SARASOTA, FL – In an effort to strengthen its education outreach program, Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe has hired Jim Weaver as its new education director/artistic associate. WBTT patrons may recognize Weaver’s name – he has directed productions including “Caroline or Change,” “Raisin,” “In the Heights,” “Fences” and “Purlie,” to name a few. In his new role, Weaver will oversee and grow adult and youth programs such as the WBTT Voices Community Forum, the Jazzlinks and Rhythm & Tales school outreach programs, Stage of Discovery summer musical theater intensive program, and new workshop opportunities as well as direct shows and staged readings.
Weaver’s most recent position was as director and professor of theatre studies for Kent State University at Stark, where he was afforded the opportunity to introduce innovative and unique courses that encouraged inclusivity of all members of the performing arts student body. He holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in acting and has earned awards recognizing his academic and theatrical achievements.
“WBTT is on the move, growing by leaps and bounds, with plans for an even brighter future,” said Weaver. “Education in the performing arts and accessibility to training are integral elements of that plan and I’m thrilled to be a part of those efforts with WBTT.”
Originally hailing from New York City, Weaver began his professional performance career at the age of 14 and has appeared in Broadway productions “Don’t Call Back,” “Marie Christine” and “Ragtime.” He has numerous off-Broadway, regional and international performance credits and numerous directorial credits as well as television, film and soundtrack recordings. He is also a skilled choreographer, with dance instruction styles including Afro/Caribbean, musical theatre, modern dance, contemporary jazz and ballet.
“For years, we have discussed how we could grow and strengthen our education programs,” said Nate Jacobs, founder/artistic director for WBTT. “Not only does Jim’s breadth of educational, directing and performance experience make him the ideal candidate for such work, he’s also already a treasured member of the WBTT extended family.”
Weaver begins his tenure on August 1, 2021. For more about WBTT, go to westcoastblacktheatre.org.
About Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe
The mission of Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe (WBTT) is to produce professional theatre that promotes and celebrates African American history and experience, engages a broad base of patrons and audiences, supports the development of a dynamic group of aspiring artists, and builds self-esteem in youth of color.