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Weekend arts forecast: The return of ‘The Flying Ace’

Bill DeYoung

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Kathryn Boyd and Harold Platts in Norman Studios' 1926 silent film "The Flying Ace." Screengrab.

The Tampa Theatre screens the 1926 silent, 65-minute film The Flying Ace at 3 p.m. Sunday. This is the only known surviving production from by Norman Studios of Jacksonville, Florida, which made movies with all-Black casts, geared specifically for Black audiences. Although it was lensed entirely on the ground, the studio promoted The Flying Ace as “the greatest airplane thriller ever filmed.”

It’s actually a nail-biting detective yarn, with the good guys and the bad guys clearly identified from the first moments. 

Norman Studios did not survive the end of the silent era. A few years ago, the crumbling studio facilities were purchased and are bring transformed into a public museum.

The Library of Congress had The Flying Ace restored, deemed it culturally significant and added the title to the United States National Film Registry. Admission to Sunday’s 3 p.m. screening – presented in honor of the Juneteenth holiday – is free.

Dr. Steven Ball will perform an original score on the Tampa Theatre’s Wurlitzer theatre organ.

Click here for this weekend’s Juneteenth festivities in St. Pete and Pinellas County.

 

The big shows

Tori Amos. Publicity photo.

Idiosyncratic singer/songwriter Tori Amos is touring behind Ocean to Ocean, her 2021 album (the 16th of her career), and the 30th anniversary of her breakthrough collection Little Earthquakes. Amos, whose deeply personal and probing songs are given additional impact and resonance via her haunting vocal delivery, plays piano and is accompanied on this tour by Jon Evans (bass) and drummer Ash Soa.

She’s at Ruth Eckerd Hall Sunday; find tickets here.

With more than 100 million records sold, England’s Duran Duran has transcended the 1980s, from whence the proto-punk dance band emerged, and remains an arena-stuffing live act, on both sides of the pond, to this very day. In advance of Friday’s Amalie Arena concert, the Catalyst spoke with Duran’s Roger Taylor this week. There’s a ticket link in the story.

 

Happy Birthday, 620

Bob Devin Jones and the staff at thestudio@620 celebrate the venue’s 19th birthday Saturday; the free event (2-5 p.m.) is called “19 Flavors,” and as in previous birthday events the focus is on baked goods – there will be cake (and ice cream) and you’re encouraged to bring something tasty for all to enjoy. Also on the schedule: Poetry and musical performances (you’re also encouraged to write a poem or haiku to perform).

Sunday, 620 celebrates Father’s Day with a showcase of poetry and spoken word honoring “fathers, papas, uncles and male role models.” Admission to the 3 p.m. event is $10 here.

In “OZ”: Elizabeth Meckler, left, and Roxanne Fay. Photo: Thee Photo Ninja.

On theater stages

The Great American Trailer Park Musical, with Heather Kreuger, Susan Haldeman, Julia Rifino and other great musical comedy actresses familiar to Stageworks audiences, is sold out for this weekend. It runs through June 25 (hint, hint – look here for tickets).

Also doing good business is OZ, freeFall Theatre’s original musical about children’s author L. Frank Baum. Hear our Arts Alive! podcast from June 9, with creators Eric Davis and Michael Raabe, here.

Disgraced, the Pulitzer Prize-winning drama at American Stage, is starting its next-to-last weekend. Read our interview with lead actor Ashan Ali here.

And it’s the final weekend for the Tampa Repertory Theatre’s production of the iconic Arthur Miller drama All My Sons, being staged on the University of South Florida campus. Tickets are here; the show’s Emilia Sargent and Ned Averill-Snell are guests on the Arts Alive! podcast Friday.

The Weekend arts forecast appears every Thursday in the Catalyst

Please add us to your mailing list – send all press releases and event info to bill@stpetecatalyst.com.

You can also submit your events to the Catalyst calendar, by clicking here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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