Brad Meltzer at Stephane’s, 2006 N.W. Executive Center Circle, Boca Raton; 6 to 8 p.m.; free; 561/893-8838 or www.stephanesrestaurant.com
It’s not often we get No. 1 New York Times best-selling authors north of Coral Gables, but this evening, Brad Meltzer will grace Boca Raton book lovers with his presence at the Ameri-French restaurant Stephane’s. A 1988 alum of North Miami Beach High School, this law school graduate is known for his legal and political thrillers like “The Zero Game” and “The Inner Cirle,” and he lent his insider political knowledge to the wonderful but short-lived TV series “Jack & Bobby.” No stranger to controversies in around the Beltway, Meltzer has recently delved into the murky waters of nonfiction –his History Channel series “Decoded” explores conspiracy theories. The evening will include drink specials and signed copies of Meltzer’s books, should you choose to purchase any.
Opening day of “New Work Miami” at Miami Art Museum, 101 W. Flagler St., Miami; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; $4 to $8, free for students; 305/375-3000 or www.miamiartmuseum.org
Miami’s art culture is currently undergoing a dramatic, $220 million face-lift with a construction of a new art museum in Bicentennial Park. Slated to open next fall and designed by Tate Modern architects Herzog & deMeuron, the upcoming Perez Art Museum Miami will become the much-anticipated new home of the Miami Art Museum, a South Florida institution since 1996. But in the meantime, life goes on at MAM, including the opening of “New Work Miami,” a showcase of local talent mounted just in time for Art Basel. Running through May 12, “New Work Miami” will feature site-specific installations, sculpture, painting and photography by 10 top artists, including Bhakti Baxter, Sinisa Kukec, Loriel Beltran and Tom Scicluna.
Opening night of “The Wild Party” at Mizner Park Cultural Arts Center, 201 Plaza Real, Boca Raton; 8 p.m.; $35 to $50; 954/300-2149 or www.outretheatrecompany.com
As you may have heard over the summer, the Caldwell Theatre Company is now officially as dead as Methuselah. But as the stage lords taketh away, so too do they give, in the form of new and improved theater companies in Boca Raton. The Women’s Theatre Project recently migrated to Boca Raton, and the Boca Raton Theatre Guild is now a professional company. And now a new company will share the Mizner Park space often occupied by these institutions. It’s called Outre Theatre Company, a name that is hard to pronounce but, hopefully, easy to appreciate onstage. Its first production, opening tonight and running through Dec. 9, is Andrew Lippa’s “The Wild Party,” a jazz age retelling of a John Moncure March poem about sex, booze, vaudeville performers and one dramatic party, set in 1928. A cast of 15 will perform in this ambitious debut.
Lea Vendetta calendar release party at Dada, 52 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach; 8 to 11 p.m.; free; 561/330-3232 or www.sub-culture.org
Tattoo artist, painter, model, force of nature – Boynton Beach’s Lea Vendetta is all of these things and more. And now she’s got her own calendar, yet another reason for single men to gawk at her all year long. Born in Paris – a city homaged in many of Vendetta’s artworks, on the body and elsewhere – and exhibited in tattoo magazines around the world, Vendetta received national attention when she was one of 10 tattoo artists to compete in this year’s Spike TV reality series “Ink Masters.” The redheaded vixen with full-body tats will appear at Dada tonight to celebrate her 2013 calendar, and the event will include the final judging of a “tattooed beauties” contest, with enviable prizes for the top competitors.
Clay Aiken at Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach; 8 p.m.; starting at $25; 561/832-7469 or www.kravis.org
It wouldn’t be the holiday season without a selection of Kravis Center Christmas concerts by some of the best-selling crooners in the business. Clay Aiken, the blue-eyed soul singer and author known for his boyish charms, ravenous fan base and six million records sold, will perform a family-friendly Christmas set accompanied by an orchestra. The tour will include many selections from his platinum-selling “Merry Christmas With Love” album, including “Winter Wonderland,” “Silent Night” and Joy to the World.” Amazon.com’s music critic praised the record’s unironic seriousness: “Expect tree trimmers to put aside their tinsel and contemplate the meaning of the season.” He even makes a Celine Dion song enjoyable (“Don’t Save it All For Christmas Day”), which is really saying something.
Men Without Hats at Grand Central, 697 N. Miami Ave., Miami; 10 p.m.; $15; 305/377-2277 or www.grandcentralmiami.com
The Canadian group Men Without Hats has released at least 85 songs since 1982, in an on-again/off-again career spanning three decades and nine releases. But most of the world knows them for a single hit: “The Safety Dance,” whose two minutes and 44 seconds of synth-driven cheese inspired many a bell-bottomed, big-haired clubgoer to dance the robot in the heyday of New Wave music. The group’s videos from the period can still induce nostalgic cringes, but their one-hit wonder status is undeserved; many of today’s electronic-driven bands would be lucky to record albums as consistently catchy and dance-able as Men Without Hats did – and still does. The band is touring behind its comeback album “Love in the Age of War,” but expect most of its set to date back to the time of the Reagan administration.
Anna Haas at Arts Garage, 180 N.E. First St., Delray Beach; 7 p.m.; $20-$30 in advance, $5 more at the door; 561/450-6367 or www.artsgarage.org
The intimate cabaret setting of the Arts Garage should make a perfect home for Anna Haas, a fiery, ginger-haired singer-songwriter whose energetic act involves climbing down from the stage, interacting with the audience and engaging in her own dance choreography. A natural performer who was born in America’s music city – Nashville – and trained at prestigious programs in Boston and New York, Haas has directed Broadway shows and enjoyed an eclectic background in theater, dance and installation art before settling on music. Her sound is equal parts soul, blues, jazz and brooding indie music recalling everyone from Patty Griffin to Lady Gaga, making for quite a diverse sonic stew.