Music: Florida Grand Opera continues its remake of itself as more of a cutting-edge company today as it opens the first of five presentations of Before Night Falls, the 2010 opera by Cuban-American composer Jorge Martín, which is based on the memoirs of the dissident Cuban writer Reinaldo Arenas. The opera tells the story of Arenas’s talent, his homosexuality and suffering from AIDS, and his torture at the hands of the Cuban revolutionaries he once so ardently wanted to join. Elliot Madore stars as Arenas, and the production also includes house favorite Elizabeth Caballero as the Moon and Javier Abreu as Pepe, the role he sang in the original production at the Fort Worth Opera. Martin’s score has a distinctive Cuban flavor and a mild modernism that allows this tragic but hopeful story to make a strong impact. The opera opens tonight at the Ziff Ballet Opera House in Miami at 7. Call 800-741-1010 or visit fgo.org.
Film: Director Ritesh Batra (best known for the admirable Indian tale, The Lunchbox) has now delivered a crafty adaptation of Julian Barnes’ Man Booker Prize-winning novel The Sense of an Ending, a very British, very literate story about an old codger (Oscar winner Jim Broadbent) whose quiet life is disrupted by an inheritance from an old school chum. As his thoughts drift back to those days, the film bounces back and forth in time. His college days are interesting, but the film comes alive when Charlotte Rampling is on screen as Broadbent’s former girlfriend, now even more difficult and enigmatic in her senior years. Nick Payne’s screenplay is sublimely understated, as is the acting. Leave it to the British.
Theater: Lynn University’s public theater performances have mainly been developmental readings of new scripts, but once a year it does a full production. Last year, it reached back to 1954 for Kismet. Bolstered by its success, it is now reviving the early Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe classic Brigadoon, about the mythic Scottish village that surfaces once every 100 years. Produced and directed by the tireless Jan McArt, with full orchestra accompaniment by the Lynn Philharmonia, it plays three performances only – Saturday at 2 and 7:30 p.m. andSunday at 4 p.m. – then disappears, just like the village does. Tickets range from $50-$70, the venue is the attractive Wold Performing Arts Center in Boca Raton. Call the box office at 561-237-9000.
Art: This is the second year of Art Boca Raton, which runs through the weekend at Florida Atlantic University in a 35,000-square-foot venue at the college’s Research Park. The exhibit of 20th and 21st-century art includes prominent local artists as well as national and international figures, live demonstrations of techniques such as gold leafing, and a Warhol 3X exhibit that includes his portrait of Judy Garland in Blackglama. A few leisurely hours today or tomorrow should let you see all of it, and you’ll come away from it feeling good about the vibrancy of the world of visual arts in this corner of South Florida. Visit nextlevelfairs.com/artbocaraton/ for more information or to buy tickets, or just stop by.