The Daniel Island Performing Arts Center (DIPAC) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is envisioned to be the home of the first League of Resident Theatres (LORT) in South Carolina. As announced in the Post and Courier on January 17, 2017, DIPAC will be part of the new Daniel Island Square on Island Park Drive in the heart of the Daniel Island business district, with the first phase of construction underway with a four-story office building with a restaurant. In the next phase, DIPAC will construct a state-of-the-art facility later in 2017 for an inaugural 2019-2020 season.
DIPAC is the vision of Mary Gould who founded the South of Broadway Theatre Company at Park Circle. When construction is complete, DIPAC will have a 400-seat acoustically pure proscenium theatre, a 99-seat black box theatre, catering kitchen, several rehearsal halls, event space, dressing rooms, and a green room. The hallmark of the proscenium theatre will be its acoustical design to accommodate musical and theatrical performances without amplification.
With its attainment of the prestigious LORT designation, DIPAC will be positioned to be a regional destination theatre for the Low Country, South Carolina, and beyond, and be a significant economic engine for Daniel Island, Berkeley County, and the greater Charleston area. LORT theatres serve as incubators for Broadway productions, expand opportunities for artists living and working in the Charleston community, and are eligible for Tony Award consideration. There are currently 72 LORT member theatres in the United States, and DIPAC will be joining ranks with such celebrated destination theatres as the La Jolla Playhouse in La Jolla, CA; Barter Theatre in Abingdon, VA; Goodman Theatre in Chicago, IL; Arena Stage in Washington, DC; and Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, GA.
In addition to creating an intimate and acoustically pure performing arts center in Charleston that will feature local performing arts organizations and invited national and international talent, DIPAC will provide educational performing arts programming for students of all ages in Berkeley County Schools and across the Low Country. DIPAC also will offer space available for civic activities, fundraising events, and corporate meetings.
“DIPAC has raised over $5 million for its capital campaign to date, says Ed Jones, Chairman of the DIPAC Board and resident of Seabrook Island. “Donors investing in DIPAC’s 2017 Capital Campaign Founders’ Circle have a unique, once in a lifetime opportunity to play a key role in establishing a nationally-recognized LORT regional destination theatre to the Low Country.”
As Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg noted at the August 2015 DIPAC site sign unveiling on Island Park Drive, “When we have the arts in our lives, it enriches us, it enlightens us, it inspires us as citizens, in our personal life and our community life.”
To learn more about DIPAC, please see the electronic brochure: DIPAC: An Introduction. To learn how you can join the 2017 Capital Campaign Founders’ Circle, call Mary Gould at 843-814-4451.
-Submitted by Ed Jones