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This Week in A+E: March 31 to April 6

Festivals dot the landscape, including Chalk, Film and La Musica, in an action-packed week of Sarasota arts and entertainment.

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Step Into My Chamber
SCF Symphonic Band
7:30 p.m. at State College of Florida Recital Hall, 5840 26th St. W., Bradenton

The SCF Symphonic Band will blow you away with a procession of small chamber groups inside the school's new 150-seat Recital Hall. Come hear brass, woodwinds, clarinet, percussion and more.
This massive shark drawn at the 2014 Chalk Festival set a world record. (Courtesy photo: Chalk Festival)
This massive shark drawn at the 2014 Chalk Festival set a world record. (Courtesy photo: Chalk Festival)




We live in a world of instant gratification. But chalk art allows you to appreciate the ingenuity of the creative spirit and the moment in which art is created.

For three days, artists from all over the world will set about crafting all kinds of lifelike images in Venice.

And then they'll wash them away. 

The Chalk Festival is returning from a two-year absence due to the pandemic, and artists are raring to go and create drawings of massive skill and scale. 

Where: Venice Airport, 610 Airport Ave. East, Venice
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on April 1 and 2; 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. April 3
Tickets: $5-$30

Debbie Keeton
2 p.m. at Unitarian Universalist Church, 3975 Fruitville Road

Debbie Keeton and company will lead you on a journey through jazz standards and the American Songbook. Keeton will be accompanied by drummer David Pruyn, pianist Stan Collins and bassist Mark Neuenschwander.

Opening Night: Sarasota Film Festival
7 p.m. at Sarasota Municipal Auditorium, 801 N. Tamiami Trail

The Sarasota Film Festival kicks off with "Porcupine," which stars Jena Malone as a struggling worker who is estranged from her family. Malone's character ultimately explores the world of adult adoption in her search for acceptance and community; and the actress will be one of the stars in town for the festival. She'll be featured in an in-person conversation about the film and her career at the Sarasota Yacht Club on Sunday.

In-Studio Performance Series featuring Monessa Salley
7 p.m. at SCD Home Studio, 1440 Blvd. of the Arts

Sarasota Contemporary Dance presents Dancing Through Life, a program built for the incandescent skill of Monessa Salley. Salley will also perform Saturday night, and that showing can be streamed virtually.

Fool*ish Dance Showcase
7 p.m. at Booker High School, 3201 N. Orange Ave.

Watch the talented members of the Booker High School Visual Arts Program as they dance their way through a performance designed to showcase their skills. The showcase will have a second performance on Saturday.

Legends and Laughter with Jimmy Mazz
7:30 p.m. at Studio 1130 - Crossings at Siesta Key, 3501 S. Tamiami Trail

It's one man and a whole catalogue of voices. Mazz will take on the outsized talents of legends like Rod Stewart, Michael Jackson, Joe Cocker and more as he moves through an astounding range of voices and stylings.

‘A Skeptic and a Bruja’
7:30 p.m. at Urbanite Theatre, 1487 2nd St.

It's the world premiere of a Rosa Fernandez play that deals with the paranormal and colors in the lines of today's virtual reality television climate. Runs through May 1.

Bramwell Tovey is providing a sneak peek of what his tenure as Music Director might be like. (Courtesy Photo)
Bramwell Tovey is providing a sneak peek of what his tenure as Music Director might be like. (Courtesy Photo)


Breaking Boundaries

It's back to the future with the Sarasota Orchestra, who will be welcoming Music Director designate Bramwell Tovey for this series of shows.

Tovey, the longtime former music director of the Vancouver Symphony, is excited to share the stage with his future charges and to showcase their skill on a program that features epic compositions by Ravel, Strauss, Coleridge Taylor and Mendelssohn.

Tovey will take over the reins of the Sarasota Orchestra full time next season, but now's your chance to get in on the ground floor and greet him with a hearty welcome.

When: 8 p.m., April 1 and 2; 2:30 p.m., April 3
Where: Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail
Tickets: $35-$98



FST Improv Presents: Comedy Freestyle
7:30 p.m. at FST’s Bowne’s Lab, 1265 1st St.

There's no rules and no boundaries here; whatever makes you laugh is fair game. The Florida Studio Theatre improv troupe will make it all up as they go along in the interest of cracking you up.

Jorge Caballero, Classical Guitarist
7:30 p.m. at Riverview Performing Arts Center, 1 Ram Way

Peruvian virtuoso Jorge Caballero will be the next guitar luminary to play in Guitar Sarasota's International Concert Series. Caballero has developed a worldwide reputation for taking orchestral masterworks by artists like Dvorak and Debussy and adapting them to his one-man exhibition of skill and showmanship.

Night of R&B and Jazz with Nu Jazz
Florida Cultural Group
8 p.m. at Manatee Performing Arts Center, 502 3rd Ave. W., Bradenton

It's live jazz and R&B with local artists Nu Jazz taking center stage at the Manatee Performing Arts Center.

Roy BookBinder & Todd Albright
8 p.m. at Fogartyville, 525 Kumquat Court
$22 members, $26 nonmembers

If you've got the blues, Fogartyville has the antidote. Ray BookBinder and Todd Albright bring consummate skill and decades of experience at playing the blues on large stages and small ones.



La Musica: Derek Han Memorial Concert
3:00 p.m. at Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave.

It's a tribute and a memorial to Derek Han, co-founder and associate music director of La Musica, and to the music that he loved. Beethoven, Brahms and Ravel will be on the menu, and Han's friend Wu Han will perform. 



Warsaw Philharmonic with pianist Bruce Liu
7:30 p.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail

The world renowned Warsaw Philharmonic will play Brahms Symphony No. 1, and Bruce Liu —the First Prize Winner at the International Chopin Piano Competition —will perform Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 1. Andrey Boreyko, Music Director of the Naples Philharmonic, will lead the orchestra.

It's Kenny G in SRQ.
It's Kenny G in SRQ.



Kenny G
8 p.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail

Kenny G is double billed in Sarasota; he's in town to screen his documentary for the Sarasota Film Festival on April 7 and also to perform at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall in his inimitable signature style.

He's been around the world and experienced a level of renown few musicians ever achieve, and as his documentary "Listening to Kenny G" shows, he has a sense of humor about it. 

If you see Tuesday's show and can't get enough, mosey on over to the Municipal Auditorium on Thursday.



7 p.m. at McCurdy’s Comedy Theatre, 1923 Ringling Blvd.
Tickets $25

Basile, who bills himself as "Everyone's Favorite Greek," will be at McCurdy's for seven shows starting Wednesday night. Basile has brought his show to Europe and Australia and all over the United States. 

La Musica Concert: Innocence and Illicit Passion
7:30 p.m. at Sarasota Opera House, 61 N. Pineapple Ave.

La Musica, which began all the way back in 1987, will continue with this show featuring the works of Mozart, Romberg and Franck. The festival will conclude with events on April 10 and April 13 at the Opera House.

'Twelfth Night'
8 p.m. at FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail

It's the opening night of a Shakespeare offering! Twelfth Night, directed by Jonathan Epstein, will open with a preview performance on Tuesday evening and will begin its normal theatrical run on Wednesday. The romantic comedy peppered with the Bard's memorable dialogue will run through April 24.

Sarasota Film Festival: American Minefields
6 p.m. at Historic Asolo Theatre, 5401 Bayshore Road

John Sims, a Sarasota-based activist and artist, will be the featured guest for this evening of cinema. Two Sims films will be shown, and then the artist will take part in a talkback about his life and career.