During the summer of 2017, Kim Cressell, co-owner of The Reserve (the wine/coffee/tea/book shop on North Tamiami Trail), hired a talented barista named Sky Stahlmann who could sing and play various instruments.

Stahlmann started off as a barista, but eventually became the host of “Open Mic” night, since she had a great connection with the local music community. She has since gone on to study at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. 

“Open Mic” night is still going on strong after Stahlmann left to pursue her music career, and now The Reserve hosts the event every Friday night from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. The local talent varies from acoustics, vocalists, guitar and drums to spoken word, poetry, dramatic performances and novel readings.

Cressell says the acts are mostly music oriented, but The Reserve is open to all different expressions of creativity within reason.

Open Mic night hosts are expected to perform in between the other local performers and are frequently rotated. Vanessa Franciscus, an acoustic guitarist and vocalist, is hosting the event this Friday, July 27, starting at 7:30 p.m. Sign-up to perform usually starts around 7 p.m. and the order is based on when guests sign up.

“Every Friday Open Mic night is different, and that’s what makes it so refreshing,” says Cressell. “It’s amazing to see the level of local talent from people that performed on Broadway to folks playing cabaret piano. It’s such a wide, rich, exciting experience and we are very proud of that.”

The Reserve is located at 1322 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Call (941) 702-5859 or click here for more information.

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