FST Opens Edward Albee's OCCUPANT Running Thru 1/31

FST Opens Edward Albee's OCCUPANT Running Thru 1/31Florida Studio Theatre opens its Stage III Series with an inside look at The Life of acclaimed American sculptor Louise Nevelson by the three time Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Edward Albee. Edward Albee's Occupant runs through January 31, 2009 at the Gompertz Theatre.
Born into a Ukrainian Jewish family, Nevelson's family immigrated to America when she was a young child. With a personality as impressive as her art, was she destined for greatness? What is the relationship between creator and creation? Who was Louise Nevelson? Only she knew. "Fascinating" hailed Variety Magazine.

Director Susan Greenhill used Nevelson's words as a guide in getting to the root of what she was about. One of her favorite quotes to reference was "A truth isn't a truth to me, a lie isn't a lie. If I were to accept academically these words and what they stand for, it would kill me immediately." Actress Kate Alexander commented, "You cannot undertake a role like Louise Nevelson without reflecting upon your own life. For her life was a work of art: She lived life as art, as philosophy and history as myth, she created her own reality."

Edward Albee's Occupant marks the return of, Florida Studio Theatre's Associate Director, Kate Alexander to the FST stage. Ms. Alexander stars as "Louise Nevelson," she has been a resident actress with Florida Studio Theatre for over 20 years. Some of her favorite leading ladies performed in plays on these stages were: Golda's Balcony, Master Class, Filumena, The Goat, Three Tall Women, Agnes of God, La Ronde, Shooting Simone, The Guardsman, The Play About the Baby and Betrayal. Also a director, Ms. Alexander has directed numerous plays. In the 2008 season, she directed Pure Confidence, Underneath the Lintel and The Miamians. Ms. Alexander is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Sarasota County Arts Leadership Award, She knows where She is Going and the Woman of Power Award, from the National Council of Jewish Women. Most recently, Ms. Alexander's WRITE A PLAY program was a feature of the PBS special, Kids in the Arts and she co-authored the book Ideas for the Animated Short with DVD: Finding and Building Stories.

New York Actor Patrick Noonan co-stars as "The Man." Noonan most recently starred in The Mystery of Irma Vep in Florida Studio Theatre's 2008 Summerfest production. A veteran of the longest running play in America, he has over 1500 performances of Shear Madness under his belt. A few more of his favorite performances were in: Almost, Maine (Off-Broadway), Our Town (GEVA Theatre Center), and Dirty Day (Knightsbridge Theatre of LA). TV/film credits include: 30 Rock, Life on Mars, Law and Order, Law and Order: Criminal Intent, The Black Donnelly's, Hope and Faith, Guiding Light, and The Princess Diaries. Look for him in the soon to be released films Frame of Mind starring Chris Noth, and the new horror movie Choose starring Kevin Pollack.

Edward Albee's Occupant is directed by Broadway Actress Susan Greenhill. Greenhill returns to FST, having performed in Southern Comforts, Dinner With Friend and Fiction. Her Broadway acting credits include Crimes of the Heart. Off-Broadway: Primary Stages, Actors Studio Theatre, Playwrights Horizons, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Urban Stages. Regional: The Clean House, Cincinnati Playhouse (Acclaim Award); Sideman, Philadelphia Company (Barrymore Award); We Won't Pay! We Won't Pay!, Long Wharf Theatre; The Glass Menagerie, St. Louis Rep; The Importance of Being Earnest, Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey; Born Yesterday, Indiana Rep; Expectations, Stamford Center (with Eartha Kitt). Television & film: Chapelle Show, Law & Order, Clarissa Explains It All, Loving, Guiding Light, Pecker (directed by John Waters), High Stakes, Noon Blue Apples (Sundance Festival).

The production design team includes FST staff member Eric Abbott (Costume Design), Lauren Feldman (Set Design) and Bruce Price (Lighting Design).

Edward Albee's Occupant runs through January 31, 2009 at the Gompertz Theatre. Tickets are $19 - $32 and may be purchased from the FST Box Office in person, by phone (941) 366 - 9000 or online at www.floridastudiotheatre.org

Stage III debuted in January 2005 to answer an increasing demand from local audiences for edgier works that showed the uncommon human experience and challenged previously held beliefs and values. Featuring plays that challenge with as much gusto as they entertain; FST Stage III pushes the envelope of contemporary theatre and brings fresh, edgy works to the Sarasota theatrical landscape. Singular in taste, fresh in approach, FST's Stage III offers the adventurous theatergoer the opportunity to see plays that both challenges and entertain. In its first two seasons, FST Stage III has attracted more than 3000 subscribers and continues to grow.

Because of its challenging nature, the Stage III series may include plays with language and/or situations that are uncomfortable or offensive to some audience members. Viewer discretion is advised.

Known as Sarasota's Contemporary Theatre, Florida Studio Theatre was founded in 1973 by Jon Spelman. Starting out as a small touring company, FST traveled to places such as migrant camps and prisons. The company eventually settled down into a permanent home, acquiring the former Woman's Club building - now renamed the Keating Theatre. In the years that followed, Florida Studio Theatre established itself as a major force in American Theatre, presenting contemporary theatre in its three theatre venues: the Keating Theatre, the Goldstein Cabaret and its newest space, the Gompertz Theatre.

Even with its growth, Florida Studio Theatre remains firmly committed to making the arts accessible and affordable to a broad-based audience. Under Richard Hopkins, Artistic Director and CEO, FST develops theatre that speaks to our living, evolving, and dynamically changing world. As FST grows and expands, it continues to provide audiences with challenging, contemporary drama and innovative programs.

Florida Studio Theatre is grateful to Dennis and Graci McGillicuddy for underwriting the 2008 - 2009 Stage III Season; Co-Producer's Lois Stulberg and Sally Yanowitz and to the Florida Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Edward Albee's Occupant
Performance Schedule
January 14 - January 31, 2009
Gompertz Theatre
Tickets: $19-$32
Wednesday, January 14 8:00 p.m. (Preview)
Thursday, January 15 8:00 p.m. (Preview)
Saturday, January 17 8:00 p.m. (Opening)
Sunday, January 18 3:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m.
Tuesday, January 20 8:00 p.m.
Wednesday, January 21 8:00 p.m.
Thursday, January 22 8:00 p.m.
Friday, January 23 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, January 24 2:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, January 25 3:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m.
Tuesday, January 27 8:00 p.m.
Wednesday, January 28 8:00 p.m.
Thursday, January 29 8:00 p.m.
Friday, January 30 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, January 31 5:00 p.m.

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