S E P T E M B E R – O C T O B E R
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International Arts Festival
Returns to Sarasota

Ringling International Arts Festival (RIAF) returns for its ninth season with an array of innovative and provocative music and movement from around the world. From October 18-21, The Ringling will host 24 performances of seven productions at the Historic Asolo Theater, the Ringling Circus Museum, the Museum of Art, and the West Courtyard.

The festival opens on October 18 with an evening celebration in Ringling’s West Courtyard, introducing the Arts Festival’s guest artists and featuring a performance by eVenti Verticale of Wanted. Following the final performance on October 21, a closing night party, ‘Ringling World’s Fair,’ will feature music, dancing and entertainment in the Museum of Art courtyard with World’s Fair style pavilions dedicated to the world of arts.

Artists performing at the Arts Festival:

ensemblenewSRQ : Sarasota musical group perform the music of John Luther Adams, performed in the James Turrell Skyspace; and Luciano Berio’s Sequenzas in the Museum of Art’s Huntington Gallery.

eVenti Verticale : Italian performance group combines theater, circus, graphic art, acrobatics, dance, music, visual comedy, and new technologies all on a vertical stage.

Volker Gerling : German photographer has walked over 2,000 miles across his native country creating flipbook portraits of the people he meets. His work, Portraits in Motion, presents a selection of his favorites projected onto a large screen while he narrates the stories behind them.

James McGinn : A new work by the Sarasota native, Ing an Die, is the product of a decade of research into Wagner’s theory of a total or universal work of art. The piece, operatic in both scope and scale, combines several choreographic languages with symbolic imagery.

Monica Bill Barnes & Co. : Contemporary American dance ensemble’s Happy Hour, transforms the Ringling Circus Museum into a Side Show Cabaret. Performed by Monica Bill Barnes and Anna Bass, Happy Hour brings the audience together for cocktails, karaoke and laughter.

Nobuntu : Female acapella quintet making its American debut with a program ranging from traditional Zimbabwean songs to Afro Jazz and Gospel. Performed with minimal percussion, traditional instruments, and authentic dance.

Nassim Soleimanpour/ Urbanite Theatre : Forbidden to leave his native Iran, Soleimanpour has distilled the experience of a generation born amidst the hardship of the Iran-Iraq war into an utterly original play, White Rabbit Red Rabbit. The script arrives in a sealed envelope and is presented to a solo actor at the onset of each performance. No rehearsal and no direction.

Each group performs each day at various times. Visit the www.ringling.org/riaf for schedules. Tickets to any performance also includes free admission to the Museum of Art, Circus Museum and Ca’ d’Zan.

The Ringling is located at 5401 Bay Shore Rd. in Sarasota. For information, call 941-360-7399.


Naples Film Fest
Teams Up with Artis–Naples

Naples International Film Festival has partnered with Artis–Naples to produce this year’s events. The ninth Naples Film Festival kicks off October 26 with an Opening Night Gala — with VIP red carpet, a film screening followed by a discussion with the filmmaker, and an afterparty — all at Artis–Naples. The festival continues with screenings afternoons and evenings, October 27-29 at Silverspot Cinemas at Mercato in Naples.

There are five categories of films in the festival: narrative features, documentary features, shorts (40 minutes or less), Florida films (at least partially shot in Florida), and Young Filmmakers Showcase (short films of 10 minutes or less by Lee and Collier County students, K-12).

The Film Festival closes at Artis–Naples on October 29 with a screening of Colin Hay: Waiting for My Real Life. There is a reception and awards ceremony before the screening, which is followed by a Wrap Party featuring a performance by Colin Hay.

A special Tribute Night is scheduled for October 28, but at press time the locations and subject of the tribute had not been announced.

Artis–Naples is located at 5833 Pelican Bay Blvd. in Naples. Silverspot Cinemas is located at Mercato, 9118 Strada Place in Naples. For information, call 775-3456


Rauschenberg Gallery
Hosts Fluxus Show

Florida SouthWestern State College’s Bob Rauschenberg Gallery is hosting ‘FluZUsic/FLUXUS MUSIC,’ an interactive installation with newly commissioned works by Yoko Ono, Geoffrey Hendricks, Alison Knowles and Philip Corner, ‘FluZUsic/FLUXUS MUSIC’ provides an historical examination into this seminal art movement and a participatory, sonic experience for visitors.

Heavily inspired by the ideas of John Cage, Fluxus art often relied on chance to shape the outcome of a work and actively involve the viewer. Fluxus compositions or scores for performances and events involved simple actions, ideas and objects from everyday life. Incorporating poetry, visual art and writing, Fluxus performances were the embodiment of ‘intermedia,’ a dialogue between two or more media to create a third, entirely new art form. Beginning with a series of festivals featuring concerts of experimental music and other avant-garde performance, Fluxus artists reacted against the commodification of art, its commercialization in the gallery system, and its static presentation in museums. While Bob Rauschenberg famously stated his interest in working ‘in the gap between art and life,’ the primary goal of most Fluxus artists was to destroy any boundary between the two, an ‘anti-art’ offering a new way of thinking about the process of art while using humor to mock the elitist world of ‘high art.’

FluZUsic/FLUXUS MUSIC is on view thru November 11 at the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery, located on the campus of FSW State College, 8099 College Pkwy. in Fort Myers. Call 489-9313 for information.


Backstage at

TheatreZone is beginning its 13th season as an equity theatre showcasing professional actors, singers, dancers and musicians performing in the intimate 250-seat G&L Theatre.

TheatreZone is now offering behind-the-scenes tours prior to the first Saturday matinee of each show next season. The 90-minute small group tours led by Artistic Director Mark Danni and Managing Director Karen Molnar Danni will include views of the dressing rooms, costume storage areas and behind the stage, as well as a brief presentation about the history of TheatreZone and the opportunity to watch actors preparing on stage with mic checks and vocal warmups for the afternoon's performance. Tours will be offered at noon on December 9 (Home for the Holidays), January 13 (Me & My Girl), February 10 (Secret Garden), March 10 (Copacabana), and April 28 (Baby).

A ticket to that day's show is not required. The ability to climb stairs is required, as elevator access is not available for all areas.

The G&L Theatre is located on the campus of the Naples Community School, 13275 Livingston Rd. in Naples. For information, call 888-966-3352.


Brews for Birds
at Wonder Gardens

Craft beer connoisseurs, food truck fans and avian aficionados will enjoy the inaugural ‘Brews for the Birds’ fundraiser at the Everglades Wonder Gardens.

On the evening of September 23, the Everglades Wonder Gardens will be transformed into the ‘Everglades Beer Gardens,’ with craft beer tastings and new music by Naples-based band, The Woodwork.

Bone Hook Brewing Co., Bury Me Brewing, Fort Myers Brewing, Momentum Brewhouse, Naples Beach Brewery, Point Ybel Brewing Company, Riptide Brewing Company, and Scotty’s Bierwerks will be serving their signature brews. Food trucks will be onsite, including El Local Mexican Street Food, JewBan’s Deli Dale, and Sweet Cheesus.

All event proceeds from ticket sales, as well as 10% of food truck sales, will support the enhancement of the Wonder Gardens birds’ living environment.

An 80-year-old cultural icon and designated historic resource of the City of Bonita Springs, the Everglades Wonder Gardens provides visitors the opportunity to experience more than 2,100 rare and exotic trees and plants, and 245 rescued birds and reptiles.

The Wonder Gardens, located at 27180 Old 41 Rd. in Bonita Springs, is open daily, 9am-5pm. For information, call 992-2591.


Historical Places at
Naples Depot Museum

The Naples Depot Museum presents ‘Sites & Scenes: Collier County’s Historic Places,’ an exhibition of photographs of some of Collier County’s most important landmarks and the stories behind them, from the 19th Century homes to a railroad depot from the Roaring ‘20s.

Set in Naples’ first passenger train station, the restored Naples Depot Museum takes visitors back to Florida’s railroading heyday and tells how technology and transportation helped Naples grow from a village of 300 pioneers to today’s modern Gulf Coast resort.

‘Sites & Scenes: Collier County’s Historic Places’ is on view thru October 28. Naples Depot Museum, located at 1051 5th Ave. in downtown Naples, is open Mon-Sat 9am-4pm. Admission to all Collier County Museums is free. For information, call 262-6525.

Sarasota’s ensemblenewSRQ
perform the music of
John Luther Adams and
Luciano Berio during the
Ringling International Arts Festival
in Sarasota, October 18-21.

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Stephen Dorff, better known
as an actor, will be performing
his songs at Fort Myers Beach’s Diamondhead Resort on
September 29 & Nervous Nellie’s
on September 30 during the
Island Hopper Songwriter Festival.

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The Naples International Film
Festival Wrap Party features
a live performance by Colin Hay,
the subject of the closing night
documentary film.

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‘Ding’ Darling Days,’
the week-long celebration of the
National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel,
is October 15-21.

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FSW’s Bob Rauchenberg Gallery
hosts an exhibition of Fluxus art
thru November 11.

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‘Sites & Scenes: Collier County’s
Historical Places’ is on view at
the Naples Depot Museum in
downtown Naples thru October 28.

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Germain Arena
11000 Everblades Parkway

Oct 13: vs Atlanta Gladiators
Oct 14: vs Atlanta Gladiators *
Oct 25: vs Indy Fuel
Oct 27: vs Indy Fuel
Oct 28: vs Indy Fuel *
Nov 8: vs Cincinnati Cyclones
Nov 10: vs Cincinnati Cyclones
Nov 11: vs Cincinnati Cyclones *
Nov 18: vs Jacksonville Icemen *
Dec 8: vs Jacksonville Icemen
Dec 9: vs Jacksonville Icemen *
Dec 13: vs South Carolina Stingrays
Dec 15: vs South Carolina Stingrays
Dec 16: vs South Carolina Stingrays*
Dec 20: vs Jacksonville Icemen
Jan 3: vs Orlando Solar Bears
Jan 12: vs Jacksonville Icemen
Feb 2: vs Greenville Swamp Rabbits
Feb 3: vs Greenville Swamp Rabbits*
Feb 7: vs Orlando Solar Bears
Feb 9: vs Allen Americans
Feb 10: vs Allen Americans *
Feb 23: vs Orlando Solar Bears
Feb 24: vs Jacksonville Icemen
Feb 25: vs Jacksonville Icemen
Mar 2: vs Greenville Swamp Rabbits
Mar 3: vs Greenville Swamp Rabbits*
Mar 16: vs Orlando Solar Bears
Mar 17: vs Orlando Solar Bears *
Mar 21: vs Norfolk Admirals
Mar 23: vs Norfolk Admirals
Mar 24: vs Norfolk Admirals *
Mar 28: vs Greenville Swamp Rabbits
Mar 30: vs Greenville Swamp Rabbits
Mar 31: vs Atlanta Gladiators
Apr 7: vs Jacksonville Icemen *

All games start 7:30pm
except * starts 7pm

Songwriters Descend
on Southwest Florida

The Island Hopper Songwriter Festival returns for its fourth year to Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach and Captiva, September 22-October 1. Headliners include Lindsay Ell and Brooke Eden, performing at Pinchers Crab Shack at The Marina at Edison Ford on September 27. The Canadian Country Music Association recently nominated Ell for Female Artist of the Year.

This year’s festival includes more than 100 live performances, more than 70 songwriters giving more than 100 live performances at 21 venues. Most performances are free, with a few select shows requiring paid admission.

Some of the songwriters appearing at the festival for the first time are Natalie Hemby (‘White Liar,’ recorded by Miranda Lambert), Clint Daniels (‘Brokenheartsville,’ recorded by Joe Nichols) and Maggie Rose.

Returning songwriters include Even Stevens (‘I Love a Rainy Night,’ recorded by Eddie Rabbit), Aaron Barker (‘What About Now,’ recorded by Lonestar). Wynn Varble, and Karla Davis.

The Festival comes to Captiva first, September 22-24, with performances at Key Lime Bistro, South Seas Island Resort, Doc Ford’s Rum Bar & Grille, Crow’s Nest at ‘Tween the Waters, Cantina Captiva, RC Otter’s, and Mucky Duck.

Downtown Fort Myers hosts concerts September 25-28 at The Barrel Room, Twisted Vine Bistro, City Tavern, Hotel Indigo, and Pincher’s at The Marina at Edison Ford. The Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center hosts a special Songwriters Round on the evening of September 28, for which tickets are needed.

The Festival winds up in Fort Myers Beach, September 29-October 1 at Diamondhead Resort’s Cabana, Sunset Beach Tropical Grill, Pierside Grill, Matanzas on the Bay, Nervous Nellie’s, Pincher’s Crab Shack, Yucatan Beach Stand, and Pink Shell Beach Resort. RaeLynn performs a ticketed concert at the Pink Shell Resort on the evening of October 1.

Some highlights of the Festival are performances by Taylor Alexander (September 29 at Matanzas on the Bay, September 30 at the Diamondhead Resort, October 1 at Pincher’s Crab Shack) and Stephen Dorff (September 29 at Diamondhead Resort and September 30 at Nervous Nellie’s). Alexander became a celebrity with his breakout performance of Cher’s ‘Believe’ on this year’s The Voice. Steven Dorff has starred in many films, most recently Wheeler, which he co-wrote, about a musician from Texas who travels to Nashville following his lifelong dream.

Visit the Island Hopper Songwriters Fest website for schedule, venues, and artist bios. Call 338-3500 for information.


Sanibel Celebrates
‘Ding’ Darling Days

The 29th annual eco-festival and celebration of the J.N. ‘Ding’ Darling National Wildlife Refuge features activities for children and adults alike, including wildlife presentations, puppet shows, butterfly house, crafts, educational exhibits, live entertainment, and walking, bicycling, kayaking, and tram tours throughout the day, October 15-21.

October 15 : Free Family Fun Day
October 16 : Let’s Go on a Hike Day
October 17 : Beach & Water Day.
October 18 : Bees & Butterflies Day.
October 19 : Calusa Day.
October 20 : Duck Stamp Day.
October 21 : Conservation Art Day.

On Family Fun Day, October 15, the Wildlife Refuge will debut its new #LearningLab exhibit, which will transform the Visitor & Education Center restrooms into marine life exhibits. Also on October 15, the schedule includes Kids Animal Yoga, live animal presentations by CROW, and a performance by the Sanibel School Steel Drumming Band.

In addition to the day’s all-free refuge tours and activities, this year’s festival features the Florida WaterVentures Traveling Lab, a 53-foot traveling science center featuring hands-on activities focusing on Florida's watersheds, water conservation, and recycling.

WaterVentures will also be open for touring the following day, October 16. The theme that day is ‘Let’s Go on a Hike Day,’ and includes a scavenger hunt at Bailey Tract, Animal Olympics on Indigo Trail, a hike and story time with Ranger Toni at the Wildlife Education Boardwalk, and a showing of the film, The Lorax.

The J.N. ‘Ding’ Darling Wildlife Refuge, open daily from dawn to dusk, is located at 1 Wil




The Symphonic Chorale of Southwest Florida, resident chorus for the Southwest Florida Symphony, invites singers to audition for the group.

Repertoire includes classical masterworks and contemporary compositions, including commissions and premieres of new and newly discovered works.

The audition is about 5-10 minutes with Artistic Director Dr.Trent Brown and accompanist Abbey Allison. You'll be asked to sing at least one minute and no more than three of a prepared selection.

Pre-season auditions will be held the evening of September 5. Auditions are held at their rehearsal venue, Lamb of God Church, 19691 Cypress View Drive in Fort Myers. Interested singers should call the Symphonic Chorale of SWFL at 560-5695.


TheatreZone, in Naples, will hold auditions for its 2017-18 season shows on September 9 & 10, from 10am-6pm, at the G&L Theatre on the Community School of Naples campus, located at 13275 Livingston Rd. in Naples.

Equity and non-Equity performers are invited to audition for Home for the Holidays, Me & My Girl, Secret Garden, Barry Manilow’s Copacabana, and Baby. Show dates, roles and descriptions are available on TheatreZone’s website. Performers must prepare 32 bars of a song, bring sheet music, and be prepared to dance. Appointments are required. Equity members without appointments will be seen throughout the audition day as time permits.

Call 888-966-3352 for information.


Art Fest Naples at Fleischmann Park is seeking artists working in all media to exhibit at their 21st annual juried art show, to be held January 20-21 in Fleischmann Park in Naples. A jury of arts professionals will select the artists to participate in the show and will award prizes in numerous categories. All artists must apply online at www.artfestnaples.com by October 15. For information, call 634-2337.


The 4th Annual Bonita Springs Short Film Festival is currently calling for entries. The theme for 2017 is ‘Historic Bonita.’ Entries should be 1-10 minutes long. The deadline for submissions is October 8.

The festival will award $2250 in cash for the winners in all categories. The organization provides technical support and assistance to all film makers.

The Film Festival Gala, with awards ceremony, will take place on November 2nd.

For information, call 404-3377.


September 15 is the deadline for submissions for the 30th Annual ‘Ding’ Darling Days Amateur Nature Photography Contest. All entries this year must be submitted electronically.

The contest, sponsored by the ‘Ding’ Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge, is held in conjunction with ‘Ding’ Darling Days, a community eco-festival, October 15-21.

Only amateur photographers (of all ages) are eligible to enter. Photos must be taken at J.N. ‘Ding’ Darling National Wildlife Reserve within the last two years. Each person may enter up to two photos. Only very limited image modifications are permitted.

First, second, and third place winners and honorable mentions will be formally announced during the ‘Ding’ Darling Day’s week-long celebration held in October. Cash prizes will be awarded.

For information, call 292-0566.

child actors

Broadway Palm is holding open children’s auditions for their upcoming production of A Christmas Story on September 10 at 1pm. Auditions are on a first-come, first-served basis. A sign-up sheet will be available at noon. No appointments will be taken.

Broadway Palm, 1380 Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers. For more information, call 278-4422.


Venice Theatre invites volunteer performers to audition for Flaming Guns of the Purple Sage, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and The Silver Foxes performance troupe.

Auditions for Flaming Guns of the Purple Sage are September 10 & 11, at 7:30pm. The show is scheduled to run November 2-19.

Singing auditions for The Silver Foxes is September 11 and acting auditions for The Silver Foxes are September 12. Auditions both dates start at 10am. Dancing auditions for The Silver Foxes will be held in October on date to be announced. The Silver Foxes annual show is scheduled for March 19-24.

Auditions for A Midsummer Night's Dream are September 17 & 18, beginning at 7:30pm. The play is scheduled to run March 15-April 8.

All auditions will be held at Venice Theatre, located at 140 W. Tampa Ave. in Venice. For information about auditioning for Flaming Guns of the Purple Sage and A Midsummer Night's Dream, call 941-484-4033. For information about auditioning for The Silver Foxes, call 941-486-8679.dlife Drive on Sanibel. For information, call 472-1100.