Welcome to the Center Stage Theater Blog!

This is our new blog! A place to learn what’s coming up at Center Stage, learn more about the groups performing here and other fun stuff.

During these challenging times, this blog keeps us connected, keeps you up to date, and helps us navigate this ever-changing new world together.

Following the Digital Arts Festival Link in the corner to see the beginning of the Festival from the Spring and Summer of 2020. We began by featuring the work of different artists, including an interview with each. Get to know some of Santa Barbara’s most talented artists, as well as some friends from beyond.

We are excited to be back to live performance! You can find out about our full COVID protocols on the main website. Below we will continue to provide updates about what we are up to and the upcoming shows. Scroll down to see what you might have missed. Stay well, and we look forward to seeing you back at the thater soon!

“Art speaks where words are unable to explain.” 

What’s Up These Days at Center Stage?

Our next live show, coming up on Monday May 31 at 6:00. Jim Sirriani interiewed Sara Neal, Ryan Hollon and Sheila Correa about their production of Three Sisters by Anton Chekhov.

Watch the video here.

Listen to the podcast here.

Get your tickets for the show here.

Center Stage Theater/ UCSB New & Reimagined Work present:
Welcome Back Dance Festival:
A celebration of dance, during a time when we all need to celebrate! 
June 17-20th


Brandon Whited, Curator/Artistic Director

All dance forms, styles, genres, traditions are welcome and encouraged to submit – Do not self-eliminate send in your ideas and let us decide. We are hoping to create as eclectic a showcase as possible, so bring it on!

These are interesting times and things are changing quickly. Our original plan was for this to be a digital festival, but happily it looks like we will be able to have a live component.  Given the current situation, our hope is to have performances with limited capacity audiences that include both live dances and recorded video.  As we proceed we will be prepared to shift gears and create an all-digital festival if needed.

We will be creating 3-4 different bills, each with 1 or 2 performances at the theater. We want this to be an opportunity for our audiences to meet and connect with the artists, so for each selected dance we will create an interview/introduction video. This will be a chance for the artists to talk about their specific dance, and its creation as well as their overall process and other projects you might be working on.  These will be featured on the Center Stage Blog leading up to the Festival and will be included in the live performance.

We are creating 3 categories for submissions: Student; Short Form; Long Form.  The submissions can be a completed work or a work in progress.  In your submission you can indicate if you prefer to have your dance presented as a video, even if we are able to have a live performance.  This will allow us to welcome submissions from outside the Santa Barbara area, and for those who might not yet be ready to return to performing inside with an audience. The final bills will combine selections from each of the three categories.  All decisions about placement within the different bills will be at the sole discretion of the Festival management.

All selected dances will receive a block of time at Center Stage to rehearse and/or film their dance for the Festival, with full COVID safety protocols in place.  Center Stage can provide a lighting designer if you don’t already have one. For those wishing to create a video we can offer the use of 2 digital cameras and camera operators, along with editing assistance.  If you prefer to bring in your own videographer and editor please let us know this when you submit and we can discuss those parameters. Final decisions on the amount of time each group receives for rehearsal and filming will be determined at the sole discretion of Center Stage Theater, Executive Director Teri Ball will make all final decisions.

If you prefer to submit a finalized video you have that opportunity on the submission form.

Performance Dates
June 17 – 20

Additional Info

  • All dance forms, styles and traditions are welcome for submission.
  • There are no application or production fees.  Our hope is to create an opportunity for artists to present their work during the pandemic.  It can be new work created for the Festival or during the pandemic, it can be existing work remounted for the Festival, or it can be a filmed version or previous work.  All submissions are welcome.
  • There are no additional costs required to participate.
  • Submissions will be accepted through May 14th and selections will be announced by May 16th
  • Rehearsals and filming will take place during late-May to mid-June.
  • Contracts and paperwork will be provided following selection to the festival.
  • If you should have further questions please contact Teri Ball, Center Stage Theater Executive Director at admin@centerstagetheater.org

To Submit – Deadline May 16 11:59 pm

  • Please review this information and then complete and submit the form below
  • If you want to submit more than one piece for consideration, please fill out a separate form for each submission.
  • In addition to completing the google form, please provide a 1-2 page description of your piece. This should include an artist’s statement, where you are in the development of the piece, and what is driving the work.  If you would like to submit a video instead of performing live, please share how you envision using video to enhance the piece, are there things you can accomplish with video that you could not achieve live. It may also be the case that you will be submitting video for simple logistical reasons, but in that case please consider how you can use the video platform to enhance telling your story. Email these to admin@centerstagetheater.org.  Your submission will not be accepted or reviewed until your Submission Description/Artist Statement is received.
  • Include a 3-5 minute video of your piece, this does not need to be performance quality, just something to let us see your work in progress. There will be a place on the submission form for you to provide a link to your video.
  • If you plan to submit a completed video, and it is already completed, there will also be a place in the form to provide a link to your completed video.
  • If you encounter any issues while applying, please contact Teri Ball, Center Stage Theater Executive Director at admin@centerstagetheater.org

Thank you for submitting your work for the Welcome Back Festival, we look forward to reviewing your submission. Please help us spread the word about the Festival – the more the merrier.

Brandon Whited, Festival Artistic Director
Meredith Cabaniss, Center Stage Board Member
Vickie Scott, Director Initiative for New & Reimagined Work
Teri Ball, Center Stage Theater Executive Director


On March 12 we held a community meeting with some of our renters to offer an update on what’s new at the theater. Introducing them to our COVID protocols, showing off some fun new equipment and instroducing our new staff members. Technical Director Antonio Cruz Ventura, and Kai Kogo our COVID Compliance Officer, who also offers expertise in video editing and livestreaming.

If you would like to hear what we talked about, you can watch the video HERE.

Or take a look at the powerpoint presentation HERE.

If you would like to see a demonstration of our newest addition, some fun moving lights you can view some video demonstrations that Antonio and Kai put together: ANTONIO VIDEO KAI VIDEO

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Come back to this blog to see what’s new at the theater!