Arts & Culture

Best College Productions To See This Year Around Charlotte

October 14, 2013 8:00 AM

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Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Charlotte and Mecklenburg County are fortunate to have a number of colleges and universities enriching the community’s cultural life. Each of our local colleges has an active theater program and presents numerous productions during the school year, often at bargain ticket prices. Among them, Central Piedmont’s theater program is a standout, with top talent that lifts its musical productions, especially, close to the professional level. Here are some highlights of the upcoming 2013-2014 season at colleges around the county.
“Les Miserables”
Central Piedmont Community College
Halton Theater, Overcash Building
1206 Elizabeth Ave.
Charlotte, NC 28204
(704) 330-6534

Dates: Nov. 15-24, 2013

The CPCC Theatre Department teams with the college’s Opera and Dance departments to mount the hugely popular “Les Mis” to honor Central Piedmont’s 50th Anniversary. The pop opera will receive the full attention of CPCC’s always impressive theatrical and musical talents, honed through CPCC’s award-winning annual summer theater season. With most shows selling out, the professional summer stock series has been a beloved local tradition since 1973, and much of the talent comes from right here in Charlotte. In spring of 2014, CPCC Theatre brings Neil Simon’s vaudeville comedy “The Sunshine Boys” to the stage April 4-13, as well as a musical revue titled “Some Enchanted Evening” featuring the music of Rodgers and Hammerstein from February 14-23.

Related: Best Outdoor Theaters In Charlotte

“Love the Doctor”
University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Robinson Hall, Black Box Theater
9201 University City Blvd.
Charlotte, NC 28223
(704) 687-1849

Dates: Oct. 30 through Nov. 10, 2013

UNCC alum Sarah Brew translated this 17th century comedy by Tirso de Molina from the Spanish original, and it receives its first English production here. The baroque comedy involves mistaken identities, lovers’ triangles and a fair amount of cross-dressing. In February, the UNCC Theater Department presents “4:48 Psychosis,” the final play of British author Sarah Kane before her suicide at age 28, and on April 10-16, “Spring Awakening,” winner of eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical. A rock score by Duncan Sheik electrifies this dark musical based on a controversial German play.

“Providence Gap”
Davidson College
Duke Family Performance Hall, Knobloch Center
207 Faculty Drive
Davidson, NC 28035
(704) 894-2135

Dates: March 26-30, 2014

Evoking the myths and music of the Appalachian Mountains, this original musical was written by Preston Lane, artistic director and co-founder of Triad Stage in Greensboro, and singer/songwriter Laurelyn Dossett, the team’s fourth collaboration to date. Covering the years 1894-1931, the play takes place in a mountain village and a mill town during a time of turbulent change. This is the new play’s second production since its world premiere at Triad Stage. Dossett, an accomplished bluegrass singer, will guest-star accompanied by Davidson student actors and musicians. Other productions in the Davidson season include: Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” (Oct. 25-27, Nov. 1-2, 2013) and the comedies “Reckless” (Nov. 13-17, 2013) and “Mr. Marmalade” (Feb. 19-23, 2014).

“The Actor’s Nightmare” and “Poof!”
Johnson C. Smith University Arts Factory
1545 W. Trade St.
Charlotte, NC 28216
(704) 330-1361

Dates: Oct. 16-19, 2013

An evening of one-acts kicks off the JCSU season. “The Actor’s Nightmare,” by Tony Award-winning playwright Christopher Durang, is a comedy of the absurd centered on an accountant accidentally thrust onto stage to perform a play he knows nothing about. “Poof!” by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage is a short work about a housewife whose husband spontaneously goes up in smoke. On February 19-23, the JCSU students will present a longer work by Nottage, “Crumbs from the Table of Joy,” which won two NAACP Theatre awards.

“The Rocky Horror Show”
Queens University of Charlotte
2132 Radcliffe Ave.
Charlotte, NC 28207
(704) 337-2463

Dates: March 20-23, 2014

Do the time warp with the student actors of Queens College this spring as they romp through “Rocky Horror.” The camp musical attracts a cult following, and you’re sure to see outrageous costumes and a variety of props in the audience. Check the schedule for possible midnight shows. Earlier in the season, Queens presents “Dearly Departed,” an off-Broadway hit comedy set in the Bible Belt from November 14-17.

Related: Best Places to Discover New Music in Charlotte

With 15 years of experience covering restaurants in Charlotte and the Carolinas, and two regional guidebooks under her belt, Renee Wright examines the dining scene with enthusiasm plus a deep knowledge of food trends and outstanding local eating ops. Her work can be found at

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