Chad Mize, "Say Gay."

Weekend Top 10: Tears, Fears & Rainbows

Sorry, guv. June is Pride Month so everybody’s sayin’ gay. Plus, there’s great theater, art and music on both sides of the Bay and a chance to have a morning meal with a manatee.

Opening Friday

SAY GAY at MIZE Gallery

The ever-effervescent MIZE Gallery in St. Pete’s Historic Uptown district is going loud and proud for Pride month with artwork that “SPEAKS, SCREAMS, YELLS GAY!” The cast of thousands (well, at least 26 by my count) includes such OUTstanding talents as Andrea Pawlisz, Chad Jacobs, Charley Soderbergh, Jay Hoff, John Gascot, Macy Eats Paint, Melanie Posner, Saumitra Chandratreya, Spencer Meyers, and, of course, gallery owner and artist Chad Mize himself. Exhibit opens 6/10, 6-9 p.m., and continues through 6/26. MIZE, 689 Dr MLK Jr St N., Unit C, St. Petersburg, @mizegallery

Opening Friday

TORCH SONG at Gulfport Community Players

Daniel Harris as Arnold Beckoff.

The gravel-voiced actor/playwright Harvey Fierstein made Broadway history in 1982 with his ground-breaking playTorch Song Trilogy, the saga of a torch song-singing Jewish drag queen named Arnold Beckoff living in NYC in the late ‘70s and ‘80s and longing for a husband, a child, and a pair of bunny slippers. Fierstein, who played Arnold in the original production, condensed the play to two acts for a Broadway revival in 2018 starring Michael Urie; that’s the version director Patrick Brafford is using for this Pride Month presentation at Gulfport Community Players starring Daniel Harris. Through 6/19, Catherine Hickman Theater, 26th & Beach Blvd., Gulfport. Tickets $20 online, $25 cash at the door. GulfportCommunityPlayers.org.

Friday

TEARS FOR FEARS at Mid-Florida Amp

Tears for Fears. Photo: ©Frank W. Ockenfels

They sang the anguished-but-catchy tunes that wormed their way into our ears in the ‘80s and stayed there — “Shout,” “Head Over Heels,” “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” — and now, 17(!) years since their last album, they’re touring with a new record, “The Tipping Point,” that’s getting rave reviews. 6/10, 7:30 p.m., MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, 4802 U.S. 301 N., Tampa. livenation.com.

Friday

COCO AND HOMO at freeFall

Zachary Hines and Colleen Cherry.

O Coco and Homo, we missed you so! The insanely talented and slightly insane comic cabaret duo, aka Colleen Cherry and Zachary Hines, are finally back where they belong — together, on the freeFall stage — to take audiences on  “an acid trip of interactive games, campy anthems, and frolicking drinking songs” just in time for Pride. 6/10, 7 p.m., freeFall Theatre, 6099 Central Ave., St. Petersburg, freefalltheatre.com. Tickets $35 for non-subscribers.

Opening Friday

BEYOND WORDS: CELEBRATING BOOKS AS ART at Florida CraftArt

Globe, by Lauren Dykes.

A juried exhibition showcasing handcrafted works by artists from Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee “that challenge preconceptions of what a book is and can be,” says exhibit curator Cindy Bartosek. Each of the 75 books in the show represents “a personal story, a reflection of cultural heritage or international sensibilities,” says Bartosek. Well-known local artists among the 36 selected for the exhibition include Robert Barancik, Karen Brown, Neverne Covington, Lauren Dykes, and Rose Marie Prins. 6/10, 5:30-7 p.m.: Opening Reception and Awards Ceremony. Exhibit continues through 7/30. Florida CraftArt, 501 Central Ave., St. Petersburg, FloridaCraftArt.org.

Saturday
MIMOSAS WITH MANATEES at ZooTampa

Photo: ZooTampa

The price might be a bit steep ($85 for ZooTampa members, $110 for non-members), but this is no typical weekend brunch. It’s a chance to watch graceful manatees swim as you sip your mimosas and learn about the life-saving work being done at ZooTampa’s David A. Straz, Jr. Manatee Critical Care Center, one of only four critical care centers in the US for injured, orphaned and sick manatees. The program includes light breakfast, coffee & juices; a tour of the center; an animal care chat; a professional photo with one of the animals; and admission to the park following the program. Suitable for ages 5 and up. 1/11 or 1/18, 8-9:30 a.m., ZooTampa, 1101 W. Sligh Ave., Tampa, zootampa.org

Opening Saturday

Selina Román’s A BAD BATCH: BEAUTY IN THE BREAKDOWN at Tempus Projects 

Selina Román, Refusal to Unpack.

A mistake, a malfunction wrapped up in magic and unintended consequences: Since late 2020, photographer Selina Román has been documenting malfunctioning purple streetlights around Tampa at night. The result: A Bad Batch: Beauty in the Breakdown, a series of spontaneous photographs, as well as staged portraiture and video, in which the broken lights bathe their surroundings in an otherworldly hue. 6/11: Members’ cocktail hour at 6 p.m., public opening reception from 7 to 9 p.m.  Show continues through 6/26. Tempus Projects, 4220 N. Florida Ave., Tampa, tempus-projects.com.

Saturday-Sunday

CARSON KRESSLEY & SANDRA BERNHARD:  St. Pete Pride at The Palladium

St. Pete Pride has snagged some big-name performers for the 20th anniversary of Florida’s biggest Pride celebration, beginning with a stellar back-to-back booking at The Palladium this weekend.  On Saturday night, June 11, Carson Kressley of Queer Eye fame hosts Queer-E-Okee, during which local queer musicians will perform some of the LGBTQIA+ community’s most beloved songs while the audience sings along with the help of karaoke-style lyrics projected onto a large screen.

Ms. Bernhard.

And on Sunday, June 12, the deliciously acerbic Sandra Bernhard brings her one-woman show to the stage, combining cabaret, standup, rock ’n’ roll and social commentary. Both shows at 7 p.m. in Hough Hall, Palladium Theater, 253 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg, mypalladium.org.

Sunday

POOL PARTY & DRAG SHOW BRUNCH at The Fenway

To the pool, boys and girls! That would be the pool at Dunedin’s snazzy retro hotel, The Fenway, site of a drag brunch party with live performances, games and giveaways in conjunction with Dunedin Pride Week (June 11-18). Every ticket purchase includes 1 drink ticket and entry to the show. 6/12, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., The Fenway Hotel, Autograph Collection, 453 Edgewater Drive, Dunedin. Tickets at dunedinpride.com.

Thru June 19

THE DREAMER EXAMINES HIS PILLOW at Tampa Rep

Ar’Darius Stewart and Anna Roman.

Recommended by the judges of Theatre Tampa Bay after only one weekend, Dreamer is an early work by the playwright/screenwriter John Patrick Shanley who would go on to write the classics Moonstruck and Doubt. From all accounts this production is a searingly well-acted portrayal of a tortured love affair starring newcomers Ar’Darius Stewart and Anna Roman and the dependably excellent Jim Sorensen. Through 6/19, Tampa Repertory Theatre, USF Theatre Center, TAR 120, 3837 USF Holly Dr., Tampa, tamparep.org.

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