Podcast #10: Voodou, La Noche Miami, Mendelssohn

By | March 24th, 2011 | No Comments

The raising the dead dance.

On this week’s podcast, we take a sonic journey through the weekend-that-was in Miami, with the spinning spokes of La Noche Criterium (March 17), the mournful melody of Big Night in Little Haiti (March 18), and the sublime strings of the New World Symphony’s Mendelssohn mini-concert (March 19). For those of you who noticed and, bless your hearts, lamented that we did not post a podcast last Thursday, we are planning to do them every two weeks from now on to give us more time to do the job right.

Make sure to subscribe to our podcast RSS feed to get a free mp3 download beamed your way every other Thursday morning. If you have any suggestions — a person to interview, an event to forecast, a worthy reupholsterer to send Michael Tilson Thomas’s way — please email us at podcast@beachedmiami.com.

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Photos from La Noche Miami Criterium

By | March 18th, 2011 | 4 Comments

Riders on their mark at La Noche Miami Criterium in Wynwood

The Bicycle Film Festival kicked off last night with La Noche Miami Criterium, two races (geared and fixed) in Wynwood. The 15-lap geared ride was sick, with the spandex-sealed velo riders blazing down the main stretches (NW Third and Fifth avenues), taking the corners at 45-degree angles, and clocking the ten-block course in under 1:30.

The fixed race was sickening, with the stomach-turning sight and sound of one rider slamming full-speed into a wall as he rounded the corner at NW Third and 25th Street. The ambulance came. I didn’t expect the kid to ever walk again, let alone ride a bike, but he actually ended up sending the EMTs away after getting up on his feet. At least one other rider got bloodied in the accident, but that didn’t stop the rest of the cyclists from finishing the race. Hardcore.

Between riders and spectators, about 75 people showed up for the BFF’s first night in Miami, the 38th city on its tenth-anniversary world tour. The festival is four days long, with film programs Friday and Saturday nights at O Cinema, and a group ride from Wynwood to the beach on Sunday. There is an after party every night. You can get all the details at bicyclefilmfestival.com.

Here are some photos from the La Noche Miami Criterium.

Pulling tricks at O Cinema before the races

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Interview with Bicycle Film Festival founder Brendt Barbur

By | March 9th, 2011 | No Comments

Produced by Johnny Knoxville and Spike Jonze, BFF opener The Birth of Big Air chronicles the career of legendary BMXer Mat Hoffman.

In its tenth year, the Bicycle Film Festival will be riding to Miami next week for the end of a 38-city, international tour that started back in May. Festival director Brendt Barbur founded BFF in 2001 after being hit by a bus in New York City, where he still lives. It wasn’t Barbur’s first traumatic experience on a bike: He had gone through someone’s windshield in San Francisco a few years before. Amazed at the reaction of the police, EMTs, and bystanders — “It was as if it was my fault, and I was so stupid for riding a bike” — Barbur decided to launch the BFF as “a platform to celebrate the bicycle” through music, art, and film. In the last ten years, he has organized 130 festivals around the world, including one in Miami in 2009.

This year’s fest kicks off next Thursday (March 17) with the unsanctioned La Noche Miami Criterium race in Wynwood. On Friday and Saturday, O, Cinema will screen bike films all evening, including The Birth of Big Air, Empire, and Riding The Long White Cloud, followed by after-parties in South Beach and downtown with Brooklyn Brewery specials (yum). Then Sunday at 2 p.m., there is a Bike To The Beach group ride taking off from Wynwood (2801 Biscayne Blvd), followed by “Chocolate Sundays” at Purdy Lounge Sunday night.

With BFF Miami set to roll into town, I spoke to Barbur by phone on Tuesday about how getting hit by a bus led him to start an international film festival, the state of Miami’s bike scene, and the cure to America’s car sickness. It was a late-afternoon, rambling interview, so I bucked the Q&A format for a series of Barbur’s thoughts on different topics.

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