Theatre Charlotte plans a December reopening

The Arts

October 31, 2022



After an extensive fire nearly two years ago, Theatre Charlotte plans to raise the curtains again at home in Myers Park next month.

by Leigh Brock

In November, Theatre Charlotte had planned to launch its 95th season by welcoming audiences back for a two-week run of Misery, the play based on the novel by Stephen King. But the homecoming met with delays once again as construction issues forced the theater company to push the show to March 2023.

Still, plans to reopen the theatre in 2022 are not completely scrapped. Theatre Charlotte is expecting to welcome audiences back for A Christmas Carol in December.

The rescheduling of Season 95 is just one more hurdle as Charlotte’s longest-running community theater continues to deal with the aftermath of a one-two punch: managing the pandemic’s toll while trying to rebuild after a devastating fire.

The pandemic had already forced Theatre Charlotte to creatively rethink how to share performances remotely. Jackie Timmons, director of development and marketing, says they quickly adapted by streaming shows and interviews online, and adding parking-lot shows as soon as it felt safe. Just as performers and audiences settled into a new pandemic routine, their beloved theater burned in late December 2020 after a fire started in the HVAC system.

photograph by Joe Ciarlante

Ron Law, executive director of Theatre Charlotte from 2005-2020, returns next year as director of Misery

There were times Timmons doubted a comeback. “Of course. Probably at least once a week,” she says. “But we know that Theatre Charlotte is important in the lives of so many in our community as a creative outlet, an escape, a family and a home, so we dig a little deeper, find more creative solutions, move on to Plan B (or probably Plan Q at this point) and keep going.”

Without a theater last year, the actors went on tour, performing in venues around the city. As of this writing, A Christmas Carol will open on December 9 as Theatre Charlotte’s “soft reopening” on Queens Road followed by a grand reopening with Something Rotten in January. It’s a practical move that keeps Season 95 moving forward and allows the cast of Misery to still perform, though at a much later date than expected.

“Being ‘on the road’ last season helped us meet new audiences and forged some new partnerships with great organizations that we hope to continue to build upon. We absolutely have a new appreciation for our home and will certainly never take it for granted again,” Timmons says.  SP

For ticket information and upcoming shows visit theatrecharlotte.org.

Featured image: Theatre Charlotte is preparing to reopen its doors for the first time since a fire damaged the Queens Road building in December 2020.

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