Orlando, Fla. – Florida Theatrical Association, the non-profit presenter of FAIRWINDS Broadway Across America – Orlando, Broadway Across America – Ft. Lauderdale and Broadway Across America – Miami, will celebrate its 20th Anniversary on June 30, 2009. Florida Theatrical Association was originally founded on June 30, 1989 with the purpose of educating and developing new audiences and to encourage and preserve the presentation of touring Broadway.
“Florida Theatrical still serves that role and purpose today, and probably better than ever,” said Ron Legler, president and CEO of Florida Theatrical Association. “For Florida Theatrical to celebrate its 20th Anniversary, especially during these difficult financial times, and honestly say we’re doing better than ever is astounding. We have to give credit to the patrons of Florida, they love the arts!”
This season, Florida Theatrical will bring in six spectacular shows to Orlando for its FAIRWINDS Broadway Across America – Orlando series featuring the triumphant return of The Phantom of The Opera, as well as productions of Fiddler on the Roof starring Topol, The Color Purple, In the Heights, Xanadu and Spring Awakening.
Florida Theatrical has Broadway Across America – Ft. Lauderdale lined up to launch its six-show 2009 – 2010 season in October with Fiddler on the Roof, followed by Legally Blonde the Musical, Alfred Hitchcock’s The 39 Steps, In the Heights, The Color Purple, and Disney’s Mary Poppins.
“We’re bringing the best Broadway has to offer to the state of Florida for our 20th Anniversary,” said Legler. “In the Heights, Xanadu, The 39 Steps – those are all first-runs. That never used to happen in Florida and now our cities are consistently chosen as first-run stops!”
Aside from bringing high-caliber entertainment to Florida, Florida Theatrical fulfills its mission through a variety of education initiatives: Broadway’s Class Act, scholarship and grants, ticket donations to other non-profit organizations, Discover Broadway activities, master classes, technical observations and published student reviews. These are accomplished by working with the cast and company members of each Broadway production Florida Theatrical Association brings to Florida.
Some education highlights include:
- Since 1989 FTA has distributed over $1 million in scholarships and grants to arts organizations across the state of Florida
- FTA donates over $120,000 in tickets every year to the community. One recent ticket donation in St. Petersburg allowed over 50 children from the Midtown Boys & Girls Club Royal Theater to attend their first Broadway Show – Cats.
- Established in 2002 to help bring the mission of FTA to life Broadway’s Class Act is a performance focused troupe that brings Broadway into the classrooms of local schools and provides professional based training. There are currently four BCA alumni on Broadway or in Broadway touring productions!
- Partnering with Barnes & Noble statewide, FTA works with the productions to bring cast members to the store where they participate in an educational chat back session. Cast members talk about the show they’re in, giving audience members insight and background that can’t be found anywhere else.
- Broadway can’t be successful without a review! Working with local high school students and universities FTA arranges advance interviews with cast members and provide complimentary press tickets to the students so they can view and then review the show.