Sarasota, FL – August 25, 2021 – The Players Centre for Performing Arts, opening its 92nd season in October, announces the amicable departure of 15-year producing artistic director, Jeffery Kin, in late spring of 2022.
While The Players Family is sad to lose such a prominent figure in the Sarasota arts community, Kin won’t be far away. He will begin work as general director of a new citywide arts festival with the Arts and Culture Alliance of Sarasota County in conjunction with the Sarasota Downtown Improvement District.
Before his time as artistic director, Kin became involved with The Players New Play Festival, the week-long play reading event, where local playwrights compete to have their plays fully produced at The Players Centre. Throughout his time at The Players Centre, Kin brought new events and ideas to the organization, not to mention his theatre training as he often taught playwrighting classes at The Players Studio and shared his knowledge with The Players Summer Camp students. Kin created Got a Minute, where multiple minute-long plays were written and then performed to raise money for breast cancer.
“Looking back over the last 15 years it’s challenging to pinpoint one or two things that I am most proud of. So much work, heart, and soul go into each show, each event and each performance. So, I’m most proud of the amazing actors and creative teams who shared in our theater’s journeys and overcame a number of obstacles – time limitations, stress, budgetary restrictions – and created art. Every breakthrough and each success has kept me focused and thankful all these years,” says Kin. “I truly appreciate the years of dedication by all the creatives and the many wonderful patrons and donors who trusted our theater and believe in our journey. Thank you to The Players Centre board and staff for the opportunities that have led me here. I’m excited to now be able to support all of our area’s arts organizations and I just may have found a way of doing more for the community by heading this new organization and bringing a true Festival of the Arts to Sarasota. There’s a great deal of work to be done, and while I work on this new challenge, I can’t wait to see what’s next for The Players Centre. I’ll be rooting along with the rest of the community!”
The Players Centre will begin the search for a new artistic director within the context of a new strategic plan and a fresh focus on new perspectives and diversity, equity and inclusion. The nonprofit will continue its mission of entertaining, educating and engaging the community with high-quality live theatre while continuing the Center Stage Capital Campaign to bring a new performance facility to the Waterside Place development in Lakewood Ranch.
“Jeffery has been such an asset to The Players Centre and a staple of our arts community. In my short time at The Players Centre, his insight has been invaluable. While I will miss working with him every day, we at The Players Centre know this is a wonderful opportunity for him and for the community,” says Players Centre CEO, William F. Skaggs. “We look forward to working with Jeffery throughout the 92nd Season and even after his departure in his new role. This strong organization has exciting plans and new ideas brewing, and we can’t wait to share them with the community.”
The Players Centre begins its new season in October 2021 with the heartfelt, modern, musical comedy [title of show] by Hunter Bell and Jeff Bowden about the creation of the musical itself. After the 2020-21 season was held outdoors, this season will take place indoors at Studio 1130, the new temporary performance venue for The Players Centre.
“I first met Jeffery doing theatre 30 years ago. Since 1991 I’ve watched Jeffery’s journey from being an actor, stage manager, choreographer, director, playwright, and TV co-host to finally being the Artistic Director for The Players Centre,” says Donna DeFant, Chair of The Players Board of Trustees. “I am excited to watch his continued journey in this new adventure; knowing that he will always continue to be a big part of The Players Family and keep The Players Centre close to his heart!”’