Do This: Happy Pi Day, Joan Rivers, Carmen, American Monkey premiere and more

Much to do this weekend, starting today, including the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair and 6th Annual Chalk Walk.

Posted by Julie Garisto on Fri, Mar 14, 2014 at 10:57 AM

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Not only is it Friday, it's Pi Day, folks. (3.14, get it?) Because artist Salvador Dali loved the irrational numbers and often using them and other mathematical principles in his art, the Dali Museum is celebrating 3.14 with Dali Loves Pi today until 5 p.m. The museum will screen free films based on numbers and algorithms. If you decide to pony up the admission, tours are included so you can learn more about Dali's numerical fetish. Pinellas & Hillsborough math teachers admitted free all day (with district employee ID). General admission is $21; seniors, military, police and firefighters pay $19; children 13-17 and students 18 and older with student ID, $15; children 6-12, $7, and 5 and younger admitted free. One Dali Blvd., St. Petersburg, 727-823-3767. For schedule and other details, visit thedali.org.
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Bizet’s Carmen may very well be the sexiest and most popular non-Italian-sung opera of all time, with a fiery Spanish-flavored score that includes music non-opera lovers will recognize from movies like The Bad News Bears and a slew of TV shows and commercials. The story based on the novel by Prosper Mérimeé is set in Seville, Spain, and revolves around a seductive gypsy who runs into trouble when she spurns a corporal in favor of her beloved toreador, Escamillo. Sung in French with English supertitles, the Opera Tampa production stars Alessandra Volpe (pictured, right), a Dr. Zena Lansky Endowed Principal Artist, in the title role with John Pickle (Don José), Jason Howard (Escamillo) and Nathalie Paulin (Micaëla). Maestro Lipton and Opera Tampa Managing Director Frank McClain co-direct the production. Tonight at 8 p.m. and Sun., March 16, at 2 p.m. Straz Center’s Morsani Hall, Tampa. $34.50–$84.50. strazcenter.org. Photo by Rob-Harris Productions.

The 6th Annual Chalk Walk features 40-plus artists covering Hyde Park Village’s sidewalks with unique masterpieces during a three-day festival that includes live entertainment, food trucks, craft beer, wine, an open-air market, gallery and fun stuff for kids. Read a schedule at tbbca.org.

freeFall Theatre Company stages acclaimed plays while finding new ways to surprise its audiences. Their next production offers another first — a world premiere — co-presented by Westbound Productions. American Monkey, Mihkel Raud’s dark comedy, satirizes reality television and all its barbaric absurdity by likening it to the lion-feeding spectacles of the Roman Colosseum. Its plot centers on a TV talent show called American Superstar. Another added twist: freeFall audience members will get a chance to participate by singing for the play’s panel of judges. Those interested will be screened beforehand by theater staff members. Directed by Eric Davis, the cast of American Monkey features Broadway star Patrick Ryan Sullivan (Beauty and the Beast, 42nd Street), Chris Jackson, Stefanie Clouse and John Lombardi. 6099 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. Official run begins tomorrow but there will be discounted previews tonight and Saturday matinee. freefalltheatre.com, 727-498-5205.

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Joan Rivers refuses to fade away — her face is so synthetically altered, it will outlive all of us. All that aside, the living legend is a trailblazer for female comics and has been delivering some of the most wickedly hilarious oneliners on TV, on E!’s Fashion Police. The Tony-nominated actress, bestselling author, playwright, screenwriter, film director, columnist, lecturer, syndicated radio host, jewelry designer and cosmetic company entrepreneur turns 80 this year. She even was brave enough to star on a reality show with her daughter. See Rivers tonight at 7:30 p.m., Ruth Eckerd Hall, $65-$85, rutheckerdhall.com

Attend a huge annual event that’s the ultimate alternative to the sweaty din of St. Patrick’s Day parties. At the 32nd Annual Florida Antiquarian Book Fair — the biggest of its kind in the Southeast — you can browse old books, maps, prints, postcards, paper collectibles and other ephemera. Items range in price from a few dollars to several hundred thousand dollars. “Stand-up Librarian” Meredith Myers will perform her shtick and parodies opening night (read Tiffany Razzano's interview with her on ArtBreaker). Friday evening’s $10 admission includes live classical music performance and is good for entire weekend, and Saturday’s ticket includes free lectures. All proceeds from ticket sales go to St. Petersburg Library. Food and beverages, including cash bar, will be available onsite. Fri.-Sun., March 14-16, Fri., 5 p.m.-9 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sat., 11 a.m.-4 p.m. $6 a day, $10 for weekend pass. Sunday’s tickets are $6. Children 12 and under, students with ID are admitted free. The Historic Coliseum, 535 4th Ave. N., St. Petersburg. Parking is free. 727-234-7759. stpete.org/coliseum

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