It was a warm sunny day on September 21, 2017, when the Seabrook Island Natural History Group (SINHG) visited the North Charleston Performing Arts Center (PAC). There we met Steve Congress, Director of Event Services. Steve told us that he is in charge of the day-to-day operations of not only the PAC, but also the Coliseum, and the Convention Center. He took us behind the scenes of the PAC. This 2,300 seat theater is home to the Best of Broadway Series, as well as the North Charleston POPS! It has hosted concerts, ballets, symphonies, and art festivals. We walked onto the 110’ by 40’ stage which had been replaced this year, including the rigging and lighting. There is a large garage door (painted black) in the back of the stage positioned 30 feet from the loading dock to enable quick and easy setup. We then toured the dressing rooms. There are 4 star dressing rooms which have enough makeup area to accommodate at least 5 stars each. The ladies of our group are shown in the photo in one of the star’s dressing rooms. Then there are 2 large main dressing rooms to accommodate the rest of the cast. Finally, we walked the halls behind the stage. There we caught views of the art that the casts of all of these productions paint on the hallway walls. Some of them are just signatures of the stars, while others are masterpieces of art. One notable signature was from Oprah Winfrey. She would only sign the wall if the PAC provided a Plexiglas covering. All in all, it was a great experience to see how the PAC is set up to produce the shows we all want to see.
-Submitted by Frank Stare on behalf of SINHG