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McKeever's award-winning 'Melt' to return

McKeever Michael McKeever's Melt is a play that explores, through compelling stories of Hispanic, black and Jewish famillies, the interactions of diverse cultures in melting-pot Miami.  It debuted in 2007 at Coral Gables' New Theatre, winning McKeever the Carbonell Award for best new work, and had subsequent productions at Sarasota's Florida Studio Theatre, Miami's Gusman Center for the Performing Arts, and a staged reading at New York's Primary Stages.

In February, alumni of Leadership Miami, which presented Melt at Gusman to nearly 900 high school students, are bringing back a play they considerer a poignant, provocative reflection of Miami's diversity.  The group's effort, dubbed One Community, One Play, will see Melt staged at Actors' Playhouse, 280 Miracle Mile, Coral Gables, Feb. 10-28, 2010.  Stuart Meltzer will direct a cast that includes John Felix, Teresa Maria Rojas, Nick Richberg, Javier Siut and Tara Vodihn. Leadership Miami Alumni is planning to underwrite a large number of tickets so that young South Floridians can see the show, which will be followed by post-show talkbacks.

Performances will be at 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday, with tickets priced at $30 ($25 for seniors, $20 for students).  For info or tickets, visit the Actors' Playhouse web site or call the box office 305-444-9293.

Santaland poster McKeever, by the way, is about to demonstrate another of his many talents by giving four performances as the harried, sardonic elf in David Sedaris' The Santaland Diaries.  The show, directed by Burt Reynolds Institute for Film & Theatre executive director Kenneth Kay, is the second offering from a new troupe, The Burt Reynolds Under-the-Bridge Players, a group based in the movie star's Burt Reynolds & Friends Museum in Jupiter.  (Reynolds himself kicks things off tonight at 8 playing legendary actor John Barrymore in a three-performance staged reading of William Luce's Barrymore.)

The Santaland Diaries will be presented at 8 p.m. Dec..16-19, at the museum, 100 N. U.S. Hwy. 1, Jupiter.  Tickets are $25 ($100 for the theater's five-show season).  For information, call 561-743-9962 or visit the Institute's web site.