Andrew Meacham, Times Staff

Andrew Meacham

Times Staff

I’ve been on both sides of performer-reviewer split, acting in plays after college and singing with the Master Chorale. So it is with much respect that I try to keep readers up to date on our mushrooming performing arts scene. What’s good in theater, orchestra and opera? What should you think twice about before seeing? As a St. Pete native, it was my dream to work for the Times, joining the staff in 2005 after five years freelancing. For a half-dozen years I wrote the Epilogue obituary feature. I miss running over the old Gandy Bridge and having knees that made that easier. Find me with another local, Linda Mastry, at Spinnergy or on opening night.

The best of 2018 in theater, orchestra and dance

The cast of Between Riverside and Crazy, which ran Oct. 3-Nov. 4, 2018, at American Stage, included, from left. Donovan Whitney as Oswaldo, Vanesa Rendon as Lulu, and L. Peter Callender as Pops. [Photo by Beth Reynolds]
It was another good year for Tampa Bay performing arts. In theater, older shows took all but our top spot.

What’s on stage: Moscow Ballet’s Nutcracker, Terry Fator, Salute to Vienna, Sebastian Maniscalco

Photos by the Moscow Ballet
The Moscow Ballet, shown here in 2013, returns to the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersbug Dec. 26 and 27, 2018, to present the Great Russian Nutcracker, in which Uncle Drosselmeyer brings magical life-sized Matrushka Dolls to the Christmas Eve Party. [Courtesy of the Moscow Ballet.]
Moscow Ballet and Cirque Holidaze bring once-a-year color. Comics Terry Fator, Sebastian Maniscalco add laughs.

Florida Orchestra names Mark Cantrell its new president and CEO

The Florida Orchestra on Dec. 19, 2018, announced that is has named Mark Cantrell, currently the chief executive officer of the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, as its new president and CEO. [Courtesy of the Florida Orchestra]
The longtime musician and orchestra manager succeeds Michael Pastreich. Passions include sled dog racing and flying planes.

At Ruth Eckerd Hall, three weekend performances of 'The Sound of Music,' Florida Orchestra plays to 'Home Alone'

Ruth Eckerd Hall
The Sound of Music features Lauren Kidwell, left, as the Mother Abbess and Jill-Christine Wiley as Maria.
Audiences are liking these simul-concerts.

Curtain call: On retirement, performing arts critic Andrew Meacham bids farewell

CHERIE DIEZ   |   Times	
Tampa Bay Times performing arts critic Andrew Meacham, whose history with the newspaper goes back decades, is retiring from daily newspaper work.
For most of my life, all roads have led eventually to the Times. The next one leads away.