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Phoenix Theatre founder dies from COVID-19 complications

Bryan Fonseca.jpg
Posted at 5:13 PM, Sep 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-17 17:13:05-04

INDIANAPOLIS – Bryan Fonseca, the founder of Indianapolis’ Phoenix Theatre and a staple of the city’s theater scene for decades, has died from COVID-19 complications.

Recently, he founded the Fonseca Theatre Company in 2018. The company aims to use art and theater to improve the near westside community.

“Bryan’s legacy as a cultural icon and his vision to give voice to and celebrate the minority communities of Indianapolis through the prism of purposeful theater and civic engagement will live on through the Fonseca Theatre,” said Frank Basile, founding donor and board member of the Fonseca Theatre.

Before creating the Fonseca Theatre Company, he founded and led the Phoenix Theatre for more than 35 years. WRTV profiled the Phoenix Theatre and its history in the city in 2018.
Fonseca also directed shows at the Broad Ripple Playhouse as well as for the MFA Playwrights Workshop at the Kennedy Center; The Human Race Theatre in Dayton, Ohio; Indiana University; Ball State University and the Civic Theatre of Indianapolis.

He received an Achievement and Service award from the Indiana Theatre Association, two Artist Fellowship awards from the Indiana Arts Commission and two Creative Renewal Fellowships.

The Fonseca Theatre Company is on hiatus, but is scheduled to return sometime after spring 2021.

Fonseca was 65 years old.