Here's a look at the A&E news of the week.
Florida Studio Theatre’s cabaret shows always do well — hence why “Guitar Girls” has been extended three times — but nothing compares to “Unchained Melodies,” FST’s celebration of male harmony groups. A March 22 release from the theater company announced that the show is now the most successful cabaret in FST history, and by the time the curtain finally closes on it March 23, more than 19,900 people will have seen the production.
Take a bow (and a few more)
Speaking of extensions, Urbanite Theatre announced March 19 that it’s latest production, “In a Word by Lauren Yee,” has been extended until April 21. The story follows a married couple whose relationship is deteriorating after the disappearance of their young son. Co-Artistic Director Summer Wallce stars as Fiona, a mother who is coming to realize that she can’t trust anyone or anything — not even words.
Love in the air
Bradenton-based country music artist (and Lakewood Ranch High School graduate) Derek Lersch married his high school sweetheart, Mackenzie Wise, on March 2, and he filmed the music video for his second single (which doubled as their wedding song) the same night.“Forever and Always” will be released April 5 on iTunes, Spotify and other streaming services. He encourages fans to check out his concert the same day at 9:30 p.m. at the recently reopened Joyland.
There’s been a great deal of news on the restaurant front lately, so here are the highlights:
- Health-oriented casual restaurant Lemon Tree Kitchen opened March 19 in the former Louies Modern location at 1289 N. Palm Ave.
- The Coolinary restaurant on lower main street in downtown Sarasota closed last week after two-and-a-half years.
- Umbrellas1296, the new restaurant next to the Sarasota Opera House, reopened March 22 after it was forced to close for about a week to replace the sewer pipe.
- Fresh Mozzarella Pizzeria has replaced the former Ringling Pizza at 2289 Ringling Blvd.
These artists better make some room on their trophy shelf. On March 15, Florida Suncoast Watercolor Society announced the following local winners of its latest exhibit at the Studio at Gulf & Pine Gallery:
- First Prize: Bradenton artist Kathy Simon McDonald for “Chalk Artist III”
- Second Prize: Cortez painter Suzanna Spann for “New Year’s Eve”
- Third Prize: Lakewood Ranch artist William Perry for “Venice Beach Virtuoso”
- Honorable mentions: Graciela Giles of Bradenton for “Storm in the Canyon,” Kathy Houghton of Sarasota for “Lover Boy,” Lydia Kaeyer of Lakewood Ranch for “Friendship Sloop Race” and Linda Wokoun of Lakewood Ranch for “Three Crowns”
- The People’s Choice: Bradenton artist at Shough for “Shades of Red II”