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Memorial Day celebration

by Roger Pettingell

A day to honor those who sacrificed

Events to consider for this holiday and the summer ahead

Superboats make their way out to the Gulf of Mexico
The Grand Prix returns with races on July 1 and 2.

I hope that you have good plans today for Memorial Day. It is significant that we honor those who have fought for our freedoms. There are many events today, in many different ways we can celebrate from concerts to parades. The weather is expected to cooperate, celebrate those heroes with family that this day is recognized for.

If you read this in time, the Sarasota Memorial Day Parade begins at 10 AM on Main Street, starting at Osprey Avenue and ending at J.D. Hamel Park. This is the Battle of Midway 75th anniversary and a scholar of that famous sea battle, Dr. Jim D'Angelo will be the keynote speaker in the park. Bring lawn chairs and coolers to Philippi Estate Park where the Sarasota Concert Band will perform from 2 to 4 PM in its Memorial Day Concert. There is a $5 fee for adults at this event.

In Venice the Memorial Day Celebration will begin at 10 AM in Patriots Park, followed by an open house at the American Legion Post 159 in Venice. Memorial Day will be celebrated at Veterans’ Monument Park in Bradenton, near the Riverwalk, starting at 9 AM.

Those in the military will receive a salute and a discount at participating businesses on St. Armands Circle. A Military Appreciation decal will appear on businesses with special offers from 10 AM to 8 PM to all those who served in the military. Jungle Gardens in Sarasota will offer a free entry with one paid entry to anyone who served. They are open today for this special from 10 AM to 5 PM.

Summer is a time to enjoy Sarasota

It is the unofficial start to summer, a good time to start making plans for some of the summer activities and events that are coming our way.

The Sarasota Music Festival officially starts next Sunday, a three week series of concerts by professional and highly talented student musicians. The first concert is the Artist Showcase on June 8. A different Artist Showcase will be performed each Thursday during the festival in Holley Hall beginning at 4:30 PM. Beginning at 8 PM each week in the Sarasota Opera House, chamber music will fill the air in the Friday Festival series. The Saturday Symphony series each week at 8 PM in the Opera House is an ongoing tradition.

Over 500 students nationwide auditioned for 60 spots in the Rising Star series of movements and chamber music. These ensembles of students will perform on different days in Holley Hall. Renowned scholar, educator and pianist, Robert Levin will give an insightful lecture, Saturday, June 17 in Holley Hall starting at 1:30 PM. I will write more about the festival next Monday in my REALTALKplus™ article. Tickets are available from their Music Festival website.

Thousands trek to Sarasota, Independence Day weekend, for the annual Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix races with best viewing on Lido Beach. The race dates are Saturday and Sunday, July 1 and 2, but the activities surrounding the Grand Prix begin June 24 with the Bob Rizi Memorial Golf Classic at The Meadows Country Club. There is a car show planned on Main Street at Lakewood Ranch, a Boat & Personal Watercraft "Fun Run" at Marina Jack and on June 28 there are two events, “The Friendliest Catch” Fishing Tournament that is by invitation only at the Sarasota Outboard Club on City Island, and the Grand Prix Comedy Night special at McCurdy's Comedy Theatre featuring comedian John Carfi. This year the AquaX and P1 Superstock races will be streamed live on Facebook. I will provide more information in my REALTALKplus™ article that week, June 19.

The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, local theaters, farmers markets, festivals, fireworks and concert activities are all listed on our upcoming events page. Take civic pride in the events of today and enjoy the summer.

Last week I listed a wonderful penthouse in Marina Tower ideally located in the heart of downtown Sarasota, this one-of-a-kind residence is a showcase of panoramic views overlooking the bay, Gulf of Mexico, a bustling city life and Marina Jack. Please contact me at (941) 387-1840 for an exclusive showing or if you have a property to sell or buy.

Address List Price Media Slideshow
1233 N. Gulfstream Drive $3,695,000 Video  

 

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Longboat Key prepares for the storm season

by Roger Pettingell

Friday Seminar is a prelude to season

Forums to include FEMA, weather and Red Cross services

Loose Sailboat
Don't forget your boat - Batten down the hatches.

Although we have been fortunate to be out of the direct paths of hurricanes for many years, last year’s Hurricane Matthew and Hermine sent a message to us that we should prepare for the season that officially begins next Thursday on June 1. The potential development of an El Niño effect should raise awareness for the possibility of a major storm.

In a Tropical Meteorology Project report issued by Colorado State University, 2017 is expected to have a lower level of activity with 11 named storms, four of those may develop into hurricanes. The cause for concern is that they included a one in four chance that one of those storms will hit Florida this year.

During the peak season from August to September it is expected that El Niño will weaken, but that may not be good news. Since El Niño refers to warmer ocean temperatures in the Pacific, the westerly winds it creates in the Atlantic has an opposite effect, reducing the chances of developing storms in our section of the planet. If they become strong during these peak months we could have an early end to the hurricane season. The expected weaker to moderate El Niño prolongs the season.

Preparedness is key for the keys

Longboat Key has had an initiative the last 14 years to provide its residents with the most up-to-date information on the subject. This year special guests headline their annual Disaster Preparedness Seminar this Friday in the Resort at Longboat Key Club, Harbourside Ballroom. Government programs, weather patterns and disaster relief forums will be led by Craig Fugate, Bob Harrigan and Steven Guetschow.

Craig is the former director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Florida Division of Emergency Management. As keynote speaker he will be able to best discuss the role of those two agencies in emergencies. A request for FEMA is initiated by the governor to act on any disaster that overwhelms the resources of the state. They can assist to provide communications, transportation, security and financial relief in times of a disaster.

Bob is a meteorologist with our local ABC affiliate on Channel 7 news. He has a nice ability to translate the complexities of the weather to an audience for understanding as to how they track and what may happen in a storm. Steven represents the American Red Cross, he is the acting disaster program manager for Southwest Florida. The Red Cross is instrumental in providing assistance to residents in times of a disaster. The three-hour seminar starts at 3:15 p.m. but reservations must be made by calling (941) 383-2466. There are special gifts for the first 125 to register for this free event.

REALTALK™ #92
Mike Mailliard of MIC Insurance shares some ideas on protecting your valuable assets in REALTALK™ #92.

In my REALTALKplus™ article June 20, 2016, I outlined more preparations for hurricanes. The information holds true for this year. In that article there is information on local shelters in Manatee and Sarasota counties. There is a link to my REALTALK™ #92 video, the second of a two-part series in which Mike Mailliard of MIC Insurance on Longboat Key discussed the steps that are necessary to ensure the safety of critical documents and 20 to 30 irreplaceable personal items.

There is information in that article on what to pack in times of an emergency. In all cases it may go without saying that your personal preparation for emergencies should not wait, they should be laid out well in advance. In times of a disaster, good preparation will be key to saving your heirlooms and possibly your life. You can start with a good communications plan, that may be the first to break in a storm.

Sarasota has links on its website for hurricane preparations which include what to do before a storm approaches to links for disaster relief if a storm destroys property. The Manatee County website has similar links and information on the history of hurricanes in Florida.

So, on November 30 we can all breathe a sigh of relief that we avoided a direct hit from a major storm or hurricane. The only hurricane we will have survived is the one that was poured in a glass with ice.

Theaters in the arts cultural city, Sarasota

by Roger Pettingell

Variety in Sarasota's performing arts

Most venues within walking distance downtown

Entrance to the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall - Top celebrities perform here in over 100 events each year.

The opportunities for attending a play, musical or concert downtown is pleasantly astonishing. That is one reason why voters of American Style Magazine ranked Sarasota as the top arts destinations in the nation for populations of 100,000 or less. The histories of the venues are as intriguing as the performances themselves, starting with one of the most notable in the area, the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.

Performances at the Van Wezel are scheduled year round and are mostly one-day shows from well-known stars that are on a route that includes The Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater. With over 100 performances scheduled this year, more than half are of cultural significance with ballet, Sarasota orchestra and town hall lectures. More than 25,000 students in the neighboring four counties are introduced to the arts each year here.

Attending a show at the Van Wezel is an experience in itself. Arrive early to stroll the banks of Sarasota Bay or socialize with others with fine dining at Mattison's Bayside. Even the color of hall is a sample of royalty, a purple and violet combination suggested by Olgivanna Lloyd Wright, the widow of famed architect, Frank Lloyd Wright. Although there are 1,736 seats in the hall, the more popular artists do sell out their shows. The future of the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall is in question as community leaders discuss the acres of property on the bayfront, either to replace the building constructed in 1969 or to design a downtown community that includes this historic structure.

Long tradition of opera at the Sarasota Opera House

Sarasota Opera House
The Sarasota Opera House, open since 1926.

You can walk among the theaters in downtown Sarasota, some that are close to the Van Wezel. The Sarasota Opera House is host to operas, a venue for the annual Sarasota Film Venue each April or the upcoming Sarasota Music Festival, June 8-24. Opened originally in 1926, the building that seats 1,119 patrons was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1984. Currently the opera house is owned by the Sarasota Opera Association, it was once used as a performance hall that included stars such as Will Rogers and Elvis Presley. The Greatest Show on Earth movie had its world premiere at the opera house in 1952 with its stars Charlton Heston and Dorothy Lamour in attendance. The summer HD at the Opera House series begins its run May 21 with high definition operas, ballets and plays including The Marriage of Figaro, Tristan and Isolde, Madama Butterfly, Faust, Swan Lake and Macbeth.

The Players Centre for the Performing Arts seeks a new beginning

Across Tamiami Trail near the Van Wezel is the Players Centre for the Performing Arts with more than 86 years of performances in downtown Sarasota. Actors bring some of the best Broadway plays of the day to the stage with daily performances. Their Summer Sizzler Series begins June 14 and includes such plays as Beau Jest, The Marvelous Wonderettes and Arsenic and Old Lace. The series concludes with the premiere of the New Play Festival winner, Mammoth Bones, August 22-27. The organization may lose its downtown location, having put the building up for sale this month. Its plans are for a three-theatre complex in Lakewood Ranch to be built within three years.

Social gatherings for the arts with the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe

REALTALK interview with Nate Jacobs of the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe
Interview with Nate Jacobs of the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe in REALTALK™ #101.

Nearby is the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe on 10th Way downtown, entertaining audiences with plays and musical performances by talented local actors. It was founded in 1999 by its current artistic director, Nate Jacobs. The WBTT is expanding also with its current Heart & Soul Campaign that is raising funds for a new performance hall that will accommodate more guests and continue to sell out their shows. A popular show each December is the Black Nativity which has become a tradition of the troupe. Nate Jacobs adapted this show from the poetry of Langston Hughes. Currently running is the play, Dearly Departed, a comedy about a funeral for the family’s departed father. I proudly sit on the board of directors for the WBTT.

A village of theaters within a city at Florida Studio Theatre

A number of theaters in one block comprise the Florida Studio Theatre complex of Keating, Gompertz, Goldstein and John C. Court Cabarets, and Bowne's Lab Theatre. Since 1973 the theaters provide the heart for a series of mainstage productions, cabarets, education and new play development in contemporary settings. Every Saturday the FST Improv Troupe delight audiences with their improvisational comedy shows. Now in its ninth year, FST invites improv troupes from around the globe to the Sarasota Improv Festival for three days. This year, July 13-15, there are 22 troupes competing in the festival.

Historic Asolo, Cook and Mertz at the FSU Center for the Performing Arts

On the grounds of the Ringling Museum is the home of the FSU Center for the Performing Arts, a series of three theaters. Originally constructed in 1798 in the Italian town that bears its name, for 132 years the Historic Asolo Theater was the home of famed Italian actors and actresses when it was dismantled in 1930 and placed in storage. Following World War II the Ringling purchased the theater and its four tiers of seats to be placed on the grounds of the museum. There it remained in a gallery until the late 50s when it was reconstructed as a home for modern theatre. It was moved once again to its current location on Bay Shore Road on the museum grounds and renamed the Historic Asolo Theater. The building will be closed to tours and performances through June 1, as the new Kotler-Coville Glass Pavilion is in construction next to it. The first performance is scheduled June 13 through July 29 with Bello Nock, a comedic acrobat in IncrediBello!

Asolo Repertory Theatre
The world premiere of Beatsville is the current repertory production in the Mertz Theatre.

Across the street are the Mertz and Cook theatres, home of the Asolo Repertory Theatre and the FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training. The Mertz Theatre has a similar history as the Historic Asolo Theater, first constructed as an opera house in Dunfermline, Scotland where it stood for 86 years before it was purchased for the Ringling and moved here in 1903. The 500-seat theatre is in use primarily for plays by the Asolo Repertory company, a group of professional actors. The smaller 161-seat Cook Theatre in the same building is used as a theater for small-cast repertory shows and for the Florida State University MFA Acting program. No more than 12 students are admitted to this storied College of Fine Arts program that has been training actors for 40 years. The Theatre is named after Jane Bancroft Cook, a philanthropist and heir to the family owned Dow Jones & Company, where she served on its board for 36 years before her death in 2002.

There are other theaters and cinemas in the area and many more from Bradenton to Venice, the heritage this city has for arts and entertainment date back to John Ringling and his circus. It is one of the many reasons that many people take up residence here in this part of sunny Florida. Please contact me at (941) 387-1840 if you have a property to sell or buy.

References to other entertainment venues in Sarasota

New downtown construction update

by Roger Pettingell

1,500 new residences within two years

Downtown Community Redevelopment Authority district update

Marina Jack and the VUE in downtown Sarasota
VUE Sarasota - When completed this summer the VUE Sarasota will have 144 news residences and 255 hotel rooms overlooking Marina Jack.

A lot has happened to downtown Sarasota new residence construction since I last reported on the progress that is in the Downtown Community Redevelopment Authority district. That is much of the area in the 34236 zip code but does not include Bird and Lido keys. Most recently Golden Gate Point was added to the reporting. In all, 1,500 new residences will be in construction or completed within the next two years. The inventory is good, contact me to see any active listing that I mention in this article.

Downtown Sarasota

One of the largest projects and most visible on the skyline is the 144 luxury residences and 255 hotel rooms associated with the Westin Hotel chain is VUE Sarasota. Retail stores and three ballrooms are also in the mix. But labor shortages pushed the occupancy dates to an expected July 2017 completion. There are four residences remaining for sale at the VUE, starting at $962,000 for a 1BR/1.5BA unit with two-car garage to a 3BR/3.5BA penthouse on the 18th floor with three assigned parking spaces listing for $3,399,000.

Rising quickly from the ground on the other side of Tamiami Trail at the old CoCENTRIX property, the BLVD properties have two active sales on the seventh and 16th floors. Completion date for this 18-story community is expected in May of next year. The building will have 8,300 square feet of office space and its own restaurant. An infinity style pool will be constructed on the rooftop overlooking Sarasota and the skyline.

Three of the 10 two-bedroom, two-bath residences are active in the MLS for the Courtyard at Citrus Square in downtown Sarasota. These luxury condominiums above retail shops and restaurants are expected to open in July. The common areas feature a fireplace with sitting area in a private courtyard. These remaining units are offered with one carport from $385-$404,000.

1500 State street, Sarasota
Two of 20 residences remain for sale at 1500 State Street, expected to be completed in November.

There are two projects on State Street that when completed will offer 177 of the new residences in Sarasota. At 1500 State Street, 20 properties in the $390,000 range have two remaining active listings with a completion date around the end of this year. The bigger project in the 1400 State Street block, The Mark community, will be completed first quarter of 2019. A penthouse is for sale at $1.9 million, a 3BR/3.5BA home with 2,649 square feet of living space. Luxury abounds on the fifth-floor amenities of The Mark that includes a resort-style pool with private cabanas and fire pit lounge. A Resident’s Club Room, News Room and fitness center are also planned for this floor. Five properties are currently for sale in The Mark.

A certificate of occupancy is awarded to another townhouse community of 40 properties on Cosmopolitan Court. The Q, just south of Main Street in the Laurel Park neighborhood has seven active listings, mostly selling between $600 and $990,000. There is a three-bedroom, three-bath residence that is offered for $1,595,000. One of the bedrooms in this designer townhome is a private guest apartment with its own kitchen.

Near the historic Burns Square area

The Orange Club in the historic Burns Square area is expected to be completed in two months and will feature two projects of 15 condominiums and nine townhomes. There is one townhome that is listed among the five properties that are active for sale. The residences can be purchased between $525 and $760,000 while the townhouse is offered at nearly one million dollars.

Sansara, the recently completed community on South Pineapple Avenue near Burns Court has two residences for sale among the total 17. Two, 3 bedroom, 3 bathroom condominiums are listed at $2.95 million and $2.25 million. Amenities include a pool, private spa, cabanas, fire pit, outdoor kitchen with bar and a private gym with yoga room.

The resurgence of the Rosemary District

There are four properties for sale at Risdon on 5th, ready to be completed this summer. Different floor plans offer configurations of one to three bedrooms. This is a Rosemary District neighborhood zoned for mixed use with 22 residences and office space. There is a rooftop pool that is heated with solar panels for energy efficiency. The Rosemary District is close to boutique shopping, fine dining, theaters and the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall with performances by international stars and symphonies.

Valencia at Rosemary Place is being constructed in three phases, of which the permit for phase III was issued in April. Phase II is currently under construction and is expected to be completed by the end of this year. There are 30 townhomes in this community of which two are offered for sale. The Madrid floor plan has 1,973 square feet of living space with three bedrooms and three and one-half bathrooms. With a two-car garage this home is listed at $550,900. Listed for the same price, the Almeria floor plan at 1254 May Lane is slightly larger at 2,099 square feet. It also has three bedrooms but is less one full bathroom. It has a two-car garage and private terrace off the master bedroom.

Six residences will be mixed with commercial space at Zahrada, or "Garden" in the Czech language. These homes at 1524 Fourth Street, also in the Rosemary District, has an expected completion date in August of 2018. Each condominium will be over 3,000 square feet and have three levels. Offered in the $1.3 million range, each home will have its own swimming pool and garage space for two cars. There are currently two of these on the market.

Golden Gate Point, 23 acres of prime real estate

On Golden Gate Point there are two remaining residences in the completed Aqua community. Award winning architect, Guy Peterson, was the designer of this community with an amazing list of amenities including a fitness studio, yoga room, sauna, wine room, putting green and waterfront heated pool and spa with barbecue and entertaining area. Each residence has an enclosed two-car garage and private boat slip with lift.

Also on Golden Gate Point, the four-story townhouse Allure communities with 4,000 square-foot residences were selling in the $2.2 to $2.7 million range. At ONE88 on Golden Gate Point there are two active listings in the community completed in 2015. Floor plans are offered with 3,000 square feet of living space and configured with three bedrooms and three and one-half bathrooms. The Pearl at 609 Golden Gate Point has half of its eight residences for sale. This community has a listed completion date of April 1, 2018 and will face downtown Sarasota on the eastern side of Golden Gate Point. Amenities include a pool with spa, cabana, barbecue, two-car garage and rooftop patio. Each property is 2,750 square feet, has three bedrooms, three and a half baths. The listing price starts at $1.65 million and increases $100,000 with each level.

We have prepared a page on this website with a description, photo, prepared active search and additional links for most of the new residence communities on Longboat Key, Lido Key and Sarasota. The latest update was made April 21, 2017. Call us at (941) 387-1840 for an exclusive showing of any active listing mentioned in this article.

Van Wezel shares its 2017-18 schedule

by Roger Pettingell

Award-winning performances on schedule

Variety of dance, musicals, orchestra and concerts on tap for 2017-18

Aerial view of the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
Aerial view of the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall

While urban planners figure out the future of the big purple building that sits on the 60 acres of land in the Sarasota Bayfront 20:20 cultural park, that famous building known as the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall has announced its schedule of events for the 2017-18 performance season. Many of the favorite acts return, including the Jersey Boys for three nights April 10-12. Once again they are bringing in new acts that will excite those who love ballet, symphony orchestras, chorus ensembles, well-known single acts and plays. This place has it all coming up with 45 shows on the schedule within the next year. As in past years I suspect they will be adding more world-renown shows to the schedule so you may want to sign up for their announcements as a Van Wezel E-mail club member.

Concerts by the Stars

We can start with some of the single acts since that is the next big performance coming up when the legendary Frankie Valli with his Four Seasons perform May 20. Frankie Vallie has been an iconic star since 1962 and still draws in fans for sold out shows. The Four Seasons’ fame is popularized by the Jersey Boys, their success is still strong during these decades of musical high-pitch vocals.

Next up is Idina Menzel on May 27, another vocal genius that rivals the likes of Barbra Streisand. She typically sells out too. Diana Ross of the Supremes is up on stage, June 23. The singing group has 12 number-one singles, she by herself has 31 top-10 selling singles. On to 2018, January 16, with the return performance of four-time Grammy Award winner Renée Fleming. Her range is opera to classical jazz, garnering her awards for Best Classical Vocal Solo artist.

Tributes to the Best in Music

Tributes to stars that are no longer with us are on the schedule. Buddy, is the musical story December 5 of Buddy Holly, from his rise to fame to his death and “The Day the Music Died.” A Night with Janis Joplin on January 8 is an outpouring of her famous hits by an ensemble that is an incredible recreation of her talents and the influences of others that Janis Joplin idolized.

Friday Fest ‘17

If you like musical bands, there are local favorites and national talents on the stage. In a series of local favorites labeled as Friday Fest ‘17, there are three Friday concerts on the third of each summer month and one on the fourth Friday beginning with Doug Deming & The Jewel Tones on June 16. This group transferred their talents from Detroit to become a home-town favorite in Sarasota. Considered the best band by voters in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune balloting, Kettle of Fish takes the stage, July 21. The only fourth Friday Fest ’17 concert will be August 25 with the Jah Movement Reggae Band. Expect plenty of love for lead vocalist, Shantel Norman, as she performs in front of her home-town fans on her birthday night. Reverend Barry & the Funktastic Soul completes the Friday Fest ’17 party on September 15. They will be accompanied by The Hellacious Horns who will bring to life some of the genre songs from the 60s and 70s.

Doo Wop Music

Also with songs from that era, the Doo Wop Spectacular hits the stage November 4 featuring best hit songs from the Shirelles. Original lead singer Shirley Alston Reeves joins in on the fun with their hits and other songs from the Golden Age of Rock & Roll. Cleveland Still and the Dubs, The Coasters and The Boomerz round out a spectacular night of music.

Symphonies from Around the Globe

The winter months are filled with plays, musicals, operas and symphonies starting with the Salute To Vienna on New Year’s Eve that combines opera, ballroom dance and ballet with the rich sound of a Sarasota symphony. The China National Symphony Orchestra comes to the Van Wezel February 22 with their blend of Western and Asian compositions. On March 11 the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba will ease relations between two countries with inspired classical Cuban and Latin American works.

Chamber music is highlighted when the Academy of St. Martin In The Fields, led by violin virtuoso Joshua Bell, visit the Van Wezel March 24. This show combines small ensembles with full, rich, orchestra classics. World renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble embraces Sarasota with the world through classical renditions, April 19.

Tango, Dance and Ballet

Ringo Starr and his All-Starr band at the 45th anniversary of the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall in Sarasota Florida
Ringo and his All-Starr Band - Pictured is Ringo Starr and Gregg Bissonette on drums, and Richard Page and Todd Rundgren on guitars at the 45th Anniversary of the Van Wezel, February 24, 2015.

The Van Wezel has been busy scheduling dance arrangements. Tango Fire starts 2018 out right January 12 when the troupe The Tango Fire Company of Buenos Aires introduces the Argentine Tango to the Sarasota audience. Balletboyz perform February 1 with their duet ballet movements to two works, Serpent and Fallen. The following week on February 7, Shaping Sound under the choreography direction of Travis Wall, will bring their new production to the Sarasota stage, After the Curtain, a story of a man who fights to find his creative voice after the death of his love. Romeo & Juliet & Carmen, two full length ballets are brought to life February 27 by the Moscow Festival Ballet. Dance to the Movies March 12 showcases the talents of Dancing With The Stars Celebrity Pros and So You Think You Can Dance top finalists to bring back classic movie dances. An odd-ball, but truly amazing way to portray light and shadows in one performance is the stage show by the Mummenschanz troupe, You & Me, at the Van Wezel, April 26.

If you like Musicals

Spectacles of musicals and performances, so good they could not be contained in one night, round out the 2017-18 schedule at the Van Wezel. A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder was the 2014 Tony Award® for Best Musical, a story January 6 and 7 that outlines the hilarious plot of Monty Navarro to claim an entire inheritance by eliminating eight relatives. The tantalizing antics of Sally Bowles in Cabaret plays two nights at the Van Wezel, January 30 and 31. Circus 1903 combines magical illusionists with amazing puppeteers to bring back the feeling one must have had at the circus in the turn of the 20th century. Dorothy, Toto, a wizard, witches and a cast of well-known supporting characters take to the stage to celebrate the original film, The Wizard of Oz, March 6 and 7. There will be eight shows of Motown, The Musical, spread out over six days with matinees on Saturday and Sunday, March 27 through April 1. This show celebrates the best music that had a historic significance in the country. Broadway performers and their lives come together in humorous and touching ways for A Chorus Line, April 24 and 25.

A show in a category of its own, Peter Pan on March 26 is a sensory perception portrayal of the original story of Peter and Wendy. The show is a combination of holograms seen through 3D glasses, large-screen video and dance performances for the audience to participate along with the characters in Never Never Land.

Start Your Night at Mattison's Bayside

Mattison's Bayside
Mattison's Bayside is a popular gathering place

At this time tickets can be purchased for four of the upcoming shows through the Van Wezel website box office. If history has taught me one thing, I would not wait for some of these popular shows, especially if you are looking for multiple seats together. Some shows sell out of their 1,736 seats that are available. Also, make plans before each show to treat yourself to fine dining at Mattison's Bayside in the grand foyer of the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.

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About Roger Pettingell

Roger Pettingell of Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate is your Longboat Key, Florida Luxury Real Estate Specialist. Roger provides his real estate expertise to sellers, investors, developers, and buyers in the Sarasota area including Anna Maria, Bird Key, Bradenton Beach, Casey Key, Cortez, Grand Bay, Holmes Beach, Longboat Key, Marina Bay, Osprey and Siesta Key. Search for homes, luxury homes, condominiums, investment property, development property, and vacant land and lots on the Longboat Key, Florida and the surrounding area.