A look at our favorite events taking place this week.
Black Diamond Burlesque Valentine Show
8 p.m. at McCurdy’s Comedy Theatre, 1923 Ringling Blvd.
These diamonds want to add some sparkle to your Valentine’s Day — vaudeville style. Enjoy a glamorous striptease performance by this big name in local burlesque. Whether you’re with your beau or flying solo, you’ll love this cabaret-style show.
Opening Reception for ‘Myakka River: A Florida Treasure’
1 p.m. at Clyde Butcher Photography — St. Armands Gallery, 55 S. Boulevard of the Presidents
There’s one Sarasota County artist who is so passionate about the environment, he believes you have to be immersed in it to capture its essence (you can find him hips-deep in swampy waters to get the perfect shot). Meet iconic nature photographer Clyde Butcher at the opening of his latest exhibit documenting Myakka River State Park. Ask him about his practice, get your book signed and help him celebrate the Florida ecosystem while connecting to a place that’s become his tranquil, healing sanctuary. Exhibit runs through May 15.
‘Life, Love and What I’ve Learned Along the Way’
5 p.m. at Longboat Key Education Center, 5370 Gulf of Mexico Drive Suite 202, Longboat Key
$30; members $25
Grab a glass of champagne and a bite of some fresh appetizers at this intimate evening of music. Enjoy performances by singer Rhonda Liss and pianist Alan Jay Corey, who will play classics by Hamlisch, Loesser, Rogers and Hart, Gershwin, Sondheim, Cole Porter and Legrand.
6:30 and 8:50 p.m. at McCurdy’s Comedy Theatre, 1923 Ringling Blvd.
Life is hard (especially in peak season). So grab a drink, a good seat and laugh off the stresses weighing you down with this hysterical evening of standup comedy. You deserve it. Jay Mohr is an actor, comedian, radio host and best-selling author with experience in everything from “Saturday Night Live” to performing opposite Tom Cruise in “Jerry McGuire,” so you’re in good hands. Runs through Saturday.
In Studio Series with Pamela Pietro and Michael Foley
7 p.m. at Sarasota Contemporary Dance Studio, 1400 Boulevard of the Arts, Suite 300
There are few artistic experiences more intimate than watching a performer inside the studio, and this installment of Sarasota Contemporary Dance’s in-house series revolves around an emotional topic: the #MeToo movement. Watch internationally acclaimed performer and New York University Tisch Department of Dance associate professor Pamela Pietro share this work about remembering, forgetting, misunderstanding and understanding the things that happen to women in this era. After the performance, check out the studio gallery exhibit by featured artist Kaytee Esser on display through March 30.
Nik's Pick: Circus Sarasota 2019
Step into this European-style Big Top while simultaneously stepping into a new world. Every year, the Circus Arts Conservatory curates an awe-inspiring show with a new cast, and this year’s acts include juggling, cyr wheel, teeterboard, hand-to-hand acrobatics, high wire, a modern blend of aerial dance and majestic horses and more. Runs through March 10.
If You Go
When: 7 p.m. Friday
Where: Big Top at Nathan Benderson Park, 140 University Town Center Drive
Tickets: $15 to $55
Info: Call 355-9805.
Martha Graham Dance Company
7:30 p.m. at FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail
Martha Graham was a dance goddess. Her Graham technique reshaped the art form, showing the extensive expressive capacity of the human body. Graham’s legacy has remained a major influence on the modern dance world well beyond her death, and The Sarasota Ballet is hosting the innovative company that carries her name — which is also the oldest dance company in America — for six thrilling performances. Runs through Monday.
‘Tigers Above and Tigers Below’
8 p.m. at Black Box Theater, New College of Florida, 5845 General Dougher Place
$15, free with subscription
What if you could watch the raw inner workings of a composer’s mind play out on stage? New Music New College is offering audiences that experience. Associate professor of movement at the FSU/Asolo Conservatory Eliza Ladd presents this commission in collaboration with New College students, which is her theatrical approach to composition and performance. Ladd combines the sounds of the human body with the sound of objects to create what she calls “Live Sound Action.” Runs through Sunday.
Lido Beach Winter Fine Art Festival
Paragon Festivals and Humane Society of Sarasota County
10 a.m. at Lido Beach, 400 Benjamin Franklin Drive
Looking for some original handmade artwork to brighten up your home? Or a belated Valentine’s Day gift? You can find all that and more at this annual festival. Artists of multiple disciplines come from across the U.S. to sell works in mediums ranging from painting and ceramics to mixed-media and woodworking. Runs through Sunday.
70th Annual Show
2:30 and 7 p.m. at Riverview Performing Arts Center, 1 Ram Way
Come celebrate Sarasota Chorus of the Keys’ 70th birthday at its annual show under the direction of gold medal award-winning artist Drew Kirkman. Enjoy a program filled with classic barbershop tunes, patriotic favorites and Broadway hits.
3 p.m. at First Church of the Nazarene, 1616 59th St. W., Bradenton
The Bradenton chapter of Sweet Adelines International is an all-female four-part harmony a cappella group specializing in the barbershop harmony style. For their annual show, these women will perform — with special guest quartet My Three Sons — songs from several beloved movies.
Don't Miss: ‘From the Heart: A German Requiem’
Choral Artists of Sarasota wants to extend a heartfelt “thank you” to its supporters these past 40 years, so what better way to do so than through song? This program includes one of the most moving pieces of the 19th century, Johannes Brahms’ “A German Requiem,” along with William Averitt’s setting of four spiritual works “Over Jordan.” This concert also features soloists baritone Marcus DeLoach and soprano Jenny Kim-Godfrey.
If You Go
When: 4 p.m. Saturday
Where: First United Methodist Church, 104 S. Pineapple Ave.
Tickets: $35; students $5
Info: Call 387-6046.
Opening Reception: Conspicio
5 p.m. at GAZE Modern, 340 Central Ave.
Art is all about exploration, and for local artist David Steiner, true happiness is discovering new, different styles through creative experimentation. Painter-turned-photographer Steiner is showing a dozen never-before-seen photos in “CONSPICIO,” an exhibit exploring his community but also his path to understanding his new artistic medium.
‘The Magic Flute’
7:30 p.m. at Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave.
Sarasota Opera is returning to one of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s most recognized operas after eight years. The setting is a mythical land that lies somewhere between the sun and the moon. The plot follows the heroic quest of Prince Tamino, who falls in love with the Queen’s daughter, Pamina, immediately upon seeing her portrait. Pamina’s been enslaved by the evil Sarastro, and under both the command of the queen and his own heart, Tamino sets out to rescue her with the help of a bird catcher and a magic flute. Runs through Feb. 27.
8 p.m. at Fogartyville Community Media and Arts Center, 525 Kumquat Court
$12; $15 day of
With a name like Dirty Cello, you’d hope this group knows how to mix things. From China to Italy, this group has shared its talent with audiences eager to hear blues and bluegrass music like they’ve never heard it before.
8:30 p.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail
If you don’t think it’s physically possible to receive a kiss from a rose on the gray, try going to this concert. This famed performer is known for dedicating his music career to expressing the multifaceted experience of love through music, and audiences can expect to hear hits “Kiss From a Rose” and “Crazy.”
Artist Talk, Q&A AND Book Signing: Mary Whyte
1 p.m. at Art Center Sarasota, 707 N. Tamiami Trail
$35 Nonmembers; $30 members; and free for Whyte workshop students
Watercolor painter Mary Whyte knows how to portray the human spirit through a portrait. She’ll share her artistic process, personal journey and several tips for other artists at this discussion that will also cover her five nonfiction books.
‘A Many Splendored Thing’
2:30 p.m. at Holley Hall, Beatrice Friedman Symphony Center, 709 N. Tamiami Trail
There’s a reason classical music plays in the background of romantic movie dinner scenes. Sarasota Orchestra is celebrating Valentine’s Day with this concert featuring works by Gershwin, John Williams and Verdi.
11 a.m. at Plantation Golf and Country Club, 500 Rockley Blvd., Venice
Artist Series Concerts of Sarasota is bringing one of the internet’s hottest duos to town for a lunch-and-listen concert. Chow down on grilled chicken while enjoying dynamic arrangements of classical hits played on the melodica — half keyboard, half harmonica.
‘The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee’
7:30 p.m. at The Players Centre for Performing Arts, 838 N. Tamiami Trail
$27; premium $32; students $14
There won’t be a test, don’t worry. This Tony Award-winning show (and its Grammy Award-winning music) follows six misfit kids from Putnam Valley Middle School as they fight for the most pined-after title in town: Spelling Bee Champion. Runs through March 10.
7:30 p.m. at Bowne’s Lab Theatre, Florida Studio Theatre, 1265 First St.
$18 to $39
In this timely play, a neo-Nazi charged with murder is assigned a Jewish lawyer. As said attorney works to create a defense for the skinhead, he’s forced to face the limits of his liberal mindset and personal struggles. This dramatic piece of theater is an unflinching look at the effects of hatred and the challenge of eliminating it. Runs through March 17.