16/17 Dialogues on Diversity

Florida Studio Theatre presents Dialogues on Diversity. This call to conscience will include panel discussions, post-show discussions, online discussions, community events, and more. This year the forum series has expanded to include six shows: brownsville song (b-side for tray), Older Than Dirt, Stalking The Bogeyman, Gidion's Knot, Grounded, and The Exonerated. All events are free to attend but reservations are required and can be made by calling the box office at 941-366-9000 or online at www.floridastudiotheatre.org. Panel discussions are listed below. For a full list of events, please see the events tab.

Join the online discussion at www.fst-blog.com to hear more from community leaders and the Sarasota community.

Stalking the Bogeyman

Stalking the Bogeyman follows renowned journalist David Holthouse’s secret pursuit of justice for a crime hidden for 25 years. This new play explores the dangers of vengeance, the power of forgiveness, and the strength of family. Stalking the Bogeyman adapted by Markus Potter & David Holthouse plays January 4, 2017 - January 20, 2017 in Bowne's Lab Theatre. Click here to learn more. 

brownsville song (b-side for tray)

Tray Thompson is not just a name, not just a statistic. Set against the gritty backdrop of rundown Brooklyn, brownsville song is a poignant, and uplifting story of one family’s courage and endurance after a senseless act of gang violence alters a high school senior’s dreams forever. Left to pick up the pieces, his family must find hope and resilience within their tight-knit Brooklyn borough. brownsville song (b-side for tray) by Kimber Lee plays January 25, 2017 - March 26, 2017 in the Gompertz Theatre. Click here to learn more.

Older Than Dirt

Getting old is not for sissies, but it sure is good for a laugh. This musical comedy revue provides a witty and heartfelt 360 degree view of aging. Featuring songs by Shel Silverstein, Adam Sandler, and Neil Young, Older Than Dirt takes the audience on a journey through the pitfalls and perks of aging. Featuring songs such as “When I’m 64,” “Don’t Be Ashamed of Your Age,” and “Forever Young.” Older Than Dirt by Richard Hopkins, Rebecca Hopkins, with Arrangements by Jim Prosser plays February 8, 2017 - June 4, 2017 in the Court Cabaret. Click here to learn more.

Gidion's Knot

Over the course of a 90-minute parent/teacher conference, a grieving mother and an emotionally overwhelmed primary school teacher have a fraught conversation about the death of the mother’s son, the teacher’s student, Gidion. Gidion may have been bullied severely - or he may have been an abuser. As his story is slowly uncovered, the women try to reconstruct a satisfying explanation for Gidion’s act and come to terms with excruciating feelings of culpability. Gidion's Knot by Johnna Adams plays February 15, 2017 - March 3, 2017 in Bowne's Lab Theatre. Click here to learn more. 


An unexpected pregnancy ends an ace fighter pilot’s career in the sky. Reassigned to operate military drones from a windowless trailer outside Las Vegas, she hunts terrorists by day and returns to her family each night. As the pressure to track a high-profile target mounts, the boundaries begin to blur between the desert in which she lives and the one she patrols half a world away. Grounded by George Brant plays March 22, 2017 – April 7, 2017 in Bowne's Lab Theatre. Click here to learn more. 

Imagine spending days, weeks or months in a space that is cold and unfamiliar, with concrete walls and floors, and bars that keep you from going where you want.  Jails are not welcoming, nor are they meant to be. Imagine spending years in one, especially if you are not guilty of the crime for which you’ve been convicted. The Exonerated reveals true stories of exonerated prisoners from interviews and court transcripts, some of whom spent as many as twenty two years behind bars. The Exonerated by Jessica Blanka nd Erik Jensen plays from April 19, 2017 - April 23, 2017 in the Keating Theatre. Click here to learn more.

The Forums are sponsored by:

(Events scheduled as of January 9, 2017)

November 9, 2016
FST Forums Kick Off Event
5:30-7:00 PM | Keating Theatre

January 6, 2017
Stalking the Bogeyman: Opening Night
7:00 PM | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

January 12, 2017
Stalking the Bogeyman Post Show Discussion
Immediately Following the Show | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

January 27, 2017
brownsville song (b-side for tray): Opening Night
8:00 PM | Gompertz Theatre

February 10, 2017
Older than Dirt: Opening Night
7:30 PM | John C. Court Cabaret

February 16, 2017
brownsville song (b-side for tray) Post Show Discussion
Immediately Following the Show | Gompertz Theatre

February 17, 2017
Gidion’s Knot: Opening Night
7:00 PM | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

February 18, 2017
brownsville song (b-side for tray) Pay What You Can Night
8:00 PM  |  Gompertz Theatre

February 23, 2017
Gidion’s Knot Post Show Discussion
Immediately Following the Show | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

March 2, 2017
brownsville song (b-side for tray) Post Show Discussion
Immediately Following the Show | Gompertz Theatre

March 6, 2017
Panel Discussion: brownsville song (b-side for tray)
Unnecessary Losses : the status of our Young African American Men and Boys

Moderated by Chief Judge Charles E. Williams
Special guest:  Psychologist, Dr. Eddy Regnier:  State Council on Black Men and Boys
5:00 PM | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

March 9, 2017
brownsville song (b-side for tray) Post Show Discussion
Immediately Following the Show | Gompertz Theatre

March 16, 2017
brownsville song (b-side for tray) Post Show Discussion
Immediately Following the Show | Gompertz Theatre

March 24, 2017
Grounded: Opening Night
7:00 PM | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

March 30, 2017
Grounded Post Show Discussion
PTSD in the Military
Immediately Following the Show | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

April 10, 2017
Panel Discussion: Older Than Dirt
5:00 PM | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

April 13, 2017
Older Than Dirt Post Show Discusion
Immediately Following the Show | John C. Court Cabaret

April 21, 2017
The Exonerated: Opening Night
8:00pm  |  Keating Theatre

April 27, 2017
The Exonerated Panel Discussion
5:00pm  |  Bowne's Lab

May 1, 2017
Panel Discussion: Older Than Dirt
5:00 PM | Bowne’s Lab Theatre

Season Underwriters


•     Mr. & Mrs Dennis & Graci McGillicuddy
•     Mrs. Anne Nethercott


•     Gerri Aaron
•     Ed and Judy Christian
•     Georgia Court
•     Bob and Bonny Israeloff
•     Ernie Kretzmer, in loving memory
       of his wife Alisa Kretzmer
•     Dorothy Waldron
•     Gulf Coast Community Foundation


•     The Woman’s Exchange, Inc.
•     The Gulf Coast Community Foundation

Stage III

•     Georgia Court
•     Herald Tribune Media Group


•     The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee
•     Ina Schnell


Stalking the Bogeyman

•     Ruth Gorton

brownsville song (b-side for tray)

•     Gaele Barthold
•     Cookie Boudreaux
•     Harriette Buckman
•     Joel and Sandy Cuba
•     Herald Tribune Media Group
•     Ina Schnell
•     Sally Yanowitz
•     Ruth Gorton
•     Lois Stulberg
•     Lois and Alan Schottenstein

Older Than Dirt

•     Jan and Larry Coleman
•     Tom Wilson and Patrick J. Crimmings
•     SRQ Magazine


•     Jane Plitt and Jim Bruen
•     Sally Yanowitz

Forum Partners

•     ABC 7-WWSB
•     Bradenton/Sarasota (FL) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated
•     Chautauqua Foundation
•     City of Sarasota Mayor’s Office
•     Compassion and Choices
•     Florida Veterans for Common Sense
•     Gulf Coast Community Foundation
•     Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas
•     Poetry Life
•     Sarasota County Bar Association’s Diversity Committee
•     Sarasota County Schools
•     Sarasota /Manatee Democratic Black Caucus of Florida
•     Sarasota Public Libraries
•     Tidewell Hospice
•     Dan and Litten Boxser, Herman and Sally Boxser Diversity Initiative
•     Charles Clapsaddle, Manateee Education Television
•     Luz Corcuera, Unidos Now
•     Georgia Court; Bookstore1
•     The Honorable Larry Eger, The Office of Public Defender
•     Dr. Donal O’Shea, New College
•     Reverend Dr. Tom Pfaff; Sarasota Ministerial Association
•     Michael J. Shelton, Director of Embracing Our Difference
•     Doug Staley, Child Protective Services
•     Tom Tryon, Opinion Editor of Sarasota Herald Tribune
•     Jeff Benninghoff
•     Dr. Willa Bernard
•     Sy & Shelley Goldblatt
•     Dr. Ed James II, Special Counsel
•     Gilbert King, author of Pulitzer Prize winning book Devil in the Grove
•     Former County Commissioner Carolyn Mason
•     Dennis and Graci McGillicuddy
•     Dale S. Recinella, author of        
•     Dr. Eddy Regnier
•     Ina Schnell