WBTT awards scholarships to young artists

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WBTT awards scholarships to young artists

Students involved with Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe programs earn funds toward artistic education and training

SARASOTA, FL – Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe is proud to announce it has awarded scholarships to deserving students through its new scholarship program. Four up-and-coming artists were each presented with $1,000 scholarships for studies in a college or conservatory program in the arts or arts management for the 2019-2020 academic year.

Todd Bellamy II and Maicy Powell received Marie McKee and Robert Cole Artistic Development Scholarship Awards. Charlotte Corporan and Jatavian Peterson received Artistic Development Fund Scholarships. The funds for Bellamy and Powell’s awards were contributed by WBTT supporters Marie McKee and Robert Cole; the remainder was provided through WBTT.

To be eligible, participants must have performed on the WBTT stage in at least two productions, worked at WBTT as an intern, or have been a participant in the WBTT Stage of Discovery summer musical theater intensive program. Funds are disbursed directly to the educational institution the awardees will be attending.

Bellamy, 17, has participated in Stage of Discovery since its founding four years ago, and has performed with WBTT in “Raisin” and “Black Nativity.” He plans to study Theater at Florida A&M University in the fall. Maicy Powell, 18, who has also attended Stage of Discovery, performed in WBTT’s “Black Nativity” in 2018 and wrote, produced and performed in her own Young Artist Showcase – with two sold-out shows – at WBTT earlier this year. She plans to attend Howard University to complete her Bachelor’s degree in Finance with a minor in Musical Theater / Theater Production. Although Charlotte Corporan, 18, attended Stage of Discovery for the first time this summer, she has been dancing for 14 years and playing musical instruments – including piano and saxophone – for 12. She will attend Rollins College to study Music (Performance and Education). Jatavian Peterson, 18, participated in Stage of Discovery the past two years. He plans to study Musical Theater at Pace University and hopes to – just as WBTT founder and artistic director Nate Jacobs does now – someday return the gift of theater education to students in his community.

“While WBTT is dedicated to producing the finest dramatic and musical theater, my dream – my true calling and purpose for founding this organization – has always been to help young aspiring artists who may otherwise be overlooked to develop their talents and have the opportunity to achieve success,” said Jacobs. “We are thrilled to be able to contribute financially to the arts education of these students and look forward to expanding the scholarship program in years to come.”

For more about WBTT, go to westcoastblacktheatre.org or call 941-366-1505.

About Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe
The mission of Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe is to produce professional theater that promotes and celebrates the African-American experience, to attract diverse audiences, to support and develop African-American artists, and to build the self-esteem of African-American youth. For more information about WBTT, visit the website at westcoastblacktheatre.org or call 941-366-1505.

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