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Actors, artists, filmmakers and events in the news November 15-21, 2020


Grouped under headings that include art openings, film, outdoor art fairs and festivals and theater are advances, announcements and articles about the actors, artists, filmmakers and events making news in Southwest Florida this week:


1     ACTORS


Dena Galyean to play Elizabeth in ‘Laundry and Bourbon’

Dena Galyean will play Elizabeth on the GreenMarket stage in the Alliance for the Arts’ upcoming outdoor production of Laundry and Bourbon. Since relocating to Southwest Florida from Chicagoland, Dena Galyean seems to have a penchant for landing fascinating roles. Among her most recent – and memorable – are Susan B. Anthony in The Agitators and Nora Helmer in Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll House for Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance, and Stella Kowalski in The Studio Players’ production of Tennessee William’s A Streetcar Named Desire at the Golden Gate Community Center. Her profile is here.



Shelley Sanders to play Amy Lee in ‘Laundry and Bourbon’

Shelley Sanders will play Amy Lee on the GreenMarket stage in the Alliance for the Arts’ upcoming outdoor production of Laundry and Bourbon. A true triple threat, Shelley Sanders is an actor, singer and dancer. Her recent credits include a variety of roles in Ken Ludwig’s Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery by Ken Ludwig. Columbia in Richard O’Brien’s Rocky Horror Show (New Phoenix Theatre) and the lead in Marian, or the True Tale of Robin Hood (Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance). Her profile is here.



Rachael Endrizzi in ‘Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical’

Rachael Endrizzi is appearing from November 12 through December 26, 2020 at Off Broadway Palm in The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical. Her extensive and impressive acting resume includes A Christmas Carol: A Live Radio Show (Off Broadway Palm), The Medora Musical 2019 (Burning Hills Singer), Suzanne in Don’t Dress for Dinner, Actor/Violinist in The Temple Bombing, Lady Capulet in Romeo & Juliet, Maggie Saunders in Lend Me a Tenor, Dinah in The Dixie Swim Club, Suzette in Don’t Dress for Dinner, Lana Sherwood in It’s a Wonderful Life: a Live Radio Play, Bamby Lynn in Knock ‘Em Dead, Mrs. Little in Stuart Little and Wendy Darling in The Terrible Tragedy of Peter Pan. Go here for Rachael’s full profile.



Rachael Lord in ‘Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical’

Rachael Lord is appearing from November 12 through December 26, 2020 at Off Broadway Palm in The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical. Lord’s other stage credits include Snow White in Lab Theater’s hybrid film-theater production of Disenchanted: A New Musical Comedy!, Sabine in In Flight: The Story of Sabine Van Dam (Gulfshore Playhouse touring production), ensemble in Shipwrecked (an adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Tempest for Gulfshore Playhouse and The Naples Philharmonic at Artis-Naples), Showgirl in Step Right Up (RWS Entertainment Group), Faith in Respect: A Musical Journey of Women (Clandestine Arts), Cherry in The Impossible Club (a staged reading for the Winter Park Playhouse) and Martha in The Secret Garden (Florida Southern College). Go here for her full profile.



Erica Sample in ‘Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical’

Erica Sample is appearing from November 12 through December 26, 2020 at Off Broadway Palm in the role of Darlene in The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical. Erica’s recent credits include Roxie Hart in Chicago, Judy Haynes in White Christmas, Sister Mary Robert in Sister Act and Sophie in Mamma Mia for The Naples Players) and Maggie in Kinky Boots and Charlotte in Charlotte’s Web in Broadway Palm/Prather Entertainment’s Children’s Theater, Off Broadway and main stage productions. Go here for Erica’s full profile.



Danielle Channell appears next in ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

Danielle Channell reprises the role of Desiree, that neck model extraordinaire, in The Realish Housewives of Fort Myers. Past credits include Mae Flynn in Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof for The Studio Players and trophy wife Kaitlyn Gordon, brainiac neurosurgeon Angela Saperstein-Koplan and caustic Bohemian author Brianna in Let Nothing You Dismay for Lab Theater. Danielle first portrayed Desiree in Lab’s SoDis virtual production of The Realish Housewives of Fort Myers earlier in the pandemic. Go here for all of Danielle’s stage and film credits. And here’s a story about how for Danielle, theater’s a group effort.



Sue Schaffel appears next in ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

The only part Sue Schaffel plays better than whacky is bitch, so it’s only natural that she should be cast in the role of Revonka in LabTV’s upcoming production of The Realish Housewives of Fort Myers. For those who don’t know, Sue burst onto the Southwest Florida theater scene in Lab Theater’s parody Hush Up Sweet Charlotte, but her break-out role locally was that of iconic Blanche Dubois in another parody, Death of a Streetcar Named Virginia Woolf which, coincidentally, was also penned by Realish playwright Tim Sniffen! You’ll find more on Sue’s stage and film credits here.



Lucy Sundby appears next in ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

Lucy Sundby is plays Claudia Louise (CL) in The Realish Housewives of Fort Myers. Look out! The last time she played a housewife, she turned her husband and his two pals into popsicles (pun intended) after the idiots locked themselves in their new walk-in freezer. Sundby was last seen pre-pandemic in 5 Lesbians Eating a Quiche for the Alliance for the Arts. Go here to see all of Lucy’s stage credits.



Kendra Michele Weaver in ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

Kendra Michele Weaver plays Gwen in The Realish Housewives of Fort Myers. Weaver is an actor, stage manager, front of house manager and Volunteer Coordinator for the Laboratory Theater of Florida. Kendra’s stage credits include the Vagina Monologue (Lab Theater, Season 10), stage manager Aggie Manville in Play On! (Lab Theater, Season 8), the Captain and a guard in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night (Lab Theater, Season 7) ….

Go here for Kendra’s full profile.



Rob Green appears next in ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

Rob Green is hosts The Realish Housewives of Fort Myers. Yes, indeed, he plays Randy Bowen. Green’s credits are Sherlock Holmes in Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery for the Alliance for the Arts, Dr. Sanderson in Harvey, Nick Dahner in Rancho Mirage, The Teacher, Cam, in Max Frisch’s Andorra, Gerald Halverson in Jeffrey Hatcher’s Murderers, the Archangel Gabriel in David Javerbaum’s An Act of God, the wheelchair-confined Queen of the Hollywood Melodrama Blanche Hudson in the outrageous Lab Theater summer spoof Whatever Happened to Baby Jane: A Parody of the Horror and Burton in in Burn This, as well as a supporting role in The Elephant Man. Go here for the rest of Rob’s stage credits.



Shelley Sanders is one of the ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

Shelley Sanders plays Brooke in the Realish Housewives of Fort Myers in Lab Theater’s filmed theatrical production to be broadcast on three separate days in November. A true triple threat, Sanders recent credits include a variety of roles in Ken Ludwig’s Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery by Ken Ludwig. Columbia in Richard O’Brien’s Rocky Horror Show (New Phoenix Theatre) and the lead in Marian, or the True Tale of Robin Hood (Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance). She also reprised the role of Bitsy Mae for SoDis (Lab) Theater’s virtual reading of Sordid Lives during the shut-down in May of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Her profile is here.



Madelaine Weymouth is Prosecco in ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

Madelaine Weymouth will play the role of Prosecco in Tim Sniffen and Kate James’ Realish Housewives of Fort Myers. Highly accomplished and much sought after, Madelaine’s acting credits include Dr. Watson in Ken Ludwig’s Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery, Robyn in Sex Tips for Straight Women from a Gay Man, Vandy Jordan in Venus in Fur (for The Studio Players), Forgive Me; I Put You in a Play, Boberg’s Timer and Dash in the Middle in Lab Theater’s inaugural Festival of Tens, Serenity in And the Winner Is, and Jessica in Hand to God. Want more Maddy? Go here.



Stephen Hooper appears next in ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

Stephen Hooper plays Dr. Ted in LabTV’s upcoming production of The Realish Housewives of Fort Myers. An actor, director and playwright whose career in theater spans more than three decades, Stephen’s foray into the realm of theater was wholly unplanned. In fact, he had been practicing law for a number of years and went into acting pretty much on a whim. Go here to read the story and see Stephen’s stage and other credits.



Randall Kenneth Jones in cast of ‘Realish Housewives of Fort Myers’

Randall Kenneth Jones will play Stefan in Realish  Housewives of Fort Myers. Highly intelligent, deeply introspective and ridiculously well-connected, Jones made quite the splash in the gender-bending roles of femme fatale Cousin Miriam in Hush Up Sweet Charlotte and Baby Jane Hudson in Whatever Happened to Baby Jane: A Parody of the Horror, both produced by Laboratory Theater of Florida in the downtown Fort Myers River District. Go here to view Randy’s full profile.



Nuniez Philor playing Chance in ‘Realish Housewives’

Nuniez “Nemo” Philor will be playing the part of Chance in LabTV’s upcoming production of Realish Housewives of Fort Myers. Nuniez Philor is an FGCU graduate whose stage credits include Theatre Conspiracy’s production of Charles Busch’s Vampire Lesbians of Sodom (Ali/PJ), Steven Dietz’s Rancho Mirage (Seth Holly) and August Wilson’s Joe Turner’s Come and Gone. He also appeared as a man who finds himself at a crossroads when people take to the street in Ferguson, Missouri in the aftermath of Michael Brown’s slaying in Theatre Conspiracy’s virtual production of Hands Up by Kristy Thomas.



Hollis Galman to play Marty for Studio Players in ‘Circle Mirror Transformation’

Next up at The Studio Players is Annie Baker’s Circle Mirror Transformation, in which five strangers gather in a dance studio to embark upon a unique journey in their creative drama class for adults. Hollis Galman plays the part of Marty, the free-spirited leader of the group. Hollis Galman is a Naples resident who made her directorial debut with The Studio Players in Walter Cronkite Is Dead. She has appeared in a number of Off-Broadway productions. Her most recent stage credits include the larger-than-life role of Masha in Vandy and Sonia and Masha and Spike, which represented her Studio Players’ debut. Go here for moreCircle Mirror Transformation opens November 27.



Gerrie Benzing plays former actress in Studio Players’ ‘Circle Mirror Transformation’

Next up at The Studio Players is Annie Baker’s Circle Mirror Transformation, in which five strangers gather in a dance studio to embark upon a unique journey in their creative drama class for adults. Gerrie Benzing plays the part of one of the students in that class, Theresa, an earnest former actress. Gerrie has performed in more than 14 productions at Cultural Park Theater, the Laboratory Theater of Florida and Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance for the Arts, but this role marks her Studio Players debut. Go here to see Gerrie’s impressive stage and other credits, and go here for an interview Gerrie gave Art Southwest Florida in August of 2019 that provides insight into her deep and abiding love of all things theater.



Rosie DeLeon plays Lauren in Studio Players ‘Circle Mirror Transformation’

Next up at The Studio Players is Annie Baker’s Circle Mirror Transformation, in which five strangers gather in a dance studio to embark upon a unique journey in their creative drama class for adults. Rosie DeLeon will appear as Lauren, a reserved and self-conscious high schooler who takes the class. Rosie DeLeon is best known in theater circles as a talented, go-to sound and lighting director/technician. But she has also appeared often on the boards at various Lee County venues. Go here to see her stage credits.






Galyean, Reed and Sanders star in Alliance’s ‘Laundry and Bourbon’

Laundry and Bourbon comes to the Alliance’s GreenMarket stage November 19 – 29. The show is directed by Sonya McCarter and stars Dena Galyean, Shelley Sanders and Anne Reed. Sonya McCarter directs.

The setting for the play is Elizabeth’s porch on a hot summer day in Maynard, Texas, a tiny town plunked down, like so many others of that state, in the middle of a nowhere that seems to consist of burning sun and empty vistas. The action centers on the discontent and hilarious gossip of three small-town wives whose marriages have turned out to be less than they’d hoped.



Helping Elizabeth, Hattie and Amy Lee choose the best ‘Laundry and Bourbon’ blend

Laundry and Bourbon comes to the Alliance’s GreenMarket stage November 19 – 29. The show is directed by Sonya McCarter and stars Dena Galyean, Shelley Sanders and Anne Reed. They play three Texas women named Elizabeth (a housewife whose Vietnam veteran husband has been missing for two days), Hattie (whose rambunctious children wreak havoc wherever they go) and Amy Lee (born into poverty but now married to money). The gals have many interests in common, including a penchant for gossip and predilection for bourbon.

Bourbon takes its name from a county in Kentucky. As American as apple pie, bourbon is made from corn based (at least 51%) along with malt, wheat and rye. The blend is then aged from two to ten years in oak barrels.

There are virtually hundreds of different brands, and choosing the blend that matches your tastes and temperament is something of an art, although there’s a lot to be said for experimentation and trial and error.

The rest of this article is here.



Drexler and Grey reunite for ‘Parallel Lives: The Kathy and Mo Show Abridged’

Coming to the Alliance’s GreenMarket stage December 3-12 is Parallel Lives: The Kathy and Mo Show Abridged. It consists of a series of comic vignettes written in 1986 by Kathy Najimy and Mo Gaffney and updated and revived (hence, “abridged”) by Gioia Marchese and Emily Schweitz). The show reunites Lauren Drexler and Kathy Grey as capricious goddesses and more.

Go here for the rest of this advance, and here for play dates, times and ticket information.



Great American Trail Park Christmas Musical at Off Broadway Palm thru Dec. 26

The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical is on stage in the Off Broadway Palm through December 26. It’s Christmastime in Armadillo Acres mobile home community in Starke, Florida and everyone is filled with visions of kegnog and beer. But while the residents are preparing to decorate for a holiday contest, a new Scrooge-like resident begins to wreak havoc on the festivities.

Betty, Linoleum, Pickles and Rufus are bound and determined to break the “Armadillo Acres curse” and finally win this year’s contest for the most festive trailer park in Northern Florida, but newcomer Darlene is having none of it. Her trailer is sans decorations save for a few “no trespassing” signs. What ensues is a cat-fightin’, sun-worshippin’, chair-throwin’ rowdy good time!

The show stars Rachel Endrizzi (A Christmas Carol: A Live Radio Show, Don’t Dress for Dinner), Rachael Lord (Snow White in LabTV’s Disenchanted: Stay-At-Home Version, In Flight: The Story of Sabine Van Dam for Gulfshore Playhouse), Ken Quiricone, Erica Sample (Judy Haynes in White Christmas, Roxy Hart in Chicago for The Naples Players), Dianne Stone Fussaro (Murder in Paradise) and Rob Summers. The show runs through December 26.



‘Holiday Inn the Broadway Musical’ opens at Broadway Palm on November 18

Holiday Inn the Broadway Musical comes to the Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre mainstage beginning November 19. This heart-warming story follows Jim as he leaves the bright lights of show business as well as his dance partner and fiance’ to settle down in a farmhouse in Connecticut. His luck takes a turn for the better when he meets a spirited schoolteacher by the name of Linda who has talent to spare. Together, they turn the farmhouse into a seasonal inn with show-stopping performances to celebrate each holiday from Thanksgiving to the Fourth of July. But when Jim’s best friend, Ted, tries to lure Linda away to be his new dance partner in Hollywood, will Jim be able to salvage his latest chance at love?”

Based on the 1942 film starring Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire, the Holiday Inn plot serves as the perfect backdrop for spectacular choreography and such Irving Berlin classics “Shaking the Blues Away,” “Blue Skies,” “Easter Parade,” “Heat Wave,” Cheek to Cheek,” “It’s a Lovely Day Today” and “White Christmas.”

The show runs through December 26. Please go here for show pricing, times and dates or call the box office at 239-278-4422. Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre is located in Royal Palm Plaza, which is located at 1380 Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers.



CFABS Community Players holding ‘Funny Shorts LIVE!’ auditions December 8 & 9

The CFABS Community Players is holding open auditions for Funny Shorts LIVE! on December 8 & 9 in the Moe Auditorium at the Center for Performing Arts, 10150 Bonita Beach Road, Bonita Springs, Florida 34135. Funny Shorts LIVE! is comprised of six hilariously funny short plays. They’ll be performed at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, January 15. Funny Shorts LIVE! is an extension of the Center’s wildly popular Stage IT! 10-Minute Play Festival, an annual competition and book publication that draws playwrights from around the world.



Creative Theatre Workshop’s ’13 the Musical’ closes today 

Creative Theater Workshop’s production of 13 the Musical closes today.

“Geek,” “poser,” “jock,” “beauty queen,” “wannabe” are labels that can last a lifetime. 13 is a musical about fitting in – and standing out! With an unforgettable rock score from Tony Award-winning composer Jason Robert Brown, (Parade, The Last Five Years, Bridges of Madison County) and a book by Dan Elish, 13 is a hilarious, coming-of-age musical about discovering that “cool” is sometimes where we least expect it.

Evan Goldman is plucked from his fast-paced, preteen New York City life and plopped into a sleepy Indiana town of Appleton following his parents’ divorce. Surrounded by an array of simpleminded middle school students, he needs to establish his place in the popularity pecking order. Can he situate himself on a comfortable link of the food chain… or will he dangle at the end with the outcasts?

The musical premiered in 2007 in Los Angeles and transferred to the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre on Broadway on September 16, 2008. It was notable for several reasons. It had musical theater rockstar Jason Robert Brown at the helm and starred actors who were all under the age of 15 and an all-teen orchestra.  Several members of the cast have become notable stars, including Graham Phillips in The Good Wife, Elizabeth Gillies in Victorious and now Dynasty, and Ariana Grande in the role of Charlotte. Grande also participated in recording the official Broadway Cast soundtrack.

Performances are Thursday and Friday, November 12 & 13 at 7:00 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, November 14 & 15 at 2:00 p.m. and Sunday, November 15 at 6:00 pm.



Florida Rep to begin outdoor performances with tribute to golden age of musical theater

Florida Repertory Theatre has a new outdoor venue and its first show will be Golden: A Tribute to the Golden Age of Musical Theatre. Performances will take place November 18-22 and November 24 and 25 beginning at 7 p.m.

The venue is situated on Edwards and Jackson Streets on the lawn on the northeast side of the Hall of Fifty States. Seating is socially distanced, and patrons will sit in clearly marked 12′ × 12′ squares facing the beautiful Caloosahatchee River. Florida Rep will provide seating, but encourages audiences to bring their own lawn chairs and blankets for the most comfort.

Seating squares are six feet apart from one another and accommodate up to four people. The price per square ranges from $60 to $120 depending on its distance from the stage.

Tickets and information are available at or by calling the Florida Rep Box Office at 239-332-4488.

Golden: A Tribute to the Golden Age of Musical Theatre stars the 2020-2021 Professional Acting Intern Company, which consists of Patrick Agonito, Nayda Mayez, Emily Foley, Sarah Joyce, Matt Kelley and Micah Weese. Assistant Education Director Christina DeCarlo directs the production and leads an expert creative team that includes Musical Director Rosalind Metcalf, choreographer Erica Sample, stage manager Zeke Bocklage, rehearsal stage manager Susan Dohan, and sound designer Katie Lowe.

Florida Repertory Theatre produced the revue in partnership with its Education Department. Conceived by Florida Rep’s Education Director Kody C Jones, the revue also features arrangements by Rosalind Metcalf.

“We are so excited to welcome our audiences back to Florida Rep – but at a safe and healthy distance,” said Artistic Director Greg Longenhagen. “This limited engagement in partnership with our Education Department is a love letter to the magic of theatre, and being able to watch it under the stars, a stone’s throw from the river, really will be a treat. That being said, our patrons’ health and well-being is of the utmost importance, and so we’re proceeding with a great deal of caution. The venue is totally outdoors, masks are required, social distancing will be enforced, and hand-sanitizing stations placed throughout, among other protocols.”

The theater will provide a mask to anyone who does not bring their own. To maintain health and safety protocols, Florida Rep will not serve concessions at this time, so audiences should plan on providing their own refreshments if they wish. Outdoor restroom facilities will be available as well as the restrooms inside the theater lobby. However, any patron wishing to enter the Arcade Theatre Lobby must have their temperature checked before entry can be granted. For more information on Florida Rep’s safety precautions, please visit its website.

Florida Rep’s outdoor performances under the stars on the banks of the Caloosahatchee resurrects a tradition that began in 1913 with the construction of a recreation wharf at the foot of Fowler. The 450-foot pier ended in a handsome pavilion whose tongue-in-groove wooden floor was the site of waltzes, foxtrots and the Banana Peel Glide and Grape Juice Wallow along with sunset concerts. In fact, the pier’s inaugural dance was such a hit that for most of the evening, it was standing room only, “which goes to prove,” the Press waxed philosophic, “ that this will be one of the most popular places in the city” and a favored “place for the young people to congregate on beautiful moonlit evenings.”

Seating is limited, and tickets must be purchased in advance, either online at or by calling 239-332-4488. Parking is free in the theater’s lot on Bay Street between Jackson & Hendry.

For patrons who are still not comfortable venturing out, there are virtual and streaming options planned throughout the season.

Follow Florida Rep on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube for the most up to date information about programming and how to support Florida Rep during this difficult time.



Tune in to the ‘Realish Housewives’ for the fake smiles and the backstabbing

Up next on LabTV is The Realish Housewives of Fort Myers by Second City alum Tim Sniffen (Death of a Streetcar Named Virginia Woolf: a Parody) and Kate James. This one’s also a parody, this time of the reality television show we all love to hate. But with a Fort Myers twist.

Randy Bowen (Rob Green) hosts the show, and his approach is simple and straightforward. Keeping everyone liquored up makes it so much easier to foment conflicts and foster meltdowns. No wonder he’s so pleased with himself and elated with his evolving media empire!

Go here for the rest of this advance.



Marco Players producing Ken Levine’s ‘On the Farce Day of Christmas’

The Marco Players will present Ken Levine’s On the Farce Day of Christmas. The comedy revolves around Wendy who, to keep her religious mother from knowing she’s divorced, pays her ex to pose as her husband and go home with her for the holidays. Havoc ensues.

According to Levine (whose credits include Cheers, M*A*S*H, Frasier), farces require two key ingredients. The first is jeopardy.

“[There must be] something the characters need so badly [they] are willing to go to the greatest lengths to achieve,” says Levine. “The situation can be totally absurd to us, but to the characters themselves, they’re very real. In fact, the greater the jeopardy the crazier they can act.”

The second ingredient is a lie.

“A character lies and then to keep from getting caught, must lie again,” Levine explains. “The lies multiply; the character digs himself into a deeper hole. And generally, there are several characters forced to lie. Often the lies contradict each other.”

At the risk of stating the obvious, a good farce demands that the plot unfold with split-second timing and precision and the pressure can never let up.

“Constant roadblocks must be introduced,” Levine adds. “Complications on top of more complications, the vice tightens…and tightens…and tightens.”

Generally, farces take place in real time. There are no fade outs, no dissolves, no relief.

“And as the piece builds the pace quickens,” Levine observes. “If done right, a farce should be a snowball rolling down a hill, gaining momentum and size.”

Neil Simon (Rumors) is quoted as saying, “At the final curtain, the audience must be as spent as the actors, who by now are on oxygen support. If the audience is only wheezing with laughter, you need rewrites or actors with stronger lungs.”

Sharon Isern plays the part of Wendy, and if you know her work-out regimen, then you can be assured that she has Superwoman-strength lungs. She’s also an actor with an exponentially-expanding resume. Go here to see her stage and other credits.

“The talented cast and crew under Paula Keenan’s direction have been working hard to bring this endearing play to life,” Isern reports. “It’s a beautifully-written romantic comedy, and [this ] might be its second production ever.”

Joining Isern in the cast are Gregg Birr as Gary, Ty Szumigala as Wendy’s father, Matt Flynn as Chip, Kay Mayr & Nancy Martin as mom, and Emery Pulse as Karen.

Director Paula Keenan has been with The Marco Players five seasons, four as a director. In the last few seasons, she directed A Doublewide, Texas Christmas, Come Blow Your Horn and Flamingo Court.

Her most recent on-stage appearance was as the ever-whining Sonia in Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike for The Studio Players. Paula has directed local performances of Over the River and Through the Woods, Bakersfield Mist, Agnes of God, and The Cocktail Hour.  Additionally, she directed Neil Simon’s The Odd Couple, when produced in Cuenca, Ecuador in October, 2018.

The show runs November 25 through December 13, 2020, with performances Wednesday through Saturday at 8:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. matinees on Saturday and Sunday. For tickets or more information, please call the Box Office at 239-642-7270 or visit



The Naples Players hosting Drive-In Movie Nights off 5th Avenue

The Naples Players (TNP) is hosting bi-monthly TNP Drive-In Movie Nights. Sponsored by The Inn on 5th, these events are held in the newly refinished 50-car lot located at 300 8th Street South, just one block north of the iconic 5th Avenue South home of The Naples Players Community Theatre.

Drive-In Movie Nights are part of Discover Culture in Collier, an alternative season of outdoor arts and culture events recently announced by The Naples Players. Each month, two different films will featured.  The scheduled films  will be projected onto a 33-foot screen using a state-of-the-art projection system.  The movie soundtracks will be broadcast over short-range FM radio to the cars in attendance.

The series continues with The Goonies November 24 & 25. The rest of the schedule through April 2021 is as follows:

  • December 15-16: A Christmas Story
  • December 29-30: Frozen II
  • January 12-13: Singin’ In the Rain
  • January 26-27: Ghostbusters
  • February 2-3: Twister
  • February 16-17: Hairspray
  • March 9-10: Breakfast at Tiffany’s
  • March 23-24: Beauty & The Beast
  • April 6-7 :Dirty Dancing

The lot opens for parking at 7:00 p.m. and movies begin promptly at 8:00 p.m. Concessions and non-alcoholic refreshments are available for purchase.

Due to space, ticketing is required in advance. General admission is $45 per vehicle, but current TNP Season Ticket Subscribers receive free admission on select “Season Ticket Holder Nights.”

Tickets are available for purchase now at or by calling the TNP Box Office at (239) 263-7990.



‘Circle Mirror Transformation’ has feel of sitcom but delivers murder mystery intrigue

Up next in the Joan Jenks Auditorium at Golden Gate Community Center is The Studio Players’ production of Annie Baker’s Circle Mirror Transformation. It’s the third in a trilogy of plays set in the fictional town of Shirley, Vermont. [The other two are Body Awareness and The Aliens.] This one places the audience in a windowless community center room where a woman by the name of Marty is finally getting the chance to teach an adult acting class.

Circle Mirror Transformation takes its name from a common acting exercise, and as Marty leads her four students through word games, trust and role playing exercises over the course of the six-week class, their stories slowly emerge. But they’re not distilled so much from the dialogue that Baker provides, but rather from the tone and silences that have become associated with the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright. “It’s an unpretentiously sophisticated format that demands brilliant acting, sensitive direction and the utmost simplicity,” notes San Francisco theater critic Robert Hurwitt. With Scott Lilly at the helm and a cast anchored by Hollis Galman and Gerri Benzing, the show is in proven, capable hands.

Go here for the rest of this advance.

And go here for play dates, times and ticket information.



Studio Players casting for ‘One Slight Hitch’

The Studio Players is holding open auditions from 7:00-8:30 p.m. on January 4, 2021 for Lewis Black’s One Slight Hitch, a fast-paced, door-slamming farce. It’s Courtney’s wedding day in 1981, and her mom, Delia, is making sure that everything is PERFECT! The groom is PERFECT. The dress is PERFECT. And the decorations (assuming they arrive) will be PERFECT! Then, like in any good farce, the doorbell rings and all hell breaks loose. So much for perfect!

The Studio Players are casting for the following roles:

  • Doc Coleman – The Father; a general practitioner; a charming, eccentric conservative who’s usually straight up.
  • Ryan – Late 20’s to early 30’s, he’s the ex. In fact, he had lived with Courtney for two and a half years until seven months ago.
  • P.B – Sixteen-year-old daughter and the loosest in the family.
  • Melanie – 30-something daughter, a nurse, attractive and deeply psychotic.
  • Courtney – the bride, 20’s to 30’s, a freelance writer who has just published her first novel, which was “almost” successful.
  • Harper – Courtney’s fiance’; in his early 30’s, he is logical and wealthy.

Sides are available on The Naples Players’ website.

The character of Courtney’s mom, Delia Coleman, a woman who is in a constant state of panic, has already been cast.

Rehearsals will be three nights per week (M/W/F from 7:00-9:00 p.m.) beginning in March. The show will be performed May 28-June 13.

The Studio Players perform in the Joan Jenks Auditorium at the Golden Gate Community Center, 4701 Golden Gate Parkway, Naples, Florida 34116.





Jansen solo show on view at Winter Park’s Cornell Fine Arts Museum

The Cornell Fine Arts Museum is exhibiting a solo show of work by Marcus Jansen through January 3, 2021. Titled E Pluribus Unum, the exhibition focuses on works Jansen created in the last 15 years and is comprised of both large scale paintings and a selection of works on paper (among them a select number of new pieces on view for the first time) that examine Jansen’s visual explorations of structures of power and the struggle to grapple with the nuanced reality of our time. The exhibition is accompanied by an illustrated catalogue.

E Pluribus Unum represents Jansen’s first solo museum show in the United States. The Bronx/Fort Myers artist has enjoyed a number of solo shows abroad, however, including shows at La Triennale di Milano Museum in Milan and the Museum Zitadelle  in Berlin, and he participated in the 12th International Print and Drawing Biennial in Taiwan at the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Art. Works by Jansen are in collections of the Moscow Museum of Modern Art (MMOMA), The University of Michigan Museum of Art, The New Britain Museum of American Art, The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, The National Taiwan Museum of Fine Art, The Housatonic Museum of Art and the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C.

Jansen is known for powerful, monumental canvases that address poignant social and political themes. Through the use of an arresting visual language characterized by colorful and expressive brushwork, and references to contemporary and historical issues, Jansen invites viewers to engage in a reflection about the human condition. Jansen continues to explore surveillance and social divides in society and will place his iconic 2010 piece Obscure Line Between Fact and Fiction (3rd photo) to the museum for the show.





METHOD & CONCEPT featuring works by Arik Levy and Zoe Ouvrier

METHOD & CONCEPT opened Beyond Nature on November 12. The exhibition features works by Arik Levy and Zoé Ouvrier.

Levy’s reflective pieces in the show expand the possibilities of material—his processes range from highly physical and intimate to monumental feats of precision engineering requiring teams of production assistants. Investigating balance and minimalism, many of his works evoke naturally-derived structures, such as minerals, rock formations and water. The relationship between the viewer and the art are central to this body of work. The series brings social signals, behavior and science to the forefront by capturing the reflection of the viewer as a moving distortion, mimicking the state of change from liquid to solid as the viewer’s perception adjusts and shifts.

Similarly inspired by the natural environment, Ouvrier engraves the sinuous and knotted shapes of trees into wood panels. Through the gesture of carving, she reconnects her material to its original element and evokes the vitality of a living tree. Ouvrier contrasts the form of the tree to the human form; through her carving, the limbs of the trees become human extremities, the wood panel becomes flesh with its own energy and life once again.

Located in beautiful Naples, the gallery is located at 111 10th St South (Unit 112). Formerly Thomas Riley Studio, METHOD + CONCEPT is a gallery, art consultancy and design atelier, serving as an incubator, catalyst and purveyor of international emerging and mid-career interdisciplinary artists. M&C believes that contemporary craft, fine art and design share a symbiotic relationship, each building upon the other to form a holistic view of the world in which we live.



METHOD & CONCEPT presenting Carmelo Blandino exhibit at Naples Botanical Garden

On November 20, 2020, ​METHOD & CONCEPT ​and​ Naples Botanical Garden (4820 Bayshore Drive)​ will ​​present ​Carmelo Blandino: Convergence​, an exhibition of paintings inspired by the Garden. ​Known for his luscious, abstract floral paintings that combine the subtleties of classicism with the crackling energy of contemporary expressionism, Carmelo Blandino’s new exhibition brings the viewer in contemplative observation of our interconnected biosphere. The exhibition will run through January 10, 2021 in Kapnick Hall at the Garden.

The exhibition of large-scale, mixed-media paintings features flora and fauna in their various stages of magnificent beauty and delicate vulnerability. These paintings reflect human connection to nature and communicate the urgency of our role in its preservation.

Blandino—whose interactive painting process and creative energy encourage the viewer to become part of his work—will produce a new series for this exhibition, drawing inspiration from the living collection at the Garden. Blandino will have exclusive access to the Garden and its staff as source material, creating on-site studies and sketches for new work. ​

A self-guided audio tour featuring interviews with the artist will accompany the show.

This exhibition is part of the Garden’s 2020-21 season dedicated to ​Roots: Power of the Unseen, which seeks to explore the underground foundations that are the lifeblood of our plants, their energy source and their connection to the earth. The season includes a yearlong installation of Steve Tobin’s massive steel and bronze root sculptures and Clyde Butcher’s photography in the spring, celebrating Florida’s “roots” in the primordial, untouched landscapes he captures. Throughout the year, educational programs and other offerings will allow guests to contemplate roots, both physical and conceptual, in meaningful ways.

Located at 111​ 10th St South, Unit 112, ​Naples, METHOD & CONCEPT is a gallery, art consultancy and design atelier serving as an incubator, catalyst and purveyor of international emerging and mid-career interdisciplinary artists. METHOD & CONCEPT believes that contemporary craft, fine art and design share a symbiotic relationship, each building upon the other to form a holistic view of the world in which we live. METHOD & CONCEPT is a Thomas Riley Company.

Naples Botanical Garden​ is a 170-acre, world-class garden paradise that features plants from around the world. The Garden provides arts, culture, youth and adult education, conservation, wellness and volunteer programs that contribute to the quality of life in Southwest Florida onsite and online at The Garden’s living collections are always growing and evolving, leaving our audiences with a deeper engagement with our curated gardens and preserve. Beginning October 1, seasonal hours of 9:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m. Timed entry tickets must be purchased in advance at Regular admission is$20 for adults, $10 for children (4–14). Members and children three and under get in free.



FGCU’s ‘When We See Further’ closes November 19

When We See Further: Heather Couch, Marina Font, Renee Rey and Terre Rybovich closes November 19. On exhibit until then in the Wasmer Gallery at FGCU, the exhibition’s theme is “the body, fragility and time” – a theme that ironically was proposed in October of 2019. Too soon to be a response to Covid-19, the show is instead a record of enduring a pandemic by women artists who engage their bodies in their art.

Heather Couch, of West Palm Beach, is an uncommon ceramicist. “The idea of precariousness and fragility underlies a lot of my work,” she readily admits. In a manner both playful and reflective, she lets the material and forms guide her, each step informed by the preceding one. The viewer encounters large vessels and even installations of ceramic (with wood) often imbalanced—even unstable—all bearing the imprint of the artist’s hand, and many further softened with raw sheep’s wool.

Marina Font is a native of Argentina who lives in Miami. She started out in photography but her work is now photo-based. The photograph is no longer the end-product but rather the starting point. In fact, the same photo—a female figure in an anatomic pose—is used over and over, each time elaborated with embroidery and other materials. “My work is deeply rooted in psychoanalysis,” Font explains. “I want to bring the unconscious to the surface, both literally and metaphorically.” The rich materiality of the surface pulls the viewer in to discover the truths beneath.

Renee Rey lives in Bonita Springs, Florida and New York City. She is a courageous artist who aims to challenge both traditional landscapes and figurative art. As she explains it, her large, ethereal paintings “portray alternative universes and transformative self-portraits, a search for the sublime in favor of the temporal, the spiritual versus the physical.” Exploring 3- and 4-dimensionality, she seeks connections and commonalities with the hope of bridging people around the world. Recent events have led her to rethink what it means to be connected when we are so separate.

Terre Rybovich, resident of Homestead, is a life-long drawer whose technique utilizes both her hands and body. “Drawing backward” was the initial idea, to cover the paper with charcoal and then erase the image. Focused on figure drawing, she tried lying on the drawing. “What I didn’t expect was when I let the imprint guide me in the process, I made drawings I never imagined.” Also, as a devoted birder, Rybovich draws birds from her photos. In quarantine these icons of freedom grew huge, and the artist captured both the process of drawing as well as the bird.



DAAS exhibiting work of Cuban artist Alex Lago in November

In the month of November, DAAS CO-OP Art Gallery & Gifts will present the work of Cuban artist Alex Lago. The exhibition will feature a selection of paintings in oils and watercolors, created in recent years. The opening reception is scheduled from 6:00-9:30 p.m. on Friday, November 6 in conjunction with Fort Myers Art Walk and will be on display through November 28, 2020.

The poetry in Alex Lagos’ work is mesmerizing. Words are not present, but anyone can read the imbedded messages and metaphors. This, to him, is extremely important and has become a strict practice during his creative process.  The artist faults his native Cuba for this thought process.

As he describes it, “Cuba is a country of extreme ideologies. Very few expressions are allowed in diversion from the official speech. The great lesson from these circumstances was discovering that I had a personal vision, which I needed to foster, cherish and share,” comments the artist, who developed a teaching workshop that lead him to Mexico, where he taught for several years. “Multiple circumstances [in Mexico] made me realize the oversaturated experience in my country, ultimately deciding to move to the United States.

Lagos, who has shown in various art centers, galleries and museums in the United States and Europe, is currently working on new pieces for an exhibition in 2021. Currently, he is represented by an art gallery in Madrid, Spain, but most of his recent endeavors have been independently. About the present times, he claims his optimism for better days, while embracing his current life.

“The past, now behind me, and the path I am following are the catalysts that move my world. Now, I live in a forest, where the trees and the birds are witnesses to my journey,” Alex explains.

DAAS CO-OP is located at 1815 Fowler Street, in the Butterfly Estates complex in Fort Myers, FL. The gallery’s temporary business hours are Thursday to Sunday, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. More information about gallery and/or how to become a member can be found at or by calling 239-590-8645.



DAAS December show seeks to process 2020 pictorially

DAAS CO-OP Art Gallery & Gifts is inaugurating a new invitational exhibition in the month of December featuring the art of Southwest Florida creatives who seek to transfer their thoughts about the year 2020 into 20-by-20-inch works of art. The concept for the show evolved from conversations regarding the year’s numerous ups and downs, twists and turns and unexpected developments.

For many, 2020 has presented an array of devastating circumstances, social issues and economic crises. The COVID-19 pandemic has cost many lives, with the loss approaching 250,000 here in America alone. By contrast, 2020 seemed like a year of resilience and fortitude for others, who see the current times as a way to restore, regroup and reorganize many aspects of their environment.

“We are looking forward to the show and to see how these artists interpreted the theme,” says DAAS co-founder, artist and curator David Acevedo. “I hope it serves as a way for artists to let go of the negative aspects of this year and heal. We need to look past this year to a brighter future.”

The opening reception is scheduled for Friday, December 4, 2020 from 6:00 to 9:30 p.m. in conjunction with the monthly Fort Myers Art Walk event.

The collective will be on display through January 2, 2021.

“We invite all Southwest Florida art collectors, supporters and enthusiasts to join us for the opening reception on the evening of December 4,” states the gallery. DAAS CO-OP Art Gallery & Gifts is located at 1815 Fowler Street in the Butterfly Estates complex in Fort Myers, FL. The gallery’s temporary business hours are 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Thursday to Sunday. For more information about gallery and/or how to become a member, please visit or call 239-590-8645.



‘Gravity of Gratitude’ at Alliance through November 28

Gravity of Gratitude: Members Exhibit is on display in the Alliance for the Arts’ main gallery through November 28. The exhibition highlights the big and little things that bring us joy and strength. Our health and mental well-being improve when we reflect on the people, places and things for which we are thankful. Taking the time to show your gratitude to others develops rich connections and relationships in our communities. Thus, the artists participating in the show reflect on what they are thankful for – whether that’s beauty in nature, humanity in others or our relationships with family and friends.

The Alliance for the Arts gallery and gift shop hours are Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. or by appointment by contacting Ehren at



Alliance annual ‘Arts & Ends’ holiday sale moves outdoors this year

The Alliance for the Arts annual Arts & Ends Holiday Sale is headed outdoors to the ArtsPark and GreenMarket grounds on Saturday, December 5. Artists will set up tables on the walkways surrounding the Alliance for the Arts building from 9:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m., allowing guests to purchase directly from them in a safe and socially distanced atmosphere. Featured Arts & Ends artists include Jayne Baker, Judy Cutler-Teeven, Carolyn Daniels, Crissy DeNoto, Wendy Drummond, Martha Grattan, Tracy Rosen, Laurie Rockwell, Inga Risk, Pamela Volz and Shannon Vickers.

This event features one-of-a-kind handmade gifts in painting, pottery, polymer clay, lamp work glass, upcycled accessories, macramé, wearable art, weaving and other fine crafts, plus an exclusive collection of creations from the Alliance gift shop. To make the holiday shopping experience even more special, Arts & Ends will take place in conjunction with the Alliance for the Arts weekly GreenMarket, which features an exclusive collection of locally grown, caught and cultivated foods and other artisanal items. To make the shopping experience even more special, the afternoon will include a variety of events and offers, including the Alliance’s Deck the Halls and Off the Wall Exhibit and a loom and weaving artist demonstration by Carolyn Daniels.

For more information, please call 239-939-2787 or visit



Calls to Artists for ‘Deck the Halls’ and ‘Off the Walls’ holiday shows

The Alliance for the Artists is calling for artists for two holiday shows, Deck the Halls and Small Works Off the Walls.

For Deck the Halls, artists are asked to create works of art and installation proposals that utilize holiday decorations in unique ways, re-use, repurpose, or re-imagine the use of traditional decorations and envision an immersive installation experience to celebrate the season. Artwork that utilizes alternative media is encouraged as well as installation and video based works. The curation of this exhibition will feature colored gallery lighting, decorative lights, and other typical decorations that “deck the halls” of the gallery in innovative ways!

Deck the Halls is a juried show and will be curated by multi-media artist Scott Snyder, who assembles his visual commentaries on contemporary consumer culture with a tongue-in-cheek commentary on the nature of the commercial art market, its volatile desires and trends. Cash awards of $250, $125 and $75 will be awarded for Best in Show, 2nd and 3rd place respectively. The deadline for submission is November 16.

For this year’s Small Works: Off the Walls Exhibition, member artists are asked to submit works valued under $200 in any medium or theme. Just as in past years, all sales are “cash and carry,” meaning purchasers will get to take the piece with them when they buy it, instead of waiting until the end of the exhibit. This year, Small Works: Off the Walls will be paired with Deck the Halls Juried Exhibition for twice the fun! Artworks will be displayed salon style from floor to ceiling in the theatre lobby. The artwork drop-off for this exhibit is 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. on Monday November 30.

Both shows will exhibit December 4, 2020 through January 4, 2021, with a virtual opening from 6:00-7:00 p.m. on Friday, December 4.





2020-2021 season now covered in Art Festival Calendar on ARTSWFL

Given COVID-19, no one really knows what to expect from Southwest Florida’s 2020-2021 art fair and festival season. At present, Florida has re-opened all venues, most at full capacity, and organizers are proceeding on the premise that they will be able to produce their outdoor art fairs and festivals as they have in the past. So subject to that caveat, here are the outdoor art fairs and festivals you will see throughout Southwest Florida between October, 2020 and April 30, 2021.



Naples Downtown Art Show application deadline is December 11

The Naples Art Association will begin accepting applications for inclusion in its Naples Downtown Art Show beginning on August 30. The 33rd Annual Downtown Naples Festival of the Arts is one of the last major art festivals of the winter season and a favorite festival for artists, art enthusiasts and collectors.

This festival was rated #24 by Sunshine Artist’s Magazine 2019.

If you would like to exhibit in this show, here’s what you will need to know:

  • Dates: Saturday and Sunday, March 20-21, 2021
  • Festival Hours: Saturday: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sunday: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Location: 5th Avenue South, Downtown Naples
  • Accept 250 artists max
  • Application fee: $35
  • Booth fee: $450 for 10×10
  • Cancellation refund policy: February 12, 2021 full refund for artist withdrawal (subject to $75 in deposit forfeiture and $25 processing fee)
  • Set up specifics: 4 a.m., early morning set up only;
  • On street set up in quads: No electrical
  • Application deadline: December  11, 2020
  • Jury Process begins: December 18, 2020
  • Status Notification: December 29, 2020
  • Booth Fee Due: January 20, 2021
  • Artist Info Emailed: March 2, 2021
  • Wait List Acceptance: January 20, 2021

Last year’s show was cancelled and launched virtually due to COVID-19. Naples Art’s website has yet been updated to provide a prospectus, application or key dates for the 2021 show.



6      PUBLIC  ART


Almonicid, Schlake to join forces on ‘Buck’s Backyard’ mural

Fort Myers’ Public Art Committee has approved a plan by the Fort Myers Mural Society to have finalists JP Almonicid and Erik Schlake join forces on the Buck’s Backyard mural project that is to be installed on the block wall separating historic McCollum Hall from the adjoining residential neighborhood to the north. The ambitious 2,440-square-foot project will cover seventeen concrete panels, each measuring eight feet high by eighteen feet wide. Although the artists’ mural styles are radically different, Fort Myers Mural Society Director Shari Shifrin assured the Committee that the size and scope of the project will benefit from a blend of the design concepts that Almonacid and Schlake presented to the Public Art Committee on September 15.

Go here for the rest of this report.


7     FILM


FMFF Season 11 starts with the resumption of TGIM on December 7

The Fort Myers Film Festival starts its 11th season with the resumption of T.G.I.M. on Monday, December 7. As in years past, T.G.I.M. gives area cineastes a look at how the Fort Myers Film Festival views submissions and a voice in the selection process.

“This is one of the highlights of our season,” says Melissa Tschari DeHaven, producer and co-host of T.G.I.M. and the Fort Myers Film Festival, who is excited for a full season of film. “It’s so much fun! Everyone loves coming out on Monday nights. There’s always something happening that you wouldn’t expect on a weeknight.”

Go here for the rest of this advance.

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