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Shakespeare Festival celebrates art
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The Shakespeare Festival includes two orchestra programs, five Shakespeare-inspired films, an art exhibit, dramatic readings, Shakespeare in song, excerpts from plays and other events Jan. 3-26.
ST. PETERSBUG - The Florida Orchestra teams up with local arts organizations to present Shakespeare Festival in January.

A collaboration featuring concerts, films, visual art, theater and more sponsored by the Florida Orchestra, American Stage Theatre Company, The Dali Museum, The Mahaffey Theater, The Studio@620, Sunscreen Film Festival, St. Petersburg College School of Music and the University of South Florida School of Music

The festival will include two orchestra programs, five Shakespeare-inspired films, an art exhibit, dramatic readings, Shakespeare in song, excerpts from plays and other events Jan. 3-26.

Florida Orchestra Board Chairman Thomas Farquhar said, “Arguably, no artist has done more to inspire the creation of art across all genres than Shakespeare. We are excited to partner with fellow arts organizations in the Tampa Bay area to offer the community a multi-faceted, month-long celebration of The Bard of Avon.”

Music played an important part in Shakespeare’s work; his words not only filled dozens of sonnets and narrative poems, but also appeared in song text sprinkled throughout his plays. Part of the Florida Orchestra’s programming in the month of January focuses on composers who have been drawn to the subjects of the great English dramatist to create a variety of orchestral music.

In addition to the symphonic repertoire, operas, operettas, musicals and songs based on Shakespeare’s dramatic works, his influence on many other art forms is equally vast and immeasurable. Nearly 400 years after his death, the genius and relevancy of Shakespeare still moves artists and inspires the creation of new works based on his words and ideas.

Shakespeare Festival event schedule:

• Thursday, Jan. 3, 11 a.m., the Florida Orchestra presents a Coffee Concert, "Symphonic Shakespeare," in the Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S., St. Petersburg. Tickets are $24, $29, $42 and $10 for students. Price includes a pre-concert talk at 10 a.m. with complimentary coffee and donuts. For tickets or more information, call 892-3337 or 1.800.662.7286, or visit www.floridaorchestra.org.

• Saturday, Jan. 5, 1 p.m., a film screening "Scotland PA," presented by The Dali Museum & Sunscreen Film Festival, at the Dali Museum, 1 Dali Blvd., St. Petersburg. A modernized retelling of Macbeth set in 1970s suburban Pennsylvania. Admission to film is free. Runtime: 104 minutes, rated R. Call 823-3767 or visit www.thedali.org.

• Thursday, Jan. 10, 5:30 p.m., “Shakespeare in Song,” presented by The Dali Museum and St. Petersburg College School of Music, at the Dali Museum, 1 Dali Blvd., St. Petersburg. Students from St. Petersburg College perform vocal selections based on Shakespeare’s texts and dramatic works. Free admission to performance. Call 823-3767 or visit www.thedali.org.

• Friday, Jan. 11 through April 28, The Dali Museum presents the “Much Ado About Shakespeare” exhibit. Two suites of Shakespearean Comedies and Tragedies consisting of 31 dry point engravings will be on display. Two editions of his published illustrated books "Macbeth" and "As You Like It" will accompany the sets. Admission is $21 for adults; $19 for seniors age 65 and up, military, police and firefighters; $15, children ages 13 to 18 and students 18 and older with ID; ages 6 to 12, $7; 5 and under admitted free. Admission after 5 p.m. Thursday is $10.

• Saturday, Jan. 12, 1 p.m., film screening, "Prospero's Books," at the Dali Museum An exiled magician finds an opportunity for revenge against his enemies muted when his daughter and the son of his chief enemy fall in love in this uniquely structured retelling of the’ The Tempest’. Directed by Peter Greenaway and starring John Gielgud, Michael Clark and Michel Blanc. Admission to film is free. Runtime: 124 minutes, rated R.

• Saturday, Jan. 19, 1 to 5 p.m. The Dali Museum’s Family Day, featuring film screenings, family activities, refreshments and more. "The Lion King" will be shown at 1 p.m. Runtime: 89 minutes, rated G. "Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead" starts at 3 p.m. Runtime: 117 minutes, rated PG. Free admission to film and kids’ activities.

• Wednesday, Jan. 23, 7 p.m., An Intimate Collaboration: “All The World’s A Stage,” presented by The Studio@620 and The Florida Orchestra, at The Studio@620, 620 First Ave. S., St. Petersburg. The Studio@620’s first of four events in partnership with The Florida Orchestra explores Shakespeare’s influence on music, spoken word and more in a multi-faceted artistic collaboration. Vocalists from the USF School of Music’s Chamber Singers highlight Shakespeare’s words in song. Co-hosted by Studio@620 artistic director Bob Devin Jones, special guests from The Florida Orchestra and guest conductor Andrew Grams. Suggested donation $10. Seating is limited. Reservations are suggested. Call 895-6620 or visit www.studio620.org.

• Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 25-27, The Florida Orchestra & American Stage Theatre Company presents a Masterworks concert, “Tchaikovsky’s Romeo & Juliet.” Show times are 10 a.m. Friday and 8 p.m. Saturday at the Mahaffey Theater. Sunday's performance is at 7:30 p.m. at Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 McMullen Booth Road, Clearwater. Actors from American Stage will present scenes from the plays as preludes to the Tchaikovsky’s music. Tickets are $15, $35 and $45. Student tickets are $10. A post-concert talk is included at Friday morning's performance. For tickets or more information, call 892-3337 or 1-800-662-7286, or visit www.floridaorchestra.org.

• Saturday, Jan. 26, 1 p.m., Film Screening, "Romeo + Juliet," at the Dali Museum. Shakespeare’s classic retains its original dialogue in an “old wine in new bottles” setting in the modern suburb of Verona. Runtime: 120 minutes, rated PG-13. Admission to film is free.
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