SoBay Festival of the Arts begins Feb. 4 at Deering

By Gary Alan Ruse….
The Deering Estate’s fifth annual SoBay Festival of the Arts begins on Feb. 4 a two-week series of special events that celebrate the literary, performing and visual arts. The festival’s purpose is to raise awareness of cultural resources within the South Biscayne Bay community.

That first Friday event is the opening of the ArtSoBay Exhibit, which is free to the public. A juried fine art exhibit at the Deering Estate at Cutler, it features “contemporary art in a variety of media that depict the soul of artists utilizing basic elements of color, line, form, texture and scale.”

The exhibit is juried by David Castillo, Bernice Steinbaum and other local art icons, joined by Rene Morales, associate curator for the Miami Art Museum, serv-ing as this year’s esteemed guest juror.

Then on Sunday, Feb. 6, is the Emergination Piano Concert and Brunch from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Cost for this event is $35 per person with advance purchase required. It showcases emerging pianists from the FIU School of Music Piano Department.

Next on Wednesday Feb. 9, is Icon Of A Moment: A Historical Discussion, from 7 to 9 p.m. This is a free event that is open to the public. The historical discussion covering the period from 1896 to 1922 is moderated by Jennifer Tisthammer and led by the Deering Estate’s own Literary Artistsin- Residence and Education and Interpretive Staff members.

On Friday, Feb. 11, is the South Florida Theatre League event from 7 to 9 p.m. The League is an alliance of theatrical organizations and professionals dedicated to nurturing the South Florida theater industry. They will present an Evening of Vignette’s at the Deering Estate. Admission is $25 per person.

Then on Saturday, Feb. 12, is the Artist Village Tour and Art Take Away Workshop, beginning at 11 a.m. This is free with estate admission and gives guests a chance to “interact with emerging artists and learn about their area of expertise as they create, display, and sell original works of art.”

Next is Miami Short Films on Sunday, Feb. 13, from 7 to 9 p.m. Cost is $15 per person to see the best of short film cinema.

Wrapping up the series on Monday, Feb. 14, is the “Moonlight and Music” Valentine’s Day concert featuring Victor Espinola. The concert begins at 8 p.m. with the gate opening at 7 p.m.

Victor Espinola is a multi-instrumentalist and singer who is best known for playing the Paraguayan harp, but his style is influenced by Flamenco, Gypsy, Brazilian, Middle Eastern, African, pop and dance music as well. It’s a romantic, outdoor concert under the stars, so guests are welcome to bring blankets, lawn chairs and picnic baskets. Parking is free.

For information, call 305-235-1668.

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