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Weekend forecast: Beauty & Beast, Madonna & Alabama

Bill DeYoung



Amanda Kronhaus, left Debbie Yones and Amanda Cappello appear in James McLure's "Laundry and Bourbon," opening tonight at the Off-Central in St. Petersburg. Photo: Noa Friedman.

There’s a new show onstage at the Off-Central, St. Petersburg’s intimate (42 seats) black box theater. Actually, it’s two one-act plays, both small-town Texas comedies by James McLure. The playwright wrote Laundry and Bourbon and Lone Star to be performed together, under the title 1959 Pink Thunderbird.

Laundry and Bourbon (Act 1) cast: Debbie Yones, Amanda Cappello and Amanda Kronhaus. Ward Smith, Michael Arce and Danny Tyrawa appear in Lone Star (Act 2). Stephen Ray is the director.

Find tickets here.

American Stage’s annual spring musical opens tonight, on the outdoor stage assembled each year for the occasion in Demens Landing Park.

The show is Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, the stage version of the ultra-successful Ashman/Menken animated film of 1991. That’s right, the one with “Be Our Guest,” “Gaston,” “Belle” and the poignant title song. The American Stage production is directed by Kenny Moten; there’s a preview performance tonight at 7:30. Find tickets and additional information here.

American Stage’s Producing Artistic Director Helen R. Murray is Friday’s guest on our Arts Alive! podcast, discussing all things Beauty and the Beast (including whether or not “Disney’s” is part of the actual title).

The parody musical “Stranger Sings!” continues at the Jaeb Theatre, in the Straz Center, Tampa. Photo: Evan Zimmerman Murphymade.

All inside the Straz Center: The musical version of Mrs. Doubtfire continues the touring-Broadway season (in Morsani Hall) today through Sunday; in the Jaeb Theatre, the parody musical Stranger Sings! continues through April 21; and Sunday’s Shimberg Playhouse matinee will be the final performance of Martin McDonagh’s The Beauty Queen of Leenane from Jobsite Theater.

The Dirty John’s adult sketch comedy group is back at The Studio@620 tonight, Friday and Saturday with Dirty John’s in Outer Space. The crew includes John Huls, Ryan Hill, Charissa Anderson, Edward Leonard, Alex Joustra, Keshia Smith and Jay Hoff, and tickets are here.


Friday dance

The 2024 edition of Beacon, the all-original bay area dance concert, happens Friday at the Palladium Theater. According to co-founders and producers Helen French and Lauren Slone, the ninth annual Beacon includes four world premieres, 20 dance artists, two local dance companies, two live musicians, one spoken word artist and one dance film.

Among the highlights: Andee Scott and Bliss Kohlmyer in the premiere of a duet created for them by choreographer Robert Moses; Sarah Walston Philips’ Atlas Modern Ballet premiere performance of Frozen Angels; projectALCHEMY’s Within.Without; the first co-creation by Heidi Brewer and Sharon McCaman; and new solo pieces from both French and Charlotte Johnson.

Find lots of details, and tickets, here.


Madonna 2024. Photo: Ticketmaster.


Yes, Madonna and her “Celebration Tour” (that’s a celebration of four decades in the business of show) visits Amalie Arena tonight. At press time, “verified resale” standing room tickets in “Pit 2,” on the floor, were priced at $8,750 through Ticketmaster. Find all tickets here.

Alabama (Randy Owen and Teddy Gentry) play the BayCare Sound amphitheater Friday, with an opening set from Diamond Rio. We had a brief email conversation with Owen earlier this week.

We’re smack in the middle of the 15th annual St. Petersburg Jazz Festival. Here are the remaining shows on the schedule: The Markus Gottschlich Trio, tonight at the Music Center at St. Petersburg College (6605 5th Ave. North); O Som Do Jazz with Rafael Pereira & Jose Valentino Ruiz, Friday on the Warehouse Arts District outdoor stage; and Sarasota’s gypsy jazz ensemble Hot Club SRQ, Saturday inside the Museum of the American Arts & Crafts Movement.

Here’s the Jazz Festival website, and here’s a Catalyst podcast interview with festival director David Manson.

Tonight’s Capitol Theatre show by singer, songwriter and Jimmy Buffett sideman Mac McAnally is sold out.

Two Saturday-night-in-Clearwater concerts: Disney Princess – The Concert at Ruth Eckerd Hall, and the group Gregorian, which performs well-known pop songs in “medieval chant-style,” at the Capitol Theatre. The former carries this disclaimer: This production features Broadway performers appearing as themselves. Costumed Disney characters do not appear at this event. All tickets are here.

Comedian/actor Kevin James (King of Queens) is onstage Sunday at the Seminole Hard Rock Event Center. Tickets.


Festival by the Trop

Soul Fest happens 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday in Lot 1, on the west side of Tropicana Field (16th Street at 1st Avenue South). This the usual spot for the weekly market known as Saturday Shoppes – but this one’s bigger, and has more celebratory stuff, including continuous live music. Along with food and beverage trucks and vendors, local craft (and other sorts of) makers and a children’s arts area. Admission is free.


Where’s the orchestra?

Russian-American pianist Natasha Paremski returns to guest with The Florida Orchestra on Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 2, part of the weekend program that also spotlights Beethoven’s Eroica Symphony. Also: John Adams’ Chairman Dances: Foxtrot for Orchestra.

Performances are 8 p.m. Friday at the Straz Center (Ferguson Hall), 8 p.m. Saturday at the Mahaffey Theater, and 7:30 p.m. Sunday at Ruth Eckerd Hall. Find all tickets here.

Music director Michael Francis and the orchestra are onstage at the Mahaffey tonight (Thursday, April 4) with the talk-and-play program Inside Beethoven’s Eroica. Admission to the 7:30 presentation is pay-what-you-can.

Your 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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