The Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe of Florida, Inc. was founded in December 1999, by local actor, singer, director and playwright Nate Jacobs. It is the only professional black theater company on Florida’s West Coast. The mission of WBTT is to “produce plays that promote and celebrate the African-American experience, which attracts diverse audiences while using its productions as a vehicle for supporting African-American artists and building the self-esteem of African-American youth.” Since its inception, WBTT has produced many productions locally, around the state of Florida, nationally and internationally. The company has gained a reputation for high quality, original, thought-provoking and entertaining performances.
WBTT has mentored and inspired many African-American youth and young adults through participation in the company’s productions. It has provided a platform for many gifted individuals who might not have had the opportunity to cultivate their interests and talents and has also been a springboard for several national and international careers. Teresa Stanley is currently a featured cast member in the Broadway production Rock of Ages and was in The Color Purple. In the summer of 2010, the then 13-year-old Troupe member and one of Nate’s mentorees, Chris Eisenberg, appeared on the popular television show, NBC’s America’s Got Talent. This young man competed against thousands of individuals and made it to the top 48 contestants. In May 2011, another young Troupe member, Alyssa White, won first place two consecutive weeks at NYC’s Apollo Theatre’s amateur night, and also appeared in their Best of the Best show. In the summer of 2013, she sang at the National Black Theatre Festival. In addition, a number of WBTT performers have had an opportunity to accompany Nate to Zurich, Switzerland, for yearly concerts and to Germany two consecutive summers for performances before adoring crowds. In the summer of 2013, WBTT presented an original show, Soul Crooners, to four sold-out crowds at the prestigious National Black Theatre Festival in North Carolina.
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Sarasota, FL 34236