Melanie LaJoie’s dance career began almost three decades ago and has since taken her to Morocco, Egypt, and Russia, where she developed her expertise in an impressive number of ethnic dance traditions. Today, she directs the instructors at A Magi Temple Belly Dance and choreographs and performs pieces at local sites such as Universal Studios, Walt Disney World, and the House of Blues. Her students, who can include ladies age 10 and up, learn everything from warm-up exercises to routines in Bollywood, belly-dancing, and flamenco classes scheduled five days per week.
Moviegoers kick back in tiered stadium seats and absorb unobstructed views of Hollywood’s latest studio releases at Cobb Plaza Cinema Café 12. A Dolby Digital audio system ensconces audiences in a seamless cocoon of sight and sound while couples raise the armrests on their high-backed leather chairs for optimum cuddling. The concession stand entertains taste buds with theater classics such as popcorn, candy, and Coca-Cola along with a full menu of beer and wine options. Drivers can snag parking spots in the attached garage for $2.50 with validation, and youngsters can pedal their tricycles over to the theater in the summer months for free kiddie showings.
A winner of the Best Theater Company award from Orlando Magazine, Mad Cow Theatre attracts a wealth of thespian talent and produces several contemporary and classic productions from American and world literature every year. Now in its 13th season, the theatre company has received recognition from national publications for its intelligent productions. The newest of these is a "chamber version" of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, in which performers Sophia Wise, Bobbie Bell, and Michael Sapp will tackle every role in the Bard of Avon's timeless tale of regicide, madness, and dirty hands on the misty moors of Scotland. In addition to being one of Western civilization’s best-known plays, Macbeth has an almost unparalleled aura of mystery surrounding it, with the play itself rumored to be cursed; as such, actors and actresses superstitiously refer to the play as "the Scottish play," "Htebcam," or "Bio-Dome".
Although The Rapture’s euphoric new album, In the Grace of Your Love, reveals a band that has matured into an art-rock juggernaut capable of captivating a wide spectrum of audiences, its defining essence remains rooted in the primal punk energy of its live show. Having taken the past few years to collect its thoughts and dust off its cowbells, the band marks its triumphant return with a night of pounding drums, pulsing synthesizers, and high-pitched howls courtesy of frontman Luke Jenner. Though described by Pitchfork's Andrew Gaerig as a “patient, skilled rock band unafraid to look uncool,” the trio’s suave brand of digifunk more than compensates for their between-song lectures on steampunk and multiverses. Opening duo Poolside draws on its experience playing in bands such as Ima Robot and the Calculators to incite bouts of dance fever with songs that fuse the clap-your-hands cadences of '70s disco with the casual leanings of '80s synthpop.
The Orlando Predators stampede into the Arena Football League’s 25th season boasting the debut of a new head coach and retooled roster. Former Predators player and Winter Park native Bret Munsey brings with him both a new playbook and ArenaBowl championship expectations, telling the Orlando Sentinel upon his hiring, “[The Predators] want to win [this] year, and I’ve got to find a way to do that.” The front office has contributed to the championship campaign with new additions on both sides of the ball. Recently acquired quarterback Trevor Harris will compete with Collin Drafts for the duties of breaking the team out of each huddle and igloo-encased locker room. On defense, new nose tackle Richard Clebert dominates the line of scrimmage by clogging foes’ running lanes, as he did in his last two seasons on a pair of ArenaBowl championship teams.
The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses celebrates more than 25 years of stirring virtual adventure and memorable soundtracks with live orchestral renditions of the videogame franchise's lush aural landscapes. Arranged by music director Chad Seiter, the concert's four-movement symphony regales ears with Nintendo composer Koji Kondo's original music that spans 15 Zelda games, recalling moments of Link conquering dungeons, running through forests, and struggling to decide what color of tunic to wear. Conductor Eimear Noone leads the full chorus and symphony with the same skills that earned her the opportunity to orchestrate the soundtrack to World of Warcraft and conduct the musical score of Starcraft II: Wind of Liberty.