Lakewood Ranch is getting a fresh addition to its arts culture with The Players Centre for Performing Arts. Originally located in downtown Sarasota, the acting school and company, first known under the name Players Theater, will build their campus in Waterside Place, Lakewood Ranch’s newest Town Center. Located in Waterside Lakewood Ranch, the Town Center will also feature waterfront restaurants, shops, and a waterfront park. Those looking for a home for sale in Lakewood Ranch can look forward to benefiting from this wonderful asset to the community.

90 Years of Performing Arts Excellence

The Players Theater is one of the oldest performing arts organizations in Sarasota county. They first started as a group formed by Fanneal Harrison and Catherine Gavin, owners of the Out-of-Door Academy, with some of their friends. They did this when looking for activities for their faculty, and found that that what the teachers were most interested in was theater.

The organization was formally founded in 1929. And, with the help of their 256 members who paid 2 dollars each for subscriptions, they promptly located the theater in a new building which was paid for with some of the proceeds. The theater was located at 9th Street and North Tamiami Trail. At the time, it could hold around 240 people, so as the troupe grew, a bigger venue was needed. In 1970, they erected the auditorium that would be their home for the next 50 years. This structure has a seating capacity for a crowd of 400.

Now, on the cusp of their 91st year together, their organization and audience have grown so much that the current center can no longer meet their needs. Sometimes, performances have to run as many as 15 times to meet demand. But, today, they're ready to move on to a bigger and better venue in Lakewood Ranch.

The Players New Campus

The $21-million Players Centre for Performing Arts will be built on a 4.5-acre lot in Waterside Place. There will be two stages instead of one in order to house multiple productions at the same time. The  main auditorium will hold up to 488 people, with additional balcony seating available. There will also be a cabaret section with a dining area for 100 audience members, and a black box theater with 125 seats.

The campus will also have several lobby spaces for receptions, events, and galleries. The organization also plans to lend these facilities to other arts and culture groups in the area, this the addition of “Performing Arts” to the name.

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New Potential for Local Theater

With the new campus on the way, arts and culture in the area will flourish and reach new heights. We should see a wealth of new, quality local productions arise from the addition of the facility to the area. Area residents will also have access to professional instruction from professional writers, actors, and directors, nurturing the passion and skills of those who take advantage of this amazing community asset.

If you're a lover of the performing arts, consider Lakewood Ranch homes for sale when looking for your next home, most particularly in Waterside Lakewood Ranch. Contact Daniel Bacon at Fine Properties when you are ready by visiting or calling us at (941) 330-7661