The Alliance for the Arts is offering its next acting class for adult minorities. The CHANGE Program (Communities Harnessing the Arts to Nurture and Grow Equity) engages aspiring minority actors in theatre education, provides performance opportunities and a platform to convene dialogue on social issues that challenge our community through creative, artistic expression. Through the course, students explore the fundamentals of acting, character development and scene work.

The class runs Saturdays, Sept. 22 through Nov. 10 from 12:30 to 3 p.m. at 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers, FL 33919. The cost is $25.Pre-registration is required and can be completed online at or by calling 239-939-2787.This project is supported by the Southwest Florida Community Foundation.

About the Instructors

Derek Lively: Derek has appeared in productions ranging from Shakespeare to Eugene O’Neill and has worked in regional theaters and Off-Broadway, including The Public Theater and LaMama E.T.C. His solo show, Welcome To My Soul, which he wrote and performed, led to a first-look development deal with NBC (Universal). He is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association and SAG-AFTRA.

Sonya McCarter: Sonya is the Community Engagement Coordinator at the Alliance for the Arts as well as a director and actress. Her heart’s passion is to help facilitate engaging, compelling and meaningful theatre in Fort Myers that features strong African-American characters and stories. Sonya has appeared in television (Burn Notice), film (The Florida Project) and theatre. Her directing credits include: The Bluest Eye, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Seven Guitars and Raisin in the Sun. She holds two Master’s Degrees in Oral Interpretation of Speech and Theatre Arts.

 Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance for the Arts kicks off its 25th Consecutive Theatre season with a world premiere play: Repossessed by Greg Lam and directed by Stephen Hooper. Rachel Burttram, Brendan Powers, Lauren Drexler, Joanna Haley, Tamicka Linstead and Patrick Day compliment the compelling script. The production is the winner of Theatre Conspiracy’s 19th annual Janet and Bruce Bunch New Play Contest.

What would happen to our world if anyone could choose to remix and rewrite their memories and personalities? Rich and Gretchen seem to have the ideal marriage, until they learn that it was manufactured by a mysterious biotech company which installed it into their brains. Because they can no longer afford this service, the company must repossess their lives. Repossessed explores questions of morality and authenticity amidst a world of rapidly changing technology and the ethics that come with it.

“Greg has created a piece of theatre that will generate conversations about who we are and who should be able to alter those traits that make us,” says artistic producing director Bill Taylor. “The show is well written and moves quickly. Our audiences will enjoy this world premiere experience.”

Repossessed  opens Aug. 16 and runs through Aug. 26. Performances are Thursday, Friday and Saturdays with a new 7:30 p.m. start time and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m.

There will be a talk-back with playwright Greg Lam and producing artistic director Bill Taylor after the Aug. 18 performance. Talkbacks allow the audience to ask questions and express their thoughts and ideas on issues revealed in the play through the form of meaningful discussion. The opportunity is included with ticket purchase.

For theatregoers who are blind, or have moderate to severe vision loss, an audio described performance will take place during the Aug. 26 matinee. Please call 239-939-2787 to reserve.

Theatre lovers can save up to $42 with a Season Subscription. Season subscriptions range from $115 per person for 5 shows to $140 per person for all 7 shows. Individual tickets to each show are $26, $11 for students or $22 for Alliance members.

To purchase tickets or for more information, call the box office at 239-939-2787, visit 10091 McGregor Blvd. Fort Myers, FL or go online at