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SRQ DAILY Apr 27, 2018

Friday Weekend Edition

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Friday Weekend Edition

"Don't let someone else slap a dead end sign on your dreams."

- Cricket Burns, CricketsCrush.com

[Theater]  "We Are Sarasota" Returns for a Night of Hope and Civility
Philip Lederer, Phil.Lederer@srqme.com

In 2012, attorney Charlie Ann Syprett and her colleague, Judge Charles Williams, in partnership with the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, presented We Are Sarasota—a multimedia theatrical and musical presentation chronicling the key moments and figures of the civil rights movement from the 1950s to the present. They were also knee-deep in trying to launch what would become the Law Academy at Booker High School (while serving on the Sarasota County Bar Association Diversity Committee as well) and the show seemed like a meaningful way to raise money for the venture. “Everyone said we were nuts and it wouldn’t happen,” recalls Syprett, “and we presented it to a sold-out crowd.” Today, the Booker High Law Academy chugs on full steam ahead, and Syprett and WBTT prepare to revive We Are Sarasota for one night only, this coming Monday, April 30, at the Sarasota Opera House.

Incorporating storytelling, video, musical performance and re-enactment, the show begins in the 1950s with original footage of Marian Anderson singing “My Country Tis of Thee” on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. after being barred from performing in Washington DC’s Constitution Hall by the Daughters of the American Revolution because she was black. Accompanied by singers from WBTT, the performance transitions to real time, “and then we begin our history lesson,” says Syprett. Working a multi-podium setup, various judges and legal officials take turns leading the audience through some of the most pivotal Supreme Court decisions in the ongoing struggle for equality and civil rights, from the Dred Scott decision to Plessy v Ferguson and all the way to Title IX and Obergefell v Hodges. In between each, performers from WBTT come to the stage for emotional, musical interludes ranging from spirituals to Stevie Wonder. “We learn by history,” says Syprett. “ And we all need to appreciate where we are in America’s history.”

Closing out the night, 12 select individuals representing 12 organizations or groups in the community will take the stage, share a bit of their story, and claim their place in the fabric of the community by declaring, “We are Sarasota.” And maybe this, says Syprett, can help alleviate some of the divisiveness and tension permeating political and social dialogue since the 2016 presidential election. “I’m fearful of it and want it to stop,” she says. “It’s time to bring back the powerful message of We Are Sarasota.” And with 600 students in the audience, she hopes the younger generation takes note of all the lessons inherent. “Our goal is to empower people,” says Syprett. “A movement can begin with a single person.”

We Are Sarasota returns for one night only at the Sarasota Opera House this Monday, April 30. 

Pictured: Founder Nate Jacobs (left) and singers from Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe perform in the 2012 presentation of "We Are Sarasota." Photo by Cliff Roles.

[WIB]  Leadership Circle Expands at Hear Me Roar Luncheon
Philip Lederer, Phil.Lederer@srqme.com

The Francis Ballroom at Louies Modern in Downtown Sarasota filled to the brim yesterday morning with business owners, entrepreneurs, innovators, creators and community leaders of all sorts, where they gathered to talk shop, trade tips, network and, most importantly, show support for their fellow go-getters. And being the SRQ Women in Business 4th annual Hear Me Roar Leadership and Awards Luncheon, all of these local movers and shakers present were women. Playing emcee for the day, SRQ Media CEO Lisl Liang and Vice President of Strategic Partnerships Ashley Grant took the opportunity to introduce keynote speaker Cricket Burns, honor Patti Cazzato with the Trailblazer Award and induct new members into the Women in Business Leadership Circle.

Part of an initiative dedicated to championing women entrepreneurs and thought-leaders, the luncheon began by recognizing past inductees from the last four years of the Women in Business Leadership Circle, including notable names such as Lee En Chung of L. Boutique, Denise Kowal of the Sarasota Chalk Festival, Dr. Sandra Stone of USF Sarasota-Manatee, Anna Von Gehr of The Ringling Museum, Veronica Brandon Miller of Goodwill Manasota, Erin McCloud of the Friendship Centers and Jennifer Vigne of the Education Foundation of Sarasota County. By the afternoon’s end, 12 more women would join the ranks.

Flying in for the event, fashion maven Cricket Burns of CricketsCrush.com gave an inspiring keynote address, leading listeners on a whirlwind journey through a life full of ups and downs and a million detours that never dissuaded her from what she knew she could accomplish. “Lofty pinnacles and deep dark valleys,” she says, but never enough to wrest control from her grasp. “I’m in charge of my own destiny,” Burns says, and not even cancer, which struck both her and her husband within a year of each other, could change that. “As a family,” she says, “we fought twice, and we won.” And the gathered women, they would have to fight too. But it would be worth it. “The world needs your gifts,” Burns concluded. “Don’t let someone else slap a dead end sign on your dreams.”

Accepting the Trailblazer Award for 2018, Patti Cazzato took the stage next. The first woman CEO of the eco-conscious San Francisco-based manufacturer Timbuk2, she began with an important reminder: “I was the best person for the job.” On her way to the top, Cazzato battled her own ups and downs, including launching her own business in June 2008, only to see investors flee as the Great Recession hit. Self-financing her venture for seven years, it proved one of the most difficult, but rewarding, endeavors of her professional life—and put her in the right place to take her current role at Timbuk2. “Think about your truth—what gets you up in the morning,” she says. “Be present on your journey. There’s a message in those setbacks.”

Lastly, it was time to announce the new inductees into the Women in Business Leadership Circle, selected by a panel of six judges, all women. All nominees were named by women in the community. Winners include: Lulu Ann of iHeartMedia, Paige LeMay of Coastal Orthopedic and Sports Medicine, Katy McBrayer of Michael Saunders and Company, Jeannie Perales of Marie Selby Botanical Gardens and Britt Riner of Liber Consulting. Finalists include Mary Bensel of the Van Wezel, Morgan Gerhart of Girls Inc., Peggy Kronus of Willis Smith Construction, Shawna Machado of Safe Children Coalition, Jacqueline Moore of Jacqueline Moore Campaign, Deva O’Donnell of Richards Foodporium and Kathryn Shea of the Florida Center for Early Childhood.

Closing out the night, Liang made a compact with the gathered women of business. “I promise this is only the beginning,” she says, as the Women in Business initiative—and its members—are always driven by that one forward-thinking question: “What’s next?” 

Pictured: Cricket Burns delivers the keynote address at the 2018 Women In Business Hear Me Roar Luncheon. Photo by Wyatt Kostygan.

[Exec Moves]  Players Managing Director and CEO Bianchi Resigns

Michelle Bianchi, managing director and CEO of The Players Centre for Performing Arts, has announced her resignation as of yesterday, April 25. Bianchi joined The Players 17 years ago, being named CEO in 2008. In 2016, she received the Arts Leadership Award for Arts Management from the Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota. 

The Players Centre for Performing Arts

[Exec Moves]  Asolo Renews Contracts with Edwards, DiGabriele

Asolo Repertory Theatre has announced that Producing Artistic Director Michael Donald Edwards and Managing Director Linda DiGabriele will continue their tenure for five more years at the theatre, through the 2022 - 2023 season. Their new contracts signify both Mr. Edwards' and Ms. DiGabriele's dedication to oversee Asolo Rep's five-year "Staging Our Future" strategic plan, announced in October 2017. This five-year plan includes fulfilling the vision for the Robert and Beverly Koski Production Center Campus, which includes the acquisition of new properties located next to the existing production center for additional rehearsal rooms, sound production, physical therapy and more. The plan also features the establishment of the Herman and Sharon Frankel Asolo Rep Annex and upgrades to Asolo Rep's Mertz Theatre. Edwards is currently in his twelfth season as Producing Artistic Director of Asolo Rep. Linda DiGabriele has been Managing Director of Asolo Rep since 1994. 

Asolo Repertory Theatre

[Education]  SCF Grad Lands Dream Job with Roskamp

Kyle Coppola, a State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) alumnus, said the biotechnology classes he took at SCF helped him land his dream job. After graduating from SCF and completing an internship at Enzymedica, Coppola was offered a job as a molecular biology research assistant at the Roskamp Institute. The non-profit bio-medical research company specializes in neurological research and potential therapies for diseases such as Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative conditions including Traumatic Brain Injury. The position also offers him more opportunities in education. Once Coppola completes his bachelor’s degree in biological science and has spent a year working at Roskamp, the Institute offers a doctoral program in neuroscience through a partnership with a university in the United Kingdom. 

State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota

[Community]  JFCS and More Partner for Homeless Veterans Stand Down

Coming to aid of veterans and the homeless has been an ongoing commitment for JFCS of the Suncoast, and this Sat., April 28, the organization is partnering with more than 30 national, community and county organizations to host a special Homeless Veterans Stand Down at the Florida Department of Health. Held from 8am to 12pm, the free event is for homeless veterans, to provide them with a variety of complimentary legal, health and employment service offerings, along with backpacks filled with non-perishable food, personal care items, clothing, blankets and more. Participating organizations include Career Source Suncoast, City of Sarasota HOT Teams, First Step of Sarasota, Goodill, Harvest House, Legal Aid of Manasota, Manatee Technical College, Sarasota Vet Center, Suncoast Partnership to End Homelessness and The Salvation Army. 

JFCS of the Suncoast

[TODAY]  PERFORMANCE: Great Masters of Dance , April 27 – April 28, 2pm and 7:30pm

Closing the season with two company premieres and one of the sexiest shows in ballet, the night begins with Antony Tudor’s The Leaves Are Fading. A company premiere, this epic romance celebrates pure dance with unfettered passion. Following Leaves, the company premiere of George Balanchine’s Bugaku illustrates the choreographer’s genius, and concludes with another production of company favorite Sir Frederic Ashton.

Sarasota Opera House, 5555 North Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[WEEKEND]  MUSIC: James Bond in Cello Case , April 28 – April 29, Saturday at 7:30pm, Sunday at 3pm

Putting the debonaire and danger back into the cello, the Rastrelli Cello Quartet thrills and entertains with nontraditional programming and performance leading back to a single source—MI6 superspy James Bond. The quartet brings iconic Bond songs to new life, ranging from the days of Sean Connery and From Russia with Love to Daniel Craig’s modern incarnation.

Historic Asolo Theater, 5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota

[WEEKEND]  THEATER: Soul Man: A New Musical Revue , April 18 – May 26

As the 1960s Civil Rights movement unfolded, black music evolved from the controlled Motown performances to fiery cross rhythms sound—a little gospel, a lot of soul. The passionate soloists, such as James Brown, Otis Redding and Sam Cooke, added energetic movements and unique vocalizations that inspired many future performers. Soul Man will feature some of WBTT’s most popular male performers.

Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, 1646 10th Way., Sarasota.

[WEEKEND]  GALA: Blossoms and Brunch , April 28, 10:30am

Share the legacy of Mable’s beloved rose garden while you enjoy a beautiful brunch surrounded by blooming roses. Blossoms & Brunch will begin with a mimosa reception complete with entertainment and silent auction. A seated brunch will begin at 11:30am. Following brunch, return to the rose garden to discover a variety of sweets at our dessert buffet. $120.

Bayfront Gardens Mable's Rose Garden, 5401 Bay Shore Rd, Sarasota, FL 34243

[WEEKEND]  GRAB BAG: SRQ Vets: Vietnam Remembrance Day , April 29, 3:30pm

Join SRQ Vets in honoring all who served during the Vietnam Conflict at JDub's Brewing Company. Family activities such as a bounce house and games will be available, as well as adult activities such as drinking, dancing and an auction. Time was served and now is the time to honor service.

JDub's Brewing Company, 1215 Mango Ave., Sarasota.

[WEEKEND]  MUSIC: Yanni 25 Live At The Acropolis Anniversary Concert Tour , April 29, 7pm

Live at the Acropolis was released in 1994 and is the first ever live album and concert video from the maestro. Recorded at the Herodes Atticus Theatre in Athens with the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra from London, the concert took a year and a half to complete. Live at the Acropolis became an incredible success and is the second best selling music video of all time.

Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 North Tamiami Tr., Sarasota.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Women Laughing Alone With Salad , April 5 – May 13

Sheila Callaghan breaks all the rules of our image-obsessed culture in this raw, audacious comedy about the unreasonable expectations demanded of women and their bodies. Gleefully vulgar, bitingly poignant and raucously unafraid, Women Laughing Alone With Salad is a gender-bending feminist fantasia with balls. For more information please visit www.urbanitetheatre.com for show times and tickets. 

Urbanite Theatre , 1487 Second Street, Sarasota

[SOON]  MUSIC: A Tribute to Music in Cinema , May 4 – May 5

We will end our Finding Maestro Season in spectacular fashion as acclaimed violin soloist and former concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic, Glenn Dicterow, performs John Williamsʼ themes from Far and Away and Schindlerʼs List. The program also features classics from Oscar-winners Henry Mancini, Jerry Goldsmith and Ennio Morricone.

Venice Performing Arts Center, 1 Indian Ave., Sarasota.

[SOON]  MUSIC: City Sounds , May 5, 7:30pm

In aconcert that is sure to capture the essence of bustling city life, some of the world's greatest cities provide the backdrop for this Discoveries program. Beethoven's mighty music speaks of the Parthenon's destruction in his Overture to The Ruins of Athens. Night music creeps through sultry Madrid streets in Boccherini's highly evocative Quintet in C Major. See the Big Apple through the lens of dance in excerpts from Leonard Bernstein's ballet Fancy Free and and Gruber's lively swing-style Manhattan Broadcasts. Copland's Quiet City casts the bustling metropolis in subdued and achingly beautiful colors.

Sarasota Opera House, 61 North Pineapple Ave., Sarasota.

[SOON]  FESTIVAL: Sarasota Veg Fest , May 5

Featuring nationally renowned and local speakers, food preparation demonstrations, plant-based food, live music from a variety of talented musicians, dance performances, eco-friendly vendors & exhibitors, humane education, a veggie kids zone, yoga classes, film discussions, a veg parade, and more, the event is fun for all ages, genders, and species. 

Sarasota Fairgrounds, 3000 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota.

[SOON]  FOOD: SRQ Magazine Salsa de Mayo Festival , May 5, 10:30am-1pm

Join us for SRQ Magazine's SALSA DE MAYO FESTIVAL on Saturday, May 5, 2018 from 10:30-1pm outside at Morton’s Market in Southside Village, Sarasota. Local chefs are invitied to create an interpretive gourmet salsa to compete for the title of Best Handcrafted Salsa. Attended by food enthusiasts, families and neighbors, Salsa de Mayo showcases innovative creations from fire-roasted poblano salsas to shrimp salsa ceviches! Join us to celebrate the magazine's 20th Anniversary as we turn up the heat!

Morton's Gourmet Market, Outside, 1924 S Osprey Ave, Sarasota

[SOON]  SPORTS: 88th Annual Sarasota Tarpon Tournament , May 9 – June 17

A party at White Buffalo Saloon will kick off this year's 5 week Tarpon Tournament. This tournament is historic and has taken place in Sarasota anually since 1930. If you’re looking to make new friends, have some fun and test your angling skills, come fish with us and yours could be the next name on that trophy. Tarpon are world-class game fish and are easy to access directly off Sarasota’s beautiful beaches. Described as one of the most exciting fish to catch, tarpon are known for spectacular leaps and determined fights. For more information, click the following website: http://www.sarasotatarpontournament.net/.

White Buffalo Saloon, 5377 McIntosh Rd., Sarasota.

[SOON]  DANCE: Sarasota Contemporary Dance: Evolving/Revolving , May 10 – May 13

The final performance series from Sarasota Contemporary Dance will comprise of diverse new works by past company collaborators and dancers which celebrates the company’s past and future through impactful collaborations.

Jane B Cook Theatre, FSU Center for the Performing Arts, 5555 N. Tamiami Trl., Sarasota

[SOON]  MUSIC: Outdoor Pops: Field of Dreams , May 11 – May 12, 8pm

Join the Sarasota Orchestra for a fan-friendly outdoor Pops concert at Ed Smith Stadium, home of the Orioles. Get yourself a hot dog, some popcorn, and sit back to enjoy the Orchestra in the outfield. The concert will showcase Broadway stars Deedee Magno Hall and Cliffton Hall. Conducted by Andrew Lane, the musicians of the Sarasota Orchestra will play a wide range of popular music including songs from La La LandGrease, Les Misérables, scores from Disney films and other fan favorites.

Ed Smith Stadium, 2700 12th St., Sarasota.

[SOON]  SPORTS: Teen Court's 2018 Golf Tournament , May 11

Come out and enjoy a beautiful day of golfing for a good cause. Proceeds will benefit Sarasota Teen Court's substance abuse reduction, anti-bullying and character development classes that they provide for young people.

The Meadows Country Club, 3101 Longmeadow., Sarasota.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Southern Watercolor Society Curated Show , May 15 – June 22

Bringing its 41st Annual Juried Exhibition to Bradenton, the Southern Watercolor Society takes over all three of ArtCenter Manatee’s galleries with a collection juried by international award-winning master watercolorist John Salminen. In addition to the exhibit, each annual show brings with it a watercolor workshop for interested artists. Salminen will be teaching the workshop as well.

ArtCenter Manatee, 209 9th St. W., Bradenton

[SOON]  SPORTS: Bombers vs. Swan City , May 19

Watch Bradenton's favorite, fierce roller derby squad face Swan City in their home arena. Prepare for a night of tough competition and keep the good times rolling to benefit Ewenity Farm, a herding dog haven. 

Ellenton Ice and Sports Complex, 5309 29th St. East, Ellenton.

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

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