An endearing, compelling ‘Souvenir’

An endearing, compelling ‘Souvenir’

Review by C.S. GILBERT

Finally got to see Souvenir at the Waterfront and am delighted that I did. This is a little sleeper of a show and I’m surprised it hasn’t garnered more press that it has; there are only two days, Friday and Saturday, left in the run and, as a friend in the audience said, “Everyone should see it.”

The word on the street was also “See it!” but the recommendation didn’t come with caveats. It should have.

This “fantasia on the life of Florence Foster Jenkins,” a wealthy woman in the first half of the 20th century who paid – and probably also earned – her way to a recital in Carnegie Hall, requires an audience with its share of true grit. Continue reading

Part III: Conch Republic’s Sir Peter Anderson

Part III: Conch Republic’s Sir Peter Anderson

Rebuilding the Conch Republic

Peter Anderson: My Life As told to Mark Howell

(An early, unedited version of Part III, through a copy editor’s error, appeared in the April 17-23 issue of Konk Life. This is the correct Part III — with apologizes to Sir Peter Anderson from Konk Life. This correct Part III will also appear in the April 24-30 Konk Life.)

I arrived in Key West from New York, driving a 1972 Cadillac El Dorado with red leather seats, my radial arm saw packed into the back seat, and $2,000 in my pocket.

The first thing I saw was the sunset celebration, with its buskers, lovely ambiance and sunset itself. Continue reading

Rebranding the old Pink Triangle:

Rebranding the old Pink Triangle:

Introducing the ‘Heart of Duval’


Upper Duval has over the past several years earned the sobriquet of the classier, arty section of the street; lower Duval somewhat defiantly clings to the drink till you barf and girls-girls-girls designation.

But what of the blocks in between?

The area of central Duval that has generally been considered the Pink Triangle because of the presence of gay venues Aqua, Bourbon Street and the 801 is currently in for a marketing makeover. Continue reading

New Ambassadors grill commissioners:

PHOTO/Alyson Crean

During a moment of levity during the roundtable are, from left, Commissioners Weekley, Johnson and Rossi, Mayor Cates, and Commissioner Wardlow.


New Ambassadors grill commissioners:

covering the waterfront and everything else



The penultimate meeting of the Key West Ambassadors Class 22, traditionally a roundtable with the mayor and commissioners, was held in their EcoDiscovery classroom last Thursday and quite literally covered the waterfront –  the endlessly aborning Truman Waterfront Park, that is.

New Ambassadors, asking questions in turn after brief opening statements by the panel, also grilled Mayor Craig Cates and the commissioners about a wide variety of subjects, ranging from affordable housing and homelessness to a living wage, dais etiquette and the morale of city employees. Continue reading

HIGH NOTES: Kremlin combine accuracy, intensity


Kremlin combines accuracy, intensity


The Impromptu Concerts, the Keys’ chamber music organization, added a special concert to the end of its season with a performance by the Chamber Orchestra Kremlin, conducted by Misha Rachlevsky, at a venue unusual for the series, the Tennessee Williams Theater. Fourteen string players, including three cellos and a bass, offered an all-Russian program of music by Tchaikovsky and Prokofiev. They played with a combination of accuracy and intensity which few musicians we’ve heard here could match.

The Prokofiev piece was his Visions Fugitives, a series of short pieces ranging over a variety of moods. Originally written for piano, it has been transcribed for string orchestra. The group played it with a sound which was spare and disciplined, but intense. Continue reading

Key West Kitchen: Three Delicious Sauces for Dressing Up Key West Pink Shrimp


PHOTO / Orange Marmalade Cocktail Sauce


Three Delicious Sauces for Dressing Up Key West Pink Shrimp


Key West pink shrimp are one of the unique culinary treasures of our island.  These succulent beauties are wild-caught right off our shores and are world renowned for their sweet and tender tail meat.  They take on their pinkish color from the coral sand environment in which they live.  Amazingly, shrimping really didn’t exist in Key West until about 1950, when Key West pinks went from being  thrown away as by-catch to a highly prized commodity soon known as “pink gold.”  The industry today, while smaller than in its heyday, continues to thrive as the global appetite for Key West Pinks remains unquenchable.

As with most fresh, locally-harvested ingredients, Key West pinks don’t need a lot of dressing up.  They are full of flavor unadorned.  However, since we are lucky enough to have them available year-round, we need a little variety in our lives, right?  Here are three simple but delicious sauces to spice up your pink experience.  Since all three sauces actually benefit from being made a couple of days ahead, you can pull these out of the fridge, pop open a cold bottle of Prosecco and serve up a delightful Key West Pink feast in no time at all! Continue reading

Column: Culture Vulture, ALS, spring, shoes and everything


 ALS, spring, shoes and everything


I had some trouble putting this CV bite together and I write through a mist of tears, even almost two years after the death from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis of the iconic Senor Lobo, whom I don’t believe I ever met. But I have been a huge fan of the work of Simone Lasswell from the first moment I saw her ceramic work at Renegade Clay, heaven knows how many years ago. Lobo/Charlie was her husband. Continue reading

Anderson III: In Key West: I was 37 and I was home

In Key West: I was 37 and I was home

Peter Anderson: My Life

As told to Mark Howel

Continuing with Part 3 of 3 parts of the biography of Peter Anderson, who came up with the slogans and policies that identified the Conch Republic as a “Sovereign State of Mind,” seeking only to bring more “humor, warmth and respect to a world in sore need of all three.” This year’s Conch Republic Celebration is April 18-27.


Chapter 6


I arrived in Key West from New York, driving a 1972 Cadillac El Dorado with red leather seats and $2,000 in my pocket. The first thing I saw was the Sunset Celebration with its buskers, lovely ambiance and sunset itself. Continue reading

Demystifying the Florida education finance program

Demystifying the Florida education finance program



If you are lucky enough to be retired and on Medicare, each month you receive a summary of medical billing related to your doctor and hospital visits, charges for medical tests and procedures, etc. It reads something like this: your doctor charged $489 for an office visit, Medicare approved $176, Medicare actually paid your doctor $114 and you may be billed $72 (for which you never receive a bill). Then you get another similar financial summary from you secondary medical provider. All of which you probably understand almost nothing. Continue reading