October Arts Roundup: Spooky screenings, art benefit sale, and more

Like to drink spirits? Love the theatre? Well, if you drink enough at Tampa Theatre’s new signature event SpiritsFest during their annual Nightmare on Franklin Street film event, you might just start seeing spooky things. 
 
While Nightmare on Franklin Street, presented by 13 Ugly Men, has so much to offer through the 16 nights of the event -- which runs Oct. 16-31 with various Halloween-themed screenings leading up to Halloween -- what’s particularly thrilling and chilling this year is their newest signature fundraising event, SpiritsFest. This year’s theme is Backstage, where visitors can sip on Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey while touring unexplored parts of Tampa Theatre, listening to chilling tales told by the storytellers of the Orlando-based Phantasmagoria.
 
“It’s an immersive, progressive cocktail event, drinking and touring your way through Tampa Theatre, going to different places you wouldn’t necessarily go as a visitor. In walking through the theatre to look at possible routes, we went down hallways I’ve never even been down in the 9 years that I’ve worked here. SpiritsFest is a way to experience Tampa Theatre in a completely different way,” says Jill Witecki, Director of Marketing & Community Relations at the Tampa Theatre.
 
During the two-hour tour, visitors will act as “performers,” not as the audience, first entering the building through the green room in small groups of 20 with timed entry before winding through basement tunnels and eventually winding up on-stage with an afterparty in the lobby. 
 
Another new addition to the lineup is the first of a series of events called “Film Tampa Bay Presents,” where Film Tampa Bay will be partnering with Tampa Theatre to host free quarterly community screenings that highlights Tampa filmmaking, whether it’s local filmmakers, local actors, or some of the film was shot here. The first screening, which stars several actors from the Tampa Bay area, will be a free screening of The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It on Oct. 16 at 8:30 p.m. This event is capped only by attendance, so make sure to RSVP online.
 
To find out more about Nightmare on Franklin Street, get the full lineup of events, and get tickets, visit The Tampa Theater website
 
What else is going on in the local art world this October?
 
From Oct. 4-9, Graphicstudio is hosting their annual Benefit Sale, where you can get your hands on some contemporary prints to either start or round out your art collection. Some of the artists include Alex Katz, Mernet Larsen, Robert Mapplethorpe, and William Wegman. Reservations are required.
 
The Inaugural Voices of Women Theatre Festival, celebrating and elevating the voices of 18 juried women playwrights, will run from Oct. 6-17. It will be held as a hybrid event with two in-person theatre events and ten livestreamed experiences. 
 
At the Dia de los Muertos 2 exhibition at Atelier de Sosi Gallery, which will be open Oct. 8-30, artists celebrate the life of deceased loved ones in their work, from professional artists to sugar skulls made by the R’Club children.
 
SHINE Mural Festival is coming back Oct. 15-24 with a full roster of international, national, and local artists to add 19 new murals to the arts district of St. Pete. Some of the local selections include Jenipher Chandley, Jared Wright, Jason Harvin, Miss Crit, Michael Fatutoa, Reid Jenkins, and Aurailieus Artist. To see the full list of artists, murals, and upcoming events, visit their website.

Chalktober Art Festival spans two weekends, Oct. 14th-17th on Cleveland Street in Downtown Clearwater and October 21st-24th on the Beachwalk Clearwater Beach. These family-friendly events welcome visitors to see some pretty amazing creations by chalk artists from near and far.
 
Not your grandma’s patchwork: Take a closer look at the intricacy of fiber work at Pieced & Patterned: American Quilts, C. 1800-1930 at the MFA St. Pete, open now through Jan. 23, 2022.
 

Read more articles by Caitlin Albritton.

Caitlin Albritton is a freelance writer based in Tampa with a BFA from Savannah College of Art and Design and a MFA from Maryland Institute College of Art. When she's not looking at art throughout town, she can be found making it. You can keep up with her visual art on Instagram @caitlinalbritton or on her website. Visit her recent line of inlay “wearable paintings.”
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