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World premiere, original production travels through the too-short life of ‘The King of Soul’

SARASOTA, FL – Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe continues its 2015-2016 season with The Sam Cooke Story, which runs March 2 – April 9. The world premiere, original production written and adapted by Nate Jacobs, Michael Jacobs and B.G. Rhule, will take theatre patrons through the life of Cooke – popularly known as “The King of Soul” – who died at the tender age of 33.

Annual event to feature WBTT alumus turned Broadway star Teresa Stanley

SARASOTA, FL – Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe will present its spring fundraiser, the “April Fools’ Fete,” on Thursday, March 31, 6-9pm at Michael’s On East (1212 East Avenue S., Sarasota). Featured performer will be one of WBTT’s founding members turned Broadway star Teresa Stanley; the theme of the event is “From WBTT to Broadway: Teresa Stanley’s Journey.” 

February programs offered in recognition of Black History Month to focus on Florida Highwaymen and renowned playwright August Wilson

SARASOTA, FL – The Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe (WBTT) announces its 2016 WBTT Voices program, which is presented in honor of Black History Month. There are two events scheduled in February: on February 8, the topic is “Meet the Florida Highwaymen Artists”; on February 14, two professionals will offer “Personal Reflections of August Wilson.”

Partnership with Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Bradenton Alumnae Chapter to collect toys for underprivileged children in Sarasota and Manatee counties

SARASOTA, FL – For the second year, Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe is partnering with the Bradenton Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. (BAC DST) on the "Keishonda Packer Cooper Holiday Toy Drive." The effort, being held under the auspices of Toys for Tots, will benefit homeless and underprivileged children in Manatee and Sarasota counties. For the second year, Bealls Outlet will donate toys to the toy drive.

Marian Moss takes role of chair and Doris Johnson joins board for growing arts organization

SARASOTA, FL - Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe has named two supporters to leadership roles: Marian Moss has been named board chair, and Doris Johnson is the organization's newest board member. The two bring business savvy, organizational knowledge and deep commitment to the cause to the table.

Arts organization's major gala to feature Tony Award-winning Broadway actress, TV star and recording artist Melba Moore

SARASOTA, FL – Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe will present its major annual gala, this year titled "Broadway Under the Stars," on Thursday, November 19, 6-10pm at the Sarasota Municipal Auditorium (801 N. Tamiami Tr., Sarasota). Featured guest at the event will be the Tony Award-winning Broadway actress, TV star and recording artist Melba Moore, who was inducted into The Official Rhythm & Blues Music Hall of Fame Museum in Detroit on October 4.

Production brings WBTT founding member Apphia Campbell back to WBTT; serves as WBTT directorial debut for James Harkness

SARASOTA, FL – Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe opens its 2015-2016 season with The Color Purple, with a run of October 14 - November 21. This inspiring musical tells the story of an unforgettable woman who triumphs over adversity and discovers her unique voice in the world.  Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Alice Walker (and the popular 1985 Steven Spielberg film), the play chronicles Celie’s 40-year evolution from near-enslavement to enlightenment through heartfelt letters to God and her long-lost missionary sister. With a jubilant score of roof-raising gospel, jazz, and throaty blues, The Color Purple is the tale of an everywoman triumphing over adversity, and a testament to the power of hope.