American novelist Theodore Dreiser once said that “art is the stored honey of the human soul.” That certainly is the case in Lake and Sumter counties where a comprehensive arts season is about to unfold. Grab your personal calendars and save the dates for the many arts and cultural events we’ve listed in Lake & Sumter Style’s fourth annual Fall Arts Preview.

long with this year’s event listings, we’ve also featured three performing artists who have garnered loyal followings throughout the tri-county area. Saxophonist Paul Luciano and fiddler Jonathan Hodge have two very different styles, but both agree that music is a universal language that has given them lifelong joy. And as part of Clermont’s Moonlight Players, playwright Thomas Kline’s avocation is taking off in ways he never expected. 

For the first time ever, artists from three Lake communities are collaborating to unveil “Arts in the Air,” which kicks off on Sept. 1 and runs through Oct. 31. Find out how this unique venture began and how the idea will someday encompass all of Lake County’s municipalities.

Local visual and performing artists such as these have made Lake County one of Florida’s top cultural destinations. Turn the page and don’t miss one of the most exciting arts seasons ever.



Bay Street Theatre
109 North Bay Street, Eustis
(352) 357-7777

Now in their 34th year, the Bay Street Players continue to celebrate the theater with an enchanting season of comedy and music productions. This year, the group will present five mainstage productions. From musicals and comedies to romance, there’s something for everyone. This is the 33rd year for the Young People’s Theatre.

2008-2009 Schedule:

Behind the Scenes:
Driving Miss Daisy
(Oct. 4-5, 2008)

Embark on a behind-the-scenes journey with Lake Eustis Institute’s Artistic Director David Clevinger as he shows guests how a small theater works and gives a behind-the-stage tour. Dinner will be served at Café Gianni, and attendees will see a showing of Driving Miss Daisy. 5-10pm. (352) 357-3995.

Driving Miss Daisy
(Sept. 26-Oct. 19, 2008)

Best known for its Academy Award-winning film adaptation, this Pulitzer Prize-winning play is a delight. Driving Miss Daisy is a warm-hearted, humorous story that follows the unexpected relationship between an aging, strong-willed white Southern lady and a proud, soft-spoken black man.

Nuncrackers: The Nunsense Christmas Musical
(Nov. 21-Dec. 14, 2008)

The fourth of Dan Goggin’s wildly popular Nunsense musical series, Nuncrackers brings all your favorite nuns, including Father Virgil, back onstage along with five of Mount Saint Helen’s most talented students. A production overflowing with cheerful holiday tunes that is sure to make the season merry and bright!

The Full Monty
(Feb. 6-March 1, 2009)

Seeing how much their wives enjoy watching male strippers during their “Girls’ Night Out,” unemployed steelworkers in Buffalo, N.Y., come up with a bold way to make some quick cash. In the process they discover renewed self-esteem, the importance of friendship, and the ability to have fun.

A Man For All Seasons
(April 10-May 3, 2009)

The gripping tale of Sir Thomas More: one man’s stand against the tempestuous monarch Henry VIII. Intrigue, diplomacy, and tests of faith abound in this award-winning masterpiece showcasing one of Central Florida’s premier actors.

(July 10-Aug. 2, 2009)

The high-spirited rivalry between the local farmers and cowboys provides the colorful background for this classic Rodgers & Hammerstein love story. Although the path to true love is as bumpy as a surrey ride down a country road, this is one show you just “can’t say no” to!

2008-2009 Schedule:

The Music Man, Jr.
(May 15-17, 2009)

The Music Man is an American musical classic following fast-talking traveling salesman Harold Hill and his visit to River City, Iowa, where he meets and falls in love with the willful spinster librarian, Marian Paroo. With his word-a-second style, “Professor” Harold Hill convinces the town to adopt his revolutionary music program, “The Think System,” or face the moral decline of the youngsters of River City.

(Summer, 2009)

Set in a Western Indian territory just after the turn of the century, the high-spirited rivalry between the local farmers and cowboys provides the colorful background against which Curly, a handsome cowboy, and Laurey, a winsome farm girl, play out their love story.

Helen Stairs Theatre
203 S. Magnolia Avenue, Sanford
(407) 321-8111

Each year, the Helen Stairs Theatre brings a variety of vocal, theater, and instrumental productions to the residents of Central Florida.

2008-2009 Schedule:

The Legends of Doo Wop
(Sept. 6, 2008)

This Doo Wop show will bring back some of rock ‘n’ roll’s top 100 hits.

Annie Get Your Gun
(Sept. 12-21, 2008)

Annie Oakley is the best shot around and ends up joining Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. She falls head over heals with shooting ace Frank Butler, but ends up pitted against him in a final shootout.  The rousing, sure-fire finale hits the mark every time in a testament to the power of female ingenuity.

Stella Parton
(Sept. 27, 2008)

With a repertoire that ranges from country to blues and beyond, Stella takes her road show across the United States and into Europe and Australia where her popularity continues to grow. An award-winning singer, songwriter, actress, and author, her career has brought her 27 chart singles, including a Billboard Top 10 hit, 19 albums, and worldwide honors.

Fab Follies “Taylor Made Dreams”
(Oct. 3-5, 2008)

Elizabeth A. Taylor Productions presents this 10th anniversary show that captures the essence of vitality and showmanship. Featuring approximately 35 “young at heart” men and women, age 55-plus, the Fab Follies are dancing, high-kicking, singing, smiling, and looking forward to entertaining an audience.

Honk Jr.
(Oct. 10-19, 2008)

A contemporary retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic story The Ugly Duckling that kids everywhere will enjoy.

Bennie and the Jets
(Nov. 1, 2008)

Bennie and the Jets, the premier Elton John tribute band, is led by Greg Ransom whose vocals are uncannily like Elton John’s. Greg’s piano playing is also right on the money!

(Nov. 7-16, 2008)

This show is filled with typical Nunsense humor, some of your favorite carols, and a “Secret Santa” audience participation.

3 Swingin’ Tenors
(Nov. 22, 2008)

An evening filled with great musical memories, featuring the swingin’ harmonies of three national recording artists. Featured tributes include The Big Apple, the Mills Brothers, Mel Torme, and the tight harmonies of the great male groups of the ‘50s and ‘60s.

(Dec. 6-7, 2008)

Animal allegories collide in this heartfelt African tale about a mother wildebeest who must take the journey of a lifetime to discover the legacy that lives within her.

Neil Diamond Tribute
(Dec. 20, 2008)

Hear all of Neil Diamond’s hit songs performed by Jack Berrios, who has appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

Toxic Audio
(Dec. 26-27, 2008)

Toxic Audio uses no instruments. Their humor, coupled with their pitch-perfect voices and beat box sounds, is a timeless classic and an unbelievable experience.

The Fabulous Hubcaps
(Jan. 25, 2009)

One of the nation’s most sought-after oldies show groups, The Hubcaps continue to captivate audiences with their high-energy tributes to Little Richard, Elvis, The Platters, Buddy Holly, Fats Domino, Ray Charles, and more!

Colours of Courage
(Jan. 31, 2009)

The Center for Contemporary Dance, in partnership with Wayne Densch Performing Arts Center, presents this moving celebration of black history, brought to life with an artful blend of contemporary dance, cultural music, and historic narratives. This performance is followed by an open-forum discussion among audiences, performers, and scholars about the impact of black history on modern culture.

Yesterday… Beatles Tribute
(Feb. 7, 2009)

Take a musical journey to a bygone era of peace, love, and innocence with the number one Beatles tribute act in the world as they perform music from The Beatles’ early years through the Sgt. Pepper’s era.

Hello, Dolly!
(Feb. 13-22, 2009)

An irresistible story about the joy of living. Hello, Dolly!  glitters with happy songs, shines with loving scenes, and is alive with the personality of one of the most fabulous characters on the musical stage!

The Vogues
 (Feb. 28, 2009)

The Vogues’ outstanding talent, stylish delivery, and tremendous audience rapport have made them one of the most in-demand groups in the world today! Highlighting an already illustrious career by being inducted into the Vocal Hall of Fame in 2001, The Vogues’ sound is incredible!

Joey Dee’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Revue
(March 7, 2009)

Joey is as exciting as ever as he comes together with the flawless vocal harmonies of David Brigati and Bobby Valli, the younger brother of Frankie Valli.

 (March 13-22, 2009)

The town has been cursed with chronic stupidity for 200 years and Leon’s job is to break the curse. No one tells him that if he stays in the town over 24 hours and fails to break the curse, he becomes stupid, too. The power of love keeps him around. 

Charo In Concert (Opening Act: Matt Stanley)
(March 28, 2009)

Charo is a household name, instantly recognizable for her witty humor, loveable accent, and mastery of the flamenco guitar, along with her trademark statement, “cuchi cuchi.” She has appeared in countless hit television shows including more than 45 appearances on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.

Damn Yankees
 (April 24-May 3, 2009)

Middle-aged baseball fanatic Joe Boyd trades his soul to the devil for a chance to lead his favorite team to victory in the pennant race against the New York Yankees, only to realize the true worth of life (and wife) he’s left behind.

Seussical the Musical Jr.
 (June 19-28, 2009)

See all of your favorite Dr. Seuss characters, including Horton the Elephant, Gertrude McFuzz, Lazy Mayzie, and all of the Whos of Whoville! Musical performances will range from Latin and pop to swing, Gospel, R&B, and funk!

Being a dad is what Clermont’s Thomas Kline says he does best, and that’s what he believes has led to his success as a part-time playwright.

For years he coached his son Erik’s Little League teams and the two attended sports events together. He wanted to find a way to spend time with his then-teenage daughter, Emmy, who made it clear that sports were not her thing.

“We were walking in downtown Clermont one afternoon in 2002, and we saw a sign asking for volunteers for the Moonlight Players,” Thomas remembers. “I asked her if we should get involved and she said ‘yes.’”

Their first experience with the Moonlight Players Warehouse Theatre was in A Tuna Christmas. Thomas handled the lighting and Emmy was the co-stage director. Thomas’s on-stage roles came later as the wizard in The Wizard of Oz and in the play Harvey.

The theater group also gave Thomas a chance to do something he always wanted to do: write.

“When I was in my 20s, I wanted to write but I couldn’t type,” the now 52-year-old says. “I went through a lot of Wite-Out and put aside a story that I was working on.”

Thomas’ story eventually became All Stars, an autobiographical play that the Moonlight Players first previewed in 2005.

“I’ve always heard ‘write what you know,’” Thomas says. “I loved playing baseball as a kid and being on the All-Star team was my dream.”

He was looking at scripts that the Moonlight Players were considering when he decided to finish his story.

“The format of scripts is fairly simple,” he says, “and now I have a computer so I don’t need Wite-Out.”

Thomas took a week off from his job as a construction inspector and wrote every day. He took the play to the Moonlight Theatre’s board, and they reluctantly gave him a shot for a one-weekend run. The show did well, and Thomas was invited to stage it for a full run in 2007.

This past summer, his second play, 9 Months, was a hit, and his third play, The Lighter Side of Suicide, has been scheduled to run at the Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival next May.

“I figured if I could write a second play, I could really write and it wasn’t just a fluke,” Thomas says with a laugh. “I still consider it a gift, however.”

He’s not ready to give up his day job, but he’d like to someday supplement his retirement income by scriptwriting.

Although his children are now grown, he says they are what brought him to this successful avocation.

“My kids are my inspirations for my shows,” he explains.

www.moonlightplayers.com                  www.orlandofringe.org

Icehouse Theatre
1100 North Unser St., Mount Dora
(352) 383-4616

So named because the original location was an abandoned ice house in Mount Dora, the Icehouse Theatre opened to a full house in February 1949 with its production of Return Engagement. More than six decades later and with the addition of The Box Theatre, The Icehouse Theatre and the Mount Dora Theatre Company continue to provide quality productions year after year.

2008-2009 Schedule:

Crimes of the Heart
 (Sept. 12-Oct. 5, 2008)

In Hazlehurst, Miss., the Magrath sisters are having a bad day. Lenny is 30 and facing diminishing marital prospects; Meg is back in town after a failed singing career; and Babe is out on bail after having shot her husband in the stomach. What else could possibly go wrong?

A Wonderful Life
(Nov. 14-Dec. 7, 2008)

Book and Lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, Music by Joe Raposo. A vibrant new musical adaptation of Frank Capra’s film classic It’s a Wonderful Life.  The story of George Bailey’s wonderful life in Bedford Falls is a timeless fable of dreams and the power of love.

The Underpants
(Jan. 23-Feb. 15, 2009)

Steve Martin’s comic genius shines in this riotous adaptation of Carl Sternheim’s classic 1910 German comedy. On a beautiful day, a lovely young woman’s underpants fall down during the procession of the King, and suddenly, newfound fame is hers.

The Honkey Tonk Angels
(March 20-April 12, 2009)

“Stand By Your Man,” “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” “9 to 5,” “I Will Always Love You,” “Harper Valley PTA,” and many more! Country classic tunes combine with a hilarious story about three good ol’ gals who meet on a Greyhound bus while following their dreams to Nashville.

On Golden Pond
(May 15-June 7, 2009)

Touching, funny, and warmly perceptive, this is the love story of Ethel and Norman Thayer, a spirited and lovable elderly couple who are returning to their summer home on Golden Pond for the 48th year.

Melon Patch Playhouse
311 North 13th Street, Leesburg
(352) 787-3013

As a regional theater company, The Melon Patch Players puts on numerous shows each year including lavish musicals, laugh-out-loud comedies, and serious dramas.

2008-2009 Schedule:

The Man Who Came To Dinner
(Sept. 12-28, 2008)

The Man Who Came To Dinner, also a 1942 hit film, tells the story of Sheridan Whiteside, who while having dinner at the home of the Stanleys, slips on their doorstep and breaks his hip. A tumultuous six weeks of confinement follows.

(Dec. 5-21, 2008)

In 1970, renowned writer/composer/lyricist Leslie Bricusse adapted the classic Dickens’ tale A Christmas Carol into the hit screen musical Scrooge. .

(Jan. 23-Feb. 8, 2009)

Based on the classic Dickens’ novel, Oliver! engages audiences with its pathos and drama, while delighting with its outstanding musical numbers including “Food Glorious Food,” “I’d Do Anything,” and “As Long As He Needs Me.”

Meet Me In St. Louis
(May 15-31, 2009)

Join the Smith family at the 1904 World’s Fair and see how their love and respect for each other is tempered with the genuine humor that can only be generated by such a family.

The Melon Patch Player’s children’s theater.

2008-2009 Schedule:

The Velveteen Rabbit
Performed by children in grades K-5 (Nov. 7-8)

The Nutcracker
Performed by children in grades 6-12 (Nov. 14-16)


Warehouse Theatre
732 B W. Montrose St., Clermont
(352) 319-1116

The Warehouse Theatre is home to Lake County’s The Moonlight Players. In 1994, the Players performed their first production, The Sound of Music, at the South Lake High School auditorium. More than 50 productions later, the group is still going strong.

2008-2009 Schedule:

(Sept. 26-Oct. 26, 2008)

In 1870s New England, carnival barker Billy Bigelow wins the heart of demure Julie Jordan. Down on their luck, the newly married couple discovers they are expecting their first child. Determined to provide for his family, Billy turns to crime. During a botched robbery attempt, the ill-fated lovers are parted by death. Now, 15 years later, Billy is sent down from above to atone for the mistakes of his life and help his only child as she struggles with her father’s legacy.

Babes In Toyland
(Nov. 21-Dec. 21, 2008)

Join Alan and Jane, Little Miss Muffet, Contrary Mary, and Tom-Tom the Piper’s Son as they successfully battle their evil uncle, Barnaby, for the future of Mother Goose Land. Included are popular songs such as “Toyland,” “I Can’t Do the Sum,” and “The March of the Wooden Soldiers.”

Little Shop of Horrors
(Jan. 8-Feb. 8, 2009)

A down-and-out, skid-row floral assistant becomes an overnight sensation when he discovers an exotic plant with a mysterious craving for fresh blood. Soon “Audrey II” grows into an ill-tempered, foul-mouthed, R&B-singing carnivore who offers him fame and fortune in exchange for feeding its growing appetite, finally revealing itself to be an alien creature poised for global domination!

Biloxi Blues
(March 13-April 12, 2009)

Eugene Morris Jerome, alter ego of the youthful Neil Simon, is a young Army recruit during WWII going through his basic training, learning about life, and developing his writer’s sensibility at boot camp in Biloxi, Miss. For the first time, Eugene confronts the degradation of anti-Semitism, and for the first time, he falls in love.

Li’l Abner
(May 8-June 7, 2009)

Based on the comic strip Li’l Abner by Al Capp, the show is, on the surface, a broad spoof of hillbillies but it is also a pointed satire taking on a number of topics from an incompetent government to standards of masculinity. The plot centers on the town of Dogpatch, declared the “most unnecessary town” in the U.S. and set to be turned into a nuclear testing site until they find the interesting side effects of the baby tonic that Abner has been fed all his life by his mother, Mammy Yokum.

The Mikado
(July 3-Aug. 2, 2009)

Nanki-Poo, in love with Yum-Yum, returns home to Titipu from exile to find herself betrothed to Koko, the town executioner, who has been condemned to death for flirting and must execute himself. This classic comic opera set in Japan is by Gilbert and Sullivan.

Ocala Civic Theatre
In the Appleton Cultural Center
4337 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala
(352) 236-2274

Ocala Civic Theatre produces more than 10 fully-staged productions each season, in addition to hosting touring companies. This volunteer-based organization is one of the largest community theaters in the state and serves more than 50,000 Marion, Citrus, and Lake County residents each season.

2008-2009 Schedule:

Hello, Dolly!
(Sept. 4-28, 2008)

Audiences are off on a whirlwind race around New York at the turn of the 20th century following the adventures of America’s most beloved matchmaker, one of the most fabulous characters on the musical stage… Dolly Gallagher Levi who, as well as pairing others, tries her best to get the match she wants—the famous half-millionaire Horace Vandergelder. An irresistible story, alive with personality and filled with classic musical numbers!

The Unexpected Guest
(Nov. 6-30, 2008)

On a foggy night in Wales, a stranger walks into a house to find a man murdered and his wife standing over him with a gun. Later, the police discover clues pointing to a man who died two years earlier, opening a Pandora’s box of love and hate, suspicion and intrigue. And, after the inevitable gathering in one room, Miss Christie has a few more surprises.

The Baker’s Wife
(Feb. 5-March 1, 2009)

The bickering residents of a small, rural town in France find peace and contentment in the heavenly bread of the newly-arrived baker and his attractive young wife. When she is lured away by the attentions of a handsome handyman, the devastated middle-aged baker loses his zest for life (and baking), throwing the community into chaos!

No Sex Please, We’re British
(March 19-April 12, 2009)

When a housewife innocently orders some Scandinavian glassware, what she receives is not what she expected. Her husband, a bank manager, is appalled, and must deal with the flood of photographs, books, films, and, eventually, girls which arrive at his door. The matter is complicated by his boss (who is also appalled), his mother (who would be appalled if she understood), a bank inspector, and a detective.

The Wizard of Oz
(May 14-June 7, 2009)

Dorothy Gale of Kansas dreams of what lies over the rainbow. One day, a twister hits her farm (accidentally killing the Wicked Witch of the East) and carries her away to Munchkinland. Join Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, and Toto as they head for the Emerald City hoping the Wizard will grant their wishes.

Special Presentations

Tuesdays With Morrie
(Oct. 9-19, 2008)

When a journalist finds himself losing his direction in life, he reconnects with a professor and mentor from his college days at Brandeis who is in the last months of his battle with Lou Gehrig’s disease. As they rekindle their friendship, the former student learns what really matters and what to value each day.

Bloody Murder
(Nov. 13-21, 2008)

A group of the usual British murder-mystery types is attending a weekend affair at the lavish estate of Lady Somerset when, suddenly, one of them dies of poisoning. Her Ladyship refuses to call the police, saying she can’t go through this again. What again? And why were all these people invited there in the first place? A comedic turn of events creates a fresh look at the classic “who done it?”

Moonlight and Magnolias
(Jan. 8-18, 2009)

For once, everyone in Hollywood agrees on one thing: Gone With The Wind is going to be a huge flop. Weeks behind in shooting and deep in debt, producer David O. Selznick hires director Victor Fleming and script writer Ben Hecht to rewrite the screenplay. In just five days, living on peanuts and bananas, the two produce one of the greatest films of all time.

Villages All-Stars Rep Company
Enterprise Theatre, Lake Miona Recreation Center
The Villages, (352) 753-8877

(Oct. 31-Nov. 2, 2008)

Bob Fosses’ hit musical arrives onstage at the Lake Miona Recreation Center this fall. Through song and dance, the new Village All-Stars Rep Company brings to life the greedy and murderous ways of Roxie Hart, Velma Kelly, Billy Flynn, and Matron Mama Morton. All proceeds from the production go toward Volunteers Performing Arts Alliance’s efforts to build a performing arts center in the tri-county area.


Lake-Sumter Community College Performing Arts Series
The 2008-2009 George O. Pringle Performing Arts Series offers an unparalleled array of theater, music, and live dance right here in Lake and Sumter counties. The performances take place at the Paul P. Williams Auditorium on the Lake-Sumter Community College campus. For additional information and reservations, call (352) 365-3506.

2008-2009 Schedule:

Brass Band of Central Florida
(Oct. 25-26, 2008)

Central Florida’s very own three-year, award-winning brass band will leave you on the edge of your seat with plenty of horns and lots of percussion!

The Four Freshmen
(Nov. 8-9, 2008)

Since their debut in the 1950s, The Four Freshmen have remained popular with hits such as “Day By Day” and their best-known song, “Graduation Day.” Celebrated for their trademark close-harmony vocals, the newest incarnation of The Four Freshmen proves the group is timeless.

Preservation Hall Jazz Band—Creole Christmas
(Dec. 6-7, 2008)

The sweet sound of Bourbon Street comes to Lake-Sumter Community College in this irresistible holiday concert. You will hear the distinctive “N’awlins” sound with carols like “Zat You Santa Claus?” and many other holiday tunes that all have the unique New Orleans flavor.

Comedy of Errors
(Jan. 17-18, 2009)

Comedy of Errors, performed by the Aquila Theatre Company, is one of Shakespeare’s most sparkling comedies. The inventive plot weaves an intricate and energetic story of two pairs of identical twins separated by a devastating shipwreck. As this comedy unfolds, all is not what it seems.

Five By Design presents Club Swing
(Feb. 14-15, 2009)

Back by popular demand! From the wild opener of Benny Goodman’s “Bugle Call Rag” to the show’s blockbuster finale featuring Louie Prima’s “Sing, Sing, Sing,” this show celebrates the swing era at its best! The repertoire embraces a rich harmonic treatment of Nat King Cole’s “Mona Lisa” and a Steve and Edye-styled arrangement of “Somethin’s Gotta Give.”

(Feb. 28-March 1, 2009)

The Duquesne University Tamburitzans is the longest-running American folk ensemble dedicated to the artistic performance and preservation of Eastern European music, song, and dance. Colorful and spellbinding, it is culture and tradition brought to life on stage by some of the world’s most talented artists. Wherever the Tamburitzans perform, the stage becomes a kaleidoscope of sight and sound. With over 400 costumes and 20-plus musical instruments, this show is a carousel of style and color from the first note to the final stomp!

Downtown Eustis

Lake County Folk Festival
(Oct. 11-12, 2008)
Ferran Park, Historic Downtown Eustis
(352) 357-8555

This 11th annual festival in downtown Eustis features traditional blues, old-time bluegrass, Celtic, gospel, and jazz, as well as folk art and crafts in Ferran Park and local cuisine. Free to the public. 10am-7pm on Saturday; 11am-5pm on Sunday. For more information, visit www.eustismainstreet.org.

Florida Lakes Symphony Orchestra

Throughout its fourth season, the Florida Lake Symphony Orchestra, under conductor Michael J. Garasi, will perform at 7:30pm at the St. Patrick Catholic Church of Mount Dora and Montverde Academy in Montverde. Call (352) 429-4650 for ticket information.

2008-2009 Season:

Good Ol’ Souls
(Mount Dora, Oct. 23, 2008; Montverde, Oct. 24, 2008)

The season gets off to a “scary” start with music including “Sorcerer’s Apprentice,” “Firebird,” and “Night on Bald Mountain.”

At Christmas Time
(Mount Dora, Dec. 18, 2008)

The Florida Lakes Symphony Orchestra presents a concert in Mount Dora featuring “Nutcracker Suite,” “Festival of Carols,” and “Hallelujah Chorus.”

Russian Romance
(Mount Dora, Jan. 15, 2009; Montverde, Jan. 16, 2009)

This concert includes Tchaikovsky favorites “Violin Concerto,” “Romeo and Juliet Overture,” and “Capriccio Italien.”

Rule Brittania
(Mount Dora, Feb. 19, 2009; Montverde, Feb. 20, 2009)

The orchestra performs music from The Proms, including “Spitfire,” “Jerusalem,” “Nimrod,” “Land of Hope and Glory,” plus piano concertos “Warsaw Concerto” and “Alamein Concerto.”

Gypsy Serenade
(Mount Dora, April 2, 2009; Montverde, April 3, 2009)

Listen to exotic and mysterious gypsy violin in Liszt, Dinicu, Brahms, Sarasate, Dvorak, Dragon, and Enesco.

Slavic Soul
(Mount Dora, April 30, 2009; Montverde, May 1, 2009)

Enjoy Dvorak’s “Cello Concerto,” “Carnival Overture,” plus Borodin’s “Polovetsian Dances” provides a spectacular conclusion to the season.

Orange Blossom Opry
13939 SE Hwy. 42, Weirsdale
(352) 821-1201

The Orange Blossom Opry is a family-oriented, smoke- and alcohol-free, country music showcase. The Opry cast presents a variety of musical styles, mostly traditional country and bluegrass, and its own special brand of humor.

2008-2009 Season:

Noel Haggard
(Sept. 13, 2008)

The youngest son of country music icon Merle Haggard, Noel Haggard brings his rich musical heritage to the Orange Blossom Opry for one night only.

Charlie McCoy
(Oct. 24, 2008)

Nashville studio musician and Music Row veteran, Charlie McCoy takes the Orange Blossom Opry stage for one performance only.

Alex Houston and Jimmy Smith
(Nov. 8, 2008)

Comedian and ventriloquist Alex Houston performs with “Elmer” while Elvis impersonator Jimmy Smith brings The King to life on stage during this entertaining lineup.

The Legends of Doo Wop
(Nov. 29, 2008)

Doo-wop singers Jimmy Gallagher of The Passions, Frank Mancuso of the Imaginations, Steve Horn of the 5 Sharks, and Tommy Mara of The Crests comprise this vocal group performing the big hits of the 1950s.

Lakeridge Winery
19239 US 27 North, Clermont
(800) 768-9463

With 77 acres of vineyards situated on 127 acres of rolling countryside, the Lakeridge Winery produces some of the most delicious tasting wines in Florida. Each year, the winery hosts a variety of community activities including music series and festivals.

2008-2009 Season:

Jazz at the Winery
(Sept. 20-21, 2008)

Live jazz, food, and wine. $2. Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 11am-5pm.

Vintage Venture
(Oct. 4-5, 2008)

Live ‘50s and ‘60s music, food, wine, and a vintage car show. $2. Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 11am-5pm.

18th Annual Holiday Open House
(Nov. 7-9, 2008)

Arts and crafts, food, wine, and live music. Free. Friday and Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 11am-5pm.

20th Annual South Lake Animal League Arts & Crafts Show
(Dec. 13-14, 2008)

Arts and crafts, food, wine, and live music. $2. Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 11am-5pm.

Savannah Center
1545 Buena Vista Blvd., The Villages
(352) 753-3229

The Savannah Center in The Villages provides an eclectic schedule of events. Concerts cover all the musical genres from rock to jazz to opera. Other events throughout the year include the Broadway series and special guest speakers.

When Jonathan Hodge appears on stage at one of Florida’s many folk festivals playing his fiddle, no one would guess that he was trained first as a classical violinist. Nor would anyone believe that the Eustis resident graduated from a French culinary school and was a Parisian chef before moving to Florida.

A true Renaissance man, 44-year-old Jonathan is a carpenter by day with FAS Millworks, and a mu-sician at all other times.

“Music has been a passion all my life,” says Jonathan, who began playing violin at age 6 in the world-renowned Suzuki Violin Program.

His dedication to music has been recognized with numerous awards, including winning first place in the contemporary division of the Florida State Fiddle Championship this past June. It was his fourth championship in five years.

“It’s important to compete because that keeps the interest in music going,” he says. “However, now that I have students who are entering, I won’t compete against them.”

Carrying on the tradition of folk music is important to Jonathan, who traces his interest in fiddle playing to his grandparents who were square dancers. He grew up in Seattle, where there was a strong Scandinavian influence on musicians and where a popular radio program, “The Fiddler Crab,” exposed him to music from all over the world.

When the program was having an open house, his father suggested going to the studio to see it live.

“I have a recording made at that open house of me playing ‘Red River Valley,’” Jonathan remembers. “I was 11 at the time and I was influenced by the great musicians who were there.”

Most notable among those musicians were Pacific Northwest bluegrass fiddlers Vivian and Phil Williams of Voyager Recordings and Publications.

“Vivian and her husband practically raised me musically,” Jonathan says. “It’s amazing all of the peo-ple I’ve learned from, and I hope I’m carrying on their traditions.”

By the time he went to college, however, Jonathan took a different route. He studied culinary arts at a Seattle community college and then left for Paris, where he graduated from the prestigious La Varenne Cooking School. He became a chef at the American Embassy and then did a stint at EuroDisney.

When the Disney Corporation sent him to Orlando, he was delighted to find open-mike sessions for musicians at the Eustis Street Grill. He was tired, though, of working nights and weekends——busy times for chefs.

“Buying my own house got me into carpentry,” he explains. “My wife, Sherri, told me that I should pursue it as a career.”

He met Sherrie five years ago at the old Capri Restaurant, which held Irish music jam sessions.

“Music brought us together,” Jonathan says. “That was a real message to me that she was the one.”

(Click on art below for web site link.)

Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra
Performances at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Center, Orlando
(407) 770-0071

The Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra is Central Florida’s resident orchestra, appearing in more than 100 performances each season. As a fully professional ensemble, the Orlando Philharmonic utilizes the talents of more than 80 professional musicians from around the globe. 

2008-2009 Season:

(Sept. 27, 2008)

Enjoy the sound of U.S. Army Herald trumpets, conducted by Christopher Wilkins. Performances will include the National Anthem, Verdi’s “Triumphal March” from Aida, Adams’ “Tromba lontana (two solo trumpets),” Tchaikovsky’s “Capriccio italien, op. 45,” and Shostakovich’s “Symphony No. 9, op. 70 in E-flat major.”

(Oct. 13, 2008)

A selection of Schubert works will be performed, including “Marche Militaire,” “Symphony No. 3 (1st movement),” “Symphony No. 5,” and “Rosamunde: Entr’acte III & Balletmusik II.” Also included will be Wolf’s “Italian Serenade,” among others.

Fly Me to the Moon, Michael Andrew & Swingerhead
(Oct. 18, 2008)

Enjoy an evening of swing with Michael Andrew. Music will feature “Moonglow,” “Moon River,” “Fly Me To The Moon,” and a tribute to Frank Sinatra.

Lincoln’s Year
(Nov. 1, 2008)

Performances will include Ungar’s “Ashokan Farewell,” Glass’ “Civil Wars,” Bacon’s “Ford’s Theatre; A Few Glimpses of Easter week, 1865,” Copeland’s “Lincoln Portrait,” and Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 5, op. 67, C minor.”

Home for the Holidays
(Nov. 29, 2008)

Celebrate the spirit of the season with this program of holiday classics conducted by Andrew Lane.

(Dec. 8, 2008)

A selection of Mendelssohn’s greatest works, including “Sinfonia No. 10, B minor,” “Double Concerto for Violin & Piano in D minor,” and “Symphony No. 3, op. 56, A minor (Scottish),” will be performed by Tamas Kocsis on violin. Joel Revzen will conduct.

Stay Tuned with Five By Design
(Jan. 24, 2009)

Five by Design, the genius behind the popular Radio Days concert, is back by popular demand! Drawing upon the songs of Rosemary Clooney, Bobby Darin, and Henry Mancini, Stay Tuned is Five By Design’s television variety show musical.

Russian Dynasty
(Feb. 2, 2009)

Tamas Kocsis on violin will perform a variety of Tchaikovsky’s works, including “Andante Cantabile,” “Elegie,” “Méditation for Solo Violin and Strings, op. 42, No. 1,” and “Serenade for Strings.” Also on the list to perform is Shostakovich’s “Sinfonia for String Orchestra from String Quartet No. 8, op. 110.”

The Artistry of Andre Watts
(Feb. 28, 2009)

Guest conductor Daniel Hege will conduct Andre Watts on piano. Performances will include Ravel’s “Le Tombeau de Couperin,” Sibelius’ “Symphony No. 5,” and Beethoven’s “Piano Concerto No. 4, op. 58, G major.”

Sweeney Todd with Davis Gaines & Mad Cow Theater
(March 6-7, 2009)

Meat pies, anyone? Broadway star Davis Gaines takes the starring role as the demon barber of Fleet Street as the Philharmonic once again collaborates with the Mad Cow Theater for this semi-staged musical production.

Classics Brahms
(March 21, 2009)

Selections will include “Tragic Overture” and “Violin Concerto,” among others. Christopher Wilkins will serve as conductor and Tamas Kocsis will perform on violin.

The Music of John Williams
(April 11, 2009)

Sit back and enjoy as the Orlando Philharmonic explores the music of John Williams, America’s most famous composer of music for film, having received 20 Grammys, five Oscars, and numerous other awards. The concert will feature selections from Saving Private Ryan, Harry Potter, Star Wars, and even a Williams’ orchestration of Fiddler On The Roof. Andrew Lane will conduct.

1900: Romanticism’s Long Shadow
(April 20, 2009)

Christopher Wilkins will conduct such selections as Fauré’s “Elégie” and “Pelléas at Mélisande, Suite.” Also included will be Debussy’s “Prélude á l’aprés-midi d’un faune” and Mahler’s “Des Knaben Wunderhorn” (selected songs from 1892-1898).

A Hero’s Life
(April 25, 2009)

Joyce Yang will perform on piano, conducted by Christopher Wilkins. Selections will include Mozart’s “Overture to Don Giovanni, K. 527” and “Piano Concerto No. 24, K. 491, C minor.” Strauss’ “Ein Heldenleben TrV 190, Op. 40 A Hero’s Life (A Heroic Life)” will also be performed.

Bach Festival Society
1000 Holt Avenue, Winter Park
(407) 646-2182

Now in their 74th year, the Bach Festival Society is one of Florida’s premier classical music organizations and one of the longest running Bach Festivals in the country. The Bach Festival Society brings the highest caliber of classical music to Central Florida. Performances are held in the intimate setting of the Tiedtke Concert Hall and the Knowles Memorial Chapel on the Rollins College campus.

2008-2009 Season:

Hélène Grimaud
(Oct. 12, 2008)

Internationally renowned French pianist Hélène Grimaud performs a challenging and exciting recital of Bach and Beethoven at 3pm at Tiedtke Concert Hall.

Haydn’s Mass in Time of War
(Oct. 25-26, 2008)

A performance of Haydn’s Mass in Time of War, Mendelssohn’s War March of the Priests, and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Paul Moravec’s Songs of Love and War at Knowles Memorial Chapel. Saturday at 7:30pm, Sunday at 3pm.

Mystical Arts of Tibet
(Nov. 7-8, 2008)

The famed multiphonic monks of Drepung Loseling monastery perform dramatic sacred music and dance from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition at Tiedtke Concert Hall. Friday at 8pm, Saturday at 11am.

A Classic Christmas
(Dec. 13-14, 2008)

Enjoy the holiday spirit with classic Christmas songs and Saint-Saëns’ Christmas Oratorio at Knowles Memorial Chapel. Saturday at 7:30pm, Sunday at 2pm.

Monica Yunus
(Jan. 23, 2009)

Soprano Monica Yunus delivers a rich, seductive vocal recital at Tiedtke Concert Hall at 7pm.

Carol Williams
(Feb. 15, 2009)

Carol Williams, the first female civic organist appointed anywhere in the U.S., performs as part of the 74th Annual Bach Festival at 3pm at Knowles Memorial Chapel.

Rossini’s Stabat Mater
(Feb. 21, 2009)

Enjoy Rossini’s enduring Stabat Mater, about the love of Mary for Jesus Christ, at the Knowles Memorial Chapel at 7:30pm. Part of the 74th Annual Bach Festival.

Sharon Isbin & Bach’s Easter Oratorio
(Feb. 22, 2009)

Preeminent classical guitarist Sharon Isbin is joined by the Bach Festival Orchestra to perform music by Baroque-era composers like Vivaldi. The Bach Festival Choir and Orchestra also performs J.S. Bach’s Easter Oratorio. 3pm at Knowles Memorial Chapel as part of the 74th Annual Bach Festival.

Brahms’ German Requiem
(Feb. 28-March 1, 2009)

Brahms, writing during a time of political unrest and personal tragedy, looked outside the traditional Roman requiem mass for his German Requiem, a work of hope to console the living. Saturday and Sunday at 3pm at Knowles Memorial Chapel as part of the 74th Annual Bach Festival.

Moscow String Quartet
(March 21-22, 2009)

The protégé quartet of the renowned Borodin Quartet, the Moscow String Quartet performs at 11am on Saturday and 3pm on Sunday at Tiedtke Concert Hall.

(April 17, 2009)

Known worldwide for her dazzling violin performances and her work as a U.N. Ambassador of Peace, Midori showcases her musical artistry at Tiedtke Concert Hall at 8pm.

Nielsen’s Hymnus Amoris
(April 18-19, 2009)

Nielsen’s Hymnus Amoris, or hymn of love, is the story of how love grows through a lifetime—a perfect piece to celebrate spring, the season of love. Performed at Knowles Memorial Chapel on Saturday at 7:30pm and Sunday at 3pm.

Carnival of the Animals
(April 25, 2009)

Appropriate for all ages, this fun symphonic ride takes audiences through Saint-Saëns’ Carnival of the Animals, a journey of animal sounds and descriptions played by orchestral instruments, and Toy Symphony, a short musical adventure. 11am at Tiedtke Concert Hall.

If it seemed like Paul Luciano disappeared from entertainment venues in The Villages and surrounding areas, he had. In 2006, he battled cancer and won; however, his long-time vocalist and wife of five days, Sharon Schrepple, lost her cancer battle in 2007.

After a tough couple of years, he’s making big band music again. Paul is a member of Leesburg’s LC Swing Band as well as the Eccentric Sax Quartet (ESQ) and the Kingdom of the Sun Concert Band. He’s also started a clarinet choir.

“Paul developed a large following, especially in The Villages,” says Frank Grace of Grace’s Books & Records in Leesburg. “The traveling big bands also called him when they needed a saxophonist to fill in.”

He’s played with Guy Lombardo’s touring band and the Don Glasser Orchestra when they came to Florida, and has even backed up Eddie Fisher and Henny Youngman.

Most fans, however, remember him for his Paul Luciano Big Band, which was formed over 20 years ago. The members still rehearse and may perform again in the future.

Music ran in Paul’s family. His father played saxophone and clarinet, and he taught Paul to play both instruments. A native of Erie, Penn., Paul was in his school’s marching band and remembers marching in the 1955 Tournament of Roses Parade. He worked his way through school substituting in big bands that played nearby.

In 1964 he moved to the Buffalo, N.Y., area where he worked at a newspaper printing plant and started an instrument repair business.

“I got tired of the North, the unions, the cold, and the snow,” he says. “An accident on the way to a Florida vacation prompted me to think about moving.”

He interviewed at the Ocala Star-Banner in the early ‘80s but took a job with a small printing com-pany instead. After six months, he decided to work for himself and opened Luciano’s Band Instrument Repair and Music Store in downtown Ocala.

“That business gave me a lot of freedom to travel when gigs came up,” he remembers.

In 2005 he sold the store and focused on performing at various venues and festivals in Central Florida.

His favorite music continues to be jazz and big band, although he believes it’s important to keep your mind open to all kinds of music.

“Even if you don’t like a certain sound,” he says, “it gives you ideas for your own thing.”

Although he says he doesn’t practice as much as he should and can’t stay up as late as he used to, Paul believes music will always be a part of his life.

“Being able to play and perform gives me something to look forward to,” he says. “I never want to give it up.”

Museums and Exhibits

Florida Carriage Museum & Resort
3000 Marion County Road, Weirsdale
(352) 750-5500

Educational in nature, the Florida Carriage Museum & Resort combines the presentation and enjoyment of carriages and their appointments with their history, restoration, preservation, and conservation.

Eustis Historical Museum & Preservation Society
536 North Bay Street, Eustis
(352) 483-0046

The day-to-day operation of this important museum is through the efforts of the Eustis Historical Museum & Preservation Society Inc. The museum features exhibits of local history including miniature models of past buildings and early fashions seen throughout Lake County. The museum also operates the Citrus Museum, Florida’s only independently owned citrus museum.

2008-2009 Season:

Honoring Our Astronaut
(Sept. 12, 2008).

Meet Eustis High School graduate (’62) and former NASA astronaut David Walker Day as part of the Eustis Historical Museum’s Eustis 125th Celebrations. The event begins at 6:30pm with a special buffet dinner. $15 per person. Proceeds benefit the Fireman Fund.

Eustis Yesteryear
(Oct. 4, 2008).

Step back in time to Eustis’ olden days. Events, crafts, and entertainment offered on the grounds of the Eustis Historical Museum. 9:30am-4pm.

Antique Appraisal Clinic
(Oct. 26, 2008)

Have your antique pieces appraised and support the Eustis Historical Museum through this fundraiser at the museum’s community center. 1-5pm.

A Real Indiana Jones
(Nov. 2-8, 2008).

Celebrate the life and times of Dr. Edgar Banks of Eustis, “the real Indiana Jones.” Activities and events, including a movie on the green, will take place at the Eustis Historical Museum.

Gesa Barto Art Show
(Nov. 1, 3-8, 10-15, 17-22, 24-29, 2008)

Art lectures and an inspiring exhibit take place all month long at the Clifford House. A reception for the exhibit will be held Nov. 15.

Christmas in Eustis
(Nov. 18-30, 2008)

Crafts and crafters galore! This annual fundrasier of the Eustis Historical Museum also features a silent auction of decorated trees.

Cookies with Santa
(Dec. 20, 2008)

Bring the kids and grandkids to the Clifford House to meet and have cookies with Santa Claus himself. 1-4pm.

Lake County Historical Museum
315 West Main Street, Tavares
First Floor of the Historic Courthouse
(352) 343-9600

The museum offers an exciting and informative view of the history of Lake County. Every month, new exhibits are on display. Contact the museum for current exhibit information.

Lake Eustis Museum of Art
200 B. East Orange Ave., Eustis
(352) 483-2900

The permanent collection of the Lake Eustis Museum houses paintings, pottery, and photographs by local artists. Exhibits rotate every eight weeks and include a variety of styles and media.

2008-2009 Season:

Chalet Comellas: Visual Vocabulary
(Through Sept. 21, 2008)

Artist Chalet Comellas’ highly patterned, poetic compositions will be on display. By exploring repetition and symbolic imagery in her artwork, Comellas strives to communicate emotionally with the viewer.

Cephas Wong: Influence and Inspiration
(Sept. 25-Nov. 9, 2008)

Singaporean artist Cephas Wong blends Eastern and Western painting techniques for his vivid renderings of Southeast Asian and Chinese landscapes.

Christopher Hauck: Identity Crisis
(Nov. 21, 2008-Jan. 11, 2009)

Artist Christopher Hauck explores the commoditization of identity, the branding of individuals, and the person as product in his artwork, which harkens back to the work of Andy Warhol. His use of bold red color with black and white bar-coded figures is eye-catching and thought-provoking.

Leesburg Center for the Arts
429 West Magnolia St., Leesburg
(352) 365-0232

The Leesburg Center for the Arts houses an art gallery, the Art Institute, and an interactive art museum for children. Each year, the center hosts the popular Leesburg Fine Art Festival in March and, as a part of its mission, supports Lake County schools by providing a venue to exhibit student work, scholarships for school supplies, and after-school arts programs in Leesburg elementary schools.

2008-2009 Season:

Art… One Stitch at a Time
(Sept. 11-Oct. 17, 2008)

A statewide exhibition of needle art from Sun Region members of the Embroiderers’ Guild of America.

Watercolors by Artist Lynn Ferris
(Jan. 8-Feb. 13, 2009)

A beautiful exhibit by nationally known watercolor artist Lynn Ferris.

Leesburg Fine Arts Festival
(March 7-8, 2009)

Now in its 32nd year, this popular arts festival will feature over 140 fine artists, live entertainment, kids’ activities, food, “Jazz on the Square,”  a student art exhibit, and a classic car show.

Student Art Exhibit and Leesburg Art Association Spring Show
(March 7-31, 2009)

Two gallery exhibits featuring the student art from Leesburg’s area schools and the Leesburg Art Association’s Spring Show.

Art in the Gardens
(May 9, 2009)

The 4th annual Art in the Gardens features some of the most beautiful private gardens and most talented plein air artists. Tour the gardens and watch the artists at work. The garden-inspired artwork will be on display through May 30.

Ridiculously Beautiful Art by PJ Commerford
(Sept. 10-Oct. 16, 2009)

Internationally collected by celebrities and art enthusiasts alike, the work of PJ Commerford demonstrates her obvious affection for unconventional fine art.

Mount Dora Center for the Arts
138 East Fifth Avenue, Mount Dora
(352) 383-0880

Since 1985, the Mount Dora Center for the Arts has provided quality art experiences in the Lake County area through exhibitions, arts education programs, and the annual Mount Dora Arts Festival. The center maintains a year-round calendar of arts-related events and activities for the whole family. All exhibits and events take place at the Mount Dora Center for the Arts, unless otherwise noted.

2008-2009 Season:

Chuck Deffes
(Through Sept. 12, 2008)

Native Louisianan artist Chuck Deffes takes an inspired look at the unique relationship between man and the Blue Heron, a bird native to lowlands of Louisiana and Florida. Deffes’ paintings are high-impact pieces with bold color and intense forms. The abstract work of Deffes’ son, Adam Deffes, will also be on display.

Fiber Invitational Gallery Exhibit
(Sept. 19-Oct. 24, 2008)

Feel the ideas, experiences, and inspirations of multimedia designs. Most of the artists in this exhibit are self-taught, although several are well-known and have exhibited internationally. The pieces are diverse, ranging from pictorial still lifes to narrative abstracts.

Structures of Paint and Light Gallery Exhibit
(Oct. 31-Nov. 21, 2008)

Lighting sculptor Robert Perry, inspired by recycled materials, combines light and shadow with the strength and harshness of raw metal to create unique sculptures of aluminum, stainless steel, and industrial scrap metal. Local artist Richard M. Salter’s striking mixed media paintings will also be on display.

Lake County Tourism and Business Relations
20763 US Hwy. 27, Groveland
(352) 429-3673

The arts are a popular attraction in Lake County, and Lake County Tourism and Business Relations works to build new events as well as promote established organizations like the Florida Lake Symphony, the Bay Street Players, Melon Patch Theatre, IceHouse Theatre, and The Moonlight Players. Here are just a few of the great cultural events to look forward to during the 2008-2009 season.

2008-2009 Season:

Mount Dora Downtown Art Stroll
(Oct. 10, 2008)

Make an evening of it! Mount Dora’s popular Art Stroll showcases regional artwork at several walkable venues throughout the downtown area. Music and light hors d’oeuvres will be provided, and admission is free. All art will be available for purchase. 6-8pm. (352) 383-2165.

Old Timers Day
(Oct. 10, 2008)

“Old timers” from near and far are welcome to share their stories of growing up locally and elsewhere during this beloved tradition at the Umatilla Antique Markets and Bookstore. Interested storytellers can sign-up by calling (352) 669-3202. No admission charge. Refreshments provided.

Clermont Historic Downtown Art & Craft Festival
(Oct. 11-12, 2008)

The 3rd Annual Clermont Historic Downtown Art & Craft Festival features fine art, fine crafts, food, and music on downtown Clermont’s Montrose Street. Free parking and free admission. Saturday, 10am-5pm. Sunday, 10am-4pm. (352) 344-0657.

Lady Lake Art in the Park
(Oct. 18-19, 2008)

The Lady Lake Chamber of Commerce hosts the 3rd Annual Art in the Park in the streets around the chamber’s log cabin located on US 27 and US 441. Fine arts and crafts, food, and music will be offered. No admission charge, and no charge for parking. (352) 344-0657.

Mount Dora Craft Fair
(Oct. 25-26, 2008)

This nationally-ranked juried event continues to attract over 250,000 visitors and over 350 of the best crafters in the country each year. Held in the downtown streets of Mount Dora. Times are to be determined. Contact the Downtown Merchants Association at (352) 735-1191.

Mount Dora Music Festival
(Feb. 19-22, 2009)

This outstanding program features a variety of music, from jazz to classical to big band. Visit mountdoramusicfest.com or call
(352) 383-2627 for more information.

Appleton Museum of Art
4333 NE Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala
(352) 291-4455

Ocala’s Appleton Museum is one of the premier art repositories and education centers in the South. Originally built to preserve and display the collection of Arthur Appleton, the museum has expanded to include traveling exhibitions, educational programs, and cultural events. Check its Web site for additional events including the popular Appleton After Hours program.

2008-2009 Season:

Responding to Home
(Sept. 13-Nov. 9, 2008)

Drawn from observations about what the word “home” means in today’s highly mobile, often rootless society, the exhibition showcases seven artists’ photographic and mixed media interpretations.

Thomas Hart Benton
(Sept. 13-Nov. 9, 2008)

Nineteen “democratized art” lithographs from the ‘30s and ‘40s from the collection of Kyle Culley and the estate of Mary Helen Bohmer depict pre-industrial life in rural, Depression-era America.

Heart Gallery of Mid-Florida
(Sept. 13-Oct. 12, 2008)

This traveling exhibit from the Children’s Home Society in partnership with the Professional Photographers of North Central Florida features portraits of more than 300 children in need of forever families and homes to call their own.

Winslow Homer in America
(Dec. 6, 2008-Jan. 18, 2009)

This comprehensive collection of 142 prints from wood engravings includes all of Homer’s most popular illustrations produced during the pre- to post-Civil War years. One of the most celebrated American artists of the 19th century, Homer captured scene of every day American life, playing on themes of home and family as they intersected and interacted with society.

Young in Art and Sixth Congressional District Art Competition
(Late April-May 2009)

Royellou Museum
450 Royellou Lane, Mount Dora
(352) 383-0006

Housed in the former jail and fire department of Mount Dora, Royellou Museum depicts the history of the town with household objects, vintage clothing, military artifacts, and sports memorabilia. 

Orlando Museum of Art
2416 North Mills Avenue, Orlando
(407) 896-4231

Founded in 1924, the Orlando Museum of Art (OMA) strives to enrich the cultural life of Florida through promoting excellence in the visual arts. To meet this objective, the OMA has dedicated itself to collecting, preserving, and interpreting notable works of art, presenting exhibitions of local, regional, national, and international significance, and developing first-rate educational programs throughout the community.

2008-2009 Season:

Provocative Pairings
(Sept. 20-Nov. 2, 2008)

Drawn from the museum’s permanent collection, this unique exhibit pairs artwork from different time periods, in different media, and from different points of view, side by side to promote a new way of looking at the art.

Drawing In Space: The Peninsula Sculpture by John Henry
(Dec. 13, 2008-Feb. 15, 2009)

Drawing In Space presents seven monumental pieces by internationally known sculptor John Henry in seven cities across the state of Florida. In Orlando, one sculpture will be on display in Loch Haven Park and a second in OMA’s plaza. Models of all seven sculptures and more will be displayed inside OMA.

Therman Statom: Stories of the New World
(Jan. 10-May 10, 2009)

Featuring custom art installations by Therman Statom, a major figure in the Studio Glass movement, this multi-part exhibition will transform 5,600 square feet of the museum’s galleries into a dazzling display of light and color. Visitors will take a walk through a mirrored maze, panoramic murals, video projections, and blown-glass sculptures. 

Jerry Pinkney: Aesop’s Fables and Other Tails
(May 9-Aug. 16, 2009)

This exhibit showcases more than 65 original watercolor illustrations by award-winning artist Jerry Pinkney, focusing on his portrayals of animals from such Aesop fables as The Tortoise and the Hare and The Goose and the Golden Egg as well as favorite children’s stories like The Ugly Duckling and Little Red Hen.

Lake’s Golden Triangle cities of Tavares, Mount Dora, and Eustis show off their talented artists this fall in a unique collaborative effort called “Arts in the Air.” Local artists in each city worked all summer to create one-of-a-kind banners that will hang in downtown areas from Sept. 1 to Oct. 31.

“This is the first time all three cities have shared in a cultural project of this type,” says Kace Montgomery, Eustis’ Public Arts and Music (PAM) coordinator. “It is a way to get artists aware of each other and for the community to be aware of the artists.”

PAM has successfully used artists’ banners in Eustis since 2005 to raise funds for the Lake Folk Art Festival. Kace proposed the idea to the Lake County Arts and Cultural Alliance, which formed in 2007 to advise county commissioners about artistic and cultural matters.

Each city will hang 30 original, weather-proof banners. On Dec. 12, the banners will be auctioned off during the tri-city Arts in the Air Gala at the Mount Dora Center for the Arts.

Christina Padgett, executive co-chair of the Mount Dora Center for the Arts, says funds raised from each city’s 30 banners will be used for scholarships to send children to art camps next summer and to cover the initial costs for banner hardware and installation. The primary goal, however, is making the community aware of the wealth of talented artists who call Lake County home.

“This is a 90-day art show on the street,” says Christina. “We want to create more opportunities for artists and highlight their works.”

In Mount Dora, each banner was painted by individual artists, including Sandra de Nijs and Heather Glennon, both award-winning artists. Mount Dora participants are creating interpretive pieces around the theme, “Images of Mount Dora, Someplace Special.”

In Tavares, eight artists had a “paint day” to create banners that depict the city as “The Capital Waterfront City of Lake County.” The banners feature boats, seaplanes, water taxis, and fishermen.

“This really is a group effort,” explains Tammey Rogers, who is coordinating Tavares’ banners. “We hope people will tour from city to city to see all of the banners.”

A pool of artists——Brenda Heim, Cindy Sbrissa, David Clevinger, Paul Russ, Kace Montgomery, and Jeff Riggard——created Eustis’ banners with the theme “Life is Art.”

Seeing the cooperation among the Golden Cities has been an inspiration to other Lake County communities. Both Leesburg and Lady Lake hope to participate in the 2009 Arts in the Air project.

Although alliance members hope the public will visit all three cities to see the banners, the real goal is to expose public art to the communities.

“We just put the art out there and hope people love it,” says Kace Montgomery.

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