Scene & Heard by Heidi Kurpiela

Scene & Heard 07.29.10

Posted July 28, 2010 at 6:00 am

by Heidi Kurpiela

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+ Family bonds show at Art Center exhibit
Sears Portrait Studio has nothing on Art Center Sarasota’s current show, “The Observer and The Observed.”

The exhibit — a collection of paintings, sculptures and photography — opened last Thursday to rave reviews. The pieces, created by 16 different artists, depict four local families, each with a child struggling with emotional and behavioral issues.

The exhibit, which will be on display throughout the rest of the summer, was a collaborative mental-health awareness project organized by The Sarasota Partnership for Children’s Mental Heath and Art Center Sarasota.

Even if you don’t know the families illustrated in the show, it won’t take long before you’ll feel like you do.

Below: “Untitled,” by photographer Barbara Banks

+ Out with the old, in with the new
Asolo Repertory Theatre bid farewell last week to its development director, Deborah Ann Trimble.

Trimble, a senior staffer at the Asolo Rep since 2005, announced earlier this month that she’s moving her family to California, where she’ll work in a similar position at the La Jolla Playhouse.

Meanwhile, Sarasota Opera welcomed a new marketing director into its fold.

Michael Chang
is the former managing director for MC Strategies, a consulting firm for nonprofit visual- and performing-arts groups in New York.

The former executive director for a community concert series in White Plains, N.Y., Chang’s resume is extensive and includes positions on chamber music festival boards and the Hong Kong Tourism Board.

Chang, a San Francisco native and former opera singer, has replaced Richard Russell, who, after five years as the opera’s marketing director, left in April to helm Opera New Jersey.
+ ‘Master Daters’ seeks hopeful romantics
Does the girl in the pink necklace look familiar?

That’s The Observer’s lovable “Single in Sarasota” blogger and Community Editor Loren Mayo, who was caught surrounded by a film crew last Thursday at Ceviche in downtown Sarasota, while filming reality show “Master Daters.”

The brainchild of Sarasota radio show host Rochelle Herman, “Master Daters” is a reality show aimed at giving single men and women dating pointers. In short, it’s less of a blind date and more of an info date, or, as Herman calls it, “a faux date.”

Bachelors and bachelorettes are set up with a “master dater,” (in Mayo’s case, Gerry Healy) whose purpose is to provide feedback and analysis of your dating prowess — the good, the bad and the ugly — at the end of each date.

“This is not at all about embarrassing people,” Herman says. “It’s about finding out what you’re doing right and wrong.”

Stay tuned for Mayo’s analysis of the experience on her blog at To sign up for a master date, call 730-5555.

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