Sunday, February 25, 2018
Features and More

Al Pacino, Katie Holmes, Paul Rudd among the stars lighting up Broadway this season

NEW YORK — As autumn turns the Manhattan air crisp and cool, Broadway is gearing up for another season. In the 2012-2013 lineup are new plays, star-driven revivals, lavish musicals and shows inspired by movies, books, TV shows and one very well-known comic strip.

The stars who should make box offices glow just a little brighter this season include Al Pacino (in the revival of David Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross), Jessica Chastain (playing the title role in The Heiress), Katie Holmes (moving on from Tom Cruise in Dead Accounts), the always-fabulous Chita Rivera (in The Mystery of Edwin Drood revival), Debra Winger (opposite Patti LuPone in Mamet's new The Anarchist), Paul Rudd (with Ed Asner and Boardwalk Empire's Michael Shannon in Grace), Alec Baldwin (in a planned spring revival of Orphans) and Henry "The Fonz" Winkler (as a retired porn star, believe it or not, in The Performers).

Kids and their families will have plenty of Broadway (and close-to-Broadway) options this season, from a revival of Annie to a stage version of the TV musical Cinderella and the British hit Matilda.

There's also family-friendly holiday fare like Elf, A Christmas Story and two large-scale shows, Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical (at the Theater at Madison Square Garden, theateratmsg.com) and that beloved perennial the Radio City Christmas Spectacular (at Radio City Music Hall, radiocity.com).

The season's best bet (so far) for fans of take-no-prisoners drama on Broadway is the Steppenwolf revival of Edward Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? starring company members Amy Morton (she was in August: Osage County) and Tracy Letts (he won the Pulitzer Prize for writing August: Osage).

As always, consider what Off-Broadway has to offer if you're making New York theater plans. Christopher Durang's Chekovian comedy Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike (starring Sigourney Weaver and David Hyde Pierce) runs at Lincoln Center's Mitzi Newhouse Theater through Jan. 13 (lct.org). Giant, a musical version of the Edna Ferber novel set in Texas (with music and lyrics by Michael John LaChiusa and a book by Sybille Pearson), plays the redesigned Public Theater through Dec. 2 (publictheater.org). Two other musicals at the Public, Jeanine Tesori and Lisa Kron's Fun Home (through Nov. 4) and Here Lies Love by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim (April 2 to May 5), also sound promising.

Movie hottie Jake Gyllenhaal is making his stage debut in the play If There Is I Haven't Found It Yet at the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for theater (roundabouttheatre.org). Other stars who will show up Off-Broadway this season include Bebe Neuwirth in Terrence McNally's Golden Age (Nov. 13 to Jan. 6) and Edie Falco in Liz Flahive's The Madrid (Feb. 5 to April 14), Manhattan Theatre Club productions at the New York City Center (manhattantheatreclub.com).

Tarell Alvin McCraney's hot new London hit, Choir Boy, will also play City Center next summer (previewing June 18, opening July 2). Other Off-Broadway plays to look out for include Quiara Alegria Hudes' Pulitzer Prize-winning Water by the Spoonful at Second Stage (2st.com) and the Playwrights Horizons world premiere of hot playwright Amy Herzog's The Great God Pan (Nov. 24 to Dec. 30; playwrightshorizons.org).

Comments
Orchestra explores spirit of Florida and the U.S. with ‘Triptych’ and ‘New World’ Symphony

Orchestra explores spirit of Florida and the U.S. with ‘Triptych’ and ‘New World’ Symphony

ST. PETERSBURG — One of the more important programs in the Florida Orchestra’s season combined Antonin Dvorak’s best known symphony with the debut of a major commission. Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9, better known as the "New World," reaches to the roots o...
Published: 02/24/18
Your 4-year-old daughter could land a role in ‘Waitress’ at the Straz

Your 4-year-old daughter could land a role in ‘Waitress’ at the Straz

TAMPA — Could your 4-year-old be the next Lulu? A touring Broadway show wants to find out. Waitress, which runs April 24-29 at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, is looking for a local 4- to 5-year old to play a small but c...
Published: 02/23/18
Top things to do on Friday, Feb. 23

Top things to do on Friday, Feb. 23

Blast Friday: The Romantics: The family-friendly food and craft vendor festival featuring a free live concert and a beer garden. 5:30 p.m., 400 Block of Cleveland Street, Osceola Avenue and Cleveland Street, Clearwater. Free. (727) 464-7200. Pasco C...
Published: 02/23/18
The Florida Orchestra taps composer Michael Ippolito to capture the state’s sound

The Florida Orchestra taps composer Michael Ippolito to capture the state’s sound

ST. PETERSBURG — The composer sat in semi-darkness, his hand drifting like a slow pendulum at his side. On the Mahaffey Theater stage, the violins led a creaking and mysterious journey through a cypress swamp, the inspiration for the first movement.T...
Published: 02/23/18
A look at new ships and trends in cruising for 2018

A look at new ships and trends in cruising for 2018

What’s new in cruising for 2018? As usual, there’s lots of razzle-dazzle — laser tag, water slides, zip lines and massive LED screens — along with a continued emphasis on healthy lifestyle options, from dining to fitness. But there are also changes u...
Published: 02/23/18
New play focuses on the dangers of seniors falling

New play focuses on the dangers of seniors falling

CLEARWATER — The actor is playing out a common moment. She is an elderly woman, one who cherishes simple possessions — her cat, a favorite rug, her own home. She loses her balance while leaning over. She tumbles to the ground. The stage fades to blac...
Published: 02/22/18
Updated: 02/23/18
Clearwater police chief forms special unit for repeat offenders

Clearwater police chief forms special unit for repeat offenders

CLEARWATER — Police Chief Dan Slaughter started this month a new unit to target repeat offenders and nuisance properties.The Special Enforcement Unit consists of six police officers and a sergeant from within the department to focus on the small grou...
Published: 02/22/18
Jolley Trolley offers free rides to Clearwater Beach

Jolley Trolley offers free rides to Clearwater Beach

CLEARWATER — Spring break kicked off this week with a program offering free rides on the Jolley Trolley between downtown and Clearwater Beach until April 29.The Park N Ride service will pick up riders at two lots downtown every 15 minutes and drop th...
Published: 02/22/18
Ruth Eckerd Hall asks Clearwater for $3 million toward renovations

Ruth Eckerd Hall asks Clearwater for $3 million toward renovations

CLEARWATER — Ruth Eckerd Hall is requesting a $3 million grant from the city to help complete the $21 million renovation of its facility on McMullen Booth Road.The Expanding the Experience project began in 2015 with a renovation of the Murray Theatre...
Published: 02/22/18
This week food fests celebrate collard greens and Jewish foods

This week food fests celebrate collard greens and Jewish foods

FIELD OF GREEN: COLLARD FEST On Saturday you can devote your whole day to the beauty of collard greens. Well, that’s the jumping off point. Collards are the "central ingredient" at the Tampa Bay Collard Green Festival at St. Petersburg’...
Published: 02/21/18
Updated: 02/22/18