April 30, 2009
'Steel' the one
Friday & Saturday (May 1 & 2), 7:30pm, Sunday (May 3), 3pm, Iao Theater, Wailuku
Attention all dudes: if you are a macho homophobe whose fragile manly eyes cannot glimpse anything that possesses femininity without being overtly sexual, you may want to divert your peepers for the next 185 words or so. Otherwise, man up and step right this way. You see, I generally view chick flicks/chick lit as inconsequential fluff that perpetually reinforces the most revolting female stereotypes. But when a work with a nuanced plot, one that goes beyond shopping, boyfriends and chocolate, comes along I have to give it its due. Steel Magnolias, which will be performed this week by Maui OnStage, is one of those works that gives its female characters actual depth. It chronicles the struggles of a young woman as she battles Type I diabetes. Of course, such a monumental struggle cannot be adequately portrayed without simultaneously charting the bonds that occur among kin over time. The plots of both the stage and film versions are anchored in a small-town Louisiana salon. The characters are quite colorful and humor prevails throughout. $18/$15 matinee.
Post Lei Day mele
Saturday (May 2), 7:30pm, Castle Theater, MACC
Lei Day, an occasion that celebrates the production, existence and cultural significance of lei, has been celebrated on May 1 since its 1928 inception. I hereby suggest the expansion of May Day, so that it swallows May 2 as well. You see, not only does Lei Day occur on a Saturday this year, it also precedes a performance by the award-winning Brothers Cazimero, Hawaii's quintessential Lei Day musical component. For decades they've been one of the definitive acts of contemporary Hawaiian music. Plus, they incorporate hula (Robert Cazimero is a kumu hula). So we can turn May 1 into a 48-hour extravaganza before going back to normal on Monday.
Saturday (May 2), 6pm, MCC
It is most auspicious that the MauiFEST Hawaii folks saw fit to organize their drive-in theater extravaganza tribute to Uncle Boy Kanae on what will from now on be known as lei weekend. These events are most valiant in their celebration of all things Hawaii, especially in this case, given that it's celebrating the life of a man who was nicknamed "Da Hawaiian Supaman." Entertainment includes loads of live music courtesy of George Kahumoku, Jr. and uke virtuosos Derick Sebastian and Uncle Benny Uyetake. Films to be screened include The Koaloha Ukulele Story (Maui premiere) and Ke Ka'apuni Ho'onui (world premier), which documents the recent journey of Hawaiian marchers on Maui. Expect ono food booths and a whole slew of other delights too numerous to list. $20 per car/$5 walk-ins.
May the Schwartz be with you
Sunday (May 3), 6-10pm, Lahaina Civic Center
There are two movies I distinctly recall seeing in the theater when I was little: The Princess Bride and Spaceballs. Now, more than 20 years later, I can see that I am not alone in my love of things that make fun of other things. This Sunday's free screening of the 1987 Mel Brooks classic will serve as an opportunity for lovers of satire to stand and be counted. The film, if you'll recall, is a spoof of Star Wars, Star Trek and other sci-fi works that take themselves way too seriously. Brooks even sneaks in shots at fairy tales as well as the mass marketing of film memorabilia ("moychendising!") that often accompanies big-budget action flicks. The cast includes Brooks, John Candy, Rick Moranis, Bill Pullman, Daphne Zuniga, Joan Rivers and many others. The Sunday screening is a popcorn potluck, so bring a snack to share. Oh, and how can I forget: coming in costume is highly encouraged. Free.
Beyond the Triangle
Wednesday (May 6), 10pm, Hard Rock Café, Lahaina
You wouldn't know it from a standard world map, but Bermuda consists of more than 100 small islands. I view this as an apt metaphor for individuals. We've all got the tendency to paint others with a broad stroke, to turn each other into cardboard cutouts for our own convenience. Stereotyping, after all, is one hell of a time-saver (to paraphrase the good people at The Onion). Bermuda-born reggae musician Mishka is an individual who, in his music and story, defies expectation. His vocals are sweet and at times heart wrenching. The sources from which he draws are wide-ranging and blend together in a broadly appealing way. Bob Marley is an obvious influence, but it's also clear that Mishka has listened to the Beatles religiously. His studio material, exemplified on his recent release Above the Bones, has a highly refined and dance-conducive sound. How Mishka got to his current spot is quite a story: first off, he was raised on a sailboat. Actor Matthew McConaughey discovered and subsequently signed Mishka to j.k. livin, McConaughey's fledgling record label.
Cinco de drinko
Tuesday (May 5), All day, drinkeries islandwide
You may be wondering how to best celebrate the Mexican Army's unexpected defeat of the French Army at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. Lucky for you, some killer Cinco de Mayo fiestas are happening across Maui. Folks on the North Shore can enjoy cheap food and drink at Milagros in Paia (including $3 Coronas all day, $5 fish tacos until 5pm and a sweet happy hour). South Mauians can check out a slew of Cinco parties, among them the Mulligan's on the Blue shindig, with performances by Byron Brown and the Derelicts and Off Tomorrow. Kihei bars putting on festivities include Fred's (food & drink specials all day) Ambrosia (where DJ CIA will be spinning), The Dog and Duck, Life's a Beach and Tip-Ups. West Siders can check out a massive party at Mulligan's at the Wharf (music from the Unifires, food booths and $3 Tecates, starting at 5pm), plus Santa Fe Cantina for live music and drink specials, then pop over to Los Pelones for $1 tacos and cheap booze (starting at 4pm). Isn't history amazing in its wealth of excuses to get sloshed?
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