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Arts / Culture

Tampa's Arts Scene Goes Gasp! Again

Lori Ballard
Creative Loafing

In the atrium of the Tampa Museum of Art, a dancer moved gracefully to pensive piano music. That was just one of the many acts at last year's GASP!--a one night festival for theater, dance, poetry, music and more.

This year, GASP! is back.

The festival is a collaborative effort between the Tampa Museum of Art and Creative Loafing

David Warner, editor-in-chief of Creative Loafing, said there was something missing among other Tampa-based festivals that occur in the month of March.

"In Gasparilla arts month--which has the music festival and the film festival--there was nothing that was specifically about the performing arts," he said. "This is the last gasp of Gasparilla."

These types of festivals are common in bigger cities--places like New York and Philadelphia, Warner said.

This year, Karleigh Chase will perform her one-woman play entitled Memoirs of a Painted Woman, which fictionalizes the perspective of women captured in some of the world's most iconic paintings and photos. 

Think: Mona Lisa and Marilyn Monroe. 

She opens the piece with a depiction of Frida Kahlo, a 20th-century Mexican painter, referencing a self-portrait.

Here's an excerpt: I'm not beautiful. You're wondering why I'm here. Wondering why the only female artist decided to paint herself as a man.  What can I say? I've never truly felt like a woman.

"Prepare to be surprised," Warner said. 

GASP! is on March 27 at the Tampa Museum of Art, beginning at 6:00 p.m.