Breaking Barriers at Florida Studio Theatre

Todays News

Pictured: Britt Michael Gordon as Casey. Photo by John Jones.

The Legend of Georgia McBride by Matthew Lopez, began play at the Florida Studio Theatre last Wednesday, on April 6th. The production, which runs until May 22nd headlines FST’s winter mainstage program and is directed by FST’s Associate Director At-Large, Kate Alexander.

The Legend of Georgia McBride is a comedy set in the Florida Panhandle and chronicles the journey of Casey, a down and out Elvis impersonator working at a local dive bar who becomes swept up in the B-level drag show that the bar’s owner brings in to replace his act.

“I liken it to films like Tootsie or Mrs. Doubtfire - where someone takes a great exploration by accident and then comes away having learned a great deal about themselves and who they are,” says director Kate Alexander.

On directing the production, Alexander added that, “I loved the play and its themes. It’s not forcing you into anything, it’s taking you into a joyous and celebratory world. There is an exploration too, of what it means to be male in the modern world.”

The path to production, however, was not always smooth as the COVID-19 pandemic caused a nearly two year gap between initial and final rehearsals. “We had begun rehearsals in March of 2020 - we were one week in and we had to stop rehearsal and drag everybody home. Three of the cast members are the same - including Kraig Swartz (Miss Tracy Mills) who was an anchor for this play,” says Alexander.

Casting the lead role of Casey, also had its challenges. “Some of what Britt Michaels brought to the role was this guilelessness and the natural ability to play a Floridian. A lot of actors auditioning for the part came in playing their idea of a ‘southern man’ which was a turn off for not only the director or the audience. The audience needs to like him even though he feels a little ashamed of himself for participating in a drag show,” adds Alexander.

Florida Studio Theatre, 1265 First Street, Sarasota, Box Office: 941.366.9000

Pictured: Britt Michael Gordon as Casey. Photo by John Jones.

For more information or to purchase tickets click here.

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