SARASOTA, FL – Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe recently received an Arts Appreciation Grant of $40,000 from Gulf Coast Community Foundation. The grant will support WBTT’s operations as well as the costs associated with its 2022-2023 season, which includes “Guys and Dolls,” “Flyin’ West,” “Dreamgirls,” “Big Sexy: The Fats Waller Revue” and the holiday show, “Black Nativity.”
This is the sixth Arts Appreciation grant WBTT has received from Gulf Coast, totaling $175,000 since the first award in 2018.
Gulf Coast’s Arts Appreciation Grants offer unrestricted funding to cornerstone arts organizations – in recognition of their contributions to our region’s economy and quality of life – to further their missions. A streamlined application and reporting process enable Gulf Coast’s arts partners to keep their focus on what they do best: to present world-class performances and collections.
“As our organization continues to grow and evolve, the investment from Gulf Coast Community Foundation is essential in helping us to achieve our mission of ensuring greater diversity in professional theatre offerings and providing a stage and training for aspiring artists of color,” said WBTT Executive Director Julie Leach. “The increased award this year affirms the foundation’s continued confidence in us as a thriving, unique and important part of Sarasota’s arts community as well as a valued contributor to the region’s economy. Many thanks to Gulf Coast for its ongoing generous support of WBTT and our incomparable arts community.”
Founded in 1999, the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe is the only professional black theater company on Florida’s West Coast. Its mission 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.
“Gulf Coast Community Foundation is honored to support the dynamic work of Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, which focuses on sharing and celebrating African American history and experiences,” said Kelly Borgia, Strategic Engagement Manager of Gulf Coast Community Foundation. “We believe in thriving communities with opportunities for all, and Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe – season after season – thrills audiences with exceptional theatrical experiences and educational programs.”
For more about WBTT or its upcoming season of shows, call 941-366-1505 or visit 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. Visit westcoastblacktheatre.org.
About Gulf Coast Community Foundation
Headquartered in Venice, Fla. and with a second office in downtown Sarasota, Fla., Gulf Coast Community Foundation has transformed the region through bold and proactive philanthropy for over 25 years. Serving the needs of the region as a partner in philanthropy, and leader in community initiatives, Gulf Coast has granted $473 million in the areas of: health and human services, civic and economic development, education, arts and culture, and the environment. Gulf Coast was named one of the “Best Nonprofits to Work For” nationally by The Nonprofit Times in 2010, 2011, 2017, 2020, and 2021. To learn more, visit GulfCoastCF.org and follow us on Facebook at @GulfCoastCommFnd.