The Sarasota Ballet will present Will Tuckett’s full-length production of The Secret Garden. Bringing to life Frances Hodgson Burnett’s popular children’s novel, this two-act dance-theatre production takes the stage of the FSU Center for the Performing Arts, August 8-16 in nine performances

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image0085555 North Tamiami Trail
Sarasota, FL  34243
PHONE:  (941) 359-0099
For more information, visit:

July 29, 2014


Frances Hodgson Burnett’s classic novel is brought to life

Sarasota, Fla. – July 29, 2014 – This August, in a special and unique summer performance, The Sarasota Ballet will present Will Tuckett’s full-length production of The Secret Garden. Bringing to life Frances Hodgson Burnett’s popular children’s novel, this two-act dance-theatre production takes the stage of the FSU Center for the Performing Arts, August 8-16 in nine performances. The entire Tampa Bay Region will be given the opportunity to enjoy this light-hearted, family-friendly performance that not only features dancers, but showcases hand-crafted puppets and an on-stage actor who will narrate.

“Bringing to life this beloved children’s classic through dance, theatre and puppetryis sure to delight children and adults of all ages,” explained Mary Anne Servian, Managing Director of The Sarasota Ballet.

Tuckett is no stranger to creating noteworthy, memorable productions. He is the recent recipient of England’s 2014Olivier Awards for his work, The Wind in the Willows – another production that utilizes the trio of dance, theatre and puppetry. To help bring his vision for The Secret Garden to life, he commissioned a score by Jeremy Holland-Smith and costumes and set designs by the renowned Tim Meacock, best known for bringing Hansel & Gretel and Jack and the Beanstalk to life on stage in the United Kingdom.

“Any time we bring Will to Sarasota, he brings our audiences an experience that is different, beautiful and completely his own,” said Iain Webb, Director of The Sarasota Ballet. “When Will presented me with this idea, it was a no-brainer. What a great opportunity for our dancers and the community to participate in an exciting new venture.”

It is always a total pleasure to be working with The Sarasota Ballet due to their commitment, good humor and wealth of talent, but The Secret Garden is unlike anything I have made for them before – a full length, narrative piece that draws on a whole other, very theatrical side of performing,” said Tuckett.

In conjunction with the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts’ “Any Given Child” program and the curriculum department of Sarasota County Schools, The Sarasota Ballet’s production of The Secret Garden includes a strong educational outreach component, giving students the chance to learn through art.

Prior to the August 14 performance, community members are invited to join The Sarasota Ballet for a pre-performance dinner event, Picnic and Play at The Sarasota Ballet. Hosted at the playground on the grounds of the Ringling Museum, patrons can join The Sarasota Ballet for dinner, catered by The Francis, from 5-7 p.m. Tickets are $30 for adults and $10 for students, and all proceeds go to the Any Given Child Foundation.

“Working with the Any Given Child Foundation is another way we can give back to the community,” said Webb.

In preparation for the August 8opening, The Sarasota Ballet will also host a movie-night, August 4 at 1:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m., where audience members will watch the 1949 film adaptation of The Secret Garden.  There will be a pre-movie discussion led by Alasdair Middleton who wrote the narration. Tickets for this event are $10 and can be purchased through The Sarasota Ballet box office. For more information please call 941-359-0099 x 101.

“I think anyone coming to see The Secret Garden either on their own or with the whole family, will not only have a great experience, but will walk away realizing that The Sarasota Ballet is a wonderful example of an artistic flower truly in full bloom. All I can do is thank Iain Webb, the whole Sarasota Ballet team and the incredible set and costume workshops of the Asolo theatre for allowing my team and I to realize our dream. This show has grown from the very heart of the Sarasota community, through their support, incredible outreach and great education programs and by just coming along to see the show. Thank you! ” said Tuckett.

The Fox Puppet – Photo Credit Frank Atura

Performance Schedule and Ticket Information

The Secret Garden


FSU Center for the Performing Arts

5555 North Tamiami Trail

Sarasota, FL 34243
August 8, 14 and 15 at 7 p.m.

August 10 and 13 at 2 p.m.

August 9 and 16 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.


In addition to the summer performances, The Secret Garden will also open the Company’s 2014-15 Season,

October 24-26.


Tickets may be purchased online 24 hours a day, seven days a week with Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover. Tickets start at $25.The box office can be contacted by calling (941) 359-0099 x101.


About The Sarasota Ballet

Since 1990 The Sarasota Ballet, the Gulf Coast of Florida’s only professional ballet company, has been enriching lives, captivating emotions and strengthening the community through the art of dance. Under the leadership of Director Iain Webb, the Company’s expanded repertoire includes works by world-renowned choreographers such as Sir Frederick Ashton, George Balanchine, Dame Ninette de Valois, Twyla Tharp, Antony Tudor, Sir Kenneth MacMillan, John Cranko, Hans van Manen, Andre Prokovsky, Dominic Walsh, Christopher Wheeldon and Matthew Bourne. Receiving national and international recognition for their diverse repertoire of rarely performed ballets, The Sarasota Ballet recently received rave reviews during the Sir Frederick Ashton Festival, which highlighted 14 of the famed choreographer’s ballets and divertissements in four days.  Alastair Macaulay with The New York Times said the Festival was an “extraordinary level both of Mr. Webb’s ambition and his company’s level of achievement.” For more information, please visit or call (941) 359-0099.


Connecting with TSB’s Online Communities
The Sarasota Ballet has a rich digital presence on a number of online/social media platforms, offering numerous ways for dance enthusiasts around the world to connect with the artists of the Company.  The Sarasota Ballet’s online communities includes the Company’s eMagazine, “Footlights,” which comes out 3 times a year, Facebook (, videos on Vimeo (, live performance tweets on Twitter (@sarasotaballet), as well as image updates on Flickr (


Subscription Tickets
Four and seven program subscription packages to The Sarasota Ballet’s 2014-2015 Repertory Season range from $110 – 675 and are on sale to the public now.  For information, please call the box office at (941) 359-0099 x101 or visit  Phone hours are Monday through Friday, 10am to 4pm.


Single Tickets
Individual tickets for The Sarasota Ballet’s 2014-2015 Repertory Season, starting at $35, will be available for online sales at or by calling (941) 359-0099 x101, beginning September 1, 2014.

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