The 100 Artists Show. Artists. Saltwater. Art. This twice-annual juried show, presented by Suntan Art Center, showcases fine art and mostly-local artists in one of the best open-air venues in Tampa Bay. Expect anything from plein air to jewelry with one commonality: the aesthetic. Feb. 20-21, Horan Park, St. Pete Beach. SuntanArt.org.
Localtopia. Celebrate all things local, including the arts in all their glorious local forms: music, writing, and, of course, plenty of local food and drink. Feb. 6, Williams Park, St. Petersburg. KeepStPetersburgLocal.org.
La Traviata. Oh, Violetta, you courtesan with a heart of gold: yes, real love is possible, and yes, before you die of consumption you may enjoy the thrill of finding your true soulmate. But wait: his father says what? And asks you to perform what noble act of renunciation? Well, at least there’s Verdi’s music to console you, yes? No? Violetta, can you hear me? Violetta! March 11-13, The Straz Center, Tampa. —Mark Leib
E.G. Barnhill: Old Florida in Daring Color. Author Gary Monroe (The Highwaymen: Florida’s African-American Landscape Painters) showcases E.G. Barnhill, a turn-of-the-(last)-century St. Petersburg photographer who used photography and uranium-dye coloring to create hand-colored landscape photography. This collection of his work showcases Barnhill’s best work. Available in March, University Press of Florida. UPF.com.
Michael Feinstein and Michael Francis Gala Concert. Support the Florida Orchestra with its sole fundraiser for the season while celebrating new maestro Michael Francis’s first season. Michael Feinstein, beloved champion of the Great American Songbook, will provide vocals and piano. The evening includes music from the Gershwins, Irving Berlin and Richard Rodgers. Jan. 30, Mahaffey Theater, St. Petersburg. TheMahaffey.com.
Politicking Politely: Florida Women’s Pages, Club Women and the Equal Rights Amendment. Relegated to the food and society pages of most newspapers, women journalists went unnoticed as they quietly used those same pages to effect social change. Kim Voss will talk about Florida women’s page editors and their impact on the state’s politics. Jan. 22, Gulfport History Museum, Gulfport. GulfportHistoricalSociety.org.
Wine, Whiskey and Wonder: Grape Escape. Meet for drinks and hors d’oeuvres, then get whisked away to an undisclosed location, all in support of the Museum of Fine Arts. The evening starts at the museum but where it ends is anyone’s guess. Feb. 6, Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg. fine-arts.org.
Fantastic Ekphrastic. Words meet the visual in, well, ekphrastic fashion as actors read local writers’ interpetations of 16 visual art pieces. The event, which debuted last year, was so successful that organizers have spread it over two nights for its 2016 incarnation. Feb. 19-20, Softwater Studios, St. Petersburg. KeepStPeteLit.org.
Bringing Home the Sunshine: Collecting Florida Souvenirs. Canned sunshine? Old postcards? Genuine Florida kitsch, on tap at the Tampa Bay History Center. From the archives of the Center, USF Tampa’s collections and private collectors comes a collection of Florida’s best gimcrack. From vintage marketing brochures to ceramic alligators, the Center has it all. Jan. 16-April 17, Tampa Bay History Center, Tampa. tampabayhistorycenter.org.
Current Issues in Constitutional Law. As the presidential primary draws closer, candidates throw around the U.S. Constitution like a hackey sack, but what does our Constitution actually allow? Michael P. Allen, a professor at Stetson Law School, discusses current and recent issues before the US Supreme Court. Mar. 29 and 31, OLLI at Eckerd, Palm Harbor and St. Petersburg (respectively). Eckerd.edu/olli.
Inside Story of Spring Training: Happy Hour with the Historian. From an after-thought winter road trip to a bustling business bringing major-league money to Florida, Charles Fountain (Under the March Sun: The Story of Spring Training) shares the story of spring training over cocktails. Mar. 10, St. Pete Museum of History, St. Petersburg. SPMoH.com.
On the radar...
Don Giovanni. Flaubert called it one of “the three finest things that God ever made” — the other two being Hamlet and the sea. Kierkegaard wrote about it in Either/Or, Shaw used it shamelessly in Man and Superman, and it plays a pivotal role in Isak Dinesen’s Babette’s Feast. Find out why this Mozart opera has impressed so many other artists (Gounod noted its “uninterrupted perfection”) and whether you, too, will become one of its adulators. April 8-10, Straz Center, Tampa. —Mark Leib
The Messenger. As songbirds disappear from the planet at an disturbing rate, scientists try to turn the tide. This film discusses how climate change and pesticides — among other factors — are decimating songbird populations. The film also offers a glimpse into the secret world of birds. April 8, The Studio @620, St. Petersburg. StPeteAudubon.org.
Faces of Alzheimers. An exhibit of 50 photos of people from Tampa Bay, all with Alzheimers. Photographer Sophan Theam uses her lens to bring more than statistics to the plight of those suffering from ths disease. Through March 1. Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, Tampa. 813-221-2222. fmopa.org.
Kumquat Festival. It looks like an olive and tastes like citrus. This annual festival offers the chance to taste kumquat pie, marmalade, cookies, and smoothies. The newly-crowned Mr. and Miss Kumquat (crowned Sat., Jan. 16) will preside. Tour kumquat groves and packing houses (Jan. 28-19) and enjoy all things kumquat. Jan. 30, Dade City. DadeCityChamber.org.
Wednesday2. From the intensely creative mind of Ciara Carinci, the driving force behind City of Imagination, comes Wednesday Squared. On the second Wednesday of every month, come hear curated writers read. Feb. 10, Mar. 9, City of Imagination, Gulfport.CityofImagination.info.
The Boy. In case the trailer didn’t scare you enough, sit through the full length film. A nanny takes a post in an isolated English village and, upon her arrival, discovers her charge is a doll that is (of course) haunted by the soul of the couple’s dead son. Opening Jan. 22.
Jane Got A Gun. A man. A woman. A man the woman spurned. A dangerous posse after the first man. The Old West. Plenty of love for the ladies and shoot-’em-up for the guys. Natalie Portman and Ewan MacGregor star. (Jan. 26)
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. True story: You may have hated reading Austen in college, but she was the John Hughes of the early 19th century. Take a popular storyline from early 1800s and add in some zombies? From where we sit, the only thing that could make this more awesome would be Colin Firth. (Feb. 5)
Deadpool. He’s not your typical superhero. Technically, he’s not a superhero at all. He does wear a mask, though. And spandex. However, he lacks the, uh, sophstication of, say, Batman or Superman. (Feb. 12)
Zoolander 2. The world of modeling made bitchy and violent, only funny. Allegedly. (Feb. 12)
Zootopia. A con artist fox (get it?) and a rookie cop bunny go Oliver Stone (but in a rather witty fashion) as they try and expose a conspiracy in their animated world overflowing with anthropomorphism. (March 4)
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Which hero does Metropolis want: Batman or Superman? The two set aside their battle and form a crime-fighting menage-a-trois with Wonder Woman to defeat Doomsday and Lex Luthor. For DC Comics fans, it doesn’t get any better than this. (March 25)
Elvis & Nixon. tells the story of the famous meeting between the King and our 37th presdent, forever emblazoned on our collective consciousness by the most-requested photo in the National Archives. (Apr. 15)
The Jungle Book. The classic story of an orphan and the wolves, bear, and panther who raise him in the jungle, told once again as only Disney can. In the 49 years since the orginal Disney release, advances in animation should make these two wholly disparate movies. (Apr. 15)
Everybody Wants Some. Director Richard Linklater (Dazed and Confused) reminds us how simultaneously awesome and awful the early eighties were (for music and fashion, respectively) as he tells the story of teammates on a college baseball team. (Apr. 15)
Captain America: Civil War. Politics ruins everything. Namely, when politcians try and regulate superheroes. In this case, it’s causing some tension between Captain America and Iron Man. Not cool, politicos. Not. Cool. (May 6)