Editor’s note: In-person events are subject to change. Please check before venturing out.
February 11-March 6
The marquee is baackk! Get ready for this season’s circus at Nathan Benderson Park. You’ll be entertained by ringmaster Joseph Bauer Jr., daredevils Bello and Annaliese Nock, hand balancers the Alexis Brothers, speed juggler Nilson Escobar, the Pompeyo Family Dogs and more in shows to children of all ages, as they say. For tickets and more information, call (941) 355-9805 or visit circusarts.org.
Sarasota Opera House: Tosca
February 12-March 19
Opera is also back, planning a full winter festival season that opens with Puccini’s classic tragedy about love, jealousy and murder. At the Sarasota Opera House; for tickets, call (941) 328-1300 or visit sarasotaopera.org.
Robert Mapplethorpe and Patti Smith: flowers, poetry and light
February 13-June 26
Finally, the next exhibition in the Goldstein series at the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens opens, and it promises original photos by the late Mapplethorpe, poetry, lyrics and music by Smith, and new horticultural exhibits inspired by the work of artists. Learn more at selby.org or call (941) 366-5731.
Asolo representative: The big jump
February 11-April 2
Canceled nearly two years ago due to the pandemic, this Lauren Yee play finally bows to Asolo Rep, the third and final show of the rotating reps’ winter season. The comedy drama centers on Manford Lum, who finds his home on the basketball courts of San Francisco’s Chinatown and fights his way onto a college team heading to Beijing. It’s a family story as much as a sport one. Get tickets by calling (941) 351-8000 or visiting asolorep.org.
The Tony Award-winning singer and actress returns to the stage at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall on Friday at 8 p.m. and she’s sure to lift your spirits. For tickets, call (941) 263-6799 or visit vanwezel.org.
Bradenton Area River Regatta
There’s something for almost everyone at this seventh annual regatta, including a fishing tournament and family entertainment area for the kids, a flyboard champion at work, live music on two stages, motorboats, lots of food, and a spectacular fireworks display over the Manatee River. Participation is free and all day; for the full schedule (and info on when the Green Bridge will be closed), go to bradentonarearegatta.com.
Key Chorale: 387 AD
February 11 and 12
What happened, you ask me, in the year 387? Well, according to legend, the famous Te Deum was spontaneously composed by Saint Ambrose and Saint Augustine one night that year. Several well-known soloists (Suzanne Karpov, Blake Friedman, Jamal Sarikoki and Amy Connours) join the symphonic choir to celebrate with a program featuring music by Handel, Haydn, Bruckner, Dvorak and more, at the Church of Palm trees. For tickets, call (941) 552-8768 or visit keychorale.org.
Perlman Music Program Alumni: Around Town
More classical music is on the agenda with music from the heart, featuring a six-piece chamber ensemble, including Max Tan, a Suncoast Perlman Music Program alumnus, on violin. 7 p.m. at Temple Sinai on Lockwood Ridge Road. For tickets, go to perlmansuncoast.org.
The Oshima Brothers
For a more pop music sound, tune into this Maine-based indie duo, delivering vocals, live loops, foot percussion, electric and acoustic guitars, keyboard and vintage bass, at 8 p.m. Friday at Fogartyville Downtown Community Media and Arts Center. Advance tickets available at wslr.org.
Jazz Brunch with the SRQ Hot Club
We are also not forgetting the jazz lovers this weekend. Enjoy live gypsy jazz-style music from the Hot Club de la SRQ, as well as food from Hamlet’s Eatery, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sundays. In the outdoor courtyard of The Bazaar on Apricot & Lime, 821 Apricot Ave. For more information, visit hamletseatery.com or by calling (941) 445-1938.
Hermitage Artist’s Retreat: From Pen to Paper
Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel (How I Learned to Drive, The Baltimore Waltz) performs in a free community program at 5 p.m. Friday in the outdoor courtyard of Booker High School, conducting a writing “bake-off” in which the public collectively creates and designs a short piece. It is part of the Hermitage @Booker series; Check it out at hermitageartistretreat.org.