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Weekend forecast: ‘Moulin Rouge’ and other delights

Bill DeYoung



A national tour of "Moulin Rouge! The Musical" is at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts in Tampa. Publicity photo.

The Broadway series at Tampa’s Straz Center for the Performing Arts continues with the touring production of the bright and garish Moulin Rouge! The Musical, 10-time Tony Award-winner and a stage show based on Australian director Baz Luhrmann’s bright and garish 2001 film.

Moulin Rouge! (gotta love that exclamation point) opened Wednesday night, in Morsani Hall, and runs nightly through Feb. 18, with a number of matinees available. Find tickets here.

At freeFall Theatre in St. Pete, the curtain goes up Friday on Kurt Vonnegut’s God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater, an early musical from the Beauty and the Beast, Little Mermaid and Little Shop of Horrors team of Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, based on author Vonnegut’s 1965 novel of the same name.

Eric Davis directs the six-member cast, with musical direction by Michael Raabe. The show will run through March 9. Find more info, as well as tickets, here.

At American Stage (St. Pete) the raves are coming in for the historical drama The Chinese Lady. Based on the true story of Afong Moy, the first woman from China to set foot in the United States of America. Find details and tickets here.

Opening this weekend at Stageworks Theatre, in Tampa’s Channelside District, is another historical drama, I Am My Own Wife. It’s a one-person show telling the astonishing story of German transgender woman Charlotte von Mahlsdorf. Find details and tickets here.

You will survive: Tonight at the Central Park Performing Arts Center I Largo, it’s a national touring production of that feel-good classic Girls Night The Musical. Find details and tickets here.

Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night winds down Sunday at Jobsite Theater (that’s in the Straz complex, too, being produced in the smallish Jaeb Theatre). Tickets.

The U.S. premiere of Whiskey & Soda, which imagines a 1979 meeting between British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and music icon John Lennon, continues through Sunday at the Off-Central in St. Pete. Tickets.

Tampa Repertory Theatre’s Straight White Men, a comedy of identity and privilege, continues through Feb. 18 at the University of South Florida (Tampa campus) Theater Center. Tickets.

The Diaries of Adam & Eve, an “outdoor” (literally) comedy, is being produced through Feb. 18 by American Stage – on the forest trail at Boyd Hill Nature Preserve. Tickets.

Previous St. Pete Catalyst stories (click on the links):

The Chinese Lady

I Am My Own Wife

Twelfth Night

Whiskey & Soda

Straight White Men



Comedian Mike Birbligia returns to St. Pete’s Mahaffey Theater. Photo: Evan Sung.

Standup comic, author and filmmaker (Sleepwalk With Me) Mike Birbiglia returns to the Mahaffey Theater Friday. Tickets.

Friday at Ruth Eckerd Hall, it’s Bored Teachers: We Can’t Make This Stuff Up, a touring show featuring, you guessed it, actual schoolteachers moonlighting as standup comics. Tickets.

On the same night (Friday), Ruth’s sister venue, the Capitol Theatre debuts Piff The Magic Dragon, a standup comedy/magic guy who won big on America’s Got Talent, the Best of Las Vegas Awards and others, performing with Mr. Piffles, “The World’s Only Magic Performing Chihuahua.” Tickets.



This weekend’s concert program from The Florida Orchestra, From Broadway With Love, features vocalist Ashley Brown  and music from the Broadway and Disney songbooks. The conductor is Jack Everly, Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m. at the Mahaffey Theater. Tickets.

Mark Sforzini conducts the Tampa Bay Symphony at 2:30 p.m. Sunday in Ferguson Hall, Straz Center. The program is called Music of the Heart. Tickets



Give it up for 90-year-old Willie Nelson, still touring and still knockin’ ‘em sideways. Nelson and what remains of his Family Band play Clearwater’s Sound Amphitheatre Saturday. Tickets.

And Frankie Valli, 89, performs tonight (Thursday, Feb. 8) at the Seminole Hard Rock Event Center. Tickets.

The great horn-propelled California band Tower of Power plays Ruth Eckerd Hall tonight. Tickets.

Friday at the Palladium Theater Side Door Café: It’s the Tampa swing band Hot Tonic playing the music of the late Burt Bacharach. Tickets.

Friday at the Catherine Hickman Theatre in Gulfport: The acoustic Americana duo Moors & McCumber. Tickets.

Kent Burnside, the guitarist grandson of Mississippi electric blues legend R.L. Burnside, will take the stage at Skipper’s Smokehouse Saturday. Tickets.


Your weekend arts forecast appears every Thursday in the Catalyst

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