Katherine Michelle Tanner, Founder of Sarasota's Tree Fort Productions, Joins the Club

Katherine Michelle Tanner, Founder of Sarasota's Tree Fort Productions, Joins the Club

She is a graduate of FSU's Asolo Theatre Conservatory and owner and artistic director of Sarasota's Tree Fort Productions. Katherine Michelle Tanner is an actor, playwright, singer, dancer, filmmaker, choreographer, photographer, and teacher, and for the next month, she is producing and performing the one act play she wrote and choreographed about World War II Polish Jewish ballerina, Franceska Mann called Mann's Last Dance.
Her remarkable play about this unlikely World War II heroine can be seen at Tree Fort Productions at the Crossings Mall (3501 S. Tamiami Trail) September 9 through October 2. Take a listen to this podcast episode about Katherine's life, career, and the making of her one woman play, Mann's Last Dance and then go see this performance!
Come along and join the club!

• Katherine Michelle Tanner Website & Facebook & Instagram & YouTube

• Mann's Last Stand Ticket Link

Tree Fort Productions Website & Facebook & Instagram

• SCF Theatre Program Website & Facebook Page & Instagram

Support the show


Robyn Bell: We have produced 102 podcast episodes so far, but I have yet to have a guest that is doing a one woman show. That is until now I have asked Katherine Michelle Tanner to join me today to talk about her one woman show called Mann's Last Dance. It is being directed by Blake Walton. It is showing at Tree Fort Productions theatre in Sarasota, September 9th through October 2nd. So Katherine Michelle Tanner, welcome to the club. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Thank you so much for having me. 

Robyn Bell: Now we're gonna talk in depth about the creation and production of this show, but before we do tell us a little bit about yourself and, you know, kinda like your whole life lead up to this show and how you chose to write about this world war II, era Polish ballerina, Franceska Mann. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Sure. I'm originally from a very small town Hastings, Minnesota 

Robyn Bell: cold, 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yes. If you've ever seen the movie grumpy old men.

Robyn Bell: Yes, 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: that was my first film set. So it was all shot written and directed in my home town and I attended St. Olaf College, which is kind of known for Betty White. But what was interesting is I was a triple major at St. Olaf in theater, dance and education. And then directly from there, I knew I wanted to lean into the performance world. So I started to audition for graduate schools and there were a few options and I ended up being accepted at the FSU Asolo Theatre Conservatory, and then decided to get my MFA from there, 

Robyn Bell: which explains how you landed in Sarasota.

Katherine Michelle Tanner: That's right. And I always said I've never been to the campus yet. I've never been to FSU, but my campus was a studio and a theater, so I'll take it.

Robyn Bell: Yeah. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: But what was interesting is I came down to Sarasota with the expectation of really honing my craft. I did not expect it to be such a warm, welcoming. Performance community. I think they really it's like a mini New York. 

Robyn Bell: It is. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: They really foster the essence of yes. You support the sports. Yes. You support the restaurants, but let's support education. And the, cultural arts, which I think is such a vibrant scene here. So when I graduated, I was back up in New York and traveling all across the U.S. as an actor. But I always kept my roots here. I kept a place here. And then I started Tree Fort Productions, really out of teaching some students, , teaching voice lessons, teaching some dance, teaching, some acting, and then it started to form into performances that I was asked to produce. And they suddenly asked me what my production company was called. And I ran into the dressing room and. where did I start this? Oh, it was my tree fort as a child. So let's just hone in and lean into that a little bit. And boom, that's kind of how Tree Fort Production started.

Robyn Bell: And so Tree Fort Productions can be thought of as a, place where you're gonna produce shows, but also it sounds like a kind of a teaching studio academy.

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yes. We offer classes for youth, teens and adults starting at age three up to, you know, 103. And what we do is we really hone. What is it that you want to build as your performing arts passion? So we don't make you a product of what we offer. We help you become a product of what you desire to be. We do offer studio training classes, as we said, for youth, teens, and adults, but we can cater to what it is you are working on. Do you need an acting workshop, an audition workshop? Are you having a commercial for your company? We've done a lot of. Hmm. And what's nice is just now kind of post the pandemic shutdown. We're offering public performances again with passion projects that we've kind of been sitting on the shelf for a little bit. We had started these years ago, but let's all release them, you know, kind of this fall semester, we have quite a few and then we're building on new products and projects for the spring. So it's exciting. 

Robyn Bell: And where is Tree Fort Production located? 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Tree Fort productions is located on Tamiami Trail and Siesta Key Drive in the Crossings Mall directly between Connors and Aldi. We're right under the Chico signs. So we're in that mall there, and it's a beautiful studio, 3000 square feet seats, 85 people, A lovely space. It's kind of a sound stage, a studio and a performance space.

Robyn Bell: Wow. And so Katherine, where do you mind if I ask, did you get the funding to build what you need? I mean, I can imagine what it takes to have a, a production studio inside of a mall. You didn't just walk into a old Gap and go, okay, here we are. Right. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: actually. Actually we kind of did, it was an old J Jill and someone had tipped me off to this space. I had been in a few spaces leading up to that, that were, we had kind of outgrown. So with my hard work and, savings of, of my own, financials, I was able to step into this space and decide. This is what we needed. We are forming corporate sponsorships. Now we're building our 5 0 1 C three as we speak. But what's interesting is there was no need for one during the pandemic, 

Robyn Bell: right?

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Because I mean, it isn't that we shelved it it's that it wasn't a priority. And when you're a business person, when you're an artist, you have to look at what's the priority in this moment and what can I build in the future? It's a very exciting. And scary thing to do that. But if you keep that x-ray vision on what it is that you're offering people, I think things become very clear on what can I do and what do I need to do?

Robyn Bell: Absolutely. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: You know? 

Robyn Bell: Yes. And you keep using the word we 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: mm-hmm 

Robyn Bell: so talk to us. It's not just you, you must have a team. Tell us about that. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: I have an amazing team and over the last few years, it's really shifted into something really beautiful. I have some people who are involved with Tree Fort Productions from the get go. Lucinda Schleterbach is a part of it. Blake Walton is a part of it. Annie Morrison is a part of it. Steve Patmagrine is a part of it. There are so many people behind the scenes that that really step up at first was the student's parents who would come in or people who I would hire individual artists, Michael Pasquini, Dorian Boyd.

Robyn Bell: Mm. Let me pause you at Dorian Boyd here at the State College of Florida. He's our sound designer for the Neel Performing Arts Center in the Recital Hall. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: And he's so talented and he's so willing to kind of come in and work with you on your project instead of take over, which is great. And so over the years I've had these, you know, we did a film and we did have some sponsors for that, that stepped up as producers, but it's been so interesting. Have people believe in your vision and when I think of that and I think of how can I pay this forward on the back end? I definitely try to balance the scales. Oh, they believed in me. They saw me in these 30 plays. I don't know how they believe in me, but they do let me turn around and offer a scholarship to someone who I believe in.

Robyn Bell: But your main source of income for Tree Fort Production is tuition for lessons. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yes. 

Robyn Bell: Tickets, if they come peoples, come see a show 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: that's right. 

Robyn Bell: This sort of thing.

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yes. And we are really into the new stage of, especially this semester, building those corporate sponsorships and then obviously getting our 5 0 1 C three status. So we're thrilled. 

Robyn Bell: Outstanding. And how many productions have you had at Tree Fort Production so far?

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Ooh, that's a great question. Let me think. I think we've had over 12. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. When was it founded? Exactly.

Katherine Michelle Tanner: It was founded in 2014. Okay. But at our studio, I mean, we've been all over. I produce things with Tree Fort Productions across the United States.

Robyn Bell: I see. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: But, at our studio we've had 12 and then we've done three films and we are having a film festival this fall highlighting those films. 

Robyn Bell: Well, maybe we should talk about those kind of things. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Sure. 

Robyn Bell: I know you've got a big project that we're gonna talk about in detail. This one woman show that you wrote and are producing, but while you're doing that on kind of on your shoulders, you have some other projects still, you know, it's a balancing act as we all are as, as artists, you know? So tell us about, before we go into Mann's Last Dance, tell us about. All the other things you're involved in simultaneously. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Sure. Well, how much time do you have ? 

Robyn Bell: Well, I get paid by the hour, so 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: so, currently as I am a studio teacher, I do offer classes in dance, music, acting, singing, photography, film. And obviously writing, but what's so interesting is a few years ago I had started my second sophomore album and I kind of shelved it for a little bit and then it took a new direction. So I'm completing that, which is called the Mississippi. I grew up obviously on the Mississippi lock and dam number three and it's. So you can throw a rock across it. That's how narrow it still is. And I really wanted to kind of feel like you were coming into someone's backyard with an acoustic, like come to my fire pit. Let's sing some music together, which is a drastic change from my first album, which was a holiday album. And so that's coming across this fall. We will be having our CD release party for that. I'm. Highlighting the three films that we have done at Tree Fort Productions, they really started out as teaching projects and then we were so pleasantly surprised at the quality of the work 

Robyn Bell: mm-hmm 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: that we had to suddenly take them even more seriously. And the students are coming back, you know, three years later, like I was a baby there. I was. I was 10 when I filmed this and now I'm 14 and living in New York and I'm like, yeah. So it'll be interesting to revisit that one of them's called the Crimson Cloak and it's a prequel to a very famous grim fairy tale. So I won't give that anymore away. The second would be a beautiful documentary called Pay Attention. And it started out as a teen film class. And I said, what is it that you would like to talk about? And the students in that class both had ADHD. and they said, I'm just starting meds, or I've been on meds for years, or I'm starting a new type of, you know, personal training in executive function. And so I would like to document that journey. So they started and then the, pandemic hit us and we had to shut down. And then we met with them a year later after they've been, working on themselves and really at. What was this journey like at home? And then we interviewed their parents and some of their family members and also a doctor kind of honing in on this and come to find out How you approach ADHD in, in their situations was really a family function and it was beautiful to see maybe some of their families members had it. And some of them didn't, or maybe it was undiagnosed. So it became this really beautiful touching film about listening to themselves and slowing down, which ironically the world allowed them to do that. It was really 

Robyn Bell: there you go. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Something. , the last film is a beautiful genesis of dance and music. I, I happen to lose very quickly over 26 people to, the coronavirus. 

Robyn Bell: Wow. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: It was unbelievable. And it happened within eight weeks. So I stopped checking my email. I couldn't handle it anymore. And I started to process that through dance and I thought, how can I honor these people? And I have this young student who's not so young anymore. She's. 14 Lily Wheeler, who had been the lead in my first film. And you know, I, I teach her private lessons a lot on zoom out of my carport. It was amazing. And two years ago now we started kind of collaborating on what would be a 20 minute dance piece that was then edited down into four minutes. And it's so touching and moving, it actually won an award for best soundtrack. But what's interesting. She puts on a mask in the piece and I almost took it away to make it timeless, but I thought, no, that wouldn't be really reflective of where we are. It wouldn't be telling the truth. So she takes you through this, this living, losing loving, and it's just a four minute meditation on youth adults and, and maybe even more adult, like parental age and then the elderly and, and how you lose. And. Kind of navigate through that it's beautiful piece. 

Robyn Bell: Beautiful. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yeah. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. And so these three films are circulating the film festival. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: They are, we're gonna go ahead and launch them here. They're all shorts. And I'm also including Allison Stewart, my former, student she's gone forward to graduate from, um, Rollins College. And she started to do a documentary about the neurodiverse community Running Man Theater in Orlando. And how they put on these productions and how she's a part of it and how they grow, what you can offer and what I think people don't realize. I hope they don't underestimate that community and not only what they can produce, but what they need. They need an outlet too, to be zany and funny and creative. Of course we do. So Tree Fort Productions is just now going to launch their own series of neurodiverse classes starting in October. And we thought this would be a lovely highlight of. 17 minute film that has gone on to be , a part of film festivals as well. So that's all happening one night, October 17th at 7:00 PM. It's a lovely film festival. I hope you can come out and take a look. 

Robyn Bell: Oh yeah. It sounds really wonderful. And a great diverse, you know, the arts, as we always say, it's about human emotion and we're not always happy. Right, right. the human emotion runs the gamut. And so does our art to represent that? 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yes. 

Robyn Bell: Uh, and you, you were talking about. Coronavirus in the pandemic. And that kind of leads us to this one woman play that you have written and you are starring in and are producing now with Tree Fort Productions. It's Mann's Last Dance. And, uh, for those that may not know what it takes to take a project like this from the idea to the end production, take us through the many. Steps and maybe missteps , you know, to, to have brought this project to life on stage. And then just tell us about this wonderful story. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Sure. A few years ago, I'd say it was three years ago. I came across a Facebook ad during women's history month mm-hmm and the story of Franceska Mann popped up and I watched it. It was probably a less than a minute. And I was thinking to myself, she's a hero and no one. Anything about her. I'd never even heard her name. She went by a few names, Loretta Horowitz, Lola Horowitz, Francesca Manheim Rosenberg. And so I leaned into that story a little bit and started to do some research and I thought. This is worthy of me researching her a little bit more. And as I did, I started to hear two voices in my head, one of her, and one of her former ballet teacher Irina, who I did find out is her true name. I don't know her last name, but we could, we could research even more. How much time do we have but what's interesting is I still take ballet class and teach ballet class each week over six hours total. And I started to echo what she was learning in the ballet world. She was a very famous ballerina, almost like the Esther Mertz of her time. She was rising to fame very, very quickly, but when Germany invaded Poland in 1939 on September 1st, ironically, it had thwarted all of her plans and I think. It thwarted everyone's plans. I mean, let's face it stardom and fame mean nothing if you don't have bread to eat. Right. 

Robyn Bell: Right. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: And I think it was very humbling. To everyone, especially her, but she decided to use any part of her former fame to help others. And she went around, doing something to help her, community in the ghetto. And it turned out not to be helping her community. And I think that really is the linchpin of this story. And I don't wanna give too much away, but Franceska Mann was a lovely ballerina who went for years and years, really rising to fame. She got married to a lovely man, named Mark Rosenberg. And they were just starting their life together and something happened and she stood up for humanity in every best possible, good way. And I thought that's a story to, to share so I started writing it really with those two voices, a few other voices come in. And I kid you, not a friend of mine, had been a playwright and he always kind of dared me to do things. And his name was Sam Osler. And I said, I said, Sam, I'm thinking of doing this play. And he goes, well, I dare you to do it. So I went home one day and I wrote the whole play. 

Robyn Bell: Wow. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: I stayed up till about 4:00 AM, which is kind of how you want it to happen. That's a good way to happen.

Robyn Bell: You can't stop even if you wanted to, you're not able to. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Right. 

Robyn Bell: Mm-hmm . 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: And so I thought, okay, I'm just a vessel, I guess, for this. I don't really, you can't really describe it because if you are a metered writer, great. But if it comes to you and you have the time, great, however you get it out, get it out. So I did, and then I sat. And I never told anyone, cause I still don't fancy myself a writer, even though I've written other plays that have been produced in New York and other places, you really think of yourself as an actor I think, or I do. So the next thing I know is a few years later years, I was with Annie Morrison and Blake Walton at my studio. And they said, you know, have you written anything lately? And I'm like, listen. And they're part of the Sarasolo Theatre Project here in Sarasota. They run it. And I said, actually, would you take a look at this play that I wrote? I don't know if it's a play, but there's dance in it. And they're like, what? You have to send it to us. So I always audio record my plays. So that if, if someone wants to read it, you know, I have an inkling of what I was thinking. So you hear my cats meowing in the background and you hear me pouring water, and it's just very rudimentary. And I sent it to them. And within two days, I got an email back saying, start memorizing your lines. This is mesmerizing. And I thought, okay, you're very nice. Thank you so much. You're good friends. And they said, no, no, you need to do this. And I was like, okay, well, Okay, so they said, please, please start working on it. So they would give me little and I would give myself little homework to complete more scenes. Well then a friend of mine who I met at Starbucks, she's wonderful. Through another mutual friend, she had helped. Kind of found the Arden Theatre Company. And she was like, so what are you working on lately? And I'm like, well, so many things, but I actually have this pet project and she's like, this is fascinating. You need to do like a workshop. So I'm like, okay, well I'll do one in April. And she was like, really? So they thought they were coming to a play reading where you stand at a stand and you, reenact what you need to work out. It does the storyline follow the lovers? Does it follow the narration? Do you understand the, the drama breakdown, but I kind of fast forwarded that this is kind of how I am really. I'm a doer less meetings, more doings. And I built a. with what I had in the back room. I have a stage and I, I literally built a set and I got a costume and I started dancing the piece cuz there's a lot of dance in it. And I designed the audio, I hired a stage manager and I put on a show for about an hour. 

Robyn Bell: Wow. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: And I carried my script, 

Robyn Bell: not what they were expecting. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: No, no, not what I was expecting, but I had to do it. Because, how do you parlay, you know, plays are meant to be done. 

Robyn Bell: Mm-hmm ,

Katherine Michelle Tanner: they're not really meant to be read, especially one with dance. So if I'm going to 

Robyn Bell: well in a play about a ballerina, 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: right. 

Robyn Bell: Really should have dance, 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: right? so I could play this music and they're gonna be bored outta their minds. You know, I could say ton, do all you want. So I did it and they were on the edge of their seat and I. Was then having to take it even more seriously. And that's when I decided, okay. I think I'm now gonna be a part of a workshop with the it's called the solo project with solo synergy, with Sarasolo Theatre Company, with Annie and Blake in July, I did a, a very invited workshop of about 24 people and got some feedback. Is this working? They gave me great notes. I incorporated all of them. And that's what led me to then the project in July, which we did a 10 minute showing. Yet again, people were like, what is this? I'm very interested. And I thought, maybe I need to fast forward this more than I think I do. So we are possibly going to bring this back again in January during Holocaust remembrance weekend.

Robyn Bell: Oh yes. Yep. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: January 27th and 28th. . As a gala, but I needed to fast forward it now and work out the kinks and listen, there's no right time to do a play but this is living now. And the fact that Germany invaded Poland in September 1st, we need to honor that time now. So it is gonna run these 12 performances in September. And we're so pleased. And I. I cannot. Thank my team enough. I think the universe conspires to work with you when something is aligned and I, I can't thank them enough for how this is playing out. It's literally a miracle. 

Robyn Bell: And so the play has two characters. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: It does mainly two characters. 

Robyn Bell: Okay. Tell us, when does the place start in Franceska's life?

Katherine Michelle Tanner: 13 years old. Okay. And she starts to decide she's so clumsy. She really needs to take a dance class and she goes in and little, does she know she's getting life lessons from this lovely mentor and the mentor is getting life lessons from her. And then she falls in love. And then something happens where she has to step up to the plate and not only be brave for herself, but then be brave for others. And it's absolutely mesmerizing. 

Robyn Bell: During the Holocaust, she has a, a. Pivotal moment in her, whole story line. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yes. Yes. And I know that that can be triggering for people. I get it, but I want you to remember with great sadness comes great joy, and this is one of those plays that there's so much joy and inspiration and there's that sprinkle of sadness. We can't have the joy without it. Mm-hmm so it isn't a one hour of drudgery. It's. oh my gosh. Let's remind ourselves of how great we can be.

Robyn Bell: And Katherine, I'm wondering why you chose to do this as a one woman play and not with all the other male characters that could be involved in the story.

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Right? That's a wonderful question. I did question that. In fact, I stopped writing. I stopped working on it a little bit because I, I, I said to my friend, Annie, I think there could be more people here. Even a screenplay has definitely come to the table a few times with, with some companies. And I also think that will come in time, but when it comes to this piece, she learns so many lessons from this woman. It seems. That she's seamless. They, they become a quilt. Well, you can't tell who stitches or who's. And I think that when people work on a quilt, you know, I did those stitches and you did those. No one really knows mm-hmm it just covers you and warms you up and let's go. So I think that is the beauty of this piece is. It wouldn't work if all those other people were in it as beautifully as it does as a one, you know, I've never seen this show, but that's how it feels.

Robyn Bell: Sure. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: You know, 

Robyn Bell: now, obviously if there's dancing, I'm gonna assume there's music. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yes. 

Robyn Bell: Tell me about how the music came about and who has performed it or where you got it. How does that work? 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yes. I am a musician I play the violin and the piano, mainly the piano. I'm also a singer and a writer. And I, do write music to inspire the characters. I needed some transitions, a lot of the music as Robert Thaylor's Ballet. Class, CD. So we have permission to use that it's very classical, very timeless, none of the pieces anyone would know mm-hmm , which I think really add to the storytelling, but I'd say 40% is his and 60% is mine.

Robyn Bell: Wow. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: And at first it took a few minutes to kind of decide what is the best to tell the story here. I think it's almost like synesthesia when you're one artist, you're all of them. And if you're not, you find the person that is, this just comes very naturally to me. So we started to hone in on those. And Blake was like, no, we have to use your music. And I'm like, no, we, so that has become a, literally a I, when I think about it, he goes, you don't see how much, you know it already. And you're like, kind of it's. It's literally like breathing. And I said, yeah, I hope so. But I did start creating the soundtrack for the workshop and then we've honed in a little bit more. And when it comes to just the sounds, those you garner off of, you know, you create a few, but you usually buy, like, if you need a train whistle and things like that. 

Robyn Bell: Sure. Yeah. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: But you'll hear the musical interludes and they are a part of the story. It's just like being a. Composer for a film mm-hmm , you have to guide the people on their emotions, not only as an actor, but as that sound person,

Robyn Bell: That's a great answer. I can see and hear even in you describing it, how that is all gonna work together and I'm, I'm anxious to hear the music you wrote. That's very impressive now, as the person. I came up with the idea and wrote the script and is performing it because I'm not an actor. I wouldn't know this, how. Is it to be directed by someone else? 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: That's a great question. When I first did the workshop, I followed my own instincts and kind of set boundaries. Like this was her dressing room. This was the dance studio. This is the club. This is the train. So I came up with the locations and I had a, like a floor plan of it's called blocking and 

Robyn Bell: sure.

Katherine Michelle Tanner: You know, a structure. And then if you are smart, And I mean, this, you have to step it away from that and you just have to be an actor and you have to follow your instincts, but find someone, or hopefully you find someone who allows you to play, but is willing to tell you the truth. This is working, this isn't working. I do like this. Let's throw that out. Let's try this. And I always come from a place of yes, until it's a no and I'm like, this is, this feels really wrong. And they. But you have to come from a place of yes. So when I asked Blake to be, you know, Annie and Blake were a part of it all along, Annie has her own one woman show right now, Merrily From Center Stage. So I knew she couldn't, hook onto this one, but Blake was integral from the beginning and I said, Blake, would you please be my director? And so I hired him. I had no idea. What a great relationship. This was gonna be, I had always hoped for it. And I thought, thank goodness, we didn't let each other down um, and he is like, no kidding. Right. You know, the expectation is pretty high, but I also think. when you are real and just telling the truth, just get outta your own way, you know, let him tell the truth. It's that simple. And I think sometimes that's the hardest thing for artists is to just get outta your own way and let someone tell you the truth.

Robyn Bell: Yeah. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: And I think if you follow that, that's the only goal. When I step into the dressing room each night, just go tell the. That's it. And you have to spend years to get there, but , it's just like any good relationship, that's what good communication is. 

Robyn Bell: Now. You, you mentioned the dresser room. So I have to ask about costuming or costume changes. Mm-hmm what, how is Franceska portrayed visually? 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: When I first wrote it the role, I dunno why I did this. It fascinates me, but I wrote in costume changes and I was like, what am I doing? And then I thought, no, I can grow her up with this. So I wear a very simple, , slip with a skirt, with a cardigan, with a jacket. And I look very 1930s. 

Robyn Bell: Mm-hmm 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: it does look like a ballerina of sorts, but. Things go awry and she's struggling. So how do we go from this lovely, coiffed ballerina to a struggling person who's starving? This works and we've gone through a little bit of a gray moment and now the black moment, and I think the black works opposite my pale skin and so we're kind of going with that also. When you are wearing white or brights on stage, it does give a different message. And I think this one kind of worked out. So we've, we've gone through a few iterations. 

Robyn Bell: Yeah. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Yeah. 

Robyn Bell: All right. Cool. Well, we are all very excited to see this. I'm hearing about it for the first time, really from Dorian Boyd, who is my colleague here and connected the two of us together, and this one woman play called Mann's Last Dance about a Polish ballerina, Franceska Mann, during World War II, it could be seen at Katherine's Tree Fort Productions, which is located at the Crossings Mall. The address. 35 0 1 South Tamiami Trail in Sarasota. It begins on September 9th and it runs all the way through October 2nd. And tickets can be purchased in advance by going to MannsLastDance.com. And we'll tell you the word, man has two NS, M a N N MannsLastDance.com or by calling the box office at 9 4 1 5 4 4 2 2 7 6, Katherine, Michelle Tanner. Thank you so much for joining us today and for sharing your energy and talent and your passions with the Suncoast community. I know how much effort it takes to start your own production company. Write your own show and get the word out to the whole world about it. So Brava to you and best of luck with this show. 

Katherine Michelle Tanner: Thank you so much.