Lodovico David is the 17th-century Swiss painter behind this masterpiece at the Ringling Museum of Art. The patron who commissioned it (probably Italian, since David worked in Rome and Venice) would have known Greek mythology and the story of the “Judgment of Paris” depicted. Here, David presented himself with a compositional challenge in crowding six figures into a narrow sliver of space, and their compactness keeps them all in full view for us, while his brilliant colors of purple, green, crimson and blue heighten the charge of the various sensuous flesh tones. The artist has lined up a frieze of figures beginning with the shepherd boy, Paris, who was to choose the fairest goddess of the three and reward her with the golden apple in his hand. Aphrodite is next, with her back to us. Her son, Eros, smiles at the viewer as he tries to cover his mother’s bare behind. We see Athena, who could offer Paris success on the field of battle, reaching down for her shield; to her right in white and blue is Hera, who promised property and wealth. Aphrodite won the contest by promising Paris the most beautiful woman in the world—Helen of Troy. The story does not end there, of course; the couple’s elopement ignited the Trojan War. —Mark Ormond
Galleria Silecchia. Continuing through April 3 is a show highlighting works by oil painter Glenn Harrington and glass master William Morris. Opening April 4 to run through May 1: an exhibition featuring new works in glass and metal by Alessandro Casson and original surreal oils and prints by Homero Aguilar. 365-7414.
Venice Art Center. The center’s Members Spring Exhibition remains on view through April 3. Up next: the National League of American Pen Women exhibition, April 7-24, and the South Sarasota County schools student exhibition, April 29 through May 15. 485-7136.
State of the Arts Gallery. On view here through April 3: Urban Archeology, featuring sculpture, collage and assemblages of found objects. It’s followed by White Hot, interpretations in white, April 4 through May 15. 955-2787.
Selby Gallery. Continuing through April 12: works by first-year students in the 2008 Annual Ringling College Juried Student Exhibition. On view April 18 through May 2: art by upper-class students in painting, sculpture, film, photography and other media. 359-7563.
Serrano Contemporary/Sonnet Gallery. Continuing on view at the Towles Court gallery through April 16 is Sweet-Strong, featuring works by Venezuelan artist Margarita Deleuze. Opening April 18 to run through May 10 is a show featuring the work of Texan Tod Bailey and New Yorker Monica Mary. 928-6490.
Ringling Museum of Art. Remaining on view through April 13: Grandma Moses: Grandmother to the Nation. Continuing through May 4: Jacob Lawrence: Three Series of Prints. Also to be seen this month: Old Master Drawings from the Ringling Museum of Art, through May 25; and Asian Art in Focus: Guanyin Personified, through June 15. 359-5700.
Art Center Sarasota. Continuing through April 26: Hidden Cultures, a multimedia exhibition. Also on view: Tattoo and Graffiti, and Kim Litch’s I Know Nothing. Opening April 29 to run through May 10: the North Sarasota County student art exhibition. 365-2032.
Selby Gardens. Continuing here through April 24 is an exhibition of rainforest masks created by the Borucan Indians of Costa Rica. 366-5731.
Embracing Our Differences. Continuing on view along Sarasota’s downtown bayfront through May 4 is this outdoor art festival of billboard-size images and quotations related to “enriching lives through diversity.” For more information, call 928-0567.
Salvador Dali Museum. Continuing on view at the St. Petersburg museum through June 1: the exhibition Dali & Film, examining how the artist combined his painting skills with the moving image. (727) 823-3767.
Museum of Fine Arts. The St. Petersburg museum, with its new Hazel Hough Wing now open, continues to present the exhibitions Unveiled: Rarely Seen Art from the Collection and Mrs. Stuart’s Legacy, through Aug. 26. (727) 896-2667.
Dabbert Gallery. The Palm Avenue gallery presents new works by painter Daniel Bilodeau, beginning with a reception at 5:30 p.m. April 3 and continuing through April 30. 955-1315.
Longboat Key Center for the Arts. The center presents its Spring into Summer Exhibition, opening April 4 and running all summer long. Also on view here: Serendipity, featuring works by Judy Kramer and Melody Oxarart, through April 15. 383-2345.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Other Eric Carle Favorites. Some classic stories for young people, told at 10:30 a.m. April 12 in the Van Wezel’s Saturday Morning for Kids series. 953-3368.
McCurdy’s Comedy Theatre. Providing the laughs at the comedy club this month: Alonzo Bodden, April 4 and 5; Leo DuFour, April 9-13; Sean Morey, April 18-20; and Michael Mack, April 23-27. 925-3869.
Southern Fried Chicks. Humor from the Old South, the New South, the Deep South and any other South you can think of, with four female comics, at 8 p.m. April 11 at Van Wezel. 953-3368.
Russian National Ballet Theatre and Orchestra. The 40-plus company, with full orchestra, presents Tchaikovsky’s classic tale of Sleeping Beauty, at 8 p.m. April 9 at Van Wezel. 953-3368.
Sarasota Ballet of Florida. The company presents an encore presentation of the season opener’s highly acclaimed Allegro Brillante, plus two firsts: the Infernal Galop by Matthew Bourne and a world premiere piece by Dominic Walsh. Performances April 25-27 at the FSU Center for Performing Arts. 351-8000.
Sarasota Film Festival
Ten years old and feeling strong.
Can you believe it’s been 10 years since the fest first offered up an event featuring just eight movies and a handful of stars? My, how things have changed. The 10th festival, opening April 4 and continuing through April 13, promises dozens of new films and a plethora of show biz types, with some very special honorees (such as Liv Ullmann, receiving a Master of World Cinema Award for her films with Ingmar Bergman, and producer Ted Hope, who brought us such films as In the Bedroom and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) as well. The opening night film, TBA and screened at Van Wezel, is followed by a gala at the Ringling Museum, with lots more to come in films at the Hollywood 20, including these documentaries known at press time: Glass: A Portrait of Phillip in 12 Parts (about composer Phillip Glass), Jump (about, believe it or not, competitive jump ropers), A Table in Heaven (about Le Cirque restaurateur Sirio Maccioni and his family) and To the Limit (about extreme mountain climbing). For ticket info call 364-9514 or go to sarasotafilmfestival.com.
Monday Night Movies at the Ringling. Another film festival offering, this one featuring movies set in Florida, including Great Expectations (April 14), Body Heat (April 21) and Ulee’s Gold (April 28). All at 7 p.m. at the Historic Asolo Theater. 360-7399.
A Night on the Range. The Players Theatre offers up a night of Western movies and barbecue food, April 28. Call 365-2494 for ticket info.
PAL Sailor Circus. Talented Sarasota County students continue to run away to the circus, with performances April 2, 3, 4 and 5 at the circus arena on Bahia Vista. 361-6351.
Sharks Tooth Festival. Enjoy this annual family fest from Special Olympics Sarasota County, offering arts and crafts, food, entertainment, games and, of course, shark’s tooth fossils, April 11, 12 and 13 at the Airport Festival Grounds in Venice. Cost is $3 per person; kids under 12 free. 412-0402.
Charlotte Harbor Kayak & Wildlife Festival. Kayak races, guided kayak tours, wildlife seminars and food and entertainment are on the bill for this annual fest centered at Port Charlotte Beach Park on April 12. For more info call (941) 743-1900 or visit CharlotteHarborTravel.com.
Life in the Wilderness Home Tour. The Bradenton Opera Guild hosts this look at eight homes in the River Wilderness community, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 12. Proceeds benefit the Sarasota Youth Opera, and an optional buffet lunch is available. 776-0994 or 776-2850.
Sarasota Garden Club Flower Show. “Holiday Stroll” is the theme for this year’s show, set for April 12 and 13. For more information call 955-0875.
Circus Fans Association of America Convention. Lots of circus-related talks, seminars, exhibits and more April 16-20 at the Sarasota Hotel and Marina (formerly the Sarasota Cay Club), including talks with Pedro Reis and Dolly Jacobs Reis and a banquet speech by Victoria Cristiani Rossi, whose newly published memoir, Spangles, Elephants, Violets and Me, details her life in the circus and beyond, at 7 p.m. April 19. For more information visit circusfans.org.
La Musica International Chamber Music Festival. The fest, which began last month, continues in April with concerts April 4, 7, 10 and 14 at St. Thomas More Church (all at 8 p.m.). Among the composers to be heard: Mozart, Glazunov, Schumann, Vivaldi, Bruch, Brahms, and our very own Dick Hyman, who offers a new string quartet on April 4. Lectures and open rehearsals on tap, too; for ticket information call 954-0355 ext. 304 or visit lamusicafestival.org.
Artist Series of Sarasota. On tap this month in the series: baritone Thomas Meglioranza and pianist Reiko Uchida performing works by Debussy and Ives, April 1; pianist Kotaro Fukuma, presenting Rachmaninoff, Schumann and Faure pieces, April 13 and 15; and soprano Monica Yunus, performing, among others, Weill’s My Ship and I’m a Stranger Here Myself, April 27 and 29. All at the Historic Asolo Theater; call 360-7399.
Cosi fan tutte. Up-and-coming conductor Pacien Mazzagatti lead the Sarasota Opera’s performances of this Mozart comic classic, April 1, 3, 6, 9 and 12 at the Opera House. 366-8450.
Sinatra Sings Sinatra. As in Frank Jr. paying homage to Frank Sr., backed by a 30-plus-piece orchestra. At 8 p.m. April 1 at Van Wezel. 953-3368.
I due Foscari. A Verdi rarity, set in Venice and starring Benjamin Warschawski of last season’s Sarasota Opera production of Halka, along with Reyna Carguill. In performances April 2, 6 and 13 at the Opera House. 366-8450.
Courtyard Concert. The sounds of DeLeon’s Big Band music fill the courtyard of the Ringling Museum from 6 to 9 p.m. April 3. 360-7375.
Florida West Coast Symphony Masterworks. The symphony, in collaboration with Key Chorale, presents Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, Resurrection, to close out this season’s Masterworks series, with performances at 8 p.m. April 4 and 5 at Van Wezel and 8 p.m. April 4 at Neel Performing Arts Center (there’s also a 2:30 p.m. matinee at Van Wezel April 6). 953-3434.
Venice Symphony. The symphony presents classical concerts April 4 and 5 at Church of the Nazarene; pops concerts are set for April 25 and 26, also at the church. 488-1010.
Rigoletto. Michael Corvino is the hunchbacked jester, Erica Strauss his doomed daughter, and Rafael Davila the unfaithful duke in Verdi’s tragedy, onstage April 4, 11 and 13 at the Sarasota Opera House. 366-8450.
La rondine. Soprano Lina Tetruashvili pulls out all the stops as Parisian courtesan Magda, striving for a last chance at love in this Puccini work. Onstage April 5 and 12 at the Sarasota Opera House. 366-8450.
Florida West Coast Symphony Great Escapes. Music from the dance floor, including Borodin’s Polovetsian Dances and Gershwin’s I Got Rhythm, April 9-12 at Holley Hall. 953-3434.
Beethoven: The Music and the Man. A tribute to the great composer, onstage at 8 p.m. April 11 at the Players Theatre. 365-2494.
Areti Zhulla. Violinist Zhulla closes out this season’s Perlman Young Artists Recital Series, at 8 p.m. April 14 at the USF Sarasota-Manatee Selby Auditorium. 953-3368.
Florida West Coast Symphony Chamber Soiree. Offering Schumann’s Piano Quintet in E-flat and Dvorak’s Serenade in D minor, at 5:30 p.m. April 17 at Holley Hall. 953-3434.
Cocktails at the Cà d’Zan. Featuring music from the Venturas, from 6 to 9 p.m. April 17. 359-5700.
Steinway Piano Celebration Concert. A free event so the public can enjoy the sounds of the Van Wezel’s new grand piano, at 7:30 p.m. April 23 at the hall. 953-3368.
Smooth Jazz on St. Armands: Fourth Friday with Style. Les Sabler is the featured jazzer this month, starting at 6 p.m. April 25 on the circle. 388-1554.
Live in Concert: One Night of Queen. Listen up, Freddie Mercury fans: Gary Mullen and his band The Works revive the sound of the late lead singer of Queen (and the other band members as well) in this concert at 8 p.m. April 25 at Van Wezel. 953-3368.
New Music New College. The Florida String Quartet plays music by New College composers in a free concert at 4 p.m. April 26 at the college’s Sainer Pavilion. 487-4154.
Lakewood Ranch Community Fund Charity Golf Classic. The Lakewood Ranch Country Club plays host for this charity tourney on April 7; call 556-5442 for complete details.
The Meadows Cup Pro-Am. Join other supporters of Easter Seals Southwest Florida at this benefit tourney, April 12 at The Meadows Country Club. 355-7637 ext. 412.
First Step of Sarasota Fourth Annual Golf Classic. Swing a club to aid the substance abuse treatment and recovery programs of First Step, starting at 11:30 a.m. April 28 at TPC Prestancia. 366-5333
A Conversation with Jacques d’Amboise. June LeBell hosts this conversation with dance master d’Amboise, at 5:30 p.m. April 2 at the Historic Asolo Theater. 360-7399.
Forum 2008. Two guest speakers this month in the series: First is political commentator Mark Shields, at 7:30 p.m. April 7 at the Sarasota Municipal Auditorium; next is the Rabbi Andrew Baker, who speaks on confronting the resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe, at 7:30 p.m. April 16 at Holley Hall. 365-6332 or 349-8350.
An Evening with…Nancy Horan. Novelist Horan discusses her book Loving Frank, about the relationship between Frank Lloyd Wright and Mamah Cheney, at 5:30 p.m. April 30 at the Historic Asolo Theater, in a Sarasota Reading Festival event. 360-7399.
Hair. Relive the days of “make love, not war” in this tribal rock musical, onstage through April 6 at the Players Theatre. 365-2494.
Doubt. A fine cast leads the audience through John Patrick Shanley’s parable of a play, centered on a nun’s suspicions of a young priest. Running through May 1 at the Asolo Repertory Theatre. 351-8000.
Smash. An adaptation of Shaw’s An Unsocial Socialist, following an idealistic millionaire who longs to overthrow the government. Continuing through May 3 at the Asolo Rep. 351-8000.
Equus. Peter Shaffer’s drama about a troubled teen who commits an unspeakable act of violence continues in rotating rep through May 4 at the Asolo Rep. 351-8000.
Funny Girl. Fanny Brice pursues show biz success and true love in the musical that made Streisand a star, continuing through May 11 at the Golden Apple Dinner Theatre. 366-5454.
Outlaws and Angels. A revue featuring country-Western music by the likes of Hank Williams, Willie Nelson, Patsy Cline and others, continuing through June 7 on Florida Studio Theatre’s cabaret stage. 366-9000.
Avenue Q. A young, idealistic college grad tries to make it in New York in this award-winning musical that uses Sesame Street-like puppets to make a point. Onstage April 1-6 at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center. (800) 955-1045.
Urinetown. The seemingly unlikely Broadway hit about a city where everyone must pay for the privilege of peeing, onstage April 1-20 at Venice Little Theatre. You can imagine the revolution that ensues. 488-1115.
The Miamians. Playwright Michael McKeever takes a look at three Miami families—one Cuban, one African-American, one Jewish—against the ever-changing backdrop of that city and the pursuit of the American Dream. Onstage April 2 through May 24 at Florida Studio Theatre. 366-9000.
Hot Mikado. This swinging, all-black version of the Gilbert and Sullivan operetta continues April 3, 4 and 5 in a Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe production at the Historic Asolo Theater. 360-7399.
All Shook Up. Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night meets the music of Elvis Presley in this show about a 1950s small-town girl who falls for a charismatic rebel—and dons male attire to follow him. Onstage April 3-20 at the Manatee Players. 748-5875.
Broadway in Concert: The Who’s Tommy. Venice Little Theatre ventures into the sounds of the rock band’s opera about that pinball wizard, April 6-7 and 13-14. 488-1115.
By the Bog of Cats. The Florida premiere of a new drama by playwright Marina Carr, which sets a Medea-like story of vengeance in a small Irish town. Onstage April 10-27 at Venice Little Theatre’s Stage II. 488-1115.
Chicago. The razzle-dazzle musical about murder, the media and all that jazz returns to the Van Wezel, with performances at 3 and 8 p.m. April 13. 953-3368.
Toxic Audio. An a cappella evening featuring five voices, no instruments, as this Orlando-based company performs starting April 15 and running through May 4 at Florida Studio Theatre’s Stage III. They’ve won praise from everyone from William Shatner to Paul Shaffer; guess we’ll have to hear it to know what all the praise is about. 366-9000.
Guys and Dolls. The Frank Loesser musical hit from the Damon Runyon stories, presented by students in the Booker High VPA program April 16-19 at the school’s theater. 355-2967.
The Underpants. Steve Martin adapted this German farce (that may seem a misnomer) about the uproar that ensues in a staid household when the wife accidentally loses her underthings at a public rally. Onstage April 16 through May 4 at the Cook Theatre in an FSU/Asolo Conservatory production. 351-8000.
Rent. You’re young, you’re talented, you’re starving in New York…put yourself into this Jonathan Larsen musical megahit based on La Boheme, at 3 and 8 p.m. April 18 at Van Wezel. 953-3368.
Casting Shadows. A play by Bernie Yarnell that explores the influence of the advertising world, running April 18-20 at the Players Theatre. 365-2494.
Around the World in 80 Minutes. Sarasota Senior Theater presents this fantasy song-and-dance revue April 25-27 at the Players Theatre. 365-2494.