Thursday, July 19, 2018
Stage

A busy week at the Straz with ‘Figaro’, ‘The Color Purple’, Dance Theatre of Harlem

HE’S BACK: THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO

The endearing, enduring Figaro, seen last month in The Barber of Seville, returns in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, Opera Tampa’s second show of three this season. That’s the same order in which Pierre Beaumarchais wrote the plays (although the Rossini opera, The Barber of Seville, was written after Figaro).

Daring for its challenges to notions of class and power, Figaro was an instant success. It ranked eighth on the list of most-performed operas in 2015-16 (with 2,483 performances), according to Operabase, a comprehensive international database. Gabriel Preisser, who starred in Barber, returns to play Figaro. The cast includes Claire Coolen as Susanna, Cecilia Lopez as the Countess band Seun-Hyeon Baek as Count Almaviva. 8 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Sunday at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, Ferguson Hall, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. $118.75 and up. (813) 229-7827. strazcenter.org.

A CATALYST: DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM

In 1969, Arthur Mitchell and Karel Shook founded the Dance Theatre of Harlem in a church basement. The company helped shake up the dance world, incorporating classical modes into contemporary storytelling and even redefining ballet. The company has played to sold-out houses ever since, and developed a school and arts education program with a worldwide influence. 8 p.m. Saturday at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, Morsani Hall. $25 and up. (813) 229-7827. strazcenter.org.

OYE COMO VA: THE MAMBO KINGS

Pops conductor and arranger Jeff Tyzik will lead the Mambo Kings this weekend in what promises to be a lively program with the Florida Orchestra. The songlist includes hits by Piazzolla and Tito Puente (Oye Como Va) and many more. 8 p.m. Saturday at the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg and 7:30 p.m. Sunday at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater. $15-$45. (727) 892-5798. themahaffey.com.

STILL GOING STRONG: THE COLOR PURPLE

Alice Walker’s poignant 1982 novel about the legacy of slavery in the early 20th century, The Color Purple, has some staying power. The musical in 2006 was nominated for 11 Tony awards; a 2016 production won for best revival of a musical. Runs Tuesday through March 11 at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, Morsani Hall. (813) 229-7827. $31 and up. For showtimes, go to strazcenter.org.

E=EVERYTHING: BIBO AND BERTIE

Albert Einstein is turning 75, but it’s not a happy birthday. His unified field theory (the "theory of everything") remains unfinished and he is bothered by his contributions to the arms race. Into his life comes an African Grey parrot, who turns out to be just the interlocutor he needs. Lab Theatre Project produces Bibo and Bertie, a play by Sarah Lawrence. The company, now in its third year, is dedicated to performing new work. Owen Robertson, Lab Theatre’s founder and executive director, stars as Einstein. Runs Thursday through March 11 at Silver Meteor Gallery, 2213 E Sixth Ave., Ybor City. $15. (813) 586-4272. For showtimes, go to labtheaterproject.org.

HELD OVER, COMING SOON

Forever Plaid, the 1950s and 1960s musical nostalgia group, has been extended a week. Now runs through March 17 at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, Jaeb Theater. $42. (813) 229–7827.

Marjorie Prime, a Pulitzer finalist at American Stage about artificial intelligence, is set to run March 9-April 1. The first preview starts at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Raymond James Theatre, 163 Third St. N, St. Petersburg. $20. (727) 823-7529. americanstage.org.

   
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