A look at our favorite events taking place this week.
7 p.m. at McCurdy’s Comedy, 1923 Ringling Blvd.
From Conan O’Brien to Comedy Central, Darryl Lenox has made his way around the stand-up comedy circuit. His special, “Darryl Lenox: Blind Ambition,” was the first hour-long stand-up special to ever appear on Starz Network. Runs through Sunday.
7 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 2050 Oak St.
$17; students $7
The Booker High School Visual and Performing Arts program presents the love, light and togetherness of the season through a variety of holiday songs. A second performance is 7 p.m. Friday.
SCD + Duke Ellington with Shane Chalke B.E. Jazz
7 p.m. at Jane B. Cook Theatre, FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail
See the future choreographers of contemporary dance as their careers blossom with Sarasota Contemporary Dance’s 16th season. The production presents the band Shane Chalke B.E. playing the music of Duke Ellington live alongside SCD dancers performing choreography inspired by the legendary composer. Runs through Sunday.
7:30 p.m. at Manatee Performing Arts Center, 502 Third Ave. W., Bradenton
Everyone knows the basics, but in case you’ve been living under a fallen pumpkin carriage for the past few decades, the Manatee Performing Arts Center will tell Rodgers + Hammerstein’s musical rendition of the peasant girl and orphan Cinderella on the fateful night she defies her two dreadful stepsisters and an even more terrible stepmother, resulting in — what else? — finding her Prince Charming. Runs through Dec. 12
7:30 p.m. at Holly Hall, 709 N. Tamiami Trail
Guest conductor William Waldrop will make sure there are no Scrooges in the house by the time they leave this Sarasota Orchestra concert. This “Great Escapes” performance features everything from “White Christmas” and “Winter Wonderland” to “The European Anthem (Ode to Joy)” and “Christmas at the Movies.” Runs through Sunday.
7:30 p.m. at SCF Neel Performing Arts Center, 5840 26th St. W., Bradenton
Get into the holiday spirit at the State College of Florida music program’s evening of holiday revelry. Performing ensembles include SCF’s Bradenton Symphony Orchestra, Concert Choir, Chamber Choir and Guitar Ensemble.
Siesta Beach Seafood and Music Festival
Noon to 9 p.m. at Siesta Key Pavilion, 948 Beach Road
Enjoy local seafood prepared fresh on-site using local and sustainable resources from gulf coastal waters by local restaurants and other establishments. This year’s performers include Kettle of Fish, Selwyn Birchwood and Gas House Gorilla on Friday; Jeremy Thomas, Shaw Davis & The Black Ties, Twinkle & Rock Soul Radio, Have Gun Will Travel and Damon Fowler Band on Saturday; and The Whole Band, Billy Rice Band and Soul Circus Cowboys on Sunday.
Jazz at Two: Synia Carroll Quartet
2 p.m. at Unitarian Universalist Church of Sarasota, 3975 Fruitville Road
Jazz Club of Sarasota presents Synia Carroll for the next installment of its weekly afternoon concert series. Carroll performed a lot of folk, rock and soca music before relocating to Sarasota to pursue a career in jazz. She will be joined by Billy Marcus, Don Mopsick and Stephen Bucholtz.
Bradenton Blues Fest
4-8 p.m. at LECOM Park, 1611 Ninth St. W., Bradenton
Catch some of the hottest blues acts around at the 10th anniversary of the Bradenton Blues Fest. The Friday lineup includes Cece Teneal and Soul Kamotio, Johnny Rawls, and Doug MacLeod. Proceeds from the festival support the nonprofit Realize Bradenton. Runs through Sunday.
5 p.m. at Hermitage Artist Retreat Beach, 6660 Manasota Key Road, Englewood
There are few more peaceful places for songs and readings than the Gulf of Mexico as the sky fades to a painting of pink and orange. So pull up a beach chair or blanket, and listen to Lisa E. Harris, a trained classical voice and opera singer, share songs and short stories. Award-winning playwright James Anthony Tyler will read from his play “Hop thA A.” A discussion on connecting with the world around us will follow. The event is also available to view simultaneously online.
Music on Main
6-9 p.m. on Lakewood Ranch Main Street, 8100 Lakewood Main St.
Can you get too much of a good thing? Not this good thing. The first Friday of every month, Lakewood Ranch throws a block party with food vendors, beer trucks, kids activities and music. This month, it’s Midnight Mama, whose music is R&B and soul with a dash of disco. Proceeds will benefit the Lakewood Ranch Community Fund.
Palm Avenue First Friday
6-9 p.m. at various galleries on Palm Avenue in downtown Sarasota
The first Friday of every month, art lovers take to the street (Palm Avenue, that is) and enjoy gallery openings, dining, live performances and more as members of the Palm Avenue Arts Alliance entertain residents and tourists with original artwork.
‘The SpongeBob Musical’
7 p.m. at The Bazaar on Apricot and Lime, 821 Apricot Ave.
Down in Bikini Bottom, SpongeBob SquarePants is living his best, quirky life. But when the town learns a nearby volcano, aptly named Mount Humongous, is about to erupt, they quickly lose all hope. It’s up to the ever-optimistic SpongeBob to save the day — and proving he’s more than a simple sponge is just a bonus, of course. Dingbat Theatre’s production runs through Dec. 19.
‘A Winter Wonderland’
7 p.m. at SCF Neel Performing Arts Center, 5840 26th St. W., Bradenton
Sit back, relax and tap your toes as the Manatee Community Concert Band plays many of your favorite seasonal tunes at its holiday concert, with Music Director Lynn Cleary and featuring soprano Doreen Curp.
Martina McBride: ‘The Joy of Christmas’
8 p.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail
Since her hit debut single “The Time Has Come” in 1992, Martina McBride has sold more than 23 million albums. The Grammy-nominated country singer is known for her country-pop music and her soprano singing range. Her tour of her 2018 album, “It's the Holiday Season,” features holiday favorites from "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" to "My Favorite Things."
3 p.m. at Northminster Presbyterian Church, 3131 61st St.
In need of something relaxing to do on a Sunday afternoon? (No, naps don’t count.) Check out Suncoast Concert Band, a local performance group featuring retired professional musicians and band directors alongside engineers, teachers and performers from various other professions and all walks of life united by their love of concert music.
3 p.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail
Stomp is a group of percussionists who use everyday objects — from brooms and dustbins to matchboxes and hubcaps — as instruments. The musical troupe has toured the world since its 1991 founding and won an Oliver award before opening on Off-Broadway in 1994 and West End in 2002.
A Classic Christmas with Frisson
7 p.m. at Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave.
We may not get a “White Christmas” in Florida, but Artist Series Concerts of Sarasota is bringing us Tchaikovsky’s “Nutcracker Suite” that can be enjoyed while donning sandals, so what more could you want? Frisson, an eight-piece ensemble known for its hypnotic and exhilarating sound, will perform several holiday classics including Arcangelo Corelli’s “Christmas Concerto,” “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” and “O Come, All Ye Faithful.”
Monday Night Jazz at the Cabaret with Liston Gregory III
7:30 p.m. at FST’s John C. Court Cabaret
The Jazz Club of Sarasota’s Monday Night Jazz Cabaret continues with Liston Gregory III. Gregory is a pianist known for his gospel approach to jazz. He will be joined by Ulysses Owens Jr. on percussion and Jose Villalpando on bass. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for dinner and drinks.
‘Sounds of the Season’
5:30 and 7:30 p.m. at Church of the Redeemer, 222 S. Palm Ave.
The Chamber Orchestra of Sarasota celebrates its annual holiday concert with classical music — including Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 — and seasonal favorites, featuring Carmen Bannon, Sam Nelson and Sun-Young Gemma Shin.
‘A Seraphic Fire Christmas’
7 p.m. at St. Boniface Episcopal Church, 5615 Midnight Pass Road
The Miami-based, Grammy-nominated vocal ensemble returns with traditional carols, contemporary arrangements and transcendent Gregorian chant to Sarasota for its annual candlelit Christmas performance. Featured songs include “Silent Night” and “Jesus Christ the Apple Tree.”
‘The Marvelous Wonderettes’
7:30 p.m. at Studio 1130, 3501 S. Tamiami Trail, Suite 1130
$29.50; preview $26.50; students $14
Roger Bean’s “The Marvelous Wonderettes” takes a loving look at the girl groups of the 1950s and ’60s. The story follows a quartet of high schoolers singing at prom as a last-minute replacement for the previously scheduled boy band. Their performance was a hit, but they never make it big. When they do a reprise performance at their 10-year reunion, everyone remembers the stars that should have been. Enjoy classics like “It’s My Party,” “Mr. Sandman,” “Respect” and “You Don’t Own Me.” Runs through Dec. 19.
‘America in One Room’
8 p.m. at FST’s Keating Theatre, 1241 N. Palm Ave.
What does it mean to be American? The answer will vary with every person you ask, and when eight strangers are invited to a convention and put in a room together, they have no choice but to address it. They find their personalities are as diverse as their beliefs as they debate topics from racism and homophobia to immigration and health care. Based on a real America in One Room convention held in 2019 for 500 diverse Americans to have open and respectful discussions, the play opens its world premiere at Florida Studio Theatre. Runs through Feb. 27, 2022.
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