The Space is a new and exciting performance company that both produces, creates, and stages theatrical work (both original and published.) The Space also partners with local artists of a huge variety of disciplines to bring special, diverse, and powerful performances from a wide range of artistic disciplines.  Within the walls of 2106 Main, where The Space is housed, everything in the room can be moved, therefore providing the audience a unique experience every time you walk through the doors. At The Space, our goal is to not set boundaries. our goal is to be a cultural force for the Tampa community arts scene; advocating for a diverse voice in genre and artist.


 
Jared O’Roark has been working in theater in the Tampa Bay area for 15 years as a  producer, director, writer, artistic director, actor, and an arts education creator and leader.  After 15 years at Ruth Eckerd Hall, Jared left his position as the Artistic Producing Manager, to develop a performance space that audiences, artists and leaders of all diversified backgrounds can call home.  He received his B.A. degree in both Journalism and Marketing as well as an A.A. degree in American Sign Language interpreting from the University of Arkansas. Mr. O’Roark moved from Little Rock, Arkansas to be an actor with the Eckerd Theater Company where he traveled all over the country and into Canada performing theater for youth. He has also performed in such plays as The Laramie Project, A New World, Much Ado About Nothing, Nightfall With Edgar Allan Poe,  among others. After coming off the road with Eckerd Theater Company for two years he became an artist in residence, and later the manager of an arts infusion program called PASSport to the Arts, which utilized the arts to infuse into school curriculum.  He developed many workshops and exercises that helped utilize teachers and their administrators to develop curriculum using the arts.  His focus was on poetry,  playwriting, and acting. Along with his work in the education system, Mr. O’Roark has toured his own one‐ man shows (Hearing in Color, Thinking Sideways, and Bittersweet Words). These performances started at Ruth Eckerd Hall and were given several encore performances.  Recently, Mr. O’Roark has put his focus on the backstage part of theater – including the producing, writing, marketing, and directing.  One of the programs that he created, Project: Shattered Silence, which gave a stage for teenagers to talk about their lives, was developed into a documentary by WEDU, the local PBS affiliate.  This documentary was taken national, and has since won over 30 film awards and has been accepted into numerous film festivals across the country from Virginia to California.  The documentary also received a 2014 Emmy® nomination.   The documentary also has received several film awards, including the Louisville Film Festival Best Documentary Award, the Dr. Phillips Focus on Art Award, the Silver Medal at the Global Independent Film Festival award, and many others.  Project: Shattered Silence also had a features segment on the program Arts Plus,  which won the 2013 Emmy® Award. Mr. O’Roark is also the recipient of the Images of Voices and Hope Award, the Global Independent Film Festival Humanitarian Award, and has just been named a finalist in the Art of Heart Award.

Jared O’Roark has been working in theater in the Tampa Bay area for 15 years as a  producer, director, writer, artistic director, actor, and an arts education creator and leader.  After 15 years at Ruth Eckerd Hall, Jared left his position as the Artistic Producing Manager, to develop a performance space that audiences, artists and leaders of all diversified backgrounds can call home.  He received his B.A. degree in both Journalism and Marketing as well as an A.A. degree in American Sign Language interpreting from the University of Arkansas. Mr. O’Roark moved from Little Rock, Arkansas to be an actor with the Eckerd Theater Company where he traveled all over the country and into Canada performing theater for youth. He has also performed in such plays as The Laramie ProjectA New WorldMuch Ado About NothingNightfall With Edgar Allan Poe,  among others.

After coming off the road with Eckerd Theater Company for two years he became an artist in residence, and later the manager of an arts infusion program called PASSport to the Arts, which utilized the arts to infuse into school curriculum.  He developed many workshops and exercises that helped utilize teachers and their administrators to develop curriculum using the arts.  His focus was on poetry,  playwriting, and acting. Along with his work in the education system, Mr. O’Roark has toured his own one‐ man shows (Hearing in ColorThinking Sideways, and Bittersweet Words). These performances started at Ruth Eckerd Hall and were given several encore performances.  Recently, Mr. O’Roark has put his focus on the backstage part of theater – including the producing, writing, marketing, and directing.  One of the programs that he created, Project: Shattered Silence, which gave a stage for teenagers to talk about their lives, was developed into a documentary by WEDU, the local PBS affiliate.  This documentary was taken national, and has since won over 30 film awards and has been accepted into numerous film festivals across the country from Virginia to California.  The documentary also received a 2014 Emmy® nomination.   The documentary also has received several film awards, including the Louisville Film Festival Best Documentary Award, the Dr. Phillips Focus on Art Award, the Silver Medal at the Global Independent Film Festival award, and many others.  Project: Shattered Silence also had a features segment on the program Arts Plus,  which won the 2013 Emmy® Award. Mr. O’Roark is also the recipient of the Images of Voices and Hope Award, the Global Independent Film Festival Humanitarian Award, and has just been named a finalist in the Art of Heart Award.


Erica Sutherlin

Erica C. Sutherlin is a theatrical director (stage), filmmaker, actress, screenwriter and arts educator who has performed and taught nationally and internationally. She received her B.A. in Theater Performance from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and has performed in the Arts & Entertainment field for over fifteen years. Ms. Sutherlin has directed a variety of productions, namely, Ain’t Misbehavin, Clybourne Park, Polaroid Stories, To Kill a Mocking Bird, Macbeth, A Streetcar Named Desire, The Wiz, The Women, The Colored Museum, For Colored Girls Who have Considered Suicide when the Rainbow is Enuf, and many more. She has also assisted direction in numerous productions. As a writer, Erica has written screenplays, stage plays and poetry. As an emerging filmmaker and producer, Erica has directed her first feature film, Stratosphere; 1st assistant directed in Los Angeles, California, directed short films and assistant produced film and pilots in St. Louis, Illinois and the Tampa Bay area. She currently works as a director for Victor Young Productions developing and producing multi-cultural programming and film. As an actress she has held leading roles and created notable characters in numerous productions including, Steel Magnolias, Doubt, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, Soothsayin’, A Stylin’ Julius Caesar, Lily’s Purple Plastic Purse, Metro, Macbeth, The Black Repertory Theater Company, and many more. As a poet, her more recent compilation of work performed was An Evening With…Erica C. Sutherlin, Exploring Love, Desire and Self Worth. She has presented at Harris Stowe State University (St. Louis), The Urban League Vaughn Cultural Center (St. Louis), Agape International Spiritual Center (Los Angeles), The Royal Theater (St. Petersburg), Black on Black Rhyme (Tampa) and The Carter G. Woodson African American Museum (St. Petersburg) just to name a few. With a history of over 30 years of national acclaim, the Pinellas County Center for the Arts at Gibbs High School employed its first African American performance arts teacher, Ms. Erica C. Sutherlin. Another historical milestone, since its beginnings in 1925 St. Petersburg City Theatre employed its first African American director in 2013, Ms. Erica C. Sutherlin. Ms. Sutherlin has been teaching- acting, writing, directing (stage/film) for the last 10 years throughout the United States and abroad. For the past 2 years, she has worked as a consultant for arts education infusion programs and curricula. She has been recognized with the NHS Noble Educator of Distinction Award and featured in the Tampa Bay Times newspaper, St. Petersburg Times newspaper, The Weekly Challenger newspaper, St. Louis American newspaper, Flipside magazine, The Riverfront Times magazine, KDHX Radio, dhTV, and the St. Louis Post Dispatch newspaper for her performances, writings and directing projects.

Erica C. Sutherlin is a theatrical director (stage), filmmaker, actress, screenwriter and arts educator who has performed and taught nationally and internationally. She received her B.A. in Theater Performance from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and has performed in the Arts & Entertainment field for over fifteen years. Ms. Sutherlin has directed a variety of productions, namely, Ain’t Misbehavin, Clybourne Park, Polaroid Stories, To Kill a Mocking Bird, Macbeth, A Streetcar Named Desire, The Wiz, The Women, The Colored Museum, For Colored Girls Who have Considered Suicide when the Rainbow is Enuf, and many more. She has also assisted direction in numerous productions. As a writer, Erica has written screenplays, stage plays and poetry. As an emerging filmmaker and producer, Erica has directed her first feature film, Stratosphere; 1st assistant directed in Los Angeles, California, directed short films and assistant produced film and pilots in St. Louis, Illinois and the Tampa Bay area. She currently works as a director for Victor Young Productions developing and producing multi-cultural programming and film.

As an actress she has held leading roles and created notable characters in numerous productions including, Steel Magnolias, Doubt, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, Soothsayin’, A Stylin’ Julius Caesar, Lily’s Purple Plastic Purse, Metro, Macbeth, The Black Repertory Theater Company, and many more. As a poet, her more recent compilation of work performed was An Evening With…Erica C. Sutherlin, Exploring Love, Desire and Self Worth. She has presented at Harris Stowe State University (St. Louis), The Urban League Vaughn Cultural Center (St. Louis), Agape International Spiritual Center (Los Angeles), The Royal Theater (St. Petersburg), Black on Black Rhyme (Tampa) and The Carter G. Woodson African American Museum (St. Petersburg) just to name a few. With a history of over 30 years of national acclaim, the Pinellas County Center for the Arts at Gibbs High School employed its first African American performance arts teacher, Ms. Erica C. Sutherlin. Another historical milestone, since its beginnings in 1925 St. Petersburg City Theatre employed its first African American director in 2013, Ms. Erica C. Sutherlin. Ms. Sutherlin has been teaching- acting, writing, directing (stage/film) for the last 10 years throughout the United States and abroad. For the past 2 years, she has worked as a consultant for arts education infusion programs and curricula. She has been recognized with the NHS Noble Educator of Distinction Award and featured in the Tampa Bay Times newspaper, St. Petersburg Times newspaper, The Weekly Challenger newspaper, St. Louis American newspaper, Flipside magazine, The Riverfront Times magazine, KDHX Radio, dhTV, and the St. Louis Post Dispatch newspaper for her performances, writings and directing projects.