ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (July 25, 2016) – With the addition of 20 new shows, The Mahaffey Theater’s 2016-2017 season just went from great to awesome. It’s a diverse lineup that includes the very best in music, dance, family performances and more.
Among the musical highlights: The debut of a newly-commissioned work from rock legend Mike Mills of R.E.M., violinist Robert McDuffie and the chamber music group Fifth House Ensemble; jazz guitar legend Pat Metheny fronting an all-new quartet; and the Five Irish Tenors on their first American tour.
Our “Mahaffey on the Move” series, at The Palladium Theater, features a concert by 15-year-old PBS favorite Ethan Bortnick, the one-man theatrical show Say Goodnight Gracie, and a performance from the top zydeco band in America, BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet.
With In the Wild Live, “Jungle” Jack Hanna will bring a menagerie of exotic animals to the Mahaffey stage; science and entertainment combine via the lifelike, oversized puppets of Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live; PBS Kids presents the musical Odd Squad Live!; and the magicians of TV’s Masters of Illusion return.
Other Mahaffey favorites making return appearances include music legend Smokey Robinson, puppeteer Terry Fator and comedian Billy Gardell.
The new additions to the 2016-2017 season are:
Concerto for Violin, Rock Band and String Orchestra, Composed by R.E.M.’s Mike Mills for Robert McDuffie, Featuring Fifth House Ensemble
Friday, Oct. 21, 2016 at 8 p.m.
Inspired by the blurred lines between contemporary classical audiences, pop and contemporary music, violinist Robert McDuffie has commissioned a new composition from R.E.M.’s Mike Mills, one of the most prolific song-writer/composer/collaborators from the world of rock and pop. The concerto features McDuffie on violin, with a four-member rock band fronted by Mills.
Jeffrey Osborne & Gerald Albright
Sunday, Oct. 23, 2016 at 7 p.m.
Legendary R&B vocalist Jeffrey Osborne (“You Should Be Mine,” “On the Wings of Love”) is joined by the incomparable saxophone player and multi-instrumentalist Gerald Albright for an expansive program of duets, solos and surprises. From the breathtaking ballads Jeffrey made his name with, to Gerald’s scintillating smooth jazz, pop and funk, this will be an unforgettable concert performance.
Odd Squad Live!
Sunday, Nov. 13, 2016 at 3 p.m.
From the Emmy-winning PBS kids’ series. Attention Odd Squad fans, something very odd has happened in your hometown. Ms. O needs you to team up with Odd Squad agents in this live, interactive adventure to solve an exciting case. There will be gadgets! There will be villains! There will be music! Well, what are you waiting for? Go!
Windham Hill Winter Solstice Featuring Liz Story, Barbara Higbie & Sean Harkness
Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. at The Palladium Theater
Master musicians who made their names on the Windham Hill label, pianist Liz Story, singer and multi-instrumentalist Barbara Higbie and guitarist Sean Harkness have created a special show in celebration of Winter Solstice. This ensemble in various forms has toured nationally for the past 10 years in support of the recording series that sold more than eight million copies. Warmth, humor and stunningly pristine performances abound.
Friday, Jan. 13, 2017 at 8 p.m.
Known to millions as the co-star of the hit series Mike & Molly, Billy Gardell played Officer Mike Biggs on the popular sitcom for its entire 2010-2016 run. Most recently, he stars as Col. Tom Parker in the CMT series Million Dollar Quartet. Gardell’s standup show is a powerhouse. Stories about his rough childhood, wild adolescence and new family life are executed with the skill of a master craftsman.
Ethan Bortnick: The Power of Music
Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017 at 7 p.m. at The Palladium Theater
This Mahaffey on the Move performance features 15-year-old Ethan Bortnick – from singing and playing the piano to songwriting and starring in television specials and feature films, he does it all – with talent, a captivating personality and a passion for bringing people joy. This family-friendly concert is packed with energy and features Elton John to Motown and Michael Jackson, Chopin classical renditions, recent top hits, show tunes and more.
Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
An unforgettable multi-media and live musical journey across Elvis’ life, featuring winners from Elvis Presley Enterprises’ annual worldwide Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest, each representing Elvis during different stages in his career. The Elvis tribute artists will be joined by a live band, backup singers and dancers and more; audiences “Can’t Help Falling In Love” with this phenomenal theatrical concert experience!
The Five Irish Tenors
Friday, Jan. 20, 2017 at 8 p.m.
Direct from Dublin! On their first American tour, the Five Irish Tenors fuse Irish wit and boisterous charm, with lyricism, dramatic flair and operatic style to bring you a unique concert experience. This distinctive program includes everything from W.B Yeats’s “Down by the Sally Gardens” to Verdi’s “O Mio Rimorso” from La Traviata.
Jack Hanna’s Into the Wild Live
Sunday, Jan. 22, 2017 at 3 p.m.
America’s most beloved animal expert brings his four-time Emmy Award-winning television series to the Mahaffey stage! In this live show, prepare to be fascinated as Jungle Jack takes you into the wild with a spectacular array of incredible animals. Jack will also share humorous stories and amazing footage from his adventures all around the world from Africa, to the Amazon, to Antarctica and beyond.
Terry Fator: It Starts Tonight
Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017 at 7 p.m.
At the Mirage in Las Vegas, where he’s in his 7th headlining season, Terry Fator is known as “The Voice of Entertainment.” That’s because his voice is an incredibly versatile instrument – he’s a comedian, ventriloquist, singer and unparalleled celebrity impersonator, all at the same time. Terry’s unforgettable cast of puppet “characters” includes Winston the Impersonating Turtle, World’s Greatest Elvis Impersonator Maynard Thompkins, Walter T. Airdale, Duggie Scott Walker, tween Emma Taylor and so many others.
An Evening With Pat Metheny
Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
Twenty-time Grammy winning guitarist Pat Metheny presents a range of music from throughout his storied career, joined by drummer Antonio Sanchez, bassist Linda Oh & keyboardist Gwilym Simcock. The show, Metheny says, “could really be anything and everything … with Antonio, Linda and Gwilym, I think we could and will do a wide range of things from throughout all of it – and maybe uncover what the next period has in store as well.”
Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
A Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, Kennedy Center Honoree, the recipient of a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, Soul Train Music Award for Career Achievement and too many others to count, Smokey – with his eternally smooth and instantly recognizable falsetto – is the epitome of Motown soul and classic R&B. Think “Tears of a Clown,” “Being With You,” “You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me” and dozens more! There’s only one Smokey Robinson.
BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet
Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017 at The Palladium Theater
A Mahaffey on the Move exclusive! Since forming in 1975, Grammy winners BeauSoleil have claimed their undisputed role as the most esteemed Cajun group in music. Featuring legendary singer and fiddle player Michael Doucet, the band takes the rich Cajun traditions of Louisiana and artfully blends elements of zydeco, New Orleans jazz, Tex-Mex, country, blues and more into a satisfying musical recipe.
Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live
Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017 at 3 p.m.
It may have been 65 million years in the making, but it was worth the wait. The puppets of Dinosaur Zoo Live are so extraordinarily realistic you may feel the urge to run and hide – but don’t! You won’t want to miss a minute of this fun, unique, entertaining and educational live show. It’s an eye-popping collection of amazingly life-like dinosaurs and other creatures presented in a theatrical performance that will thrill kids while stimulating their imaginations.
Masters of Illusion
Monday, Feb. 20, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
Direct from the hit TV show, Masters of Illusion is a fast-moving, family-friendly spectacular. You’ll see grand illusions, levitating women, eye-popping appearances and vanishes, escapes, comedy magic, sleight of hand and beautiful dancers – everything you could possibly imagine – all rolled up into a live show! The entire audience participates, and some lucky individuals even get picked to assist with illusions on stage.
Benise: Strings of Passion
Friday, Feb. 24, 2017 at 8 p.m.
The acclaimed guitarist Benise – a PBS favorite for over a decade – takes us on a musical journey of salsa, flamenco, tango, waltz, samba … and more! A full-scale, multi-cultural production combining Spanish guitar and Spanish dance with rock, with all the mystique, romance and passion Benise is known for.
Rhythm of the Dance
Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017 at 7 p.m.
This incredible live show celebrates the rich history of Ireland and the art of Irish dance, from the disciplined Celtic Step to the sensual, ancient Sean Nos dance style. Rhythm of the Dance creates a new era in Irish entertainment, presenting world champion dancers, a traditional Irish band, and the handsome Young Irish Tenors.
“1964” … The Tribute
Friday, March 31, 2017 at 7 p.m.
A musical journey to an era in rock history that will live in all of our hearts forever. They are hailed by critics and fans alike as the most authentic and endearing Beatles tribute in the world. Choosing songs from the pre-Sgt. Pepper era, 1964 astonishingly recreates an early ‘60s live Beatles concert, with period instruments, clothing, hairstyles, and still more.
One Night of Queen
Friday, April 21, 2017 at 8 p.m.
Great Britain’s Gary Mullen & the Works re-create a complete Queen concert, with all the pomp, power and unforgettable songs of one of rock’s greatest bands. Freddie Mercury was a magnetic and unpredictable performer; he comes alive in the form of Gary Mullen from Glasgow. The Works have enthralled audiences the world over -between “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Killer Queen,” “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” and “We Are the Champions,” they will most certainly rock you!
Say Goodnight Gracie
Saturday, April 22, 2017 at 8 p.m. at The Palladium Theater
From Tony-winning playwright Rupert Holmes, the Broadway hit that invites you to spend a hilarious, heart-warming evening in the company of the world’s favorite and funniest centenarian, George Burns, in a tour de force solo performance from Alan Safier. It’s a tender, funny, life-affirming love story … a personal guided tour through an American century in the company of a man who laughingly lived and loved each day for all it had to offer.
Tickets for all newly-announced events go on sale Friday, Aug. 5 at noon, along with our THREE FOR ME packages: Purchase three or more shows and receive free parking for each (a $10 value per show), excluding performances at The Palladium Theater. Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts members can purchase tickets and THREE FOR ME packages beginning today at noon. Tickets may be purchased online at TheMahaffey.com, on the MyMahaffey mobile app, charge by phone at 727.893.7832 or in person at The Mahaffey Theater Box Office. The Mahaffey Box Office is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday or at least 90 minutes prior to any ticketed event. There are no added charges ever on tickets purchased directly from The Mahaffey Theater.
The Mahaffey Theater
The Mahaffey Theater, under the management of Big3 Entertainment, is one of Tampa Bay’s top-rated performing arts venues. Home to the Florida Orchestra, The Mahaffey Theater hosts top-quality national and international artists and performances – Broadway, pop, rock, comedy, dance, classical and interactive engagements and exhibitions.
Located in the heart of downtown St. Petersburg, the 2,031-seat cultural jewel boasts spectacular waterfront views and is located only minutes away from white sandy beaches and world-renowned museums. Additionally, the theater supports the highly successful Class Acts program, which enables school children to experience the performing arts through in-theater performances as well as in-school outreach and extension programs.
The Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts
Founded as a 501(c)3 nonprofit in 2009, The Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts is dedicated to the success and future of The Mahaffey Theater and to the notion that through diverse programing and patron membership support, performing arts should be enjoyed by all of St. Petersburg’s citizens. It’s your theater!
The Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts is committed to supporting and presenting all genres of the performing arts at The Mahaffey Theater, funding arts education for school children through the Class Acts performance series and providing its member patrons with unequaled services, entertainment and cultural experiences.