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THURSDAY, January 24, 2013

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Erendira Wallenda proves she can walk the walk. PAGES 2 and 3

3 Things: A nest for the winter. PAGES 10 and 11

black tie | Storied planning

food

Sarasota welcomes new foodie hot-spot PAGE 12

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

Mallory Gnaegy

Olivia Thomas, chairwoman of 2010; Kristine Nickel, chairwoman of 2012; current Town Hall Chairwoman Stephanie Grosskreutz; and 2011 Chairwoman Kathleen Weiner dish on the scoop.

Chairing it All Town Hall Lecture Series organizers give the scoop on stories from ice-cream vending machines to ‘oh-no!’ moments. BLACK TIE COVER STORY CONTINUED ON PAGE 14


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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// Arts&Entertainment: She’s so high

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

Princess of the High Wire Erendira Wallenda’s life is a balancing act between her responsibilities as a mother and walking the tightrope — sans safety net.

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Mallory Gnaegy

“I love it. It’s my passion,” Erendira Wallenda says. “Think of anything you love doing (the most), and that’s what we get. That’s where I feel most alive.”

igh-wire daredevil Erendira (Vasquez) Wallenda is a seventh-generation circus performer on her aerialist father Vinicio Vasquez’s side, and an eighth-generation performer on her acrobat mother Golda (Ashton) Vasquez’s side. She was 3 weeks old when she was introduced to her future husband and “King of the High Wire,” Nikolas “Nik” Wallenda. Her parents, the Flying Vasquez, would often perform with Nik Wallenda’s parents, The Flying Wallendas. The couple’s grandparents and great-grandparents also performed together. “It was just meant to be!” she says. These days, Erendira and Nik Wallenda continue the family legacy as husband-and-wife performers. They’ll walk the wire together in this season’s Circus Sarasota, “Nik Wallenda — His Journey Continues,” at the Big Top. Erendira Wallenda, now 31, grew up in a small trailer with

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YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

3

// Arts&Entertainment

Behind the name

if you go

Erendira Wallenda

Circus Sarasota’s ‘Nik Wallenda — His Journey Continues’

eh-REHN-dee-rah

When: 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 25. Runs through Friday, Feb. 15

Meaning: “Smiling morning” History: Erendira was a Tarascan princess circa 1503. She was a fearless warrior princess who fought the Spanish conquistadors when the men were too scared to do so.

Where: Circus Sarasota Big Top, 1500 Stringfield Ave., Sarasota Cost: Tickets $10 to $49 Info: Call 355-9805 for more information.

For him, it’s just like walking on the ground … It’s good that I have someone saying, ‘You can do it. I know you can do it.’ — Erendira Wallenda her foot got caught on a tether she was required to wear for a show in New York City. Erendira Wallenda is grounded, or as grounded as a trapeze artist and wire-walker can be. She says her husband is the crazy one who stays up late coming up with ideas. He likes to push her to her full potential. If it were up to her, she’d practice a routine on a low wire 10 times before taking it up high. “For him, it’s just like walking on the ground … It’s good that I have someone saying, ‘You can do it. I know you can do it,’” she says with a hand over her heart. She enjoys walking the wire, which is what she will be doing

in the upcoming Circus Sarasota performances. She’s also doing a trick called “Revolve,” in which she will be rotating around a bar suspended between Nik Wallenda and his cousin, Blake Wallenda, who will both be on the wire. A true performer can do a variety of tricks, she explains. Erendira Wallenda can do anything from a sway pole (sitting atop a flexible pole that stretches high into the air) to her favorite trick — the cloud swing (a rope shaped like a swing on which she performs tricks). And, despite her mother’s requests, she has no interest in ground acts. “My mom would rather see

me do an act on the ground and she’s always trying to convince me,” she says. “But I can’t!” Nik and Erendira Wallenda have three children: Yanni, 14, is their “genius”; Amadeus, 11, is the piano-playing musician; and Evita, 9, their only daughter, is the ballerina. All three children know how to walk the wire, but Evita is the one who has shown the most interest in filling her parent’s high-wire shoes. Although, they say it would be nice to see her daughter become the ninth-generation of performers, it can be scary to watch her baby balancing on her father’s shoulders as he walks the line. And Erendira Wallenda has developed empathy for her mother since seeing her own daughter walking 25 feet off the ground. “I guess I understand it now that I see my kids up there. Sometimes, it’s hard (to watch),” she says. Erendira Wallenda practices her acts four-to-five times a week in her in-laws’ backyard, where they have equipment set up on their acre of land. But, her practice schedule is dependent on when she can make time after toting her children to and from school, piano, dance and karate. For the most part, Erendira Wallenda and her children are based in Sarasota, while Nik Wallenda travels for work. When she performs, it’s a treat — performing is what makes her feel alive. “I love being a mother and a wife but that’s where I feel the most myself — in the air,” she says.

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her high-wire act comes second when compared to her flying acrobat routine. She “didn’t really walk the wire” until after she was married at age 18. Even so, she’s just as antiharnesses as her husband, who successfully crossed Niagra Falls in June 2012 — even though he was required by law to wear a harness. “I knew he would be safe even if he didn’t have it,” she says. “He was actually nervous wearing the harness … he was like, ‘Babe, I don’t like the way it feels on the back of me.’” She knows what he means. The only time she’s ever felt like she was going to fall was when

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her family. The family was on the road 11 months of the year, and when she wasn’t performing a rolling globe-and-acrobatic act with her two older sisters, she attended school at Tuttle Elementary, Brookside Middle and, eventually, Booker High. Erendira Wallenda doesn’t recall her first performance — she was too young — but she does remember what she used to think about her future husband in the ’80s: “When we were little and growing up he was really annoying and dorky!” she laughs. She says he used to wear short shorts with striped knee-high socks, Adidas shoes, a little hat and a Polo shirt buttoned all the way to the top button. Her opinion of Nik Wallenda changed when she was about 14 years old. He was 17 years old and their parents were doing a show in Milwaukee. They started dating after that weekend. Then, three years later, as Nik Wallenda and his family were performing The Flying Wallenda Seven-Person Pyramid in Canada, he proposed. Nik Wallenda stayed on the wire while the rest of his family descended. A banner dangled from the wire while Nik Wallenda asked her to marry him. “I was in shock staring up at him,” Erendira Wallenda says. “My mother-in-law (Delilah) had to come over to me and say, ‘Erendira, this is when you say yes!’” And she did. They were married in 2000. Erendira Wallenda says she’ll leave the title of “Queen of the High Wire” to her mother-in-law, or sister-in-law, Lijana, because


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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// Arts&Entertainment: COLUMN

scene

HEARD By Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor | mgnaegy@yourobserver.com features works by Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Bill Bowers, Circle of Eleven and the Kate Weare Co. now through March. Tickets are $15 to $25 per performance. For more information about specific performances, visit ringling.org.

 Awarding brownie points

Courtesy of Ringling Museum

LEO by Circle of Eleven can be seen Feb. 21 to Feb. 23, at Historic Asolo Theater.

 Art of Our Time gets moving “New Stages: Narrative in Motion,” a four-part series of contemporary performances, begins this week. It all started circa 1946 with the Ringling Museum’s first executive director, A. Everett Chick Austin Jr., who believed “the function of a museum is more than merely showing pictures … it is the place to integrate the arts and bring them alive.” Curated by Dwight Currie, associate director of programming, it

If you have the best boss in Sarasota, or even if you have an OK boss whom you need to impress — then this contest is for you. The Players Theatre is holding a contest to find the best boss in Sarasota. To enter, share a story up to 250 words about why your boss is the best. Entries should be received before 4 p.m. Feb. 5. Email them to marketing@theplayers.org. The prize for the winning entry is free tickets for the employee, his boss and up to 12 employees to the upcoming musical “9 to 5,” a production about three working women who try to take over the company because they are fed up with their lewd boss. The show opens Feb. 14.

 Journalist is on the receiving end of questions Journalist and biographer Walter Isaacson and I are on the same page. At the Q&A media round table Tuesday, Jan. 15, before the Town Hall Lecture Series, he told me he believes history is

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Mallory Gnaegy

Walter Isaacson

told through the individuals who make it; and as a journalist who profiles individuals and groups — I couldn’t agree more. “It’s not new to history; it’s the way the Bible does it!” he says. Isaacson interviewed Steve Jobs more than 40 times while the inventor of the Mac computer was alive. Isaacson said he liked him — even if he was a little rough around the edges, he says. Isaacson says it was important for him to be honest, otherwise, people wouldn’t be interested in Jobs’ story 50 years down the line. “I don’t like saying bad things about a person’s personality, but I

‘Word Becomes Flesh’: The first of four performances of Ringling Museum’s “New Stages: Narrative in Motion,” ”Word Becomes Flesh” will feature Marc Bamuthi Joseph who will combine spoken-word poetry, contemporary movement and live music in a theatrical form based on hip-hop aesthetics. It takes place at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 24 through Saturday, Jan. 26, at The Ringling Museum’s Historic Asolo Theater, 5401 Bay Shore Road. Tickets are $15 to $25. Call 360-7399 for information. Cirque Des Voix: Cirque Des Voix will feature the first collaboration of Circus Sarasota, Key Chorale with Young Voices of Sarasota and the Sarasota Orchestra and will feature Dolly Jacobs, along with other Circus Sarasota acts. It takes place at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 25 and 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 26, at the Big Top, located at 12th Street and Tuttle Avenue. Tickets are $15 to $45. Call 355-9805 for more information. tried to show how the bad sides to someone’s personality helped contribute to the passion and the genius of what he achieved,” he says. So whom would Isaacson like to write his own biography? He doesn’t think he’s that interesting!

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Read Popcorn Bob's Movie Magic reviews of “Broken City,” “The Last Stand” and “Rust and Bone” at YourObserver.com.

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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// Arts&Entertainment: Backstage Pass

5

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

The Producers Asolo Repertory Theatre board members and Sarasota residents Bob and Beverly Bartner have produced so many Tony award-winning productions, they can’t remember which shows received what awards. little controversial, a little different than things that are safe,” says Bob Bartner. They’ve won Tonys for “La Cage Aux Follies” about two queens; for Scarlett Johansson’s role in “A View from the Bridge” about illegal immigrants; and people were camping overnight to get tickets to their production of “Jerusalem” that presents its lead character as an endearing drug-addict hero. Bob Bartner didn’t grow up imersed in the world of theater, as his life is now. He saw his first production in college when he took a date to see famous opera singer Ezio Pinza and Broadway star Mary Martin in “South Pacific” to impress her. Unlike her husband, retired antique-furniture dealer Beverly Bartner became enamored with theater at a young age. When she was 8 years old, her father took her to see famed stage actors Tyrone Power and Anne Baxter, in “John Brown’s Body.” She was so close to the stage she felt like she could reach out and touch the actors, and it inspired a lifelong love. Bob Bartner met Beverly Bartner in 1962, through his brother’s fiancé. They started seeing plays and musicals together. At the time, he worked at CBS and she would take the train in from her home in New Rochelle, N.Y., to meet him in Manhattan for evening shows. Bob Bartner says his passion

for theater really began in 1995, in Guilford, Conn., where the couple was living at the time. He met the artistic director of the Long Wharf Theater, Doug Hughes, who recruited him to the board at the theater. Then, in 1997, a play named “Wit,” about an English professor’s final hours with ovarian cancer, came to the theater. Bob Bartner loved it. After its Connecticut run, an interested commercial producer and theater owner in New York was ready to take a chance on “Wit,” if someone would enhance it with $25,000. Without question, Bob Bartner signed the check. Firsttime scriptwriter and kindergarten teacher Margaret Edson won a Pultizer Prize for “Wit” in 1999. Bob Bartner’s career successes are well spent supporting the arts. He had a broad career in direct marketing and magazine publishing. And he says his most successful days were creating Maxim magazine, and The Week, a news magazine in the U.K. The Bartners are supportive patrons to Asolo Rep, for which he serves as the president of the board. Beverly Bartner is also an Asolo Rep board member. Additionally, she serves on the board at The Metropolitan Opera and flies regularly to New York City, where the Bartners have an apartment, to see opera productions. She’s also produced a few shows under her

Mallory Gnaegy

Whether it’s premiering Tony Award-winning productions in London and New York, donating to Asolo Repertory Theatre or attending a community theater production, Bob and Beverly Bartner have always been supporters of the arts. own name. The Bartners produce one to 12 Broadway and Off-Broadway productions a year, in New York and in London. They just opened “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” on Broadway, which features Scarlett Johansson. And soon after they will open “Old Times” with Kristin Scott Thomas, in London. “Two years ago, we were producing so many plays we didn’t know where we were,” Beverly Bartner says. The Bartners travel often. One day last weekend, they had a morning reading in New York City, another the same day in San Diego — plus they had to get back to Sarasota for the opening night of “Heidi Chronicles” at Asolo Rep. They attend every opening night at Asolo Rep.

The couple moved to Sarasota in 2010, because they’d heard the arts thrive here. Beverly Bartner jokes that they got involved at Asolo Rep right away, because someone Googled them when they moved here, but Bob Bartner says they were recruited at a dinner party. Either way, the strong presence of arts in the community solidifies their love of Sarasota. They belong here, in what they refer to as “the Garden of Eden.” They give a small-world example of why they think Sarasota is unique: Fellow Tony Awardwinner and director Frank Galati, who just directed “1776” at Asolo Rep, lives a few floors below them in the same Boulevard of the Arts condominium. “We love Sarasota — that’s our final word,” Bob Bartner says.

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Combining the best of a street festival and concert hall, Ovation brings together the area’s most talented performers for a free celebration of the arts with live entertainment on two stages. Browse the many booths, shops and boutiques, and find refreshment at cozy restaurants and cafes. Truly an event not to be missed!

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For information and performance schedules, visit www.lwrevents.com

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As the saying goes, religion and politics are unfit for polite company. But, controversy is always a welcome topic in theater for Sarasota residents, arts supporters and producers Bob and Beverly Bartner. That makes it fitting that their next production is “The Book of Mormon.” It took writers Trey Parker and Matt Stone seven years to develop the musical satire about the religion. It opened on Broadway in March 2011. In 2010, Bob and Beverly Bartner went to the reading at Lincoln Center in New York, which featured almost the same cast that opened in the Broadway production. “We fell in love with the piece. We thought it was the funniest thing we had ever seen,” says Bob Bartner. The rest of the Broadway world agreed, and Parker and Stone raked in nine Tonys at the 2011 Tony Awards, including one for Best Musical. Now, it’s set to open in March, in London, under the Bartners’ production. The “Book of Mormon” is not the first controversial show the Bartners have backed financially. Typically, they prefer plays to musicals, but they couldn’t resist what they call a “genius” project. “Obviously, I think you get more of a thrill and more enjoyment out of doing a little cutting edge, a


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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// Arts&Entertainment: reviews

THEATER // ‘Jitney’ The Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe does sincere justice to the great August Wilson’s “Jitney,” which was written in 1979 and became part of what’s now known as his “Ten Play Cycle,” chronicling the lives of Black Americans through each decade of the 20th century. Wilson lived from 1945 to 2005 and is celebrated for his slice-of-life style of storytelling. His dialogue perfectly reflects the period and the people, and what’s more, it is comical, dramatic and illuminating. The decades following the Civil War only added insult to the injustice of slavery, due to discrimination and lack of work and of education, which has created unique problems for African Americans to this day.  Wilson’s plays provide subtle lessons within their ample entertainment value, aimed especially at the youth of black America, although their meaning is applicable to us all. This play is an excellent example of his skill. Jim Weaver’s direction succeeds in creating a taut and convincing production. The term, jitney, applies to gypsy cabs, and an unlicensed cab station in Pittsburgh is the stage on which this two act takes place.  The ensemble acting is truly excellent all around. Alfred H. Wilson is perfect as Becker — who runs the station — an upstanding, hardworking man, trying to succeed in the world, play by its unjust rules, and who blames his son for the death of his wife. Horace Smith, as Turnbo, turns in an excellent portraiture of the type of character who espouses, “live and let live,” and who, while claiming “I ain’t trying to get in your business,” is, in fact, always in your business. Will Little is intense and vulnerable as Youngblood, a young man trying to change his lazy,

Courtesy

Logan O’Neill as Joe Gillis and Jeanne Larranga as Norma Desmond in “Sunset Boulevard”

THEATER

Courtesy

Don Laurin Johnson and Andrew Drake in WBTT’s “Jitney”

// ‘Sunset Boulevard’

if you go

The Players Theatre has “revived” “Sunset Boulevard” in many ways. The dark, wooddominated, wormy interior of this old mansion has been wondrously resurrected by director/ set designer Michael Newton-Brown in all its musty glory, and its grande dame, silentmovie star Norma Desmond, beautifully played by Jeanne Larranga, given CPR. The story reminded me of Charles Dickens’ “Great Expectations.” I could almost see the cobwebs growing behind the wallpaper and the interior of Desmond’s brain. This old gal is unusual in the theatrical lexicon, a tragic musical, bordering on light opera. The lyrics, written by Don Black and Christopher Hampton, who also wrote the book, are quite complicated and actually move the plot. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s score is alternately moody, dramatic, lyrical or even sing-songy, foreshadowing his more famous “Phantom of the Opera.” Based on the classic Billy Wilder noir film, the play is about Hollywood, its successes and failures, its glamour and its tawdriness, and the price some people pay to play there. Above all, “Sunset Boulevard” is a morality play, a brood-

August Wilson’s ‘Jitney’ When: 8 p.m.; runs through Feb. 3 Where: Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe Theatre, 1646 10th Way Cost: $28 Info: Call 366-1505 misogynistic ways — so typical of his generation. Dhakeria Cunningham brings just the right combination of caring and selfworth as Youngblood’s girlfriend, Rena. Steven McKenzy provides warmth and wisdom as old friend, Doub. Don Laurin Johnson dramatically plays Becker’s son, Booster, who believes that a woman who lies is deserving of death.  The supporting roles were all uniquely realized by Martin Taylor as Philmore; Ron Bobb-Semple as Fielding; and Andrew Drake as Shealy. — Paula Atwell

ing, classical reminder that it is ego that leads us astray and ultimately deprives us of the happiness that we might have had otherwise. Larranga brings out the pathos and delusion within the main character, making her both sympathetic and horrific, as well as providing great singing. Logan O’Neill successfully handles the songs and finely delineates the character of Joe Gillis, an impatient screenwriter, under the spell of riches. Tim Fitzgerald inhabits the role of Max Von Mayerling, butler with a past, and sings great baritone. The entire cast is entertaining, including Sarah Cassidy as Betty Schaefer; Jay Bowman as Cecil B. DeMille; Ren Pearson as Artie Green; Randy Garmer as Sheldrake; and Bill Sarazan as Manfred. Other members of the large ensemble include Alex Mahadevan, Lilian Moore, Tamara Solum, Lauren Ward and Debbi White. Costume designer Kaylene McCaw topped previous work with some fabulous costumes, most notably Desmond’s golden New Year’s Eve gown, which glittered blindingly, adding to the theme of faded glory. Michelle Teyke provided the choreography, and David M. Upton did the lighting design. Musical director and keyboardist Joyce Valentine led a fine orchestra consisting of Teri Booth, woodwinds; Erica Hendrickson-Boyd, strings; and John Januszewski, percussion. — Paula Atwell

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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

7

// Arts&Entertainment: REVIEWS

Music // SCA’s great performers: Tokyo String Quartet with Jeremy Denk It was a historic moment last week when the Tokyo String Quartet and Jeremy Denk got together at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall. The Tokyo was in the middle of its farewell tour but, looking back, both the Tokyo and Denk got their starts in the music field on the roster of Young Concert Artists — the quartet in 1970 and Denk in 1997. In the years since, they each pursued their own careers, which skyrocketed them into the annuls of superstardom through their recordings and live appearances, yet neither had much to do with the other, until Brahms brought them together in Sarasota. With little rehearsal, they brought off a beautifully sculpted, majestic reading of the Brahms F minor Piano Quintet, a popular, passionate piece that allows listeners to wallow in the gorgeous sounds of romanticism. Interestingly, Brahms wrote this work with some difficulty at first (it was revised several times), but what finally emerged has the sound of the future: askew, asymmetrical rhythms in the slow movement and a finale that has many of the composer’s folky moments mixed with a chromaticism that lays the foundation for what transpired several decades later. Fascinatingly, Bartok’s Fourth String Quartet, written in 1928 — just 31 years after Brahms’ death —preceded the Brahms piece on the program. I don’t use “fascinating” lightly. I first experienced some of Bartok’s six String Quartets when I was a student at New York’s High School of Music and Art, and I have to admit they sent me and my best friend into teenage paroxysms of giggles that got us thrown out of Carnegie Hall more than once! For years, all I heard in them was a

FILM

bunch of angry, buzzing mosquitoes. Members of the Juilliard, Emerson, Takacs and Guarneri quartets played them on my WQXR programs and tried to teach me the joys of these Bartok works. They didn’t succeed. While I loved most other Bartok, with his folky themes and jazzy, exciting rhythms, I couldn’t take his quartets. So, seeing one of them on the program of the Great Performers’ Series of the Sarasota Concert Association did not exactly send me paroxysms of joy. The Tokyo String Quartet, however, triumphed where others had failed. They made me a convert. I suddenly “got” what Bartok wrote, from the melodies and cross rhythms, to the humor and wit and, finally, the beauty of this work. Yes, the quartet played it with depth and understanding but, then, so did the other groups I’d heard. Perhaps it was the clarity and texture the Tokyo brought to it, the sexiness of their pizzicatos in the allegretto movement and the fervent fire of the why they treated the rhythms and melodies that got me. I’m indebted to them for making me hear the light … even if it did take more than half a century. Unfortunately, the Mozart Quartet in D that opened the program, the “Hoffmeister,” didn’t fare so well. It sounded thin and pallid, and there were numerous pitch problems throughout the four movements. The intonation was the fault of the musicians, but the thin, pallid sound was probably because of the appalling acoustics in the Van Wezel. That hall is now a place solely for “shows” that are amplified. Anything acoustic, especially small ensembles attempting to play Mozart or Haydn, just doesn’t belong there. The sound is swallowed up, and there’s no help for it, no matter how far forward one sits on the (uncomfortable) seats. This is not a place for chamber music. It’s hardly a place for orchestras anymore, but that’s another story. — June LeBell

// ‘Broken City’ “Broken City” should have been a great flick but, it fails miserably to deliver on so many levels. Talented actors disappoint; lame scripting annoys; and mediocre directing bores in this short-on-thrills thriller. Everything about the plot seems too familiar. Russell Crowe plays Nick Hostetler, a corrupt yet popular NYC mayor. Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg), a disgraced former-police-detective-turned-private-eye, is hired by Hostetler to spy on his wife (Catherine Zeta-Jones). The mayoral election is pending and Hostetler’s opponent, Jack Valliant (Barry Pepper), doesn’t need any dirt to sway voters. It doesn’t take a genius to smell a setup 10 minutes into the film. The wife’s supposed affair is just a cover-up for a massive real-estate scam, which may go public if Valliant’s campaign manager, Paul Chandler (Kyle Chandler), isn’t wacked. Seems Chandler has the goods on Hostetler and, oh, by the way, happens to be a very close friend of the mayor’s wife. Taggart has the photos but, looks can be deceiving. It’s extremely difficult to fall for this full-ofholes plotline. From the onset, we’re aware that Taggart is beholden to Hostetler but we’re supposed to conveniently forget that little piece of information. And why Taggart doesn’t make the connection early on makes him look foolish. Screenwriter Brian Tucker assumes the audience is as gullible as Taggart. It’s insulting. And what’s with actors of this caliber agreeing to participate in such pretentious nonsense? Oscar-winner Crowe (“Gladiator”) is one of the most gifted actors out there and he looks downright freaky, sporting a spray tan and bad rug in the film. Some of his lines are laughable

Courtesy

Russell Crowe and Mark Whalberg in “Broken City.” when, I presume, were not written as such. Wahlberg, whose acting abilities are getting better with age (“The Fighter”), slips a few rungs down the ladder with his incredible naïveté in a role that probably didn’t call for it. Zeta-Jones is stunning in her portrayal of the husband-hater-wife, but she has so little screen time that she can’t save this sinking ship. Director Allen Hughes, who has made five films with his co-director brother, Albert Hughes, ventures out on his own in “Broken City.” His previous work in “The Book of Eli” and “Menace II Society” were successful and well-made movies. But “Broken City” lacks the style and suspense it trys so desperately to convey. Beware of films that are released in January. Studios recognize that audiences are eagerly attempting to catch the quality fare nominated for awards this time of year. When Allen Hughes was asked what his brother thought of his first solo movie, his reply was that Albert hadn’t seen it yet. He may want to keep it that way. — Pam Nadon

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YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// Arts&Entertainment: Highlights

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

Circus mural and executive come to town

For 22 years, the lobby at the Feld Entertainment corporate headquarters, in Vienna, Va., hosted a two-story, 22-foot-by42-foot mural featuring iconic Sarasota Ringling Circus performers from the 1970s to 1980s. In 2012, crews began the extensive removal of the mural from its wall in Virginia. Kenneth Feld decided to donate the mural when Feld Entertainment relocated to Ellenton from its Virigina headquarters. “The Greatest Show on Earth’s” new home, at the Ringling Museum’s entrance to the Tibbals Learning Center, is a significant contribution representing the modern circus legacy of Sarasota. The mural would have been out of place in Virginia, if Feld Entertainment were not the parent company of Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus. Commissioned artist William Woodward featured Feld as the Ringmaster in the mural, placing him among familiar-faced jugglers, clowns and aerialists such as Dolly Jacobs, Peggy Williams, the flying Padillas and Lou Jacobs. Woodward began the sixmonth process to paint the acrylic mural in 1989 and finished it in 1990. For two decades, Feld would pass by the mural that captured the excitement of the circus, and he would greet each of the painted figures as if they could talk back to him. But more excitement took place Jan. 17, at the museum, with the Sarasota unveiling of

Photo courtesy Giovanni Lunardi

William Woodward’s mural, “The Greatest Show On Earth” “The Greatest Show on Earth,” one of the largest circus murals ever painted. Woodward, Feld, his employees and supporters of the museum and circus attended the event. And, as the mural’s white-curtained cover was slowly pulled back, the performers featured in the painting, also in attendance, were recognized. It was a special ceremony reuniting many of the famed performers and celebrating Feld Entertainment’s move to Sarasota.

Artist of “The Greatest Show on Earth,” William Woodward, with Stephen High, executive director of The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art

Photos by Mallory Gnaegy

Donor Kenneth Feld with Frederick Johnston and Dan Denton

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THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// HOME&GARDEN: Designer showcase

9

by Rachel S. O’Hara | Black Tie Photographer

Jewels on the Bay Two beautiful homes on Lido Key are being featured as the designer showhouses for the 18th annual Jewels on the Bay. The annual event benefits the Boys & Girls Clubs of Manatee and Sarasota counties. The two homes featured in the tour boast different architectural styles and features. The Morris home is a 6,400-square-foot Mediterranean-style home, for which 16 spaces were redesigned by 12 designers. The Marr home is a 5,500-square-foot ranchstyle home, for which 14 spaces were redesigned by 12 designers. Though many designers took part in the event, they made sure to make a point to work together to give the rooms a cohesive style for better flow.

Morris house

361 S. Blvd. of the Presidents

 Lancaster Interior Design put ballet-slipperthemed designed slip covers over the chairs in the dining room.

marr house

439 S. Blvd. of the Presidents

 William Dobson designed the master suite with a muted color palette and hints of bright green accents. Dobson incorporated the pops of color by adding this throw from Anthropologie.

if you go Jewels on the Bay Designer Showcase Benefiting: Boys and Girls Clubs of Sarasota and Manatee counties When: Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.; through Feb. 17.

Photos by Rachel S. O'Hara

 The great room and foyer were designed by Barbara Vanderkolk Gardner and featured gray-blue walls with creamy vanilla trim and bright coral accents.

 Tracee Murphy designed, The Cabana, a poolside room. She used a black-and-white color scheme for a crisp and modern design.

Where: Lido Key, 361 and 439 S. Blvd. of the Presidents

 The second guest bedroom was redesigned by Jane Faust and featured traditional mahogany furniture.

Cost: $20

 The third guest bedroom features dramatic accents, including different textures of metal, sequins and fur. The room was designed by Erin Blosser.

Info: Visit designershowhousesarasota.com

For more Designer Showcase photos, visit YourObserver.com.

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DIVERSIONS

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THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// HOME&GARDEN

THINGS

by Robert Plunket | Contributing Writer

A Nest for the Winter

Snowbirds have been flocking to Sarasota for more than 100 years and no town in the country caters to them quite as well as we do. There’s the gorgeous winter weather, of course, along with an unparalleled wealth of recreational activities. Add in the dining and cultural events, and the relative ease of getting around — been to Naples in February lately? — and we’re sure they’ll be flocking for many years to come. Here’s a selection of snowbird nests that should have our Northern neighbors drooling about this time of year.

1. For the snowbird who has everything . . . 1241 Gulf of Mexico Drive, No. 702 If price is no object, go with the ultimate: beachfront on Longboat Key. This 3,400-square-foot condo on the seventh floor of the Water Club has three balconies overlooking the Gulf, plus an array of luxury features — maple floors, wood-inlay ceilings, a private elevator and a glamorous kitchen. With three bedrooms and four-and-a-half baths, there’s plenty of room for visitors, and the amenities are what you would expect at an upscale Caribbean resort: an enormous pool, fitness center, tennis courts, etc. Snowbirds will appreciate the impeccable security and the concierge who will ready the apartment for your visits. There’s also a private garage so you can leave a car. Pets are welcome, so bring along Rover. The condo is priced at $2,595,000. For more information call Shellie Young, of Premier Sotheby’s, at 713-5458. Want to go from this ‌

Photos courtesy of Premier Sotheby’s

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THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

11

// HOME&GARDEN

2. For the arts-loving snowbird . . . 1350 Main St., no. 502 Sarasota’s latest wave of snowbirds come for the theater, opera, concerts and cabaret that fill every evening of the winter months, and this pied-à-terre, at 1350 Main St., is the perfect perch in which to enjoy them. It’s not large — just 705 square feet — but, that can be a plus in a second home. And the location couldn’t be better. You’re a short stroll from the

entertainment and, just as important, the dining. This unit comes furnished, with an urban-chic feeling and an elaborate set of window treatments, including blackout shades. Other conveniences: a washer/dryer, concierge service, indoor parking, and yes, pets are allowed. Owners can rent their units up to 12 times a year, and the latest trend is for locals to buy and use them for urban weekends. Priced at $319,000. For more information call Doug Parks, of Michael Saunders and Co., at 400-9087. Photos courtesy of Premier Sotheby’s

3. For the golfing snowbird . . . 9330 Clubside Circle, No. 3201 If your idea of snowbird heaven is endless golf, check out communities like Stoneybrook, in Palmer Ranch. You’ll find comfortable, well-appointed condos at prices that are quite affordable. This second-floor, turnkey-furnished unit couldn’t be more pleasant, with two bedrooms, two baths and a lanai overlooking the third fairway and several pretty lakes. There’s an eat-in kitchen and a private

Photos courtesy of Michael Saunders & Co.

laundry. Owners must join the golf club but, membership fees are reasonable — a bargain, actually — and the course is topnotch. And if you ever do get bored with golf, the beach is 10 minutes away, along with other activities, including the Legacy Trail for biking and jogging. This is classic snowbird living. It’s priced at $149,000. For more information call Ken Ipox, of Premier Sotheby’s, at 993-7279.

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Tuna Sashimi in a

YourObserver.com

ponz u sauce DIVERSIONS

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// FOOD&COOKING: Nautical by Nature

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

New restaurant Jack Dusty says ‘ahoy’ with opening-weekend festivities Jack Dusty is the new joint in town located inside the RitzCarlton, Sarasota. It features costal cuisine and crafted cocktails on Sarasota’s classy waterfront. Social media influencers set sail for an opening-weekend party Saturday, Jan. 19, at the new establishment. Sandy Young applied henna tattoos in the styling of Popeye; shirtless “mermen” walked the room, while a scantily clad mermaid sat atop the bar. And, there were plenty of crafted cocktails for those sea-

Bartender Roy Roig crafts Jack Dusty’s signature cockails.

men wanting to sail three-sheets to the wind. No stinky sailors were allowed in this upscale establishment full of trendy-dressed young professionals. There was also no poop deck to be scrubbed. There was, however, an open-air deck and seating area featuring fire pits. Inside, a DJ played background music near a display of coral, underneath goldsplashed, nautical-themed décor with elements of netting and fluid-like mercury glass baubles hanging from the ceiling.

Photos by Mallory Gnaegy

Jake Coleman receives a temporary tattoo from Sandy Young.

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Black Tie

INSIDE: Sarasota Orchestra Gala PAGE 18

YourObserver.com

C.J. and John Mercier dress the part in flamboyant circus costumes.

Elizabeth Flower Duke and Arnold Duke

Sailor Circus’ Anthony Congdon and Ian Laidlaw performed an amazing balancing act during the gala.

Noriko Sidlow, Kay Rosaire, Chuck Sidlow and Linda Carson

Dr. I.J. and Valerie Pober

By Rachel S. O’Hara | Black Tie Photographer Fun was the name of the game at Circus Sarasota’s annual gala Friday, Jan. 18, Under the Big Top. The evening was filled with clowns and strolling characters like Robin Eurich, Karen Bell, Marcello Spaghetti and Chuck Sidlow walking among and taking pictures with the 425 guests. To add more buzz to the atmosphere, Michael White drew caricatures; Nicole Hays and Amy Keiser painted faces; and guests were able to play dress-up in a designated costume area. The crowd came dressed to the nines — Charlie Lenger, Ray Peper and Sen. Bob Johnson were named the winners in the best-dressed costume contest. While auctioneer Michael Klauber used his magic to raise money for Sailor Circus, which Circus Sarasota ac-

Fran and John LaCivita

Sophia and Ron Fisher

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

Photos by Rachel S. O’Hara

Chris and John Sancin

quired more than a year ago, an exciting addition was made — if a certain amount was raised, CEO Pedro Reis would go up on the wire with featured guest Nik Wallenda after 30 years of being off the wire. The exciting offer raised more than $5,000. The other big item for the evening was the once-in-a-lifetime package to be part of Wallenda’s death-defying wire walk across the Grand Canyon. Hands went up over and over again as people tried to win the coveted opportunity, but in the end, Jack McKissock and his partner of more than 20 years, Lindy Smith, won the package with the winning bid of $16,000. The evening continued with more electrifying performances by Sheylla Nicolodi, Willard Nicolodi and Sailor Circus’ Anthony Congdon and Ian Laidlaw, and dancing to the music of The Venturas.

Nik Wallenda and Pedro Reis

Sen. Bob Johnson and Rep. Ray Pilon

Black Tie COVER PHOTOS CONTINUED ON PAGE 16


14

DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

// BLACK TIE:

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

(continued from page 1)

SERIES OF STORIES B

Booker High VPA Theater Booker High VPA Theater presents presents

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Rendering of Ringling College of Art and Design’s library, to be opened in 2015, from the viewpoint of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Way. by by Friedrich Duerrenmatt Friedrich Duerrenmatt

ritain’s former prime minister, Tony Blair, came in 2011 to speak at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, as part of the annual Town Hall Lecture Series, benefiting the Ringling College Library Association. He was one of five to speak that year — one more name to add to the extensive list of history’s leaders, opinion-shapers, movers and shakers who speak for the 33-year-old program that takes place from January through April. Typically, the impressive crop of speakers follows a standard format: Each speaks for 40 minutes followed by a 20-minute Q&A, featuring audience-submitted questions. But Blair requested to speak for 20 minutes and have a 40-minute Q&A. Kathleen Weiner, Town Hall chairwoman at the time, was nervous that the flow would be thrown out of kilter. Thinking a relaxing pedicure would help calm her anxiety, Weiner headed toward the nail salon to ease her mind. The tension subsided, but, then, she dropped her cell phone — the only line of communication with Tony Blair and his people — into the bubbly footbath. The loss of her phone made her unreachable until five minutes before stepping on stage to lead the Q&A. The lecture went just as smoothly as all of the others in the series.

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“He was phenomenal. I really had nothing to worry about,” Weiner says, recalling one of her favorite memories. Each year, there’s one woman responsible for contracting speakers and executing the program, and each chairwoman has more than a few stories to share. “I could write a book,” says Olivia Thomas, 2010 lecture chairwoman. “And not just the year I chaired, but I could write a chapter on every single speaker I’ve ever seen.” The committee women, many of whom became involved through Junior League, help with planning and details years before and after they chair the event. The annual series began in 1981, with a group of dedicated women under the guidance of first Chairwoman Doris Stelzer. Although the group originally consisted of non-working women, these days, most have fulltime jobs on top of their full-time volunteer job as chairwoman. For instance, Thomas is president and CEO of Safe Place Rape and Crisis Center. She chaired the 30th anniversary of the lecture series. “When I was chair, I got a vitamin D deficiency because I never went outside,” Thomas laughs, but she’s not kidding. She would spend all day at the computer working well into the night and on weekends planning the series. The highlight for her was bringing in former President Bill Clinton because he was surprisingly charming. After he spoke, it made it easier to bring in prominent figures for future lectures.

History of RCLA and the new library The Town Hall Lecture Series is the primary fundraiser for the Ringling College Library Association (RCLA). In 2007, Ringling College asked the RCLA Board of Directors to make the first gift to its Pathway to Pre-eminence Campaign to build a new library. The Library Association has pledged a total of $3.5 million toward the estimated $16 million campaign. The RCLA’s first five-year pledge was in 2008, when $1.5 million was committed; the second five-year pledge was $2 million and will be paid in 2014. So far, more than $5 million has been committed to the new

if you go

library project. These pledges are in addition to other financial support committed to general support of the current library. A new library, designed by architect design team Shepley Bulfinch, is slated to open fall 2015. When the current library was built, the student body was at 400. Now, it’s up to 1,400 students with more than 100,000 visits made annually. Twenty percent of the library’s collection, which has been stored elsewhere, will be housed in the new library, which will be quadruple the size of the current Kimbrough Library.

Dr. Robert Gates: Tuesday, Feb. 5 Dr. Benjamin Carson: Wednesday, Feb. 27 Capt. Mark Kelly: Monday, March 11 Tom Brokaw: Monday, April 8

It’s very exciting. Of course, every night I say a little prayer that all of my speakers stay healthy! – Stephanie Grosskreutz But one of Thomas’ favorite stories isn’t about a particular speaker; it’s about vending machine full of ice cream. Former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf was speaking at the round-table media Q&A, but with the combination of his thick accent and loud vending machine, people were having trouble hearing. “Kristine Nickel (2012 chairwoman) was motioning me to turn off the vending machine, so I’m crawling on my hands and knees to unplug it,” Thomas says. Then, Thomas went about her day until she received a call from Nickel that evening saying, “Olivia, we never plugged that vending machine back in.” They both pictured melted ice cream pouring out and worried about how mad the Van Wezel staff would be at them. Thomas resorted to calling the front desk to tell someone they need

to plug it back in. “It was like an anonymous bomb threat or something,” she laughs. But no one ever said anything about it. Not all the stories are funny. Nickel, president and managing partner of Nickel Communications, had a what-am-I-goingto-do moment with speaker Bill O’Reilly at last year’s event. It was 10 minutes before the media Q&A round table, and O’Reilly asked Nickel what members of the press were present. When she got to journalist Eric Deggans of the Tampa Bay Times, O’Reilly became enraged. Deggans allegedly called O’Reilly a racist in a past encounter. “Here’s this multimillion dollar TV personality pouting upstairs, saying he doesn’t want to do this press conference,” Nickel says. But, as it turns out, the two discussed their problems in front of everyone and reached reconciliation.

15

“Two weeks later, I’m surfing the TV and O’Reilly actually has Deggans on his show,” she says. So far, with only one lecture under her belt and with four left to go, this year’s chairwoman, Stephanie Grosskreutz, doesn’t have many stories — yet. She began the planning process in the summer of 2011 and announced the 2013 series season at the last lecture of 2012. According to her, after 33 years, the process is a well-oiled machine. It’s each chairwoman’s duty to find a balance among the types of speakers for their year. “You want a few recognizable names, then some that aren’t so recognizable,” she says, “Those are the ones people leave saying, ‘That was amazing!’” Grosskreutz says. Of course, every year they make offers or put together a bucket list of speakers the group would love to have, which right

When: 10:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Where: Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 North Tamiami Trail Cost: $200 to $600 per subscription Info: Call 925-1343 or visit rclassociation.org now includes: Hillary Clinton, Bono and Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg. The most difficult aspect of successfully executing the program is arranging the speakers’ contracts. Since this year’s lectures began Jan. 15, the stress of contracting is over and it is easier for Grosskreutz to enjoy the series. “It’s very exciting,” Grosskreutz says. “Of course, every night I say a little prayer that all of my speakers stay healthy!” And if the previous chairwomen’s stories are any indication, Grosskreutz will be a wealth of stories come the last lecture, which will also be when the 2014 chairman, Jay Logan, makes his series announcement and RCLA history as the first male to chair the Town Hall lectures.

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16

DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// BLACK TIE

(continued from page 13)

Amy Keiser paints Katie Cassani’s face with flowers.

Nik Wallenda, Pedro Reis and Blake Wallenda wowed the crowd with their high-wire act. It has been 30 years since Reis was last up on the high wire.

Linda Joffe and Lowell Lakritz

Ursie and Bill Fairbairn

Lisa and Terry O’Hara

Mary Anne Robinson and Ray Peper

Drs. Rebecca and Louis Cohen

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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

17

// BLACK TIE: COLUMN

Rachel S. O’Hara

Kay Mathers, Lisa Walsh and Susan Jones

 She Knows Where She’s Going! When Observer Executive Editor Lisa Walsh walked into her office, crowded with staff members as well as Girls Inc. Executive Director Kay Mathers and Board President Susan Jones, she assumed it was just a sweet thank you for the latest coverage in the paper. However, she was the true focus of the surprise: Mathers announced Walsh is going to be the 2013 She Knows Where She’s Going honoree at the April 4 Celebration Luncheon. “Lisa truly represents the strong, smart and bold characteristics of a ‘She Knows Where She’s Going’ honoree,” says Mathers. “From her work in the community, to her strong business leadership, to her continued work with Girls Inc., she is an advocate and an important part of Sarasota. We are so proud to call her a member of the Girls Inc. family.” This year’s Celebration Luncheon, co-chaired by Johanna Gustafsson and Chris Pinckney, will feature the “Power of the Girls,” showcasing the award-winning programs of Girls Inc., specifically MicroSociety. The luncheon’s 25th anniversary will feature a retrospective of all the past honorees, which includes Walsh’s daughter, Emily, who was honored in 2006 (the two make up the first mother-daughter honorees). For tickets and more information, visit girlsincsrq.com.

 Hannum’s at the helm!

The Observer welcomes back Stephanie Hannum in her new position as managing editor of Diversions and Season magazine. Readers will remember Hannum as the longtime

 Big Apple surprise

If there were a patch for wife-of-the-year, Liebe Gamble would certainly deserve it for pulling off a huge surprise for husband Billy’s recent milestone birthday. Her planning process of the so-called “Billy Palooza” began last summer and was a true labor of love. Liebe surprised Billy with a Jan. 4 trip to New York, and while staying at the Gramercy Park Hotel — a place near and dear Courtesy to the couple Liebe and Billy Gamble — Liebe brought Billy to the rooftop for a birthday drink before going “out for dinner.” While toasting near the elevator, the procession of loved ones began for the “slow-burn surprise.” All 60 guests — who flew in from all over the country, including more than 30 friends from Sarasota — arrived on the rooftop in different groups to prolong the surprise. It took the fourth group of guests to step off the elevator for overwhelmed Billy to finally catch on to what was happening. The celebratory event included a cocktail hour, sit-down dinner, toasts and finally the pièce de résistance, a flash mob that all the guests Courtesy learned via YouGramercy Park Hotel Tube. “The evening was insanely magical. The entire group had a perma-smile all night,” says Liebe.

tales by Black Tie Staff

editor of Black Tie. Most recently, Hannum served as vice president of operations for Diana E. Kelly, Inc. Hannum will guide the coverage of arts and entertainment, Black Tie and home, garden and Courtesy food features for the weekly Hannum Diversions and quarterly Season magazine. The editor garnered several awards for The Observer in her six-year tenure; Hannum won two first-place awards for Best Supplement (Season) from the Florida Press Association and two first-place awards for Best Entertainment/Lifestyle Section (Diversions) from the Local Media Association (formerly Suburban Newspaper Association). “We couldn’t be more delighted to have Stephanie at the helm of these two important Observer publications,” said Lisa Walsh, executive editor of The Observers. “Her knowledge of the Sarasota arts and social scenes is second to none, as are her organizational skills.” “I am thrilled to be back with my Observer family, managing the section that is dear to my heart and has provided me with so many great relationships in Sarasota,” Hannum says.

A Wish Fulfilled. The Ones You Love.

The Luxury of Time.

 Tidbits

Political partiers … Spotted at a recent fundraiser for Richard Dorfman’s bid for City Commission at Jesse and Katie Biter’s house were, of course, Dorfman’s sweetheart, Suzette Jones, and her daughter, Canyon Cushman. Also seen were Iris Starr, Rochelle Dudley, Emily Walsh and Diana Kelly, all sporting Courtesy the designer’s DiDiana Kelly, Iris Starr, ana E. Kelly shoes. Rochelle Dudley and More in attenEmily Walsh dance: Tami Fox, Dean Eisner, Michael Saunders, Doug and Ann Logan, Rich and Assunta Swier, Kelly Gettel, Casey Colburn, Gary Hoyt and more … Musical wardrobe … Jorgen Graugaard was in perfect harmony Jan. 13, when he was spotted wearing a matching bow tie and cummerbund that featured multi-colored musical notes to the Bradenton Opera Guild Gala … Elvis extravaganza … Charlie Ann Syprett sure knows how to celebrate! Her girlfriends — including Deb Knowles, Sharyn Weiner, Pam

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Sharyn Weiner, Charlie Ann Syprett, Deb Knowles, Pam Swain and Jennifer Saslaw

Swain and Jennifer Saslaw — toasted the birthday girl at State Street Eating House and presented her with an Elvis painting as well as a Moon Pie birthday cake. Knowles also gave all of the ladies Elvis lunch boxes full of Moon Pies, which they shared with the guests around them. With her birthday landing only one day from The King’s, fan Syprett was then whisked to see “Elvis Lives” at the Van Wezel, where one of the impersonators kissed her and tossed her his ring from the stage ... High-wired attire … Charlie Lenger was spotted at the Circus Sarasota Gala with a clever ensemble. She decorated her dress with Nik Wallenda crossing Niagra Falls by using stick-on pearls, fabric paint and magic markers. Wallenda signed her Rachel S. O’Hara dress at the gala. Charlie Lenger

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18

DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// BLACK TIE: Camera ready

// Sarasota Orchestra Gala: Bravo Broadway and Our Leading Ladies //

Benefiting Sarasota Orchestra | Saturday, Jan. 19, at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall

Larry and Carol English with Erik and Sandra Lindqvist

Chairwomen Pamela Steves and Helen Glaser

Photos by Rachel S. O’Hara

Honorees Anne Folsom Smith, Bunny Skirboll and Beathe Elden

Joan Morgan, Jack Lungmus and Sally Yanowitz

JOTB Observer ad 5x6.pdf 1 1/4/2013 Norm and Diane Foxman

Morton and Carol Siegler

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Feb 9–Mar 24, 2013

upcoming concerts & events spoken & sung: Of Mice and Men

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Puccini Feb 9–Mar 23

The Pearl fishers Bizet Feb 16–Mar 22

a King for a day Verdi Mar 2–24

of Mice and Men Carlisle Floyd Mar 9–23

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Partner: FSU/Asolo Conservatory Mon. Jan 28, 5pm | $5 admission Fsu/asolo conservatory actors present sections from John Steinbeck’s original play, and sarasota opera studio artists perform the corresponding scenes from the opera.

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the opera gala at the Ritz-Carlton Sat. Feb 2, 6:30pm

Verdi’s Times Apprentice & Studio Artists Concert Fri. Mar 8, 8pm Maestro Derenzi narrates a concert illustrating Verdi’s wide influence on the music of his time.

(941) 328-1300 | SArASoTAopera.org SeASon SPonSor

Marilyn and Jerry Schneider

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Stephanie and Jonathan Rubner


DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

19

// BLACK TIE: Camera ready

Photos by Rachel S. O’Hara

Dr. Richard and Pam Brown with Jan and Dr. Jim Fiorica and Dr. Mark Magenheim

Dan and Ellen Laubusch with Steve and Dr. Caryn Silver

Yvonne Harper

// ‘Red Hot’ Gala //

Benefiting Suncoast Communities Blood Bank Saturday, Jan. 19, at Michael’s On East

Bill Herron, board President Mary Ann Legler and CEO Scott Bush

Chairwomen Barrie Lazarus and Gina Krinsky

Natasha and Randy Hill

Robert Kohnen and Dr. Sheri Weinstein

AG JEANS JBRAND

DAFTBIRD WON HUNDRED SPLENDID KATIN

JACK SPADE

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20

DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// BLACK TIE: Camera ready

Retta Wagner, Karen Varone, Julie Reboul and Mary Anne Servian

Photos by Rachel S. O’Hara

// On Pointe Luncheon //

Benefiting Sarasota Ballet Monday, Jan. 14, at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall

Jean Weidner-Goldstein and Iain Webb

102129

Dennis Stover and Hillary Steele

Angie Diaz, a recent Dance — The Next Generation graduate

102249

Caitlin Gish and Yamil Maldonado perform the pas de deux from “Le Corsaire.”

Heather Dunhill, Molly Klauber and Sally Schule

Allison Forsyth


DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// BLACK TIE: Camera ready

// Town Hall Lecture Series featuring Walter Isaacson // Benefiting Ringling College Library Association Tuesday, Jan. 15, at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall

21

WE ♥ ISRAEL InterfaIth STREET FAIR & Shuk

Sunday, January 27, 2013 12-5pm • robarts arena Sponsors Janet and Richard Smalley with guest speaker Walter Isaacson, center

Chairwomen Ollie Johnson and Kathy Standard

ThE CommunITy IS InvITEd to thIS FREE anD faMILyfrIenDLy eVent! Celebrate Israel’s 65th birthday by enjoying a glimpse of her culture, technology, artistry, flavors and sounds!

Photos by Rachel S. O’Hara

RCLA President Merry and Stan Williams

Uta Christ-Janer and Stacey Corley

Larry Thompson, president of Ringling College of Art and Design, with his wife, Pat

// Women in Power Luncheon //

Benefiting National Council of Jewish Women, SarasotaManatee Section | Wednesday, Jan. 16, at Michael’s On East

EvEnt HIgHLIgHtS • ISRAElI Shuk (market) with lots of vendors selling Judaic, Israeli and holy Land items. • Food vEndoRS with Israeli, Middle eastern and Jewish foods. • ChIldREn’S ACTIvITIES InCludE: Climb Masada (rock wall), face painting, balloon artist, Israeli dancing, writing letters to Israeli soldiers and more! • EnTERTAInmEnT: Circus Sarasota, Westcoast Black theatre troupe, nazarene Choir, the Sarasota Jewish Chorale and Let’s rock Sarasota. • loCAl oRgAnIzATIonS: such as Mote Marine Laboratory, Sarasota Ministerial association, fisherman’s net revival Center, Chabad of Sarasota, Jewish Congregation of Venice, JfCS, technion, temple Beth Sholom, temple emanu-el & temple Sinai HoW to HELP 1) Bring non-perishable food items to be donated to the Mayor’s Feed The hungry program. 2) Donate blood to the Suncoast Communities Blood Bank. eVent parkIng IS FREE!

Honorees Dolly Jacobs, Dr. Maureen A. Maguire, Judy Cahn and Gloria B. Moss

directions: - Take I-75 to exit 210; go west on fruitville rd. approx 4-miles to 3000 fruitville rd; left (south) side of the road, just past Lockwood ridge rd. - Coming from uS 41 or uS 301: go east on fruitville to 3000 fruitville rd; right (south) side of the road, past tuttle ave.

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please visit: www.TheJewishFederation.org Nancy Rand, Susan Morin and Renate Kirshenbaum

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the STREngTh of a peopLe. the PowER of CoMMunIty.

klingenstein Jewish Center, 580 McIntosh road, Sarasota fL 34232

Photos by Rachel S. O’Hara

Chairwomen Joanne Trachtenberg and Myna Stoltz

Laura Carnavale, Nelle Miller and Veronica Brady

www.TheJewishFederation.org • 941.371.4546


22

Booker High School VPA

DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

// BLACK TIE: Camera ready

presents Friday, February 1st 7:30pm Saturday, February 2nd 7:00pm and 8:45pm Tickets: $10.00 Purchase by calling Judy Piercy at 941.355.2967 or by going online to www.vpabooker.com

Photos by Rachel S. O’Hara

101554

Sheila Lightcap, Kellie Moran, Audra Porter and Pat Luber came in first place for low net with a score of 57.5.

// SPARCC Scramble //

Benefiting Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center Monday, Jan. 14, at Laurel Oak Country Club

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Debbie Reese, Dawn Burcham, Heidi Phillips and Jean Newbon

Nancy Huber, Chris Deeds, Linda Ward and Gayle Borthwick came in first place for low gross with a score of 59.

Sarasota Concert Association presents the 2013

at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall

6th Annual SARASOTA

Monday, January 28 UT SOLD O

TV Media Sponsor

The Cleveland Orchestra with Joshua Bell, violin soloist

Tuesday, February 12 • 8 p.m.

Vienna Boys Choir Tuesday, February 26 • 8 p.m.

James Ehnes, violin Tuesday, March 19 • 8 p.m.

Beethoven Orchestra of Bonn 101486

with Louis Lortie, pianist

CONCERT TICKETS: $70 • $60 • $50 • $40 941-955-0040 • www.scasarasota.org 101377


YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

23 GCCC Gift Card membership rewards may be redeemed at:

// BLACK TIE: Camera ready

// Designer Showcase Kick-off Party // Benefiting The Boys and Girls Clubs of Sarasota and Manatee Counties Friday, Jan. 18, at Saks Fifth Avenue

Are You A Travel Connoisseur? Travel Connoisseur Club members receive Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club gift card rewards plus Virtuoso or American Express Platinum benefits! By invitation only. Contact us for details.

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Mack Reid, of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Sarasota County, with Shauna and Carl Weeks, of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Manatee County

Christa Molloy and Nicholas Rapisardi

Photos by Rachel S. O’Hara

101356

DIVERSIONS

TM

Chairwomen Deborah Coons and Cate McLean

JAZZ

Lisa Morris and Terri Symons

New Orleans’ Own The DUKES of Dixieland blow traditional Jazz and Dixieland into the 21st Century. Sarasota Orchestra conducted by Andrew Lane February 7 & 8, 8:00 pm Van Wezel | Tickets from $32

Leslie and Jim Short

MEDIA SPONSOR:

Come as you are. Leave different. www.SarasotaOrchestra.org | 941-953-3434 Sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture. Sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture.

102250

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Keffie Lancaster and Brigid Saah


24

DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2013

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Diversions  

Diversions