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Longboat Key Cultural Calendar Highlights For 2018

Longboat Key Cultural Calendar Highlights For 2018

They don’t call it the Cultural Coast for nothing. The Sarasota and Longboat Key area come alive in spring, with a variety of performances, shows and exhibits planned for 2018. A sneak peak at what’s on offer reveals an exciting and dynamic start to the new year, with enough unique cultural experiences to suit everyone in your group.

The Ringling Museum of Art

The prestigious museum presents “250 Years of the Circus in Print,” a display of historic posters straight from the Big Top running through May. Ringling does a great job of honoring the area’s circus roots (and its namesake) year round through its Circus Museum. From February to May, ten photographs from Hank Willis Thomas’s “Unbranded: A Century of White Women, 1915-2015” will be exhibited, while the museum showcases “Toni Dove: Embodied Machines” through May, part performance-piece, interactive story and immersive reality experience.

Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall

The unmistakable “purple cow” performance hall kicks off its 2018 season with a bang, featuring “A Night With Janis Joplin” in January. The Sarasota Concert Association’s Great Performers Series runs January through April and attracts some of the world’s foremost musicians on stage. Other standout performances include Tony Bennett, The Beach Boys, Barry Manilow, Gordon Lightfoot and Diana Krall, as well as round tables and talks in conjunction with The Ringling College of Art and Design.

Sarasota Orchestra

In February, the orchestra welcomes esteemed violinist Midori, who will play in tribute to Leonard Bernstein. What follows is a jam-packed season of some of the orchestra’s most beloved programs, including its Dinner Series and Best of Broadway, along with chamber music performances and Pops concerts.

Asolo Repertory Theatre 

The Asolo debuts “Shakespeare in Love” in January and runs it through March, the perfect offering for Valentine’s Day. Asolo’s programming runs the gamut, with comedy “Morning After Grace” running concurrent to “Shakespeare,” and upbeat “Ragtime” swinging into the theatre in May.

The Sarasota Ballet

The Sarasota Ballet’s Principal Film Series comes to an end in March with “Tanaquil Le Clercq, Afternoon of a Faun,” a fitting end to an excellent series that focuses on ballet’s best and brightest talents. In February, Ballet Hispanico comes to the stage, New York City’s premiere Latin dance troupe. “Dreams of Nature” officially opens the 2018 season, and as one of the most lauded versions of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in the dance world, it’s the perfect way to welcome summer. The ballet’s Annual Gala in April winds up the season.

The Circus Arts Conservatory

Locals wait all year to catch “Ovation” at the Ulla Searing Big Top, which brings together some of the finest circus artists from across the globe.¬† In March, the Conservatory partners with Key Chorale to stage Cirque Des Voix, which celebrates the haunting music of composer Danny Elfman. More than 100 singers are accompanied by a full orchestra and live circus acts in this unforgettable event. Also in March, the Conservatory’s Sailor Circus runs its annual spring show. Circus students perform every trick you can think of, from high wire to ladders to trapeze to acrobatic skating.