Culture worthy of your calendar

Professor's students are creating a Greek tragedy in an improvisational setting

  • By
  • | 12:31 p.m. April 13, 2011
  • Winter Park - Maitland Observer
  • Neighborhood
  • Share

It’s ‘All Greek’ at Rollins College

Rollins College professor David Charles has found a new way to teach while also coming up with a unique form of entertainment. His students are creating a Greek tragedy in an improvisational setting. Charles, a professor of theater, is an expert in improvisation and has created a two-hour performance honoring the traditions and period style of the Greek tragedy, while adding the fun of improvisation to the performance. The show, “It’s All Greek to Me: An Aristophane-Slapping Comedy of Tragic Proportions,” debuts at the Annie Russell Theatre on Friday, April 15.

With an in-depth knowledge of Greek history, the students are learning how the Greek tragedies were performed and have read all the plays by Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. “We’re playing around the plays, but we’re not re-creating them,” Charles said. With each player performing multiple roles — from gods to townspeople — the show is totally improvised. Audience involvement is brought into the play each evening as a character named Vanna Aspros spins the Wheel of Fortuna to choose which new characters will be brought into the play. The Annie Russell Theatre is on the campus of Rollins College in Winter Park. Call 407-646-2145 or visit

Food fest fun

Weekend “food events” are fun, and part of the challenge is finding out what is unique or different about each one. The Oviedo-Winter Springs Regional Chamber of Commerce’s 17th Annual Taste of Oviedo, set for Saturday, April 16, is filled with food, arts and entertainment, and it’s free to the public. This annual street festival, celebrating the city’s traditions, will also feature crafts exhibitors and a car show. The uniqueness kicks off at 9 a.m. with the Citrus and Celery Cook-Off, celebrating the historical importance of the citrus and celery industry in Oviedo. (At the cook-off, all dishes must contain citrus and celery as an ingredient.) The event will take place on Oviedo Boulevard (connecting State Road 419 with Mitchell Hammock Road). Call 407-278-4871 or visit

Candace Neal at the Plaza

After a childhood singing along to mom’s Billy Joel cassettes and dad’s Beatles CDs, it’s no surprise that Candace Neal’s debut album, “Music From A Can,” is a fresh take on classic, piano-driven rock. The completely original album covers everything from schoolgirl crushes to ballads of love unrequited. Now we get to hear this very special entertainer/songwriter present her album to us live as The Plaza Theater presents its first singer/songwriter showcase on Tuesday, April 19, at 8 p.m.

Joining Candace are songwriters Bill Stambaugh, Jon from Rug, Bob Green, John Martino, Cassandra Wilcox and headliner Matt Butcher. And the evening is @@free!@@ Most impressively, this beautiful young performer built her record with little funds, thus inspiring other young artists with the knowledge that it doesn’t take millions of dollars to write a simple melody to touch the heart. The Plaza Theatre is at 425 N. Bumby Ave. just south of Colonial. Visit or call 407-228-1220.

Paul McCartney tribute

Fans of the Beatles and fans of symphonic music get to “come together” for a pair of concerts by the Orlando Philharmonic as it presents “Paul McCartney: A Symphonic Tribute” on April 22 and 23 at the Bob Carr. Pops conductor Michael Krajewski will lead the Philharmonic in this program that combines McCartney favorites including “Eleanor Rigby,” “Blackbird,” “Lady Madonna,” and other beloved pop hits with the power of symphonic orchestrations. The second half of the program features Tony Kishman and the Live and Let Die band. For six years, Kishman starred on Broadway in “Beatlemania” and is known for his uncanny resemblance — both visually and vocally — to McCartney. He will sing “Let It Be,” “Uncle Albert,” “Silly Love Songs,” and all your favorite McCartney hits as he joins the Philharmonic to bring his award-winning tribute to the Beatles to Orlando. Call 407-770-0071 or visit


Latest News