FSU/Asolo Conservatory For Actor Training
5555 North Tamiami Trail
Sarasota FL 34243
The FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training provides a select group of graduate students from around the world a combination of intense classroom training in all aspects of the craft of acting and, in years two and three of their training, production opportunities in both the Cook Theatre season and the Asolo Rep mainstage season, in order to provide graduates with the ability to sustain lifelong careers in the theatre.
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Greg Leaming
Board Chair Greg Leaming
Board Chair Affiliation Conservatory Director
General Info
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Incorporation Year 1973
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Exempt 0
State Registration 0
Financial Summary
IRS Letter of Determination
IRS Letter of DeterminationView
Impact Statement
Accomplishments include:
- Ticket sales (individual and subscription) continue to increase dramatically:  $84,905 for the 12-13 season,  $120,194 for the 13-14 season, 127,000 for the 14-15 season, $156,000 for the 15-16 season, and $183,000 for the 16-17 season.
- In the 2016-17 production season, the Conservatory joined forces with the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens to present an outdoor production of Shakespeare's beloved comedy, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, on the Selby grounds.  The production featured all 12 of the second year Conservatory students and 3 first years, and offered a unique opportunity to appreciate the skills of the Conservatory students in this community's most beautiful natural setting. The collaboration was a popular and critical success, with record-breaking sales that more than doubled our projections. 
- The Conservatory expanded its programming into the summer months, launching Dog Days Theatre in July 2017.  The two-production season proved extremely popular in filling the seasonal theatre void,  attracting brand new audiences (120 purchasers had never seen a Conservatory show) and playing to an 82% capacity, a remarkable achievement for an inaugural season.
- Received first time grants from several agencies:  Woman's Exchange, Arts & Cultural Alliance Opportunity Grants, Sarasota County Board of Commissioners (TDC/A grant), Barancik Foundation, as well as continuing support from Gulf Coast Community Foundation and Community Foundation of Sarasota County.
Goals include:
- Finding a stable funding source for the annual "Secure the Future" campaign, which furnishes tuition waivers for out-of-state students.
- Establishing a three-year partnership with Selby Gardens to continue to offer classic theatre outdoors; identifying and securing foundation and individual support for this ambitious project.
- Creating infrastructure that will allow faculty to take sabbaticals and eventually will supplement the growing fundraising and administrative efforts with additional staff. 
- With many of the operational expenses being covered by annual gifts, the Conservatory now turns its attention to developing an endowment program that will provide for the long-term financial health of the organization, insulate against economic fluctuations (which ultimately affect ticket sales), and allow the Conservatory to maintain its national and world-wide reputation as a top ten acting program.
Needs Statement
1.- $7500 to help cover the extraordinary expenses associated with the upcoming production of MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING in the Selby Gardens. 
2. - $5000 to support a week-long workshop with Roy Hart Theatre –an internationally renowned teaching company that focuses on developing the actor’s range of vocal and physical expression. Professional members of this company work with our students in a demanding  residency to expand their vocal and physical skills, providing them with the tools necessary for tackling the challenges of  Greek,  Shakespeare, and poetic texts. 
3.- $3000 to design and print every banner and poster for the entire FSU/Asolo Conservatory season. The season is an essential part of the training process, as well as an opportunity for our community to meet the upcoming artists who are literally the future of the American Theatre.  
4. - $7500 to underwrite an annual Professional Weekend. Artistic directors and casting directors from summer theatres around the country are invited in to audition all students for upcoming summer seasons.  In this way we provide our students with national exposure to professional artists and the chance to secure summer employment in their profession.
Background Statement
The FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training is a three-year graduate program dedicated to the development of the future artists of the American Theatre. The program was initiated as part of the Florida State University School of Theatre in Tallahassee in 1968 and moved to Sarasota in 1973 to establish a permanent relationship with the Asolo Repertory Theatre.  Since that time, the program has grown to become one of the most important conservatory training programs in the country, cited by the New York Times as one of the top 10 programs nationwide and by the Hollywood Reporter as one of the top programs world wide.  Twelve students are chosen each year from nearly 1200 applicants who audition nationwide to work in a program that combines rigorous classroom training with guest artist workshops and professional production experience.  Our distinguished faculty of teaching artists have dedicated themselves to this intensive actor training, and our partnership with the Asolo Repertory Theatre, one of the finest professional theatres in America, provides each student with the opportunity to perform for an entire season in rotating repertory.  Our graduates have appeared on and off Broadway, in regional theatres around the country, in feature films and on television. 
Areas Served
Areas Served
FL- Sarasota
FL- Manatee
Areas Served Comments
We perform for residents and visitors to Sarasota, Manatee and surrounding counties. Our students are drawn from the international community.
Service Categories
Primary Org Type Education
Secondary Org Type Arts,Culture & Humanities
Tertiary Org Type Education
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President
Statement from the CEO/Executive Director
The FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training is one of the most unique programs in the country.   It is one of the last remaining conservatory programs in the United States, offering a sophisticated combination of graduate classroom training with professional performance opportunities. We have been consistently named one of the most important actor training programs in the country from various news sources, including The New York Times, The Hollywood Reporter and U.S. News and World Report.   We audition nearly 1200 students nationwide to fill 12 positions each year.  The most unique element of our program, however, is the number of  performance opportunities we offer our students during their three years of training.  The Conservatory season of four plays, produced in the Cook Theatre specifically for the second year company of actors, is one of the most unique production seasons in the area. In order to provide our students with the opportunity to work with the widest range of material possible, our seasons range from contemporary productions of classical plays to the best new plays being written for the theatre today.  As a result, our audiences are given the opportunity to experience work unlike anything else that can be found in this community; to meet the next generation of this country's theatre artists as at the very beginning of their careers; and to watch these young artists develop over the entire Conservatory season as they prepare to take the stage in their third year of training as members of the Asolo Rep professional company. In the Summer of 2017, we introduced Dog Days Theatre, a two play performance season during the summer, providing additional performance opportunities for current students and graduates.
A season of four plays professionally produced in the Cook Theatre to provide the second year graduate students with the opportunity to put into practice the skills they have been developing in the voice, speech, movement and acting lab. The season is an eclectic mix of classical plays, including the Greeks, Shakespeare and Moliere, produced alongside of the contemporary classics (Tennessee Williams, Thornton Wilder, Edward Albee, Arthur Miller, etc.) and new plays.  These productions always receive a contemporary approach that capitalizes on the youthful energy of the second year acting company and offers the theatregoing community of this region the opportunity to see work unlike anything else offered in the area.
Budget $145,000
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Theater
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served General/Unspecified
Short Term Success
By the end of each production, students demonstrate the ability to retain direction, maintain a performance at the level they have achieved by opening night, and incorporate an awareness of the audience into the performance without allowing this awareness to force the actor off of a carefully rehearsed shape of the performance.
Long Term Success
- Students develop and demonstrate the skills to move onto the Asolo Rep mainstage as part of their third year of training.
- Along with the third year of training, students incorporate the performance skills necessary to maintain a productive and lifelong career in the theatre.
Program Success Monitoring
Faculty attend all previews and multiple performances to assess students' work.
Audience members are invited to attend one talk back for each production.
Program Success Examples
Ticket sales from subscription season continue to support the production season.
Conservatory productions annually receive nominations and awards in the local press for the year's best performances and productions.
In the year 2010 and 2011, third year students received recognition for the work in national press coverage of Asolo Rep productions, including The Wall Street Journal for their work in Twelve Angry Men  and Once in a Lifetime.  Such recognition represents validation for the kind of training we are providing to our students in their second year production season.
Although Florida State University provides the Conservatory with the faculty salaries to cover the core curriculum, it is the responsibility of the Conservatory to cover the cost of the all important additional workshops that develop the unique and specialized skills that will make our graduates valuable company members and highly valued and successful members of the profession. Skill sets in stage combat, mime, period dance, musical theatre styles, etc., are invaluable in the professional world and make our students eminently employable.  In addition, our annual showcase in New York presents our newly graduated professionals to the most important theatre community in the country, providing them with a leg up into the profession.
Budget $30,000
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Theater Arts Instruction
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served General/Unspecified
Short Term Success
Short term success of our training is evaluated by immediate use in Asolo Rep productions - being hired, for example as fight directors as a result of 30 hours of training in stage combat workshops offered in the first and second years of study.  In addition, marketability of our students is often reflected in the number of appointments scheduled with professional casting directors and agents in New York following the performance of our professional showcase.  In the year 2011, for example, 70% of our students received calls for professional appointments and auditions immediately following the showcase; in 2012 and 2013, 100% of our students received these requests.
Long Term Success
Long term success is measured in long term marketability and involvement of our graduates in the profession.  For example, several recent graduates have started off-Broadway theatre companies (Mad Dog Theatre, Our Bar and the Night Shift); other recent graduates have been hired in key positions of producing organizations around the country, including The Pearl Theatre in New York, Premiere Stages at Kean University, Pensacola Shakespeare Festival and West Coast Black Theatre in Sarasota, Florida; still others have active freelance careers and are appearing regularly on regional theatre stages, on film and in television.
Program Success Monitoring
Program success is monitored by a mentoring system built into the Asolo Rep/Conservatory programming:  professional company members hired by the Asolo Rep are asked to mentor incoming third year students and keep track of the work of the students over the course of the year.   Training, depth of skill, professional comportment, and technique are all evaluated in each individual student not only by the mentors but also by Asolo Rep Producing Artistic Director Michael Edwards each season.
Program Success Examples
The work of the FSU/Asolo Conservatory has been nationally recognized:  The New York Times named the Conservatory one of the top ten actor training programs in the country;  more recently, The Hollywood Reporter named the program one of the top 25 acting programs in the English speaking world!
Description Dog Days Theatre, Sarasota's newest theatrical venture, presents literate contemporary plays in professional productions of the highest caliber, using artists from around the country and from our own community, as well as the talents of some of the graduate actors studying at the FSU/Asolo Conservatory.  Dog Days Theatre will present smart, sophisticated work with just the right entertainment quotient to satisfy the smart and sophisticated audiences of our area during these long hot days of summer.
Budget $195,000
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Theatrical Performances
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults
Short Term Success
The inaugural season of performances drew ticket sales 14% higher than our sales goal.  Contributions from individuals were 50% higher than we had budgeted.   Clearly the community was ready to support this new venture.
As we plan for the second season, we are looking to develop a solid subscription base and committed foundation and government support. Before even announcing the play choices, we sold 268 subscriptions for the 2018 season. And before the 2017 season started, we were recommended for a Sarasota County TDC/A grant that exceeded our request. With these two pillars firmly secured, we are very confident in moving forward with our 2018 program. 
Long Term Success

Dog Days Theatre will provide the year round community of Sarasota with a professional arts program in the quieter summer season.  It will offer Conservatory graduates and professional actors from around the country with the opportunity to return to Sarasota for a valuable employment experience and the chance to renew their connection to this community.  Marketing in coming seasons will build on favorable press and focus on attracting audience members from a n expanding base.  In addition, the growing popularity of Dog Days Theatre will attract even greater attention to the FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training and its work.

Program Success Monitoring

We use the Tessitura Patron Management System to chart and analyze the growing audience base and expand our marketing efforts accordingly.  Area media reviews of our productions reflect the high quality of the productions.  Audience feed back and attendance has grown to the point that we will explore expanding the production season by increasing performances for each show and/or adding a third show into the season.

Program Success Examples

A substantial grant from TDC/A was given to Dog Days Theatre for its 2018 season even before the 2017 season opened.  Attendance for this first season reached 87%.  Clearly the community has felt a need for this kind of work during the summer and welcomed the Conservatory's attempts to provide it.  Critical reviews for this first season were extremely positive, and interest in our 2018 season resulted in unexpected ticket sales even before titles were announced.  We look forward capitalizing on this success in upcoming seasons.

Program Comments by Organization

Florida State University provides facility expenses and salaries for 5 faculty positions, which allows us to meet the basic core curriculum.  Any of the essential additional curricular workshops must be paid for by the Conservatory out of donations.   In terms of the production season, one staff position (Technical Director) is paid for by FSU and is not included in the budget figures.  However, all production expenses and the salary for production stage manager must be raised by FSU/Asolo Conservatory out of ticket income and donations.

CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Greg Leaming
CEO Term Start Apr 2004
CEO/Executive Director Email greg.leaming@conservatory.fsu.edu
FSU/Asolo Conservatory Director Greg Leaming has worked in the professional theatre for more than 30 years. He has held executive positions with Long Wharf Theatre, Hartford Stage Company and Portland Stage Company. He has directed professionally off Broadway and in theatres around the country, including Cincinnati Playhouse in the park, Merrimack Theatre Company, Florida Stage Company, American Stage Festival, Philadelphia Drama Guild, Southwest Shakespeare Festival, Dallas Theatre Center, and Stamford Theatre Center.  He has worked for the National Endowment for the Arts, the Connecticut Arts Commission and the Maine Arts Commission.  As Conservatory Director, he has guided the program through the economic crisis of 2008, the loss of substantial state funding and an increased need for securing local support.  Annual fundraising goals set by the University (ranging from $90,000 to $130,000) have been successfully met for seven consecutive years; and a joint program with Asolo Repertory Theatre has been created entitled New Stages, in which our third year graduate students tour Florida with a fully produced adaptation of a classic theatrical text, performed annually to 15,000 students statewide.
Former CEOs/Executive Directors
Mr. Gil Lazier Jan 2001 - Jan 2004
Mr. Brant Pope Jan 1990 - Jan 2001
Senior Staff
Staff & Volunteer Statistics
Full Time Staff 7
Part Time Staff 2
Staff Retention Rate % 100
Professional Development Yes
Contractors 2
Volunteers 150
Management Reports to Board No
CEO/Executive Director Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes
  • Asolo Repertory Theatre - responsible for developing, in conjunction with the Conservatory director, the third year of training for all students.
  • Ringling College of Art and Design - joint workshops offered in Acting and Directing offered to our first year company of students and Ringling College senior level directors.
  • Ringling Museum - multiple educational programs exploring the parallels between the Conservatory season and the permanent collection on display at the Ringling Museum.   Workshops in voice and speech offered by our faculty to volunteers on the Ringling staff.
  • USF - General education courses in theatre for undergraduates are taught by our third year graduate students in both the fall and the spring of 2016--17.
  • Marie Selby Botanical Gardens - a three-year collaboration, based on the success of last year's "A Midsummer Night's Dream," has commenced.  "Much Ado about Nothing" will be performed at the Gardens in April 2018.
  • New College - General education courses in theatre for undergraduates are taught by our third year graduate students
Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County2017
Actor's Equity Association2017
Stage Directors and Choreographers2004
External Assessments and Accreditations
Risk Management Provisions
Government Licenses
Organization Licensed by the Government Yes
Fundraising Plan No
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan No
Strategic Plan Years
Strategic Plan Adopted 0
Management Succession Plan No
Continuity of Operations Plan No
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No
Policies and Procedures No
Board Chair
Board Chair Greg Leaming
Company Affiliation Conservatory Director
Board Term Jan 2010 to Jan 2020
Board Chair Email Greg.Leaming@conservatory.fsu.edu
Board Members
Board Members
Mr. Doug Bradbury Community volunteer
Ms. Shelley Goldblatt Retired
Mr. Sy Goldblatt retired
Ms. Angel Hissom Asolo Rep Development Associate
Dr. Herb Kaufman Community Volunteer/retired Physician and Univ. Dept. Head
Mr. George Kole Community Volunteer
Mr. Greg Leaming Director, FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training
Mr. Frank Maggio Insignia Bank
Ms. Jane Morgan community volunteer
Mr. Maurice Richards community volunteer
Dr. Scott Shamp Interim Dean, FSU College of Fine Arts
Ms. Judy Zuckerberg community volunteer
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes
Board Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 12
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Gender
Male 8
Female 4
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 99
Board Term Limits 99
Board Orientation Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 2
Board Meeting Attendance % 83
Board Self-Evaluation No
Written Board Selection Criteria No
Board Conflict of Interest Policy No
% of Board Making Monetary Contributions 100
% of Board Making In-Kind Contributions 92
Standing Committees
Special Events (Golf Tournament, Walk / Run, Silent Auction, Dinner / Gala)
Governance Comments by Organization
The members listed above are members of an advisory board. The Conservatory is governed by FSU.
Fiscal Year Projections
Fiscal Year Start Month July
Fiscal Year Start Day 01
Fiscal Year Begins 2017
Fiscal Year End Month June
Fiscal Year End Day 30
Fiscal Year Ends 2018
Projected Revenue $490,200.00
Projected Expenses $490,200.00
Total Projected Revenue includes "in-kind" contributions/ donations No
Organization has Endowment Yes
Endowment Value $1,824,745.00
Endowment Spending Policy Income Only
Capital Campaign
Currently In a Capital Campaign No
Campaign Purpose
Campaign Goal
Campaign Dates 0 to 0
Amount Raised To Date 0 as of 0
IRS Form 990s
FSU 9902016
FSU 9902015
Historical Financial Review
CEO/Executive Director Compensation $125,001 - $150,000
Tax Credits No
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Organization
FSU Audit included is for Florida State University Foundation. Please note that the majority of these funds are donor directed and are not available to the FSU/Asolo Conservatory.  This is the organization, however, that controls our financials.
Financial Comments by Foundation
Financials for this organization are not available since they are tied in with the FSU Foundation.
Nonprofit FSU/Asolo Conservatory For Actor Training
Address 5555 North Tamiami Trail
Sarasota, FL 34243
Phone 941 351-9010 2316