Celebrating This Year’s Spelman Award Recipients
March 17, 2023
It takes a village of people to make FST the regional theatre leader that it is today. The truth is that the majority of those people are not those haloed by a spotlight night after night, but are those working behind the scenes to support the world-class artistry taking place on FST’s five stages.
Every year, FST recognizes an individual or couple who has demonstrated extraordinary leadership for FST through philanthropic support, stewardship, or service. This year, FST is pleased to present the 31st Annual Spelman Award to Ed and Susan Maier.
“Ed recently said to me, ‘I am truly humbled that you chose us to receive this award, because there are so many people who have done so much more for FST than us, but I assure you, there is no one who loves FST more than we do,’” shared Richard Hopkins, FST’s Producing Artistic Director.
“Since we moved to Sarasota more than a decade ago, we have been impressed by the caliber and professionalism of the productions at FST,” said Ed and Susan Maier. “FST contributes so much to the Sarasota community, and we are happy to support them in their artistic endeavors.”
The Maiers were honored publicly on February 6 at FST's fundraiser, The 70s Shindig. Proceeds from the event went to support of the theatre's Playwright Collective, a select group of 15 playwrights dedicated to developing new works for FST's five stages. This year’s Shindig was chaired by 2019 Spelman Award recipient Wendy Grady, who, along with her husband, Bob, are Underwriters and dedicated supporters of FST’s WRITE A PLAY program.
Featuring funky cocktails, special performances by the casts of FST’s hit Cabarets, The ’70s: More Than A Decade and A Place in the Sun: A Tribute to Stevie Wonder, and a three-course dinner by Michael’s On East, this year’s Shindig brought together artists, community leaders, and supporters to celebrate Sarasota’s contemporary theatre as we continue to foster the development of new plays and produce affordable and accessible theatre for Florida’s Cultural Coast.