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Tarpon Springs performing arts schedule has broad appeal


A sprinkling of Shakespeare. A dusting of fairy tales. A cup of comedy.

Beat it all up with a Beatles cover band and you have Tarpon Arts' fall lineup, a theatrical treat for performing arts fans.

Kathleen Monahan, director of the city of Tarpon Springs' Department of Cultural Services, said the mix of shows is designed to appeal to a variety of tastes and ages.

For starters, the Semi-Royal Shakespeare Company presents Shakespeare's Lovers and Madmen. The production showcases specially selected scenes from Romeo and Juliet, King Lear, Lady Macbeth and the bard's other comedies and tragedies. Costumed actors, ages 13 to 63, perform today and Saturday at 8 p.m.; Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Tarpon Springs Heritage Museum. Tickets are $16; $14 for members and students.

It's also time to tumble down a rabbit hole, attend the maddest of tea parties and meet the most peculiar anthropomorphic creatures. Alice in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll's imaginary tale, comes to life at the Tarpon Springs Cultural Center this Saturday and next at 2 p.m. (Don't be late for the very important dates!)

Performances are recommended for children ages 5 to 13. Tickets are $8 or $5 for members and students.

In October, Neil Simon's The Odd Couple, the rib-tickler about a messy Oscar Madison and his roomy, the fastidious and depressed Felix Unger, will be performed at the Tarpon Springs Cultural Center, Oct. 2-5 and 10-12.

Then the sweet beat of the Caribbean can be heard as the 21st Century Steel Band arrives from South Florida.

"They are probably the best steel band ensemble in the state," said Monahan. The band performs under the direction of Michael Kernahan on Oct. 3, at the Tarpon Springs Performing Arts Center.

Mark your calendars for Oct. 11 at 8 p.m. when Britbeat: America's Premier Tribute to the Beatles comes to the Tarpon Springs Performing Arts Center. Monahan said the group sounds and looks just like the mop-topped Brits who changed the musical landscape in the 1960s.

Also on the October schedule are the Diamonds (Oct. 19), Broadway on the Bayou (Oct. 24) and Bell, Book and Candle (Oct. 30).

Looking ahead to November, the Gilbert and Sullivan Players will take a satiric look at the aesthetic movement of the late 19th century as they tell the operatic story of Patience, Nov. 14-16.

"From our hometown acts to those that perform on the international stage, we are excited and proud of our offerings," Monahan said.

Reach Terri Bryce Reeves at