Choral Artists of Sarasota, the region’s premier professional vocal ensemble, celebrates the excellence of choral music through innovative, stimulating performances and educational outreach.
The State College of Florida is proud to be the only college in the Manatee/Sarasota area that offers the same music courses that are available at all four-year universities across the state and the country.
The SCF Music Program is a "transfer" program, meaning that students can take the first two years of a music major program at SCF and then transfer to a four-year university to finish their junior and senior years of music major classes. Courses at SCF cost about half of the tuition price for the same courses at a four-year institution.
The SCF Music Program also provides high quality, low cost cultural arts programming for the greater Bradenton and Sarasota area.Visit Website
Florida Studio Theatre (FST) is Sarasota’s contemporary theatre. Founded in 1973, FST has grown to a village of five theatres located in the heart of Downtown, Sarasota. Each theatre is small in size and large in impact — providing intimate and engaging settings for high-quality, professional performances.
Today, FST has established itself as a major force in American Theatre. FST is the largest subscription theatre in the state of Florida and among the largest in the country,* serving more than 230,000 live attendees each year across its diverse programs: Mainstage, Cabaret, Stage III, Children’s Theatre, FST School, New Play Development, and FST Improv.
Even with its growth, Florida Studio Theatre remains firmly committed to making the arts accessible and affordable to as many people as possible. Under the leadership of Producing Artistic Director Richard Hopkins, FST develops theatre that speaks to our living, evolving, and dynamically changing world. Hip and historical, entertaining and challenging, we are the theatre where the street meets the elite — where everyone is welcome to engage in the art of theatre.
*Source: Theatre Communications Group (TCG), 2017 survey of professional American Theatres
MAINSTAGE | The Mainstage is FST’s flagship program, producing the best in contemporary theatre. From new works to the latest Off-Broadway and Broadway hits, seven annual Mainstage productions reflect our living, evolving, and dynamically changing world. Over the course of its 45+ year history, FST’s Mainstage has produced more than 30 world premieres and more than 90 regional premieres. The Mainstage series embodies FST’s mission “to challenge with as much gusto as we entertain” by embracing a diverse range of contemporary plays and musicals. Through these challenging and entertaining works, the Mainstage provides a platform for contemporary issues and ideas both on stage and within the community.
CABARET | Launched in 1996, the Cabaret Series has become one of FST’s most popular artistic endeavors – generating new audiences along with new artistic opportunities. To date, FST’s Cabaret has created over 40 FST original music revues, spanning a wide range of popular musical genres. This beloved series celebrates the lyric poets of our day, drawing inspiration from Gershwin to Billy Joel, and is also home to social and political satire-inspired works. Set in FST’s intimate Parisian-style dinner theatres, six Cabaret productions each year provide a relaxed and engaging atmosphere that is fun for everyone – artist and audience.
STAGE III | For the adventurous theatre-goer, FST’s Stage III series is dedicated to presenting plays that are challenging in content and unique in form. With such past productions as Robert Askins’ Hand to God, Markus Potter and David Holthouse’s Stalking the Bogeyman, and John Cameron Mitchell’s Hedwig and the Angry Inch, this series truly speaks to FST’s mission “to present theatre that challenges with as much gusto as it entertains.” Stage III also reconnects FST to its roots. During its early years, FST toured to alternative performance spaces like migrant camps and prisons, connecting with audiences who did not attend the theatre, but who were intimately familiar with the play’s themes. Today, this work to tell the challenging stories of our time lives on in Stage III.
CHILDREN'S THEATRE | FST offers two theatre programs for young audiences: Our WRITE A PLAY program in schools and our weekend Children’s Theatre series on our downtown theatre campus. FST’s award-winning WRITE A PLAY program is a year-round arts-in-education initiative, providing students with the example, the inspiration, and the skills to write their own original plays. Plays generated through the program are then invited to be submitted to FST’s annual Young Playwrights Festival playwriting competition. Winning plays are selected to be mounted in a professional production and brought to life by FST actors. Since its inception in 1991, WRITE A PLAY has impacted over one million children throughout the state of Florida and as far as Scotland, Russia, and Israel. On site at FST, the weekend Children's Theatre series, launched in 2016, is designed for children and families to explore the world of theatre arts. Audiences have the opportunity to ask questions about the show - How did it make them feel? What did they see? - all while spending quality time with family for less than the cost of attending a movie.
FST SCHOOL | Founded in 1982, the Florida Studio Theatre School offers classes year-round for students of all ages and experience levels in acting, music, dance, theatre writing, and improvisation. Led by FST’s teaching staff of trained theatre professionals, students learn solid acting method, stage technique, literary skills, and more. The FST School is also home to youth Spring Break and Summer Theatre Camps, as well as FST’s VIP program, serving students with behavioral, emotional, and developmental special needs. Furthering FST’s mission “to make theatre as accessible and affordable to as many people as possible,” our Scholarship Program offsets the cost of enrollment for 15% of Florida Studio Theatre School students.
NEW PLAY DEVELOPMENT | New Play Development is the lifeblood of Florida Studio Theatre. Our philosophy of new play development is one that goes beyond the world premiere. FST receives over 3,500 new play submissions annually from established and emerging playwrights. From these plays, FST selects work to be cultivated through our many New Play Development initiatives. Regular reading series provide select works in progress with a platform, a live audience, artistic support, and valuable feedback. In addition, FST’s Playwright Collective is a brain trust of some of the top playwrights in the country, working to develop new plays for the FST stage. To date, FST has produced over 30 world premieres, many of which have been supported and nurtured through FST’s New Play Development program.
FST IMPROV | Since its founding in 2001, FST Improv has grown into a robust, year-round program, offering never-before-seen shows week after week. FST Improv celebrates the full spectrum of Improv disciplines, going beyond game-focused Short-Form improvisation, to also incorporate Long-Form, Musical, and Free-Form styles. FST also produces the annual Sarasota Improv Festival, bringing the best improv troupes from across the country and around the world to Sarasota each year for a whirlwind weekend of spontaneous art. Today, the Sarasota Improv Festival is the premier festival of its kind in the Southeast United States.Visit Website
State College of Florida has had an active, vibrant theatre program since 1965. We produce four plays per year and offer students opportunities in both performance and technical areas of theatre.
With auditions open to everyone, we welcome students who are planning to make a career of theatre or who simply enjoy theatre as an avocation. SCF is your community resource for theatre education and community enrichment.
The Theatre program of the Department of Fine and Performing Arts presents four or five shows annually. These comedies, dramas, and mysteries are presented in the David S. & Anne V. Howard Studio Theatre.
These theatre productions are staged by professional directors who also serve as both adjunct and full-time faculty. Auditions are open to SCF students and community members.Visit Website
Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe (WBTT) was founded in December 1999 as a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization. Our mission is to produce professional theatre that promotes and celebrates African American history and experience, engages a broad base of patrons and audiences, supports the development of a dynamic group of aspiring artists and builds self-esteem in youth of color.
Diversity and Inclusion are core values for Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, and we operate under the concept that being diverse means having the broadest possible representation of individuals, experiences and perspectives in all-encompassing terms. It is an inclusive concept encompassing, without limitation, race, color, ethnicity, culture, nationality, gender identity, sexual orientation or identity on the LGBTQ+ spectrum, religion or lack thereof, age, economic class, educational level, language, immigration status, physical mobility and ability, and marital and parental status.Visit Website
Jump Encore! was developed in 2010 as a children's performance company as part of Jump Dance Company. Jump Encore!'s children's performance company has been producing 2 children's musicals for the last 8 years directed by Kristina Kennedy Babcock. Jump Encore!'s children's theatre program creates theatre experiences that educate, challenge, and inspire their students. Jump Encore!'s program isn't like any in the area. Students enrolled in our children's production, rehearse once a week from August-May. This makes our program a great option for children enrolled in several extra curricular activities or families with busy schedules.
In June 2021, Jump Encore! announced they would be expanding their program to include adult professional productions. Jump Encore! is excited to begin producing family friendly productions to educate and stimulate the minds and imaginations of our audience of all ages through high-quality productions, year-round education, and community outreach. Our Professional performance company actors will work and perform as an ensemble to help bring out the intimacy and creativity of theater. Our exciting new program hopes to present several productions each season ranging from new releases to some of your favorite classics with a twist.
Artistic Director/Professional Performance Company Director: Jessica Lyndsie Babcock
Children's Program Director: Kristina Kennedy-Babcock
Resident Lighting Designer: Ethan Vail
Creative/Production Associates: Cory Boyas, Belle Babcock, Erin Montgomery, Joshua Linderman.
The Pops Orchestra is the community orchestra for the greater Bradenton/Sarasota community. With more than 65 instrumentalists, including some of the finest professional, amateur and student musicians throughout the area and led by Dr. Robyn Bell, the Pops presents high quality musical entertainment at affordable prices.Visit Website
Since 1949, Sarasota Orchestra has inspired and entertained music-lovers across the region and visitors from around the world. A cultural leader in a city known for its vibrant arts community, Sarasota Orchestra’s threefold mission is dedicated to exquisite performance and first-class musical education.
As the oldest continuing orchestra in the state of Florida, each year the 76-member Orchestra performs more than 100 classical, pops, chamber music, and community outreach concerts.
Sarasota Orchestra's acclaimed music education program includes the Sarasota Youth Orchestras, established in 1959 and currently supporting eight student ensembles, as well as the annual Summer Music Camp. Sarasota Orchestra also offers music lessons for students of all ages and abilities and sponsors multiple outreach programs. An annual tradition since 1953, the Orchestra’s Young Person’s Concerts brings the joy and wonder of a symphony orchestra performance to nearly 10,000 Sarasota and Manatee County fourth- and fifth-graders every fall.
Sarasota Orchestra is the parent program of the world-renowned Sarasota Music Festival, founded in 1965. Each June the Sarasota Music Festival welcomes 60 pre-professional fellows from around the globe and 40 faculty artists representing the top conservatories, music colleges, and classical music ensembles for three weeks of intensive study and public performances.
The mission of Sarasota Orchestra is to engage, educate, and enrich our community through high-quality, live musical experiences.
For three weeks each June, internationally recognized guest artists and musicians come together in Florida to study and perform chamber music. The Sarasota Music Festival is a magical combination of youthful promise and acclaimed talent that carries a reputation as one of the finest classical-music events in the nation.
Nearly 500 fellows from top music programs at colleges and conservatories worldwide audition to participate in the Festival each year, but only 60 are accepted. These exceptional musicians work side-by-side with a group of 40 music masters, which comprise the guest faculty. In any given day during the Festival, a fellow may rehearse in a faculty-coached ensemble, play in master classes and perform on stage. Interspersed, are rare opportunities for the public to hear these visiting artists rehearse or perform together.
Co-founded by Paul Wolfe, the Sarasota Music Festival began in 1965 as a one-week event with seven guest mentors. In just two years, the festival grew to three weeks and was drawing students from across the United States. Over the years, the festival continued to expand and receive national and international attention. In 1984 it was designated by the Florida State Legislature as the "Official Teaching and Performing Festival of the State of Florida." In 2016 Jeffrey Kahane was appointed the festival's Music Director.
There are more than 40 guest artists, including many of the festival's own alumni. These masters represent nearly all major American orchestras and a cross-section of renowned music schools, conservatories and institutes of music. The fellows range from professional-level musicians to superior students in music schools and conservatories. Several travel from other countries to participate.
Festival audiences are entertained by a wide variety of symphonic artistry including: Thursday afternoon Artist Showcase concerts, Friday Festival chamber concerts, and Saturday Symphony orchestra concerts. Many patrons enjoy the option of purchasing Festival Passes, which allows them access to the artists' master classes and rehearsals.
We hope you'll join us this June for our showcase of world-class music.Visit Website