Desperate measures presented by PenArts

2023 Grant Recipient Feature: The Wild West is Coming to Pensacola

Date Posted: Aug 18, 2023

PenArts seeks to bring down the house with its Wild West performance at Foo Foo Fest

PenArts will take to the stage at this year’s Foo Foo Fest, and while it won’t be the nonprofit organization’s first performance during the annual event, it will be a significant one: as a first-time grant recipient. “We are thrilled at being an official grant recipient this year,” shares Christine Kellogg, PenArts’ artistic director.

“Participating in an event like Foo Foo is truly exciting, but being a part of the 10-year anniversary as a grant recipient is especially meaningful to us.”

This year, PenArts will bring the rowdy and rollicking Wild West of the 1800s to Pensacola with a performance of Desperate Measures, a musical by Peter Kellogg and David Friedman. Based on Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure, the fast-paced and witty plot features mistaken identities, love triangles, and even a gunfight while featuring lively and humorous musical tunes that keep it light and fun. “We’re decking out the theater to be like a saloon from the Old West,” Christine adds. “The contemporary musical was a hit in New York City, and it’s going to be making its Pensacola premier at Foo Foo Fest.”

The theater group will put on five performances of Desperate Measures over the course of Foo Foo Fest—from November 9 through 12—all of which will be held in the Gordon Community Art Center.

PenArts has only been a part of the landscape of Pensacola since 2017, but this will already be the organization’s 14th show, says Christine. “I have been blown away by the local talent in Pensacola since I’ve been here,” she says.

“The art scene and the energy found here has impressed me from the very beginning. You can feel it here. It’s vibrant, and it continues to grow. We’re thrilled to be a part of it and help it grow.”

And as Christine and PenArts know well, Foo Foo Fest is the heart of Pensacola’s arts and culture scene, drawing people to the city for its 12-day celebration each fall or perhaps even encouraging them to relocate, such as Christine and many of the other members of PenArts.

“I am one of the transplants, and a lot of us within the group have moved here over the last few years,” she says. “Some of our members have been here in Pensacola their whole lives, while others left but then chose to come back. It says a lot about a community when so many choose to be here, and Foo Foo plays a big part in that.”

Tickets for Desperate Measures are on sale now. Click here to learn more and to purchase tickets!

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