Scene & Heard by Heidi Kurpiela

Scene & Heard 10.07.10

Posted October 6, 2010 at 6:00 am

by Heidi Kurpiela

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+ Gallery owner featured in People
Sarasota gallery owner Lori Frary spent last weekend in New York City rubbing elbows with pop singer Natasha Bedingfield at Hotel Indigo’s “Locals Know Best” VIP event.

Last month, Frary, owner of Frary Gallery, in the Rosemary District, won a national contest sponsored by the hotel chain and People magazine after submitting a 75-word essay on why she thinks her neighborhood is the best in the country.

Of course, Frary had no problem bragging about her funky neighborhood. When she opened her gallery on Fifth Street a year ago, she began championing the area so passionately that she was elected president of the Rosemary District.

“Of course, I also included the fact that I had an Indigo hotel right around the corner from my cool little urban jungle neighborhood,” Frary says. “Several weeks later, I got a phone call from someone at People, which was pretty funny because I was like, ‘Yeah, whatever.’ I thought it was a joke.”

Frary was one of four winners in the United States to be flown to New York for a three-day trip, which included a private Bedingfield concert.

Frary’s entry is featured in a full-page Hotel Indigo ad, which ran Oct. 1 in People.

+ ‘Antigone Now’ starts Sarasota tour
Playwright Melissa Cooper’s “Antigone Now” has already begun to tour the community and area high schools. Inspired by Sophocles’ “Antigone,” the play marks the return of the Asolo Rep touring play and follows the story of a young woman’s struggle up against the principles of an uncompromising authority.

Directed by Dmitry Troyanovsky, who received rave reviews for his direction of the conservatory’s “The Bacchae” and “Machinal,” the play has only one stage performance: 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 8, in the Asolo Rep’s Cook Theatre. For more information or to book a performance, call 351-9010, Ext. 3306, or visit

+ Ray Peper plays dress-up in Baltimore
Those of us in Sarasota already know how awesomely ostentatious Ray Peper’s costumes are. Now the folks in Baltimore will, too.

Peper, the owner of John Carl Spa & Salon, flew to Maryland this week for the Oct. 8 opening of “What Makes Us Smile” at the American Visionary Art Museum. The mega exhibit, which was curated by “The Simpsons” creator Matt Groening, artist Gary Panter and AVAM founder Rebecca Hoffberger, celebrates the museum’s 15th anniversary and includes seven pieces by Peper.

The resilient and plucky Peper actually embellished the radiation mask he wore during his cancer treatments with gold metallic pipe cleaners, raffia and orange yarn. The piece is titled “Fire Fly” and will be on display along with the rest of AVAM’s “Smile” exhibit through September 2011.

“The museum will have 64,000 people pass through it during an 11-month period,” says Peper, who grew up outside Baltimore. “This has happened so late in my life. It’s like ‘whoa.’ I’m blown away and honored.”

+ Selby launches garden variety series
Marie Selby Botanical Gardens has taken a cue from the Van Wezel’s Friday Fest on the Bay and organized its own Sunday music series featuring four different acts throughout the month of October.

The Grammy-nominated Dan McMillion Jazz Orchestra kicks off the garden’s fall music series at 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 10, followed by the Sarasota Brass Quintet Sunday, Oct. 17.

Catch Melissa Cooper’s “Antigone Now” Oct. 24. Performed by the Asolo Repertory Theatre, the play precedes a short concert by the Sarasota Jazz Quartet, led by John Miller, principal bass of the Sarasota Orchestra.

Soul R Coaster will perform contemporary R&B and classic soul covers Sunday, Oct. 31, with a guest appearance by saxophonist Dr. Melvin Price.

For more information, call 366-5731 or visit

Below: Jazz trumpeter Dan McMillion


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