Things to Do

What to Do in Sarasota: Feb. 11-17

It's opera season at last, Selby Gardens goes Pop!, WBTT lights up the night, and much more.

By Kay Kipling February 11, 2021

Christopher Bozeka, Alexander Charles Boyd and Hanna Brammer in the Sarasota Opera's The Happy Deception.

Editor’s note: In-person events are subject to change. Please check before venturing out.

Sarasota Opera: The Happy Deception

Selected dates Feb. 12-25

At long last, the opera opens its winter season, adjusted for Covid-19 concerns, with this Rossini one-act about a duchess who disappears, washes up onshore in a mining town, and is taken in by a kind miner. Sung in Italian, with Hanna Brammer, Chris Bozeka, Joseph Buetel, Alexander Boyd and Joshua Devane in the cast. For tickets, head to

Selby Gardens: Roy Lichtenstein: Monet’s Garden Goes Pop!

Feb. 13-June 27

The latest in Selby’s popular shows linking paintings, prints and more with living displays of horticultural art takes place starting this week, and it promises to be eye-catching, with Lichtenstein’s Pop sensibilities translating Monet’s Giverny gardens using a fun, unique approach. All kinds of special lectures, performances and programs are set, too. Find out more at

Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe: Light Up the Night!

Starting Feb. 12

WBTT began this open-air concert series back in October before shutting down due to Covid-19, but it’s back now, featuring cabaret-style performances with a live band and familiar artists singing soul hits of the 1970s. Tickets will be sold in one-week increments to accommodate exchanges in case of weather concerns; visit for yours.

The Ringling: Frans Hals and Larry Rivers

Feb. 14-May 16

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art opens two new exhibits, one focused on its Hals portrait of Pieter Jacobsz Olycan, displayed side by side with another, earlier image of Olycan. The other show is Larry Rivers: Boston Massacre, featuring 13 mixed-media prints by the pop art pioneer depicting his own version of that famous 1770 massacre. Check it out at

Sarasota Orchestra: Valentine’s Day Pops

Feb. 11-14

Get in a romantic mood with these intimate concerts at Holley Hall, featuring string musicians playing tunes by the likes of Cole Porter, Duke Ellington and Puccini. Go to for tickets; if you can’t make it in person, the concerts will also be available via streaming Feb. 18-23.

Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall: Jim Brickman/Dave Koz

Feb. 12-14; Feb. 13

Two virtual concerts to spice up your Valentine’s Day weekend. The first offers Jim Brickman in “Share the Love LIVE!” with tunes like “Angel Eyes” and “Destiny”; the second presents saxophonist Koz with vocalist Brian McKnight and special guest Shelea. Tickets to both events can be purchased at

Manatee Performing Arts Center: Love in Revue!

Feb. 12-14

There’s more love in the air with these concerts rendering favorite songs from Hollywood and Broadway, either indoors at Stone Hall, outdoors, or via streaming access. However you enjoy it, it’s a chance to hear six frequent MPAC actors deliver the romance.

Longboat Key Education Center: Romance on the Riviera

Feb. 12

The LBK center celebrates its 35th anniversary of presenting lectures, festivals, concerts and more with this offering featuring soprano Joy Leitner and tenor Robert Lischetti performing music by Puccini, Debussy, Verdi and more. You can partake in person or via Zoom; register online at or call (941) 383-8811.

EnsemblenewSRQ: Enter the Vortex

Feb. 15

Works by two French master composers, Phillippe Hurel and Gerard Grisey, highlight this livestream concert at 8 p.m., which also features works inspired by their enigmatic, “spectral” music. Sign up at

Venice Sweetheart Stroll

Feb. 11

Historic downtown Venice is the setting for Valentine-themed merchandise, food and drink specials, live music and classic cars from the Antique Automobile Club of America Venice Region, with more than 25 stores extending shopping hours. Baskets of roses for sale, too. From 5 to 7 p.m.; check it out at

Hermitage Artist Retreat/Urbanite Theatre: Sam & Lizzie

Feb. 13

Urbanite and the Hermitage collaborate on staged readings of this new work by playwright Emily Kaczmarek, at 5 and 7:30 p.m. on the Hermitage’s beach. It’s about the longtime relationship between two women who first bond as classmates on 9/11. Check to see if tickets remain at or

Artist Series Concerts of Sarasota: Women of Note

Feb. 18

Technically, this outdoor concert at Selby Gardens isn’t for another week, but since social distancing limits seating, you may want to check it out sooner rather than later. It starts at 5:30 p.m. and features soprano Jenny Kim-Godfrey, mezzo-soprano Robyn Rocklein, pianist Joseph Holt, and narrator Marcy Miller delivering works by some often-overlooked female composers, like Fanny Mendelssohn and Clara Schumann. Learn more at

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