AFTER AUGUST: A RAISIN IN THE SUN
After Joe Turnerís Come and Gone completed August Wilsonís Century Cycle last year, people asked American Stage producing artistic director Stephanie Gularte what was coming next. The answer is Lorraine Hansberryís A Raisin in the Sun, the first play by a black woman to be produced on Broadway (1959-60). Raisin kicks off the American Legacy series, "plays that draw on our history but that are incredibly relevant to today," Gularte said.
"This is about a family whose dreams are constantly being put aside because of the reality of their lives," said director L. Peter Callender, who returns from directing Joe Turner. Cast members include Enoch King and Sheryl Carbonell as Walter and Ruth Younger, Fanni Green as Walterís mother Lena, and Gavin Hawk as Karl, who represents the white neighborhood the family is considering moving into. "The actors are strong, they are dedicated, they are young," Callender said. "They represent what black theater will be in the coming years."
Opens Friday and runs through Feb. 18 at the Raymond James Theatre, 163 Third St. N. $39 and up. A preview Thursday costs $29. (727) 823-7529. For showtimes, go to americanstage.org.
MAGIC: ADAM TRENT
In his early days with the Illusionists, Adam Trent called himself "the Futurist." Now the breakout star of that best-selling show is just himself. The Magic of Adam Trent gives more than a glimpse of what made Trentís act fly on Broadway.
"I still do a lot of futuristic magic in the show. Thereís lots of tech and all that. But itís just my name now," Trent told the Times.
Yet his variety show format might represent the future of magic ó a more laid-back kind than guys in capes who dub themselves incredible.
"There are two kinds of people who come to the magic shows," Trent said. "One kind is just trying to have fun. And the other people are all about figuring out magic. And theyíre trying to make a game of me-versus-them and can I fool them? I never go out into an audience and say what I do is real. I never try to pass off that I am really doing this. Iíve always said that it was entertainment and fun."
Starts at 8 p.m. Monday at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. $45 and up. (813) 229-7827. strazcenter.org.
more magic: MASTERS OF ILLUSION
They have been chained, pierced, held under water and sawed in half. There is no challenge from which the Masters of Illusion cannot levitate to safety. Now the full complement of what grew out of a television show returns to the Mahaffey Theater with dance, sleight of hand and comedy. Starts at 8 p.m. Saturday at 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. $29.50 and up. (727) 892-5767. themahaffey.com.
GAMER GOD: NOBUO UEMATSU
The pre-eminent composer in video games will be on hand for a pair of concerts celebrating his work. Nobuo Uematsu, winner of a song of the year Gold Disc Award, Japanís equivalent of the Grammys, composed Eyes on Me for the Final Fantasy series. This weekend, Grammy winner Arnie Roth will conduct the Florida Orchestra in Distant Worlds: Music From Final Fantasy, selections from 30 years of Final Fantasy games as popular characters move on a high-definition screen. 8 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Sunday at the Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. SE, St. Petersburg. $25-$95. Separate meet-and-greet tickets $50. (727) 892-3337. floridaorchestra.org.
TWO WEEKENDS: SARASOLO
There Ainít No More ó Death of a Folksinger, a truly original show in last yearís Tampa Bay Fringe Festival, is back. Willi Carlisleís Ozarks folksinger character, honed through his study of all but forgotten tunes, tells stories through numerous means, including his own fiddle, guitar and banjo and drawings. 5 p.m. Saturday at Crocker Memorial Church, 1260 12th St., Sarasota. For tickets and complete schedules of the SaraSolo Festival (Saturday-Feb. 4), go to sarasolo.org.