Do It Today: The Shaughraun at USF, VYB contemporary dance, meet St. Pete Times columnist Ernest Hooper and more

USF's College of Visual and Performing Arts puts The Shaughraun, Dion Boucicault’s confusing and amusing melodrama about an Irishman on the lam after being mistaken for a freedom fighter. It’s helmed by Olivier Award-winning director Michael Bogdanov, and it plays out like an 19th century episode of Rocky and Bullwinkle: noble heroes, dastardly villains, daring escapes, double crosses, love at first sight, and damsels in distress, all crammed into two hours of thrilling theater. (Pictured: Stephanie Smoak and Nick Horan as Claire Folliott and Captain Molineux in The Shaughraun. Photo by Anthony Morrison) Feb. 18-27, 8 p.m. Thurs.-Sat., 3 p.m. Sun., College of Visual and Performing Arts Theater I, University of South Florida, 4202 E. Fowler Ave., Tampa, $8-$12, arts.usf.edu.

It's a little late for Valentine's, but if you owe your dance-crazy sweetheart a belated gift, VYB Dance Company's Heart 2 Heart: Fall In Love Again contemporary performance is just the ticket. Proceeds from the evening of live musical performance and array of dance and choreography benefits Danita's Children's Center in Haiti. Contact [email protected] for more info. Thurs., Feb. 18, 8 p.m., Friday Morning Musicale, Tampa, $10 in advance, $12 at the door.

After the break: St. Petersburg Times columnist Ernest Hooper at Inkwood Books, The Florida Orchestra's Coffee Concert, New Seeds Open Mic, and Tampa RiverWalk for Wishes with Mayor Pam Iorio