A look at our favorite events taking place this week.
7 p.m. at McCurdy’s Comedy Theatre, 1923 Ringling Blvd.
This Florida native made it big when he moved to Los Angeles, appearing on “Tosh.0,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and “Laughs” on Fox within his first four years living in the city. Whether you’ve seen him on TV or his web series, “IMpaired,” on All Things Comedy network, this comic’s sure to kick your weekend off with a laugh. Runs through Sunday.
Phoebe Hunt and the Gatherers
7:30 p.m. at Fogartyville Community Media and Arts Center, 525 Kumquat Court
$15 in advance; $20 day of
As one of Rolling Stone Country’s “Top 10 New Country Artists You Need to Know,” Americana instrumentalist Phoebe Hunt uses her strong foundation in jazz and swing music to take audiences on a meaningful musical journey. Concertgoers are sure to be moved by Hunt’s return to Sarasota.
Don’t Miss: ‘Race’
It’s time to talk about America’s most controversial — and timely — topic. Multiple award-winning playwright and director David Mamet takes on the subject of race in a provocative new story about two lawyers, one black and one white, discussing whether to defend a wealthy white man charged with a crime against a black woman. Runs through May 12.
If You Go
When: 7:30 p.m. Thursday
Where: Venice Theatre, 140 Tampa Ave. W., Venice
Info: Call 488-1115.
7:30 p.m. at Stone Hall, Manatee Performing Arts Center, 502 Third Ave. W., Bradenton
This production is about a man who believed in the power of being different. Phineas Taylor Barnum created a show highlighting societal outcasts. From the oldest living woman to the smallest man, he saw potential — for worse or better — in making a spectacle of these differences. This is his story, from his start to his partnership with James A. Bailey. Runs through May 12.
Nik’s Pick: ‘Dance, Dance, Dance’
You’ll wish there were a dance floor at this Sarasota Orchestra performance, which serves as the final Great Escapes concert of the season. From the toe-tapping Brazilian Samba to tunes from a high-energy Las Vegas show, head bop along to this popular dance music from all corners of the globe. Runs through Saturday.
If You Go
When: 7:30 p.m. Thursday
Where: Holley Hall, 709 N. Tamiami Trail
Tickets: From $40
Info: Call 953-3434.
7:30 p.m. at Jane B. Cook Theatre, FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail
The final performance of the Sarasota Contemporary Dance season has become the group’s annual homage to the development of the company. This show will consist of diverse, fresh works by past company collaborators and/or dancers as well as popular works brought back to life onstage. This year’s production will feature Professor Emerita at the Florida State University School of Dance Gerri Houlihan; Academic Director and Associate Arts Professor at the New York University Tisch School of Arts Pamela Pietro; and an aerial work by SCD Co-Founder Rachael Inman. Runs through Sunday.
8 p.m. at Island Players Theater, 10009 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria
Expect the unexpected — and several laughs — in this classic British comedy about the sex-crazed, egotistical and shady businessman Garry Essendine. Celebrate Island Players Theater’s 70th anniversary with this hilarious play through May 12.
‘Uptown Views’ Opening
6 p.m. at Art Uptown, 1367 Main St.
Art Uptown gallery is debuting six artists at this reception. Enjoy works by oil painter Peter Christ, nature-inspired contemporary artist Leigh O’Rourke, mixed-media artist Laura Reed, painter Dan Reeves, abstract landscape artist Kathy Wright and realistic acrylic painter Marlane Wurzbach. Runs through May 24.
Rob Shanahan Photo Exhibit Opening
6 p.m. at Stakenborg-Greenberg Fine Art, 1545 Main St.
Rob Shanahan knows rock ‘n’ roll. As a musical artist photographer for icons such as Ringo Starr, the Rolling Stones and Paul McCartney, this guy’s got some stories to tell. Enjoy a meet and greet that will kick off the exhibition of his photos.
Music on Main: La Lucha Band
6 p.m. on Lakewood Ranch Main Street, 8100 Lakewood Ranch Blvd.
Lakewood Main will turn into an outdoor concert venue for this free monthly music series. Head to Lakewood Main Street for a block party featuring beer trucks, food vendors, a DJ, rides, kids activities and, of course, live music by Latin salsa music (with a hint of Jazz) group La Lucha. This event will benefit Lakewood Ranch Humane Society.
‘William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play’
7 p.m. at The Players Centre for Performing Arts, 838 N. Tamiami Trail
Get in the mind of 17-year-old William Shakespeare of Stratford in this Players Teens production. This totally legit (*cough* fictional) long-lost manuscript of the Bard’s first play features all of his most famous characters with familiar dialogue but in a completely new story. Runs through Saturday.
‘Tomorrow’s Voices Today’
7:30 p.m. at Venice Performing Arts Center, 1 Indian Ave., Venice
Key Chorale’s sixth annual collaboration concert with Sarasota County Schools will feature the Pine View, Venice and North Port High School choirs performing separately and alongside Key Chorale, Sarasota’s symphonic chorus.
Healy Guest House ‘Cocoon House’ Tours
1 p.m. at Cocoon House, 3575 Bayou Louise Lane
$40; members $30; students $20
Sarasota is a hub of modern architecture, and one of the crown jewels is architects Ralph Twitchell and Paul Rudolph of the Sarasota School’s 1950 Healy Guest House, aka Cocoon House. Tour this masterpiece of the Sarasota School of Architecture on Siesta Key’s Bayou Louise Lane to experience two bedrooms, one bathroom and the rest of the 760-square-foot cottage. Learn how the house got its name and much more on these new Sarasota Architectural Foundations tours.
Open House Wine Tasting
2 p.m. at Michael’s Wine Cellar, 1283 S. Tamiami Trail
Take your taste buds on a trip at this wine tasting. Sip dozens of international wines at this monthly open house. These casual, walk-about tasting events are great for date night, girl’s night out (or guy’s — wine doesn’t discriminate) or special occasions.
3 p.m. at Church of the Redeemer, 222 S. Palm Ave. Free, donations encouraged
Soprano Alexis Falanga is a Sarasota native and current vocal performance student at the University of Florida. She’s been given the opportunity of a lifetime — to sing and study in Italy with the OperaFestival di Roma — but she needs help funding the adventure. Attend (and donate at) her benefit concert to hear works by Verdi, Mozart, Rodgers & Hart, Hugo Wolf and many others.
‘Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street’
2 p.m. at FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail
Asolo Repertory Theatre takes on this winner of eight Tony Awards — a dark tale of love, murder and revenge in 19th-century London that continues to entertain audiences four decades after its premiere. Sweeney Todd is out for revenge on the judge who unjustly imprisoned him for 15 years, taking him from his wife and daughter. Todd’s need for vengeance becomes profitable when he teams up with meat pie shop owner Mrs. Lovett and opens a barber practice above her shop. Runs through June 1.
Organist Nathan Laube
6 p.m. at St. Boniface Church, 5615 Midnight Pass Road
Have you ever met an organist who has performed on four continents? Nathan Laube is currently the assistant professor of organ on the faculty of the Eastman School of Music and an international consultant in organ studies at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, UK. Still not impressed? Come listen for yourself.
Fine Arts Society of Sarasota Free Art Tours
10 a.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail
Ever wonder where the artwork on the walls of Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall comes from? The Fine Arts Society of Sarasota, currently celebrating its 50th anniversary, owns this 51-piece collection, and the first Tuesday of every month volunteer docents take interested art-lovers throughout the building to experience these works up close and personal.
8 p.m. at Gompertz Theatre, Florida Studio Theatre, 1265 First St.
This world premiere play starts off with an issue familiar to many American couples: fertility. So Susan and Martin Merrit hire Becca Connor to serve as a surrogate. It’s the perfect solution — until Becca is found dead. Runs through May 24.
Moxie Productions SRQ Original Showcase
9:30 p.m. at The Gator Club, 1490 Main St.
Let’s face it, the Sarasota music scene has a long way to go, but local music pioneer Shannon Fortner started Moxie Productions SRQ to get it on track. This monthly showcase highlights original music by local, regional or touring bands, and in honor of Harvey Milk Festival, this week’s show features all queer musicians: Mosephine, Myles Optimystic and Moxie Moxie. This show is for ages 21 and up.