The Arts Come Alive! by Claudia Polzin, Independent Consultant

What an interesting year we have spent – learning how to live without live performances and familiar social events. But with tenacity we have survived and are looking forward to returning to some semblance of what we used to consider normal. The arts are getting ready for us and offering opportunities in venues that you will feel comfortable going to – so look over what’s happening and decide what will work best for you.

The City of Naples concerts and events will begin on November 5 in the Norris Center at 7 p.m. – A tribute concert to Judy Collins, Joni Mitchell and Joan Baez. Three icons of the 60’s and 70’s folk music revival in the United States. Their “music messages” continue to find a receptive audience today across the generations. The following night, November 6, at the Norris Center you can enjoy Funny Fellas Stand-up Comedy at 7 p.m. This nationally touring comedy trio features Frank Del Pizzo, Christopher Cowles and Larry Venturino.

The four main bands that perform in Cambier Park – represent over 125 years of providing Big Band and jazz favorites for the audiences in Naples. Beginning with the Naples Concert Band on November 7 in Cambier Park – 2 p.m. They started in 1972 with 10 musicians and now almost 50 years later have grown to over 80 musicians. November 14 – at 2 p.m. in Cambier Park the Gulf Coast Big Band performs – this group formed in 1991 entertains listeners with Big Band and jazz standards.

Just in case you would prefer something a little more along the lines of classical music – move up the road to Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church on November 14 for a 2 p.m concert. The concert will feature James Kealey the winner of the Cochran Prize in 2020 at Eastman School of Music. Currently James is the Associate Director of Music/Organist at Third Presbyterian Church in Rochester, New York. A native of Great Britain he received his undergraduate degree from Royal Holloway University of London. Easter Sunday in 2018 he played the Cathedral Eucharist from Sheffield Cathedral on live BBC One television to an estimated 1.5 million viewers.

The final two live band concerts in Cambier Park will happen first on November 21 with the Naples Big Band at 2 p.m. and rounding out the month will be the Naples Dixieland Jazz Band on November 28 – this band was formed in 1995 with the purpose to sponsor, preserve and promote jazz music, focusing on the golden age of jazz in the United States – 1890-1940.

Live theatre returns to the Sugden with The Naples Players presentation of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder opening on November 24. This show originally opened on Broadway, November 17, 2013 and ran through January 17, 2016 – winning four Tony Awards including Best Musical in 2014. It’s the story of Monty Navarro who is 8th in line to a family fortune. One actor tackles the role of Monty plus the roles of the eight relatives who meet their untimely demise, moving Monty up the ladder of succession. All is staged in a way to keep the audience laughing throughout the play.

Beautiful voices complete the month with a live concert in Mercato – the Gulfshore Opera Divas will perform on November 30 presenting a fun and casual concert of both opera and popular songs. These lush vocal harmonies will bring you a sense of peace and comfort. A part of the Opera al Fresco series, which began last year as a way to bring live performances during a time that theatres were closed is continuing this season due to its resounding popularity.

Enjoy all that the returning arts have to offer!!

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