Carrollwood Players Celebrates 35 Years in the Community

Published on 9 November 2016 in Business
Deborah Bostock-Kelley (author)

Deborah Bostock-Kelley

The season recently opened with the sold-out production of The Addams Family Musical Photo Deborah Bostock-Kelley

The season recently opened with the sold-out production of The Addams Family Musical Photo Deborah Bostock-Kelley

If you haven’t been to Carrollwood Players Theatre for a while or maybe you never heard of this theatre gem tucked into a nondescript shopping complex, it’s time for a visit.

Celebrating its 35th year as Tampa’s oldest continually-running nonprofit community theatre, with a gift of fresh paint, a new stage, and lobby makeover, the theatre has be- come a vibrant showcase of masterful dramas, comedies, and musicals on its Mainstage.

The season includes Deathtrap, Proof, an original take on A Christmas Carol, Lie, Cheat and Genuflect, The Red Velvet Cake Wars, All My Sons, Incorruptible, An Act of the Imagination, and A Little Murder Never Hurt Anyone.

Mainstage also features its highly regarded One Act Weekend. Whether you are hoping for knee-slapping comedy, a little funny-bone tickling, a romantic interlude, or to have your heart ripped out and stomped on repeatedly, “described as channel surfing live people,” by a patron, One Act Weekend has yet to disappoint.

The season recently opened with the sold-out production of The Ad- dams Family Musical, voted by patrons in 2015 to be the musical of choice for 2016-2017. However, La Cage aux Folles was such a close con- tender, the theatre chose to do two of the three musicals vying for patron vote. With the success of the inaugural “Adopt a Musical,” patrons will be able to vote for their favorites for the 2017-2018 season later this year.

Brought to life in April 2015, inside the lobby of the Mainstage theatre is CWP Black Box. Black Box is the vision of dozens of volunteers, helmed by patron and past board member Jim Russell. Before, a wasted space for storage, fast forward a little over two years and the intimate 50- seat Black Box is a celebrated theatre within the theatre for staged readings, original musicals, one acts, contemporary performances, musical revues, festivals, concerts, and more.

Black Box staged readings are not a line of actors sitting in a row of chairs reading the script. They are high energy, almost fully staged productions with a set, costumes, props, lights and sound effects, and the actors move around the set carrying their scripts.

The 2016-2017 season includes America Buffalo, Love Letters, Al- most, Maine, The Vagina Monologues, Hand to God, The Divine Sister, KIDSPEAK Youth Theatre, Burn This, A Thousand Clowns, and A Coupla White Chicks Sitting Around Talking.

Black Box will also feature two fully staged productions - the Tampa premiere of the New York bound musical comedy If I Embarrass You, Tell Your Friends—Belle Barth is Back and the gripping drama, Agnes of God.

Both Mainstage and Black Box al- ways seek volunteers to work front of house selling concessions, checking patrons in, handing out playbills, or selling raffle tickets. In return, you see the show for free.

If you’ve never heard of this little theatre with big talent and even bigger heart or you haven’t stopped by in a few months or even a few years, this season is the perfect opportunity to add affordable live theatre to your entertainment options.

Carrollwood Players is located at 4333 Gunn Highway and offers 8pm performances Fridays and Saturdays, and 3pm Sunday. Mainstage Non-Musical Tickets are $23 adult, $20 seniors, students and military.

Mainstage Musical tickets are $27 adult, $23 seniors, students, and military. Black Box Tickets are $10, excluding special presentations. Learn more at


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