A Spirited Summer Season

They say that the best things in life are worth waiting for, and we couldn’t agree more.

This summer, FST returns to full production with a lively three-show Mainstage Series and a three-show Cabaret Series that celebrates the joy and resilience of contemporary theatre.

Big Characters. Big Impact.

FST’s 29th Summer Mainstage Season kicks off with Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story, one of the most successful Rock & Roll musicals of all time. Called “Rockin’ happiness” by The Chicago Tribune, this feel-good tribute celebrates the life and legacy of Buddy Holly, a trailblazing musician who, despite his tragically short career, left an enduring impact on Rock & Roll. Buddy tells the story of the young musician’s meteoric rise to fame, from “That’ll Be the Day” hitting the airwaves in 1957 to “The Day the Music Died” two years later. Featuring over 20 of Holly’s greatest hits, including “Peggy Sue” and “Everyday,” along with Ritchie Valens’ “La Bamba” and The Big Bopper’s “Chantilly Lace,” Buddy will transport you back to a time when Rock & Roll was dangerous, edgy, and new.

Deborah Brevoort, writer of My Lord, What A Night. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Next up, FST is proud to bring you the NNPN Rolling World Premiere of Deborah Brevoort’s My Lord, What A Night, an insightful new play that sheds light on an unlikely friendship between two 20th century icons: Marian Anderson and Albert Einstein. Following a sold-out concert in Princeton, New Jersey, internationally renowned singer Marian Anderson is refused a room at the whites-only Nassau Inn. With nowhere to go, acclaimed theoretical physicist Albert Einstein invites her to stay in his own home, sparking a lifelong friendship. Inspired by actual events, My Lord, What a Night offers a rare glimpse into the real-life struggles faced by these two iconic historical figures.

FST’s Summer Mainstage Season comes to a close with Richard Dresser’s Rounding Third. This heartwarming two-hander follows Don and Michael, two Little League coaches who are polar opposites – Don believes in winning at all costs and Michael just wants the players to have fun. Struggling for power over the team, the pair battles it out over everything from character-building to shoelaces to misfired pop-flies. Inspired by the playwright’s own experiences with Little League baseball, Rounding Third is an endearing comedy of runs and errors, exploring fatherhood, friendship, and what it means to truly win.

Singin’ and Swingin’ in the Cabaret

Nothing brings people together quite like music. This summer, we’re serving up another Cabaret Series celebrating some of the greatest music of all time, along with the musical icons who made it.

“The Killer” gets things started in the Court Cabaret with Great Balls of Fire, the ultimate tribute to the one and only Jerry Lee Lewis. Created by Michael Schiralli and Jason Cohen, who has played Lewis in nearly eighty cities across North America, this wild Rock & Roll revue brings the ivory-smashing superstar back to life. With hits from ‘50s and beyond, including “Good Golly, Miss Molly,” “Shake, Rattle, and Roll,” and “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On,” this electrifying act celebrates the original bad boy of Rock & Roll.

The cast of Shades of Bublé. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Next up, we shift musical stylings with Shades of Bublé, a three-man tribute to “The Modern Sinatra” – Michael Bublé. Featuring intricate three-part harmonies, smooth choreography, and suave style, this delightful revue honors the sophistication and fun that Bublé brings to the stage. After debuting in 2015 with a sold-out run, Shades of Bublé has charmed audiences across the country. Now, the troupe is excited to bring such classics as “Feeling Good,” “Moondance,” and “Save the Last Dance for Me” to Sarasota audiences for the first time.

“We don’t want to do an impersonation of Bublé,” explained Ron DeStefano, Shades of Bublé producer, “but rather, take the music he’s performed and recorded, combine that with the three-part harmony sound from the ‘50s and ‘60s, and give the audience some real satisfying surprises.”

Kimberly Hawkey of The Swingaroos. Photo by Sarah Haley.

We close out our Summer Cabaret Series with the return of a Sarasota favorite: The Swingaroos. Back with an all-new show, Jukebox Saturday Night, The Swingaroos put their signature jazzy twist on some of the Jukebox’s greatest hits, including “(Get Your Kicks) On Route 66,” “Heart and Soul,” and “There’s No Business Like Show Business.” Called “Unforgettable” and “Nothing less than stellar” by The Observer, Sarasota’s favorite swing-era territory band is sure to dazzle and delight with their latest Cabaret creation.

Subscribe today, and see three Mainstage shows or three Cabaret shows for as little as $49! Click here for more information on this Summer’s Mainstage Series, and click here for more information on this Summer’s Cabaret Series.

**Header Picture: Kimberly Hawkey and Nathan Yates Douglass in FST’s 2018 presentation of “The Music of the Night.” Photo by Sarah Haley.