01 February 2021
FLORIDA KEYS — A first-rate performing arts community in the Florida Keys & Key West offers audiences seasonal musicals, comedies and award-winning performances. The cultural community is adapting in a coronavirus era to present unique virtual and in-person socially distanced performances. A selection of early 2021 highlights is outlined here.
Since 1978 The Key Players group has provided live community theater to the Upper Keys. The 2020 season ended with a very successful run of “9 to 5, The Musical.” The Key Players group plans to resume live theater again in Fall 2021 with the safety of the cast, staff and audiences in mind.
During this hiatus, the Key Players team is working on an original script for a Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre that will be available for production at various restaurant venues throughout the Upper Keys. Restaurants interested in hosting this show can contact the theater at keyplayersinfo@gmail.com.
Performances are typically staged at the Murray E. Nelson Government & Cultural Center at 102050 Overseas Highway and at the Key Largo Lions Club, 5 Homestead Ave., Key Largo. Visit thekeyplayers.org or call 305-453-0997.
Started as a small community group in 1944, the Marathon Community Theatre at 5101 Overseas Highway has grown to perform many shows with a talented group of local residents. For information on upcoming performances, visit marathontheater.org or call 305-743-0994.
Originally built as a carriage house in the 1800s, the building that is home to Key West’s Red Barn Theatre at 319 Duval St., rear, has hosted modern-era performances since 1981.
Productions scheduled for this Spring include “Quarantine for Two,” a new play written by Hy Conrad, and “Cats Talk Back,” a parody that purportedly reveals the hilarious secrets behind the making of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s legendary musical CATS. Dates for these shows are still to be announced.
Red Barn Theatre’s 2021 productions will be held outside in the Zabar’s Courtyard with limited capacity to maintain seat spacing, and facial coverings will be required for all patrons, staff and crew. Visit redbarntheatre.com or call 305-296-9911 for more information.
The Waterfront Playhouse, located at 310 Wall St., adjacent to Key West’s renowned Mallory Square, continues its 2021 season with a twist. While many shows are postponed and canceled due to the pandemic, the theater provides Key West with a different entertainment option presenting live radio treatments of “Treasure Island” (Feb. 13), “It Happened One Night” (Feb. 27), “The Hitchhiker” (Mar. 13) and “Tales of Poe” (Mar. 27) on 104.1 FM. The rest of the nation can tune in to the broadcasts on US1 Radio via US1.com.
“Every Brilliant Thing”, the marvelous new play starring Arthur Crocker and “The Rocky Horror Show” are among the theater’s features to be rescheduled. Waiting in the wings, once prepared to safely reopen is “A Life in the Theatre(Feb. 3-13), the hit musical “Matilda” (Mar. 3-30), “Three Tall Women” (Apr. 7-17) and “Clue: Live on Stage” (May 5-15). Visit waterfrontplayhouse.org or call 305-294-5015.
In an effort to maximize opportunities for creative endeavors during a global pandemic, Fringe Theater Key West has announced a partnership with the Historic Florida Keys Foundation that has resulted in a more permanent space at the Amory, located at 600 White Street. The new space provides the theater with the utmost flexibility for creating projects.
In February, Fringe will celebrate Black History Month with a complimentary online program that features the work of acclaimed author Zora Neale Hurston. In March, Fringe is planning a unique online Shakespeare “festival” of performances featuring monologues and short scenes from Shakespeare classics. Fringe is also working on an insider’s look at “The Making of Conch Republic, the Musical” which will be aired via its website in April in conjunction with Conch Republic Days. Also, in April, the theater hopes to welcome an audience when they present Gloria Montero's award-winning one-woman play about artist Frida Kahlo, and in June the theater will produce a play in conjunction with Pride.  
Performances take place at the Armory located at 600 White Street. Visit fringetheater.org or call 305-731-0581.
Located on the Key West campus of Florida Keys Community College at 5901 College Road, the Tennessee Williams Theatre presents exciting musical and theatrical entertainment. The winter/spring schedule includes a March 5 performance by Jeremy Denk, one of America’s foremost pianists. Visit twstages.com or call 305-295-7676.
Florida Keys cultural information: fla-keys.com/culture  
Florida Keys visitor information: fla-keys.com or 1-800-FLA-KEYS
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