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ARTS&ENTERTAINMENT | POETIC JUSTICE

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‘The Fairytale Ball’ PAGE 11 by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

Mallory Gnaegy

Booker High School teacher Hellen Harvey, student Chandler Powell, poet Cedric Hameed and student Franchesca Alvarado at their weekly Slam spoken word club.

THE POWER OF

POEMS

PoetryLife strives to spark a resurgence of poetry education. But students, teachers and school board employees say it teaches more than language.

ARTS&ENTERTAINMENT COVER STORY CONTINUED ON PAGE 2


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// ARTS&ENTERTAINMENT: POETIC JUSTICE

THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor (continued from page 1)

THE POWER OF POEMS PoetryLife strives to spark a resurgence of poetry education. But students, teachers and school board employees say it teaches more than language.

L

Photos by Mallory Gnaegy

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“Poetry is condensed language that helps you understand other language,” Joanna Fox says.

ate in April 2013, students filled the seats of Florida Studio Theatre’s Gompertz Theatre. Students from Booker High School, Sarasota Military Academy and Sarasota High School watched their peers participate in a spoken-word poetry competition, or poetry slam. Teens spoke about failed suicide attempts, modern racism, abandonment, divorce or death of a parent. Some spoke about happier topics, such as young love and coming of age. This competition was one element of last year’s events leading up to PoetryLife Weekend. PoetryLife is a weekend-long celebration of poetry with educational initiatives leading up to it. This year’s PoetryLife weekend takes place May 2 and May 3, at various locations and will include readings by famous poets Kevin Young and Mark Doty, a community poem reading, a young voices reading featuring winners of the student contest and more. PoetryLife’s mission is to promote poetry in education. After last year’s competition,

MM#20895


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“Broken” b y Kiki Shaw

// ARTS&ENTERTAINMENT

Booker Midd

le School, w

Cedric Hameed

Alexis Orgera

IF YOU GO Pop-Up Poetry When: 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, May 1 Where: Two Senoritas, Clasico Café and Bar, Café Epicure and Caragiulos Italian Restaurant Cost: Free Young Voices Poetry Reading When: 10 a.m. Saturday, May 3 Where: Florida Studio Theatre (Keating Theatre), 1241 Palm Ave. Cost: Tickets $15 Info: Call 365-7900 or visit poetrylife.org. participants’ peers congratulated them for their bravery. They saw their classmates with greater understanding and new light — and it built their teenage community.

Students find comfort in words

There are 1,100 students at Booker High School. Seven of these students participate in “Slam,” the inaugural spoken word club. Spoken word is like written poetry, but more visceral. Emotionally, it’s in the moment, and it’s often improvised. Slam founder Chandler Powell, 17, is one of these seven students. She founded the club with the encouragement of her teacher, Hellen Harvey, following last year’s poetry slam. Before she found spoken word, she says she wasn’t a talker. Today, Powell has a blog dedicated to spoken word, which she up-

urt

Georgia Co dates daily. She stands up to read a poem to her peers at the weekly Slam meeting. “Did you write that?” one of her peers said in disbelief. This year, Powell will participate in PoetryLife’s poetry slam contest for the second year. She uses poetry as a positive outlet for self-expression, and she thinks other students could use it, too. She says it has helped her become a positive leader.

Poetry sneaks into curriculum

Through PoetryLife, poet Alexis Orgera and poetry slam professional Cedric Hameed offer three workshops of varying levels that teachers can volunteer to attend. They become poets in these sessions and tap into their own creativity. Hameed also does weekly poetry outreach for students in their classrooms for two months prior to PoetryLife. In addition to the spoken word contest, students are encouraged to write and submit their traditional poetry for a contest. The 20 winners read in the Young Voices Poetry Reading. Angela Hartvigsen, fine arts program specialist for Sarasota County Schools, is glad to witness

the spark PoetryLife is beginning to create. “Poetry meets students where they are,” Hartvigsen says. “If they have issues with punctuation or limited English language skills, it can sometimes be less threatening, yet very rich in what a student can gain from it. “When we look at what employers look for in attributes for potential job candidates, creativity is way up there on that scale,” she says. Poetry helps build this creativity, which students can use later in life to solve problems and think outside of the box. Poets, she says, are the types of thinkers we want running the world. Aside from educational components, Hartvigsen believes poetry builds resilience in a person. It helps people find ways to talk about the difficult and unexplainable parts of life.

Helping students fall in love

Georgia Court, founder of PoetryLife and owner of Bookstore1Sarasota, was inspired to emphasize the educational component when she met writing teacher Joanna Fox. Fox walks barefoot among the kitchen tables and chairs that make up her classroom at Booker

3

-Davis

ritten for Poe tryLife How do you do it, Stay strong w Live life as if hen you’re broken ; there is no to morrow; Run wild an d fr The warm su ee through mmer’s rain ? You’re fr As if your he ee like a bird. a rt was n And as if all you ever had ever broken was a loved But you and soul. You were bro I know the truth. ken, you are broken, But broken is free.

Middle School. Instead of fluorescent overhead lights, soft-glowing decorative lamps light the room. The classroom wall is cluttered with handwritten lines of poetry, two snakeskins, magnetic poetry and dragonfly exoskeletons. Fox, with her eclectic, homey classroom, creates a setting that invites poetry. Fox thinks PoetryLife is the perfect name. “Poetry is the condensed language of life,” she says. “The poet looks at what everyone else looks at, but sees what others miss and then helps others to see what they missed.” She points to a bumper sticker on her doorframe that reads “Metaphor be with you.” Fox thinks understanding metaphor helps students gain a deeper understanding of the other nonpoetry text and literature they read. Through writing poetry, her students learn to write concisely and apply the word choices and arrangements they use in poetrywriting to their other classes. In addition to reading poetry daily and writing poetry in her classes, all of Fox’s middle school students participate in Dragonfly Café, a nickname for their live poetry readings. This explains her dragonfly earrings, necklace and

sporadically placed dragonfly decor. At last year’s PoetryLife event, Fox’s Dragonflies performed menu-inspired “Pop-Up Poetry” at four downtown restaurants. For instance, one girl performed a coming-of-age piece about how now that she’s 13, chicken fingers can’t exist in her world. Through poetry, she helps students discover what they believe and stand for and how to voice it. It also teaches them to tune in and notice the subtle nuances of human nature. Fox takes her students into nature to count the 27 shades of green they see, to notice the fuchsia portulaca, to hear birds in conversation. The students — like the birds — learn to listen to each other, and develop a sense of community through poetry. Sometimes, when one student reads his or her poetry, another might cry, relating to it. Through poetry, she has seen students climb through the dark — whether they’re dealing with broken families, drugs or normal hormonal angst — and into the light. “When you share your poetry, you’re sharing the thumbprint of your soul,” she says.

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THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

// ARTS&ENTERTAINMENT

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

ART

CALENDAR

SCENE

A&E EDITOR’S PICKS

Runs through May 3. Tickets $5 to $15. Call 355-2967.

THURSDAY, MAY 1

Sir Frederick Ashton Festival Sarasota Ballet At Historic Asolo Theater and Sarasota Opera House Runs through May 3. Call 359-0099, Ext. 101.

Gershwin’s ‘My One and Only’ Manatee Players 7:30 p.m. at Manatee Performing Arts Center Runs through May 18. Tickets $27 to $37. Call 748-5875.

Art After 5 5 p.m. at The Ringling Tickets $10. Call 359-5700.

‘Hero: The Musical’ (Preview) 7:30 p.m. at Asolo Repertory Theatre. Runs through May 31. Tickets $21 to $76. Call 351-8000.

Base/Flight Partnering Technique Intensive for Modern Dance with Tampa Bay artists Erin Cardinal and Brian Dean Fidalgo Fuzión Dance Artists 6 p.m. at New College of Florida Fitness Center. Tickets $25, $10 observation. Call 345-5755.

‘The Elephant Man’ 8 p.m. at Venice Theatre Runs through May 11. Tickets $10 to $28. Call 488-1115. Ninth Annual Ten-Minute Play Festival Theatre Odyssey At Asolo Repertory Theatre Runs through May 4. Tickets $18. Call 799-7224.

nowHERE Gallery Performance: Bora Yoon and R. Luke DuBois 6:30 p.m. at The Ringling Tickets $10. Call 359-5700.

FRIDAY, MAY 2

The Craft of Poetry 10 a.m. at Florida Studio Theatre Tickets $15. Call 365-7900.

‘Annie Get Your Gun’ 7 p.m. at Booker VPA

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and Susan in “Tom Jones” running through June 1, at Florida Studio Theatre, 1241 N. Palm Ave.

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Graciany Miranda, Eileen Ward, and Bruce Warren

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ON DISPLAY: May 2 through May

Community Favorite Poem Reading 3 p.m. at Florida Studio Theatre Tickets $15. Call 365-7900.

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Flute and Harp Duo: Cheryl Losey and Betsy Traba 4 p.m. at First United Methodist Church Call 747-4406.

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that I’ve always admired dancers for the work they put in their art, two years ago I had a Kennedy center fellowship to draw and photograph dancers in Washington, D.C. That particular painting is from one of the drawings I did then. It was from the dance tryouts for the New York State ballet that were held at Skidmore College. I liked the posture, even though she’s much more relaxed — there’s still the grace and strength great dancers have. She’s a young person very much

Musica Sacra Cantorum 4 p.m. at St. Boniface Episcopal Church Tickets $20 to $25. Call 405-7322.

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SATURDAY, MAY 3

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IF YOU COULD WORK ANY PROFESSION OTHER THAN THIS, WHAT WOULD IT BE? I’d love to eventually teach or coach acting in order to continue sharing my love for this art form.

IF YOU HAD TO CONDENSE THE PLOT OF “TOM JONES” TO THREE SENTENCES, WHAT WOULD YOUR SYNOPSIS BE? Boy meets girl. Uni-

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Monday Night Movie: ‘42’ 7 p.m. at Historic Asolo Theater Tickets $7. Call 359-5700.

engaged in her upcoming trial, so she just sort of captured my attention and I was fortunate enough to work from her.”

Mark Doty and Kevin Young live on stage 7:30 p.m. at Florida Studio Theatre Tickets $15. Call 365-7900.

TUESDAY, MAY 6

Guided Art and Backstage Tours Fine Arts Society of Sarasota and the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall 10 a.m. at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall Tickets $5. Call 953-3368.

Young Voices Poetry Reading 10 a.m. at Florida Studio Theatre Tickets $15. Call 365-7900.

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by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

Borgia acts as Asolo Rep’s hero IF YOU GO ‘Hero’ When: 8 p.m. Friday, May 2 Where: Asolo Repertory Theatre, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail Cost: Tickets $21 to $76 Info: Call 351-8000 or visit asolorep.org.

“If there’s a problem I solve it — there’s no hesitation,” Kelly Borgia says. She is responsible for the actors’ and crew’s schedules, along with every light, sound, set and prop cue. She handles any emergency involving any of the above that arises throughout rehearsals and performances. If someone gets sick or hurt, a prop breaks or the lights wont turn on (or

Mallory Gnaegy

off), Borgia finds the solution. So, could the production go on without her? Her eyes get big. It would take a family death or hospital admission for her to miss a production. For instance, when her grandfather died, after the curtain closed on the play she was work-

ing on, she drove from New Jersey to Ithaca, N.Y., to be with her family, then drove back to call the evening show the next night. “Hero” has been particularly exciting because it’s a new musical. “It’s exciting to be apart of something as it’s being created because there are so many unknowns,” she says. “…There’s no reference … It didn’t exist until you were in the room creating it.” For instance, the set can rotate and four years have passed. Or, maybe it’s Christmas one minute, and 40 seconds later it needs to be Easter — she gets to help figure out all the details. The hope is that the production will have success in Sarasota so other theaters, even Broadway, will pick it up. “Everyone believes in the work they are doing right now, but it’s also really high stakes because they want it to move and go on,” she says. “I think it’s incredible and people are going to love it.”

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Rep’s peak season. Another thing Borgia is never without is her cellphone — she’s always on call and on her toes to solve any problems that might occur at the theater. “You can never know what to be ready for, so you always have to be ready,” she says.

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Kelly Borgia saw “Titanic” on Broadway during a class trip to New York. Following the performance, in a dramatic fashion, she called her mom who was at home in Jacksonville. “I said, ‘I don’t care what it takes, I’ll sweep the stages if I have to — I’ll work on Broadway one day,’” Borgia says with a laugh. “I’ve definitely made different choices (since then), but that’s when I knew I wouldn’t do anything but theater.” Borgia did not end up a janitor; she is the production stage manager at Asolo Repertory Theatre. She’s the organizational foundation behind every production. Today is a little crazy, because the new musical “Hero,” which opens May 2, has just moved from the rehearsal hall on Tallavast Road to the actual theater. “Hero” follows the story of an aspiring comic book artist who, because of a former tragedy, lives at home with his father. When a series of unexpected events occur, he has to face his fears and discover the hero within him. With one week before the curtain comes up, there are wires, men with power tools and bustling people everywhere. Borgia is at the heart of it. She’s the hero of this production (and many others during Asolo Rep’s season). In comic book fashion, you can usually spot Borgia with her sidekick: her 8-year-old pug, Doak, who works the 12-hour days alongside her during Asolo


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THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

// ARTS&ENTERTAINMENT: SPOTLIGHT

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor

Booker gets its gun Originally, Booker VPA acting teacher and director Scott Keys wanted to present “Chicago.” He even persuaded the head of the magnet arts program to approve the racy Vaudeville-style musical. But, when they couldn’t get rights to it, he went with the classic American musical “Annie Get Your Gun.” It runs through May 3, at the Booker VPA Theatre. The production follows the true story of sharpshooter Annie Oakley’s life and love af-

fair with fellow marksman Frank Butler. They used to travel in Wild West shows, but their story is fictionalized and dramatized in this musical. Many of the Irving Berlin songs are recognizable, such as “There’s No Business like Show Business” and “Anything You Can Do.” The leading performers include senior Ellie McCaw in the title role, junior Ryan O’Dell as Frank Butler, senior Sam Anthony as Col. Buffalo Bill Cody, senior Gianni Damaia as Charlie Davenport and junior Zoe Verbil as Dolly Tate. Booker VPA’s acting pro-

Ellie McCaw

gram includes 80-plus students who auditioned to join the program. They take three class periods to study their crafts, and many also study them outside of school. So the caliber of talent and performance goes beyond what one might expect from a high school musical. Former students have gone on to study at some of the best theater programs in the country, such as The Juilliard School, Northwestern University and Carnegie Mellon. These photos are a peek at the performance taken during a technical rehearsal.

IF YOU GO ‘Annie Get Your Gun’ When: 7 p.m. April 30; 7 p.m. May 1 and 2; and 2 and 7 p.m. May 3 Where: Booker VPA Theatre, 3201 N. Orange Ave., Sarasota Cost: Students, $5; seniors, $10; adults, $15 Info: Call 3552967 or visit vpabooker.com.

Inset: Zoe Verbil and Ryan O’Dell; the ensemble

Sam Anthony

YOUROBSERVER.COM // Visit our website to view more pictures and watch clips of Booker VPA’s “Annie Get Your Gun.”

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// ARTS&ENTERTAINMENT: REVIEWS

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you off guard and howling with laughter. Musical Director Rick Bogner plays the song parodies like the anthems they’re supposed to be. (We’re talking about the people’s right to pee, remember.) He serves up the improbable song and dance like it’s “Jesus Christ Superstar.” It’s a star comic cast, too. The gangly Ellis brings a Jim Carrey physicality to his strong Strong performance. (Think double-takes, hyperactive reaction time and rubbery poses.) Robert Turoff (the director’s dad, whom we all remember from Golden Apple days) plays villainous Cladwell like Mr. Nice Guy. Playing his daughter Hope, Cassidy is all sweetness and light — then gets all Patty Hearst on us. When he’s not bashing heads, Officer Lockstock (Chri Caswell) functions as narrator and allpurpose explainer man (dryly and nicely underplayed.) He’s sometimes assisted by Little Sally (Ashley Jai), a doll-clutching waif with big eyes and big questions about hydraulics (small role, big comedy.) Penelope Pennywise (Alana Opie) brings a Carol Burns comic presence to her mercurial character. Kudos also to J.D. Carter, Berry Ayers, Philip Alexander and everyone involved. Hilarious performers all. Get ready to laugh. But … fair warning: Although “Urinetown” is a satire of message plays, it cunningly gives you a message anyway. Stop wasting water, or we’re all in the toilet. Helpful hint: Use the restroom before you see the play. It’s free. — Marty Fugate

YOUROBSERVER.COM // Read Marty Fu-

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“Urinetown: The Musical” fearlessly confronts the issue of global water shortage while satirizing left wing allegories of the 1930s and, for that matter, every musical since the dawn of time. Seriously, folks. I just saw it at The Players. I’m not making this up. It’s a happy musical about some unhappy stuff. Imagine a world, sometime in the future. A world where water is as scare as a Hollywood agent who returns your calls. In an unnamed dystopian city, a ruthless Boss (aka Caldwell B. Cladwell, played by Robert Turoff) holds a monopoly on pay toilets and has made free urination a crime. Violators are sent to a penal colony called “Urinetown,” which, based on the name, probably stinks. The people are pissed off. It’s time for a working class hero. It’s time for Bobby Strong (Jason Ellis). You get the idea. Strong starts a revolution — after falling in love with the boss’s daughter, Hope Cladwell (Sarah Cassidy). She goes from love interest to hostage before you can say, “Climactic scene before first-act break.” This is all served up in a dead-on parody of Fritz Lang’s “Metropolis,” Berthold Brecht’s “Threepenny Opera” and Marc Blitzstein’s “The Cradle Will Rock” — all those plays and movies making big statements against ruthless capitalists in top hats. It’s hilarious, whether you dig the references. And, like two bored hit men, the creators quickly shift their satiric rifle scopes to “West Side Story,” “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Chicago,” “Les Miserables” and other targets. You laugh, because each spoof is right on target. Perfect parody demands perfect pitch. And director Kyle Turoff has a good ear. At heart, every musical is an exercise in emotional manipulation. She plays it like a full-on assault. We’re not talking about toilets; we’re talking about justice. Turoff goes straight for your heart — and never winks. Her comic rhythms are flawless and never predictable. She keeps


DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

// HOME&GARDEN: SPRING FEVER

9

by Heather Merriman | Black Tie Assistant Editor

DÉCOR IN BLOOM Springtime … When flowers bloom, the air is fresh and excitement is near for the slower summer months. With all the positive energy coming from the outdoors, the positivity and relaxation should be brought indoors as well. We explored local interior shops to find the perfect spring additions to appeal to all of the senses. From visuals to scents, these items will have your home feeling springy in no time.

 This flower cart at Pottery Barn provides many options for adding flowers (and fruit) to your home for spring.  Flowers placed in flower containers, like these found at Pineapple House 533, bring a “fresh from the garden” look to your home.  Found at Rustic Rooster, these bird-top bottles on a bed of moss can be added to a foyer table or even used a table centerpiece in the home to bring a feel of spring to your everyday décor.  Adding seasonal throw pillows to your chairs and couches is a quick and easy way to add some floral and color accents to your home. This pillow, found at Pottery Barn, is neutral, yet colorful, making it an easy throw to incorporate with your décor.

 Bath & Body Works “Refresh & Renew” candle — the blend of jasmine, fresh air and mint brings the smell of spring into your home.

Silhouette®

 Mixing spring flowers and color to a more simple, or mid-century modern design home can be easily done with a subtle springtime addition, like this aluminum-based potted flower. The aluminum base matches the neutral or industrial feel, while the flower still adds a pop of color.

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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

// FOOD&COOKING: RECIPE FOR SUCCESS

by Mallory Gnaegy | A&E Editor started letting me help them when they were busy. Then it morphed into letting me cook.

ou Do y e same h t ee t en nd s frequ ateries a ch time s ea le loca e faces ture help m is fea e a s s the o? Th now the is h g you get to k better. T w you a little o n ok s face ek, get t ’s new we Dusty ef. Jack cutive ch exe

WHAT’S YOUR EARLIEST MEMORY RELATING TO FOOD? Growing up

in West Virginia, my grandfather had a garden. I remember going out and picking scallions or spring onions with him, walking around with a saltshaker and we’d (sprinkle it on) and eat them right there.

WHAT ARE YOUR BIGGEST RESPONSIBILITIES AS THE NEW EXECUTIVE CHEF? Staying current, and keeping the locals of Sarasota interested in what we’re doing. Also, keeping the menu exciting and seasonal.

SO WHAT KIND OF MENU DEVELOPMENTS ARE YOU MAKING NOW? Right now, I’m working on

Photo by Mallory Gnaegy

WHERE ARE YOU FROM? Morgantown, W. Va.

WHAT JOB DID YOU HAVE BEFORE

WHAT IS YOUR CULINARY BACKGROUND? Living in West Virginia, I

WHEN WAS THE FIRST TIME YOU PREPARED A MEAL FOR SOMEONE? I started out as a dishwash-

started working at The Greenbrier hotel for about six years. After that, I joined the Ritz-Carlton in Naples. I was cooking in local restaurants, and didn’t know what

er. I can remember trying to see what the guys on the line were doing and trying to get involved. They’d say, “Come on over,” and

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THING ON THE MENU? The Sarasota Ci-

oppino, $26. It’s very Jack Dusty. It’s one of our signature dishes.

IF THERE WERE AN INGREDIENT OR ITEM ON THE MENU THAT BEST DESCRIBES YOUR PERSONALITY, WHAT WOULD IT BE AND WHY? I’d say the Jack Dusty

make-your-own s’mores because

WHAT’S ONE OF YOUR FAVORITE PLACES TO EAT OUTSIDE OF JACK DUSTY? We just had our

second child, and while my wife was pregnant she always wanted me to take her to Drunken Poet Café to get the coconut curry soup.

YOUR DREAM CUSTOMER (DEAD OR ALIVE) COMES IN — SHE WANTS TO MEET THE CHEF — WHO IS IT? I’d say America’s

first celebrity chef, Julia Child. I’d love for her to come in and talk shop. It would be such a generational gap, so it would be neat to talk about the development of food from when she was cooking and in the scene until now.

DESCRIBE JACK DUSTY WITH ONE SONG: Beethoven’s “Ode to

Joy.” It’s from the period correct to our character Jack Dusty and his lifestyle. Plus, everyone who has ever worked in a restaurant has had a moment when they’ve been in the zone and have had that song come in their head. Sometimes (work is like) a beautiful symphony. Other times, you have a rail full of tickets and it’d be a heavy metal song … or maybe The Beatles’ “Help.”

GIVE US TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE ABOUT YOURSELF — YOU DON’T HAVE TO TELL US WHICH IS WHICH. 1. I love being a father to my kids, Scarlett, 2, and newborn, Grace. 2. I listen to and collect vinyl records. 3. I’m good at lying.

Kitchen

In The

(NEW) EXECUTIVE CHEF AT JACK DUSTY | 1111 RITZ CARLTON DRIVE, SARASOTA

I wanted to do with my life. I was just cooking for beer money. Then I thought, ‘I could do this for a living. I could do this for the rest of my life.’ And I did.

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THIS ONE? I was with a different company in Maryland, where I was the executive sous chef at a small hotel with Orient-Express Hotels Ltd.

a summer menu … I’ll talk to local farmers and see what they’ll have in the coming months. Then I’ll take those items and write a menu around that. Right now we’re working with shishito peppers. There’s a farm in Terra Ceia growing them for us, Faithful Farms. We take Anna Maria Island bottarga, a cured mullet roe. We blister the peppers and toss them with lemon juice in sea salt, then shave the bottarga over the top. Everything we use is from Sarasota. Everything’s local.

it’s interactive. I like to get my cooks thinking and involved in the planning of their work. It’s a very hands-on job. (Just like s’mores), you’ve got to work to reap the rewards.

DineOriginal.com

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Black Tie

INSIDE: First Presbyterian Preschool’s ‘First Roots’ PAGE 14

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

Co-Chairs Dr. Paul Brannan and Dr. Heidi Anderson, Matt and Lisa Walsh, Jo and Stan Rutstein and Larry and Nola Hietbrink

Gary and Debbie Knoflick

Photos by Heather Merriman

by Heather Merriman Black Tie Assistant Editor Children First’s 14th annual “The Fairytale Ball” was nothing short of spectacular. Ivy roped with string lights, deep purples and elegant silver silk linens, tree branch awnings and classic fairy tale melodies transformed Michael’s On East into an enchanted forest, just like those heard about in fairy tales. Upon entering the enchanted atrium the evening of April 26, guests enjoyed a signature cocktail, “The Mad Hatter,” a lemon vanilla martini, and spent time mingling and bidding on silent auction items. The enthusiasm for the suggested attire was extraordinary — from elegant gowns suited for queens to ball gowns with wands, more than 300 guests dressed in the theme. There were even some dressed in character — Dr. Anne Chauvet dressed as Rapunzel, Wayne and Mindy Rollins dressed as Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf and Gary and Debbie Knoflick dressed as Mickey Mouse

 Tom Ross and Sally Trout

Helen McBean and Daisy Saunders

Denver and Jenn Stutler

Chris Currie, Elenor Maxheim and Diane Davis

Elaine and Rod Hershberger

and Minnie Mouse. Following the cocktail reception, guests gathered in the enchanted ballroom for dinner and the live auction. DJ Jonathan Cortez played fairy tale tunes and serenaded guests with his live performances. Guests spent the remainder of the night dancing at the ball, until the clock struck 12. The sold-out event was a huge success for Children First. “There was so much excitement for the event. Throughout the entire night people were dancing and having fun with a party feel all night,” says Children First Major Gifts Officer Angie Stringer. “The evening had a lot of enthusiasm with people wanting to support Children First.” Dr. Heidi Anderson and Dr. Paul Brannan, Matt and Lisa Walsh, Stan and Jo Rutstein and Larry and Nola Hietbrink co-chaired the event.

The table centerpieces were each decorated with a different fairytale story theme.

Phil and Linda Targee with Chris White

David Evans and Carolyn Garvey with Julie and Josh Abel

Dawn Epstein with Ted and Ethna Wishnie


12

DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

// BLACK TIE: COLUMN

BLACKTIE&TALES

by Black Tie Staff

AMONG CHILDREN FIRST’S ENCHANTED FOREST …

T

he whole evening April 26 at Children First’s Fairytale Ball was spectacular. The theme was seen all over the transformed Michael’s On East ballroom — from the lighted vines hanging from the ceiling, the story book pages gracing the walls and the costumes and fairy tale fashions. Wayne Rollins not only donned a big bad wolf tail, but also fabulous patent leather spiked Christian Louboutins, Dr. Heidi Anderson showed off a “Wicked” handbag, Chris Voelker was kissing frogs that evening — husband Kirk had his face painted as the token addition to fairy tales and Jenn Stutler stood out in a custom gown she purchased at 530 Burns Gallery’s “Where Art Meets Fashion” event featuring designer Marisu Miranda. However, the award of best dressed goes to Renee Phinney, who looked stunning in her custom gown by Eric Cross. Phinney had the idea of wearing a storybook dress made from im-

ages from classic fairy tales — and the best to construct? Cross, who is known for his creative creations that have sashayed down the iConcept runway. He spent more than 15 hours constructing the dress, using bubble wrap, plastic sheeting and paper.

Photos by Heather Merriman

Renee Phinney and Eric Cross

It’s a boy! … Heather Dunhill and Ted MeekS ma hosted a Champagne TIDBIT toast for their new puppy, Carlos. The “puppy shower” allowed friends to mingle while enjoying Champagne and food catered by Fete. Seen cooing over the new fur baby: Kyla Weiner, Kim Livengood, Amy Sussman, Crystal Lahners, Barbara Banks, Terry McKee and Shelley Sarbey … Here comes the bride … Deb Knowles and Larry Kabinoff have been talking about the possibility of marriage for the larger part of their three years together. But she was in no hurry, and he didn’t push. The big breakthrough came a few weeks ago in as unromantic a place as you could imagine — their attorney’s office. Discussing a tax matter, the lawyer said, “This would be much simpler if you were married.” When it happened a second time, Larry hummed “Dum, dum, da  dum …” (the opening bars of the Wedding March from Lohengrin) resulting in the official engagement unofficially announced in Black Tie & Tales a few weeks ago … Meet my Mack … apparently, this column gave cupid a little nudge when we published that Mollie Nelson and Mack Harper had changed their respective Facebook statuses to “in a relationship.” They are

now officially engaged, an announcement made by dear friend and longtime neighbor Bill Wise at a “Meet My Mack” dinner April 22, at Michael’s Wine Cellar. The table favors were little tins of M&M’s monogrammed “Mack and Mollie,” of course … West meets West to feed local kids … Olivia Boutique on St. Armands is hosting a dual trunk show 4 to 7 p.m. May 1 and 2. It will feature personal appearances and made-inAmerica merchandise from California apparel designer David Klein and Sarasota’s own fine jewelry designer Marion Strickland of MK Designs. A portion of proceeds will go to All Faiths Food Bank’s “Campaign Against File photo Summer Hunger,” sponsored by the Gulf Coast Community Foundation to assure that the 21,000 kids who rely on school meals don’t go hungry when school is out … Oops! Correcting an error in last week’s column: Paul and Doris Wolfe … Galileo to go … Dr. Fritz Faulhaber and his wife, Ping, hosted a reception April 21 to announce the Faulhaber Foundation’s plans for a Suncoast Science Center. They treated the assembly of about 100 elected officials, educators and potential supporters to the kind of “hands on” learning experience the center will provide by way of a demonstration of how four balls of dramatically different weight hit the floor simultaneously when dropped. And they sent guests home with a set of the balls to play with. The center needs all kind of help: donations, volunteers and advisors. To learn more, visit suncoastscience.org.

CVA BOARD PUTS ONE OVER ON THE BOSS

Attendees at the alwayssold-out April 22 Community Video Archives luncheon were treated to some charming insights beyond what was in the video biographies of this year’s inductees. Dan Kennedy: “Excellence in a school happens not in the front office, but in the classroom.” Alexandra Quarles: quoting Gary Lew, “This is your world. Shape it or someone else will.” Sam Shapiro: “I’m happy to be here; at my age, 95, I’m happy to be anywhere.” And Gerri A sAfer ro Aaron: “Sarasota wouldn’t Applause allow a critical cable TV antenna to be built in the city so my husband (Comcast founder Dan Aaron) bought a pig farm on Fruitville and Honore for $10,000, where it remains today.” The more things change … Shapiro suggested in his comments that founder Annette Scherman should herself be nominated to the Video Hall of Fame and just a few minutes later, former CVA Board President Bob Johnson announced that is precisely what will happen next year. It took some doing; a board meeting that was minus one member. And he acknowledged, “She will come kicking and screaming.” Gotcha, Annette. Time to smile and gracefully accept so we can all applaud your induction in 2015.

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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

13

// BLACK TIE: CAMERA READY 11TH ANNUAL WOMEN HELPING WOMEN LUNCHEON Benefiting Samaritan Counseling Services of the Gulf Coast Thursday, April 24, at Michael’s On East

Ron and Rita Greenbaum, Nate Jacobs, Co-Chair Annette Scherman and Honoree Gerri Aaron

 Sandy Buchanan, Keith Hirst and Chairwoman Peggy Wilhelm

CVA HALL OF FAME INDUCTION LUNCHEON Benefiting Community Video Archives Tuesday, April 22, at Michael’s On East Photos by Heather Merriman

 Honoree Sam and Sally Shapiro with Jay Berman

Deby Rutledge, Mandy Simmons and Mindy Voight

Mother’s Day Brunch

Kathy Schersten and Honoree Alex Quarles

Roxie Jerde and Valerie Leatherwood

Tootie and Honoree Dan Kennedy

Photos by Heather Merriman

John Wilson and Kitty Cranor

in Selby Gardens Mother’s Day Mother’s Day Brunch Gourmet Sunday Brunch Day the Entire Family will Treasure

in Selby Gardens Brunch overlooking Sarasota Bay with in Selby Gardens breathtaking garden Day the Entire Family will views Treasure and live music. Day the Entire Family will Treasure

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14

DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

// BLACK TIE: CAMERA READY ‘FIRST ROOTS’ Benefiting First Presbyterian Preschool Thursday, April 24, at Michael’s Wine Cellar

Tricia Powers and her daughter, Healey May, Meredith McKay and Sara McKay

MIRACLE FEST AWARDS DINNER Benefiting Ava Maria Preparatory School Thursday, April 10, at Michael’s On East

 Ashley Carson with Bill and Donna Dooley  Co-Chairs Tina Miller and Michelle Stencik

 Ashley Knoch, Cathy Kenney and Lisa Benson

Photos by Heather Merriman

John Folvig, Kevin Wicks and Ryan Carson

Jenny Infanti and Kimmie Mangum

Photos by Heather Merriman

Jayna Hamel, Eladio Amores and Mary LeMay

Michelle and honoree Fla. Sen. John McKay

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DIVERSIONS

YourObserver.com

THURSDAY, MAY 1, 2014

15

// BLACK TIE: SOUTHERN BELLES

HOTFLASH

by Heather Merriman

20 - 60% OFF!! Store Wide

Black Tie Assistant Editor

HOW TO DRESS ‘SOUTHERN CHIC’

W

hen the Designing Daughters committee first heard about the “Southern Charm” theme for its May 2 “A Fashionable Gala,” their first thought was: “Where can one find a hoop skirt in Sarasota?” Luckily, “old South” is not what the Designing Daughters are going for with Southern Charm. With a wide variety of ways to interpret how to dress southern chic, Black Tie explored the options available locally, shopping for attire appropriate for only the most southern of belles. Here is what we found:  LILLY PULITZER: Ruffles and seersucker — nothing says southern more than seersucker Lilly, and those ruffles — need it say more?

HOT SALE, COOL JEWELS!

Photos by Heather Merriman

 TERRA NOVA: Chunky statement necklaces, like these found at Terra Nova on St. Armands Circle, are a “southern” way to add some flair to any outfit. These summer colors would pair nicely with chic dress.  FRESH: “Southern Chic” doesn’t necessarily have to be a dress. This mixed pattern outfit put together by Fresh owner Ashley Guttridge has a southern elegance with the mixed patterns, chiffon and lace. The orange dress to the right is also a good option.

Just in time for Mother’s Day, Shop early for the best selections

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 SHORE: This mint-colored Free People dress is a great option for someone going for a more “bohemian southern chic” look. The high neckline and lace add that southern charm, without being completely preppy.

L

PoetryLife May 2-3, 2014

A Special Weekend Promoting Poetry Education

Life

WHEN: 7 p.m. Friday, May 2 WHERE: Nathan Benderson Park

P

Featured Poets:

Make-A-Wish Glow Run

Mark Doty & Kevin Young

Events: Friday, May 2nd

For a list of local ev ents, or to submit your own, visit ThisWeekI nS

arasota.com/calen da

r

et

ry

c

COST: $40 in advance; $50 day-of Early-morning runs not your scene? Light up the night with MakeA-Wish Foundation’s second-annual Glow Run, where the focus is just as much on the party. Get decked out in glow toys, enjoy beer from Gold Coast Eagle Distributors and party for a good cause.

o

10 am The Craft of Poetry Florida Studio Theatre, Bowne’s Lab Theatre Tickets: $15

Reach for the Clouds

Saturday, May 3rd 10 am Young Voices Poetry Reading Florida Studio Theatre, Keating Theatre Tickets: $15

7:30 pm Mark Doty & Kevin Young Live on Stage Florida Studio Theatre, Goldstein Cabaret Tickets: $15

Noon Above and Beyond Luncheon Florida Studio Theatre, Court Cabaret Tickets: $35

Tickets: Florida Studio Theatre at 941-366-9000 www.FloridaStudioTheatre.org

3 pm Community Favorite Poem Reading Florida Studio Theatre, Keating Theatre Tickets: $15

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Diversions 5.1.14  

Diversions 5.1.14

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