Henry B Plant Museum Cast

Upstairs/Downstairs at the Tampa Bay Hotel w. Otis Freedman

Step back in time with a single-character performance that brings turn-of-the-century Tampa Bay Hotel staff members and guests to life. Based on original research conducted by the Henry Plant Museum, “Upstairs/Downstairs at the Tampa Bay Hotel” recreates the attitudes and mores of a bygone time.

In this presentation of “Upstairs/Downstairs at the Tampa Bay Hotel” hosted by Curator of Education for the Henry Plant Museum Heather Brown, we meet head waiter Otis Freedman portrayed by Josh Goff.

The year is 1905 and Freedman represents the professional black man of the era. He is a self-educated, intelligent man who overcomes the confinements of his station in life. Freedman knows the “downstairs” viewpoint of the social goings-on at the Tampa Bay Hotel from a behind-the-scenes perspective. He knows how polite society should behave; and not every member can pass his “soup test.”

Special thanks to the Arts Council of Hillsborough County​ and Hillsborough County, Florida Government​ Board of County Commissioners for underwriting this project. 

This presentation is part of The Lecture Series at Carrollwood Cultural Center presented by Carrollwood Village​ HOAs. “Upstairs Downstairs” is a Henry Plant Museum​ presentation created through a partnership with the Arts Council of Hillsborough County and The University of Tampa​.

(updated July 23, 2020)