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Winter Park / Maitland Observer Thursday, Mar. 4, 2010 7 years ago

Culture worthy of your calendar

Tuneful musicals and an important art collection
by: Josh Garrick Columnist

Mennello Museum opens 'Auspicious Vision'

The small, but mighty Mennello Museum of American Art will hold an opening reception from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, March 5 for one of the season's most important art exhibits. Called "Auspicious Vision: Edward Wales Root and American Modernism," the exhibit is drawn from the collection of Edward Wales Root, who acquired more than 227 paintings and works on paper from artists who created from 1897 to 1955. This amazing collection — including works by Edward Hopper, Stuart Davis, and Jackson Pollock — has already been exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and provides a first-hand look at how radically fine art metamorphosed in response to the changes that took place in society over those historic decades. The exhibit is organized by the Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute Museum of Art in Utica, New York, with funding for the local presentation provided by the Arts and Cultural Affairs Office of Orange County, Darden Foundation, and the Friends of the Mennello Museum. This not-to-be-missed exhibit will remain on view through May 23. The Museum is located at 900 E. Princeton St. near Loch Haven Park. Call 407-246-4278 or visit

A Gershwin tune at the Winter Park Playhouse

That little gem of a musical theatre — the Winter Park Playhouse — will do what it does best with some of the best music ever written as it presents "I Got Rhythm!" a musical tribute to the oh-so-popular George and Ira Gershwin.

There truly is nothing like a Gershwin tune, and this show will include "Embraceable You," "Our Love is Here to Stay," "Someone to Watch over You," and even a 'jazzy version' of "Summertime" as performed by local favorites — Todd Mummert, Todd Allen Long, Laura Hodos, Heather Alexander and Roy Alan.

The performers combine their talents in tribute to one of the best-loved songwriting teams of all time. "I Got Rhythm!" runs March 5 through March 14 with performances Friday and Saturday evenings at 7:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. matinees on Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. For tickets call 407-645-0145 or visit The recently expanded playhouse (now seating 124) is at 711-C Orange Ave., Winter Park.

The "Chasing Your Dreams" musical comes to Orlando

Winner of four 2008 Tony Awards, including Best Musical and the 2008 Grammy Award for Best Musical Show Album, the award-winning "In the Heights" opens on March 9 at the Bob Carr and plays through March 14. This is the musical that won Broadway's highest honors by first "winning its heart" — a musical that builds on the best traditions of theater while forging new territory.

"In the Heights" tells the story of a vibrant community in Manhattan's Washington Heights where the coffee from the corner bodega is light and sweet, the windows are always open, and the breeze carries the rhythm of three generations of music. It's a changing community, full of hopes, dreams and pressures, where family plays a big part in deciding which traditions you take with you, and which ones you leave behind. With a book by Pulitzer Prize finalist and Tony Award nominee Quiara Alegría Hudes, "In the Heights" is directed by Tony Award nominee Thomas Kail. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling 1-800-982-2787.

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