New Season HOT LIST
What's new and hot in dining, retail and culture
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Clyde Butcher's exhibition of Cuba photography is one of our Must See events of the coming season.
New Baton on the Block
To anyone who saw him conduct the Naples Philharmonic in January, there was little doubt Andrey Boreyko was a natural with the baton. So it was quite a coup when Kathleen van Bergen landed him to fill the vacant music director position with the orchestra. Although he won’t start a full slate of performances until the 2014-15 schedule, Boreyko—who also holds the same position with the National Orchestra of Belgium and the Dusseldorf Symphony Orchestra—will be in town for a New Year’s Eve show at Artis—Naples. artisnaples.org
Play On, Playhouse
For a long time we have touted—along with national theater folks such as Terry Teachout of The Wall Street Journal—the great things being done up at the Florida Repertory Theatre in Fort Myers. At the same time, we’ve quietly lamented the lack of a troupe on the same level in Naples. Well, Gulfshore Playhouse is out to change that. After a successful and exciting inaugural new works festival this summer, the company has a fantastic lineup of shows for 2013-14 season, including a world premiere drama—The God Game—about Republican politics that’s sure to strike close to home. gulfshoreplayhouse.org
Of all the big names coming to our region this year—Harry Connick Jr., the Indigo Girls, Bonnie Raitt and Kenny G, to name a few—Wynton Marsalis is the one who most excites us. He’s bringing his world-renowned Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra to Artis—Naples for a show that blends holiday favorites and classics from Swing Era giants Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Benny Goodman. The Dec. 18 performance promises to be a classic.
Attack of the Boy Bands
Expect boy bands to be big this season. Not like One Direction, though the grandkids might spend some iTunes gift card money on their concert movie after Christmas. More like Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons (courtesy of Jersey Boys coming to Artis—Naples in March), and the Sun Records stable (via Million Dollar Quartet at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall in April). There’s also the music of Queen (We Will Rock You at the Barbara B. Mann in December) and The Bee Gees (and more, as part of the Disco Days and Boogie Nights pops performance by the Naples Philharmonic in January). artisnaples.org, bbmannpah.com
Performing Arts Centers Pop Up
We are about to enter a golden age for the performing arts in Southwest Florida. Either that or a whole lot of people are about to look pretty silly. Between the myriad performance venues already in place—big (Barbara B. Mann, Germain Arena and Artis—Naples) and smaller (Alliance for the Arts, Sugden Community Theatre, Norris Center)—and the three new complexes on the horizon, there will be little chance of a performing group going homeless soon.
In Bonita Springs, two new ventures are expected to come online in 2014. First, comedy impresario Brien Spina is moving his Off The Hook Comedy Club off Marco Island to a spot on Bonita Beach Road that he’s dubbed the Southwest Florida Performing Arts Center. But he’s not just designing the venue to hold comedy fans. His plan is to host all kinds of events from theater to concerts, with seating for up to 1,000 people. Plus, two restaurants and a whole lot more. swflperformingartscenter.com
And then there’s the Center for the Arts Bonita Springs. The organization at first focused on visual art, but has slowly branched out to incorporate film screenings and performances and is about to begin retrofitting the former Living Waters Community Church, less than a half mile west of Capt. Brien’s new venture. This endeavor will be a little smaller, with seating for about 400, but has a similar mission of being a home base for some local performing groups as well as a stop on the road for state and national acts. artcenterbonita.org
Finally, and still a long way off, the Bayshore Cultural and Performing Arts Center got a boost this summer when it announced a deal to build the center on property near the Naples Botanical Garden. Although performances are still a few years off at the earliest, the new venue will add yet another place for the arts to flourish in Southwest Florida. bayshorecapa.org
15 THINGS WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND
Cuba, the Natual Beauty: Photography by Clyde Butcher, through Jan. 15 at the Collier County Museum
Breaking Through with Color: Artists Reveal the Power of Color, a national juried exhibition, Nov. 23-Jan.11 at The von Liebig Art Center.
Sarah Chang with the Naples Philharmonic, Dec. 10 at Artis—Naples
Rescued from the Flames: Soviet-era Socialist Realism Paintings, Dec. 11-Jan.12 at Gallery on Fifth (at Mercato)
John Pizzarelli Quartet, Jan. 24 at BIG Arts
Rediscovering Egypt, The Collection of the Dahesh Museum of Art, opening Jan. 25 at The Baker Museum
Mandy Patinkin, Feb. 3 at Artis—Naples
Clybourne Park, Feb. 14-March 5 by Florida Rep
Once, Feb. 18-23 at Barbara B. Mann
Renee Fleming with the Naples Philharmonic, Feb. 24 at Artis—Naples
War Horse, March 11-16 at Barbara B. Mann
Fort Myers Film Festival, March 19-22 at Barbara B. Mann and Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center
Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, March 25 at Artis—Naples
The Barber of Seville, March 29 by Opera Naples at Artis—Naples
Glengarry Glen Ross, April 18-May 3 at Laboratory Theater of Florida