m. Thursday. Admission is $35 to $67.50. VIP tickets include a
Friday, April 22
There's no mistaking the sound of Queen vocalist Freddie Mercury. With his tenor voice, Queen songs are pretty much unmistakable. They've never fallen out of radio rotation and have continued to loom large in popular culture in both film and television. Who can forget Wayne and Garth headbanging to "Bohemian Rhapsody" in Wayne's World? The world mourned when Mercury died from complications of AIDS in 1991, and he will always be remembered not only for his music but for his incredible stage presence. His flamboyant showmanship lives on through Mercury imitator Gary Mullen, accompanied by the Works as they bring "One Night With Queen" to Fort Lauderdale. Presented by the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, Mullen's act is known for his convincing emulation of Mercury, and you'll be sure to relive all of the Queen classics you know so well during this two-hour show. Judging by voice and theatrics alone, Mullen may be the only person on the planet with the authority to carry on Mercury's legacy.
"One Night With Queen" shows at 8 p.m. Friday at the Parker Playhouse, located at 707 NE Eighth St., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $37.50 to $60. Call 954-462-0222, or visit parkerplayhouse.com.
Saturday, April 23
Used to be a time a person could go out running without a cause or reason. Today you need a theme, a cause, a gimmick, a training goal. The Color Run is long on all of those —
Go solo or form a team of four or more. The Color Run 5K goes down at 7:30 a.m. Saturday at Huizenga Plaza, 32 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-468-1541, or visit goriverwalk.com.
Going by the moniker of "My Big Funny Peter," Peter Bisuito is a gay bodybuilding comedian. Also described as a muscle bear, he could very well be the only man in the world who traverses all of these categories.
For one night only, the Broward Center for the Performing Arts brings "My Big Funny Peter" to Fort Lauderdale starting at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Abdo New River Room at the Broward Center, located at 201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $26 to $35. VIP tickets are available. Visit browardcenter.org, or call 954-462-0222.
Sunday, April 24
Hollywood is a diverse town. A walk down its famous Broadwalk highlights
Stage performances start at 2 p.m. The free event wraps up at 8 p.m. It takes place at ArtsPark at Young Circle, located at 1 N. Young Circle, Hollywood. Visit sky18productions.com.
Monday, April 25
What is A Prairie Home Companion without Garrison Keillor? In October, the venerable public-radio variety program — a mix of folk and instrumental music, interviews, sketch comedy, fake commercials, and plenty of old-fashioned sound effects — will begin its first season without its iconic host, whose deadpan Twin Cities
See him at 7:30 p.m. Monday at the Broward Center's Au-Rene Theater, located at 201 SW Fifth Ave. in Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $40 to $60. Call 954-462-0222, or visit browardcenter.org.