The Sarasota Ballet welcomes audiences of all abilities to attend our performances and events. To facilitate this, we strive to meet the accommodation needs of our patrons at all of our performance venues. Performances are held at the Sarasota Opera House, the FSU Center for the Performing Arts, and the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.
THE SARASOTA OPERA HOUSE
The Sarasota Opera House has hosted everything from opera, symphony, and classical ballet to film festivals, popular music concerts, comedy shows, and clowns since April 10th, 1926. The venue that holds select performances of The Sarasota Ballet has had many stars share its stage, including Will Rogers (1927), Sally Rand (1937), the Ziegfeld Follies (1928), and even (in 1956) the young Elvis Presley.
Location: Sarasota Opera House, 61 N Pineapple Ave, Sarasota, FL 34236
Accessibility – The Sarasota Opera House
The Sarasota Opera House has elevator service to all floors and are accessible to physically disabled persons. The William E. Schmidt Opera Theater contains orchestra-level seating that is wheelchair accessible. However, due to the historic nature of the theater and local fire regulations, second-floor seating is not wheelchair accessible. All restrooms in the Sarasota Opera House have facilities for the disabled. There is also a family restroom on the first floor of the Lobby. A Hearing Loop assisted listening system is available for persons desiring amplification.
The FSU Center for the Performing Arts
About a century ago, the Mertz Theatre was known as The Dunfermline Opera House in Dunfermline, Scotland. When the Opera House opened in 1903, it was celebrated for its baroque elegance and updated again in 1921 with many more ornate details. In 1982, preservationists stepped in to help the theatre when it was set to be demolished, carefully dismantling the auditorium and placing it in storage. Four years later, the Asolo Repertory Theatre had the contents shipped across the Atlantic and reassembled as the new main stage. The auditorium found its new home 4,000 miles away in Sarasota.
Location: 5555 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34243
Accessibility – FSU Center for Performing Arts
The FSU Center for the Performing Arts is equipped with a Hearing Loop system in both the Mertz and Cook Theatres. Wheelchair seating is available in both theaters and free parking is available in front of the theater. Mertz Theatre orchestra seating is at street level. An elevator is available to the mezzanine, with a few steps into seats.
The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
A paramount part of the cultural development of Sarasota, the Van Wezel, (pronounced Van Wayzull) hosts a wide range of phenomenal performances capitalizing on the diverse interests of Southwest Florida residents and visitors. The Van Wezel has carried on the long tradition of presenting spectacular Broadway musicals, top national and international performers, popular comedians, world-class symphony orchestras, and a compelling mix of classical, modern, and ethnic dance. The Van Wezel also hosts more than 50 performances and events presented by the Sarasota Orchestra, the Sarasota Concert Association, the Ringling Library Town Hall Lecture Series, and our very own Sarasota Ballet.
Location: 777 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34236
Accessibility – Van Wesel Performing Arts Hall
The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall has the Hearing Loop System for those who suffer from hearing loss. Wireless headsets can be used at any seat in the auditorium and are available in the Main and Bayside Lobbies. Patrons in wheelchairs may enter through automatic doors in both Main and Bayside lobbies on ground level (no stairs). Accessible parking is available on the circle in front of the building and in the main parking lot. Cars must have necessary identification to qualify for these special arrangements. Patrons with mobility issues can be accommodated in restrooms off both lobbies. There is a wheelchair on the premises for emergency use.