Nate Jacobs, Founder/Artistic Director

Nate Jacobs, Founder & Artistic Director

Nate Jacobs is a driving force in Florida’s theatre scene. A graduate of Florida A&M University, Nate founded Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe in 1999. He has written, composed, directed and performed in many shows, as an actor, singer, dancer and comedian. He works extensively in the community training and mentoring youth in the performing arts.

As a result of his outstanding contributions to young people, the Sarasota County Branch NAACP Youth Council recognized Nate as one of its 2012 Men of Valor. In the spring of 2013, he was inducted into the Community Video Archives Hall of Fame for his significant contributions to the arts and education. In 2015, Nate was recognized as a Champion of Diversity for the arts during the Biz(941) and La Guia magazines’ Unity Awards Luncheon, and was honored with the prestigious Larry Leon Hamlin Producer Award during the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., “for his contributions to Black theatre specifically and American theatre in general.”

In 2017, Goodwill Manasota named him a Community Ambassador of the Year. In 2018, the Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County honored Nate with the Arts Leadership Award for Artistic Achievement. In the summer of 2019, he brought Soul Man to the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C. — WBTT’s fourth appearance there.

Nate and the troupe marked the 20th anniversary of Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall in November 2019 with Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now, a musical retrospective of the company’s first two decades. In January 2020, following a capital campaign that raised more than $8.5 million for WBTT’s campus and endowment, the Gerri Aaron & the Aaron Family Foundation Theatre Building opened with its first show in the renovated theatre — the musical Caroline, or Change.