TALKING WITH … Alice Santana, Interim Director of Education and Community Engagement

Recently appointed to the position of interim director of education and community engagement, Straz staffer Alice Santana has a lifelong love of the arts and deep-rooted passion to make an impact in her community.  Her journey with the Straz Center began in January 2016 when she was hired to work in the Patel Conservatory as the student affairs and community relations coordinator. As she flourished... Continue Reading →

National Nonprofit Day

August 17 is National Nonprofit Day, which recognizes the positive impacts nonprofits have on their communities. Emily Dey, the Straz Center's senior director of individual giving, muses on the current state of The Straz. The Straz and its $130,000,000 overall contribution to the local economy reinforces our commitment to the area’s cultural and economic prosperity.... Continue Reading →

Big Heart, Open Mind

One Patel Conservatory theater instructor’s journey to the big time in the big top and how realizing his dream helps students reach theirs. Just a few years back, Patel Conservatory theater faculty member Matthew Belopavlovich stood stranded atop a 25-foot tower while a handful of clowns, dressed as knights, circled beneath, trying to figure out... Continue Reading →

Despite Postponement, SUMMER Remains Hot Stuff

Editor’s Note: Summer: The Donna Summer Musical, its Straz run rescheduled due to the COVID-19 crisis from May 5-10, 2020 to July 13-18, 2021, was to be featured in the Straz Center’s publications this month. The article features Tampa DJ Ann Kelly of WDUV-105 FM, who accompanied The Straz team last year to preview the... Continue Reading →

Mean Girls 101

The essential guide to cult classic catch phrases This week, Caught in the Act welcomes guest blogger Alex Stewart, media relations manager for The Straz and a big fan of the Mean Girls movie. Our resident subject matter expert on the most memorable lines from the film, Alex agreed to take us through this Mean... Continue Reading →

Silver Linings

Opera Tampa, the resident opera company of the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, celebrates its 25th anniversary season with three electrifying main stage performances. This article first appeared in the Jan/Feb 2020 issue of Tampa Bay Magazine. We are happy to have permission to reprint it for our blog, in honor of the upcoming... Continue Reading →

Arts Legacy REMIX

What started as a conversation about celebrating the Tampa area's rich artistic heritage turned into a free concert series drawing unexpectedly large crowds. The Straz Center's Arts Legacy REMIX was a long time in the making and looks like it's here to stay. After a brutal warrior’s stint in Vietnam that gave him an ultimatum... Continue Reading →

Girl Power

The Straz Center arts education partnerships program with Tampa’s The Centre for Girls In addition to our many performances, lectures, classes and workshops, the Straz Center hosts a super cool outside-of-the-spotlight arts education partnership program which brings us into fruitful, fun and inspiring relationships with many organizations around the area. This semester, one of our... Continue Reading →

Just the Treats, Please

The Straz Center’s self-serve candy station in Morsani Hall is a year-round Halloween dream come true. No tricks here. It’s just all candy all the time, and we love it. Each year, we buy about 2,100 pounds of candy. That much candy is roughly the weight of two full-sized grand pianos. Each month, our guests... Continue Reading →

SEQUINS!

Like peanut butter to jelly, like Siegfried to Roy, what would the performing arts be without sequins? If the performing arts were a country, the flag undoubtedly would be made of gaff tape and sequins. What material would befit the banner of our happy little nation-state more? When we think about a few American performing... Continue Reading →

Shock Absorbers

Under a tight schedule, it takes eight weeks to replace one stage floor. Last summer, we had only five. And two enormous stages. Life is not fair. But, if you have a good sense of humor, it is funny. Running The Straz takes an enormous amount of effort on what we call the “back end,”... Continue Reading →

House of Karinska

How a Russian defector built couture fashion from ballet costumes during the rise of New York City Ballet Chanel. Gucci. Givenchy. These famous fashion houses earned notoriety for their signature styles, making their designs easily recognizable – the Chanel suit, the Gucci bag, the Givenchy dress. In the golden age of American ballet, during the... Continue Reading →

Triple Threat

The Straz Center’s Manager of Special Events Nicole Stickeler dons a bum roll to change into her next role for Opera Tampa. In show business, you’re considered a triple threat if you can sing, dance and act. In the performing arts, you’re considered a triple threat if you can sing, act and raise money. The... Continue Reading →

The Seuss Is Loose

Approaching 30 years since his death, Dr. Seuss sits poised to publish a new book from his perennial throne on the bestseller lists (WHAT.). Meanwhile, the Straz Center’s Patel Conservatory musical theater department rehearses Seussical, Jr. down stairs from the blog office for its run in the TECO theater April 25-28. Why do we love... Continue Reading →

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