FST to Host BACK LOT BBQ Fundraiser

When the summer heat turns up, it's time to fire up the grill. FST hosts a Southern-style Back Lot BBQ fundraiser on June 8 at 6pm, and everyone's invited. Complete with live music from the Manatee River Bluegrass Band and all the fixin's - cooked low and slow. Ribs, chicken, pork, you name it...we're grilling it. Enjoy a cold beverage and bring your appetite to the back lot behind the Sudakoff Theatre building. Tickets are $100, of which $60 is tax deductible. A $1000 sponsorship includes 6 tickets, and your own reserved picnic table. For tickets, contact Steve Turrisi, Development Associate, by phone at
(941) 366-0932, or by email at Sturrisi@floridastudiotheatre.org.

Manning the grill is Co-writer of The Fabulous Lipitones, John Markus and his fellow Pitmaster, Ray "Dr. BBQ" Lampe. In addition to co-writing and directing FST's first Summer Mainstage show The Fabulous Lipitones, Markus is Creator and Executive Producer of the hit network TLC television series, BBQ Pitmasters. Known for his previous work as Head-writer of The Cosby Show, Markus discovered his passion for the pit back in 99'. Having apprenticed under world champion Pitmasters Paul Kirk of Kansas City, aka The Baron of Barbecue, and Chris Lilly of Big Bob Gibson in Decatur, Alabama - Markus knows good BBQ.

Participating in BBQ cook-offs as a hobby since 1982, Ray "Dr. BBQ" Lampe decided to take a leap and turn his hobby into a career. In 2000, Ray moved to Florida and began his career as an outdoor cooking expert. He's written eight cookbooks and is currently working on his ninth. The most recent being "Flavorize" published by Chronicle Books. In 2014 Ray Lampe was inducted into the "BBQ Hall Of Fame."

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Providing the entertainment is Sarasota's own Manatee River Bluegrass Band. Band members Will Corr, Larry Lengacher, Todd Lingo, Rusty Moore, and Bryce Thompson will get toes tappin' while the Pitmasters get taste buds talkin.'FST Managing Director, Rebecca Hopkins, speaks to the excitement of bringing together artists, playwrights, donors, and all friends of FST for this fun, food-filled event stating, "How often do you have the opportunity to not only meet the playwright of the show you have just seen, but to have him cooking your food on the grill? It's not often you meet a playwright that is also a renowned Pitmaster. What a great way to make theatre more accessible. It's a really exciting way to kick off the summer here at FST. We hope to see everyone there - our actors, our patrons, our artistic crews, and our new and old friends for a fun night in our back lot with some great BBQ."

Nothing says summer like good friends, good music, and great BBQ. Tickets are $100, of which $60 is tax deductible. A $1000 sponsorship includes 6 tickets, and your own reserved picnic table. For tickets, contact Steve Turrisi, Development Associate, by phone at
(941) 366-0932, or by email at Sturrisi@floridastudiotheatre.org.


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