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Box Office: 941.351.8000 / 800.361.8388

Asolo Rep History

1960 Faculty of Florida State University starts a summer acting company in Sarasota, which performs in the Ringling Museum's Historic Asolo Theater and soon becomes known as the Asolo Theatre Festival

1965 Asolo Theatre Festival becomes the first State Theatre of Florida

1966 Asolo Theatre Festival becomes a year round professional theatre and a member of prestigious League of Resident Theatres (LORT)

1968 FSU begins sending acting students to complete internships with the company

1973 FSU's MFA in Acting program comes to Sarasota and the FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training is born

1989 Company outgrows the Historic Asolo at the Ringling and dedicates a new building – Asolo Center for the Performing Arts. The Dunfermline Opera House is purchased from Scotland and reconstructed inside the Center, becoming the Mertz Theatre in honor of its benefactors, Harold E. and Esther M. Mertz

1990 Company begins performing in the Center and the Mertz Theatre becomes its new mainstage

1991 Center's name is changed to FSU Center for the Performing Arts

1994 Jane B. Cook Theatre opens and becomes the main performance venue for the Conservatory, and second stage for Asolo Theatre Company

2003 Centennial celebration for the Mertz theatre

2006 The Asolo Theatre Company renamed to Asolo Repertory Theatre. The Historic Asolo Theater at the Ringling Museum reopens as a venue and exhibit. The Conservatory gives first guest theatrical performance in the Ringling's Historic Asolo Theater.

2007 Asolo Rep gives first guest theatrical performance in the Ringling's Historic Asolo Theater.

2008 Stephen Schwartz works with Asolo Rep to re-imagine an updated production of Working, with new songs by Tony Award winning Lynn Manuel Miranda. Barnum, produced by Asolo Rep in co-production with Maltz Jupiter Theatre, stars Brad Oscar, enjoys a sell out run and goes on to win multiple Carbonell Awards.
2009 Another notable world premiere with Jason Wells' award-winning production of Perfect MendacityContact is produced in landmark partnership with The Sarasota Ballet. Asolo Rep’s production of The Life of Galileo garners national attention and an outstanding review by The Wall Street Journal’s Terry Teachout.

2010 Bonnie & Clyde is produced by Asolo Rep starring Laura Osnes (reprising her role she originated at La Jolla Playhouse) and Jeremy Jordan, who joined her debuting as Clyde in Sarasota. Jeff Calhoun directed the musical, which featured a book by Ivan Menchell, lyrics by Don Black, and music by Frank Wildhorn. Bonnie & Clyde received national attention and moved to Broadway’s Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre for a fall of 2011 opening, with Osnes and Jordan to star again.

2011 Twelve Angry Men directed by Tony Award-winner Frank Galati, gained national attention with a rave review by Wall Street Journal’s Terry Teachout.

2012 Asolo Rep is awarded WEDU's seventh annual BE MORE Arts & Culture Award, honoring Tampa Bay area non-profit organizations. Asolo Rep earns recognition with this award for contribution to the spirit of adventure and exploration through education in the arts, and bringing rich and engaging experiences to audiences.

Once in a Lifetime, directed by Mark Rucker, receives national attention from a rave review by Wall Street Journal, Terry Teachout.

Asolo Rep’s production of Yentl and its music composer Jill Sobule were featured on NPR’s All Things Considered: Weekend Edition. This national broadcast featured original music  from the show.