WBTT presents ‘Harry Belafonte: King of Calypso,’ featuring WBTT fan favorite Michael Mendez

Comment Off 93 Views

WBTT presents ‘Harry Belafonte: King of Calypso’Musical revue featuring popular WBTT artist Michael Mendez to pay tribute to barrier-breaking singer, actor and Civil Rights activistSARASOTA, FL – Later this month, Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe is proud to present “Harry Belafonte: King of Calypso,” an original musical revue featuring popular WBTT artist Michael Mendez. The show – written and directed by WBTT Founder/Artistic Director Nate Jacobs, with music selected and adapted by Mendez and Jacobs – will take place on Sunday, October 29 and again on Monday, October 30 at 7:30 p.m. in WBTT’s Donelly Theatre (1012 N. Orange Ave., Sarasota).Well-known, multi-talented troupe member Mendez will sing the music of Belafonte, an icon known as a barrier-breaking singer, actor and civil rights activist, who passed away earlier this year at the age of 96. The show reflects the deep impact of Belafonte’s life, while revisiting well-known (and perhaps new-to-you) Belafonte hits such as “Shake Senora,” “Matilda,” “Day-O” and many more.Mendez has performed for well over a decade with WBTT. He has become a fan favorite through featured and starring roles in shows such as “In the Heights,” “Marvin Gaye: Prince of Soul,” “Soul Man” “Soul Crooners” and “Joyful! Joyful!” He previously starred as Belafonte in the Troupe’s 2014 hit, “Harry and Lena,” was Seymour in the 2015 blockbuster “Little Shop of Horrors,” and played the title role in 2016’s “The Wiz.” He has appeared many times with WBTT at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., including their most recent appearance in 2022. In 2014, Michael was awarded a prestigious John Ringling Towers Fund grant in the performing arts category by the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County. In January 2019, he was honored with an Impact Award from Visible Men Academy in the Arts category. Mendez has received stellar reviews and a Handy Award (awarded by Jay Handelman, theater critic for the Sarasota Herald-Tribune) for his performance as Usnavi in WBTT’s 2017 production of “In the Heights.” He also had a featured role in “Playing Through,” a 2022 feature-length film honoring the life and legacy of Black golf champion Ann Gregory.“It is our privilege and honor to present this tribute to Harry Belafonte – with his passing earlier this year, we felt compelled to recognize his many contributions to music and society,” said Jacobs. “Michael has grown so much since his 2014 turn as Belafonte in ‘Harry and Lena’; we believe audiences will be even more thrilled with and inspired by his performance this time around.”Tickets are $35/adults, $20/students ages 25 and under (with valid ID), $100/sponsors (includes premium seating); prices include ticket fees. Visit westcoastblacktheatre.org.About Westcoast Black Theatre TroupeThe mission of Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe (WBTT) is to produce professional theatre that promotes and celebrates African American history and experience, engages a broad base of patrons and audiences, supports the development of a dynamic group of aspiring artists, and builds self-esteem in youth of color. Visit westcoastblacktheatre.org for more information.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

About the author

Editor of Don411.com Media website.
Free Newsletter Updated Daily