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Stage & Theater
ST. PETERSBURG - The State Ballet Theatre of Russia brings Swan Lake, one of the greatest classical ballets of all time, to the Mahaffey Theater Saturday, Jan. 3, 7:30 p.m.

This full-scale production, set to the music of Tchaikovsky and based on Russian folklore and German legend, follows a heroic young prince as he works to free the beautiful swan maiden from an evil spell.

Founded by legendary dancer Maya Plissetskaya, former principal dancer of The Bolshoi Ballet, The State Ballet Theatre of Russia is now under the direction of award-winning dancer and Moiseyev soloist Nikolay Anokhin. The State Ballet Theatre of Russia presents 50 of Russia’s brightest ballet stars to bring this romantic tale of true love to glorious life.

Tickets are $27.50, $37.50, $47.50 and $57.50, and may be purchased online at TheMahaffey.com, charge by phone at 727-893-7832 or in person at The Mahaffey Theater Box Office.

The Mahaffey Box Office is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday or at least 90 minutes prior to any ticketed event. There are no added charges ever on tickets purchased directly from The Mahaffey Theater.
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ST. PETERSBURG - It’s the quintessential holiday fantasy as it was meant to be experienced - on a grand scale. The Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker comes to The Mahaffey Theater Sunday, Dec. 28, for three exciting performances, at noon, 4 and 8 p.m.

The Nutcracker premiered in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1892, a breathtaking winter ballet with exquisite music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. You won’t want to miss the Moscow Ballet’s fanciful, beautiful interpretation of the timeless tale of a little girl and her Christmas Eve dreams.
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CLEARWATER - Salute to Vienna, returns to Ruth Eckerd Hall for a glorious 17th appearance on New Year’s Eve, Wednesday, Dec. 31. at 8 p.m.

Welcome the New Year with an unforgettable concert of Strauss waltzes, polkas and operetta performed by the Strauss Symphony of America with conductor Matthias Fletzberger, soprano Lara Ciekiewicz and tenor Brian Cheney.

Dancers from Europaballett St. Polten and the International Champion Ballroom Dancers in beautiful costumes will also perform.
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CLEARWATER - West Coast Players will host auditions for “Other Desert Cities,” by Jon Robin Baitz, on Sunday, Jan. 4, 2 p.m.; and Monday, Jan. 5, 7 p.m., at West Coast Players Theatre 21905 U.S. 19 N., Clearwater.

Director Linda Weir will be looking for two men and three women ages 25 to 60 and older for this relevant drama. Auditions will be cold readings from the script. No performers will be paid.

The production dates are March 6-22.
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PINELLAS PARK - Venue Actors Studio recently announced its regular classes for winter/spring 2015. Classes will be presented at Venue Actors Studio, 4979 72nd St. For more information and fees, call the studio at 822-6194 or email venueactorstudio@gmail.com.

The following classes will be offered:

- The Stars Program - For young actors ages 4 to 8 and 8 to 12, beginning Saturday, Jan. 10. Little Stars, for ages 4 to 8, will meet from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Young Stars, for ages 8 to 12, will meet from noon to 3 p.m. These are skills workshops to develop creative thinking, focus and concentration skills as well as work on cold reading (age appropriate), memorization and improvisation using known stories and scripts, which are age appropriate.
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CLEARWATER - West Coast Players will present the rollicking, frolicking farce “Don't Dress for Dinner,” by Marc Camoletti, running Jan. 16 through Feb. 1, at West Coast Players Theatre, 21905 U.S. 19 N., Clearwater.

With his wife away, his best friend Robert unwittingly invited as an alibi, and a gourmet cook to fancy things up, Bernard has the foolproof romantic weekend planned for himself and his chic mistress - or so he thinks. An evening of mistaken identities and hilarious confusion ensues as Bernard and Robert are forced to improvise plausibility at breakneck speed.

“Don't Dress for Dinner” stars Michael Menszycki, Mark William Myers, Devon Murray, Suzanne Delaney, Margee Sapowsky, and John Sallustio, and is directed by Rand Smith.
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CLEARWATER - She Loves Me, by Jerry Bock, Sheldon Harnick and Joe Masteroff plays Dec. 4-21, at Francis Wilson Playhouse, 302 Seminole St., Clearwater.

Considered by many to be the most charming musical ever written, this classic love story inspired the popular films, The Shop Around The Corner, In The Good Old Summertime and You’ve Got Mail.

It is the 1930’s, Christmas is approaching, and the unexpected romance between two feuding employees eventually has a happy ending.
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ST. PETERSBURG - A freeFall tradition is reinvented as an all-new cast joins us this holiday season for Keith Ferguson's and Bruce Greer's enchanting new musical adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.

A Christmas Carol runs Nov. 29-Dec. 24. Special performances are scheduled the week before Christmas for patrons to share this classic with their family and friends visiting for the holidays.
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ST. PETERSBURG - St. Petersburg City Theatre continues its 90th Mainstage Season, presented by Raymond James, with Philip Grecian's A Christmas Story. Opening night is Dec. 5 and the production runs through Dec. 21.

Show times are Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. with Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. Lobby will open one hour prior the show, with doors to the audience chamber opening 30 minutes prior to the show.
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The Theatre Grapevine presented the 2014 STAR Awards Ceremony Oct. 19, in Matheos Hall at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Clearwater.

Just as the theater community the awards honor each year is a fixture in Pinellas, so, too, is the award ceremony itself.

“I have attended every award night from the beginning, over 30 years ago,” said Dee Crews, publisher of Theatre Grapevine. Her comments appear in the October 2014 issue of the publication in which she praises her readers for helping to keep the arts alive in Pinellas County. “You are part of live theater which has been around this county for many, many years. If it wasn’t for Grapeviners, there would be no awards.”
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CLEARWATER - “Miracle on South Division Street," by Tom Dudzick, runs through Dec. 21, at the Early Bird Dinner Theatre, 13355 49th St N., Clearwater.

Show times are 11 a.m. Thursdays and Saturdays, and 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

Miracle on South Division Street is the story of the Nowak family, living amidst the urban rubble of Buffalo, New York’s East Side. Maybe the neighborhood is depressed, but not Clara, the family matriarch. She happily runs her soup kitchen and tends to the family heirloom - a twenty-foot shrine to the Blessed Mother which adjoins the house. This neighborhood beacon of faith commemorates the day in 1942 when the Blessed Virgin Mary materialized in her father’s barbershop! When the play opens, a family meeting is in progress.
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ST. PETERSBURG - A Simple Theatre recently announced its 2014-15 season of productions, which will be built exclusively around staged readings and collaborations with local community groups.

The theater-in-residence at Eckerd College is calling the new season “Friends and Neighbors: A series of plays about the people we work and play with.”

"I'm very excited about the reinvention of A Simple Theatre as a theater company that does high-quality staged readings,’’ said Gavin Hawk in a press release. Hawk is associate professor of theater and artistic director of A Simple Theatre. “This bare-bones, storytelling approach really focuses on the playwright's words as interpreted by our talented local actors in an intimate setting, and allows to us to perform fantastic new plays that otherwise might be too costly or technically difficult for us to produce. It also opens the door for collaborations with wonderful organizations like The Dali Museum and the St. Petersburg Opera Company."
 ... Read More 
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Out & About
•  Updated Dec. 8 - 2014 Holiday happenings around Pinellas
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Art & Museums
•  Alliance launches Pianos in Pinellas project
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•  St. Pete ArtWorks opens new exhibit
•  Mahaffey releases 50th anniversary poster
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Movie News & Reviews
•  Movies opening this weekend - Dec. 19
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Viewpoints
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Reader's Forum
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Tampa Bay Newspapers
9911 Seminole Blvd.,
Seminole, FL 33772
Phone: (727) 397-5563
Fax: (727) 397-5900
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