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McGregor Hall Announces Audition Dates for ‘Shrek the Musical’

100.1 FM / 1450 AM WIZS; Local News broadcasts M-F 8am, 12pm, 5pm

McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center announces audition dates for “Shrek the Musical” directed by Mark Hopper.

Choose to audition either Saturday, August 17 at 10 a.m. or Monday, August 19 at 7 p.m. Callback auditions will be held Wednesday, August 21 at 7 p.m.

Auditions will be held onstage at McGregor Hall. They will consist of a cold read and musical material that will be taught as part of the audition. You may choose to bring 16 – 32 bars of a prepared piece (not required).

Performances will be October 24 (two daytime school performances), October 25 & 26 at 8 p.m., October 27 at 2 p.m., November 1 & 2 at 8 p.m. and November 3 at 2 p.m.

Visit McGregor Hall’s Auditions page (click here) for more information or email [email protected]

We can’t wait to meet McGregor Hall’s Shrek, Fiona, Donkey, and Lord Farquaad!

Children’s Theater Camp to Perform ‘The Lion King, Jr.’ at McGregor Hall

100.1 FM / 1450 AM WIZS; Local News broadcasts M-F 8am, 12pm, 5pm

PART OF THE ROSEMYR CORPORATION HENDERSON REC PLAYERS 2019 SUMMER SEASON:

The Henderson Rec Players’ first-ever summer theater camp for children and youth will culminate in performances of Disney’s “The Lion King, Jr” at McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center.

Three Performances: July 26, 27 at 8 p.m., July 28 at 2 p.m.

Featuring songs by Elton John and Tim Rice, the show tells the story of a young lion, Simba, and the rocky road to inheriting his father’s kingdom.

Tickets may be purchased by:

DROP IN: 201 Breckenridge Street, Henderson, N.C. Monday – Friday 1:30 – 5:30 p.m

CALL: (252) 598-0662 (M-F 1:30 – 5:30 p.m.)

CLICK HERE: www.McGregorHall.org  (Use the eTix official site, online fees apply)

(This is not a paid advertisement)

Town Talk: Study Reveals Extent of McGregor Hall’s Economic Impact – 07/10/19

100.1 FM / 1450 AM WIZS; Local News broadcasts M-F 8am, 12pm, 5pm

Mark Hopper, chairman and operations director for McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center, was on Wednesday’s edition of WIZS’ Town Talk to discuss the recently unveiled results of the Center’s economic impact study.

Conducted by researchers at NC State University, the months-long study found that McGregor Hall has a significant impact on Henderson, contributing $2.3 million to the local economy in the past 12 months alone.

According to lead researcher Dr. Jeffrey Diebold, who stated that one common criticism of studies is that numbers can often be skewed to the desired outcome, the McGregor Hall figure represents a conservative estimate.

“This [study] was as conservative as it could possibly be; we took no liberties. We wanted to represent the benefits as accurately as we could, so at every juncture where we had to make an assumption, the assumption was as conservative as we could make it,” Diebold reported to WIZS.

For Hopper and others associated with McGregor Hall and the Embassy Cultural Center Foundation, the results are confirmation of years of working to make a shared vision a reality for the community.

“We are thrilled we were able to accomplish what we said we were going to accomplish. The visionaries for the project said 15 years ago that they wanted this kind of facility to be an economic engine to revitalize Henderson,” Hopper said. “It’s a very proud moment for our Board and volunteers that we have done what we promised to do.”

The $2.3 million represents new spending from non-resident visitors flowing into the local economy, spending that was deemed by the NC State team to be a direct result of events hosted at McGregor Hall.

According to the study, the majority of this spending is associated with the emergence of Henderson as a destination for regional dance competitions. Each of these dance events brings thousands of visitors from states across the southeast for weekend-long competitions.

Ultimately, this weekend of travel means the dancers, their family members and supporters boost the local economy by purchasing hotel accommodations, meals, entertainment and more.

McGregor Hall also hosts a number of local performances, touring Broadway productions, musical and comedy acts, social events and more.

As part of their study notes, researchers indicated that the relationship between McGregor Hall, Vance County and the City of Henderson should be “one in which funding the theater is a key component of the county and city economic development, tourism and cultural budgets.”

Currently, McGregor Hall is operated through private funding and does not receive financial support from the City or County.

“To my knowledge, McGregor Hall is the only venue of that size – 1,000 seat category – that does not receive city or county support or have a connection with an educational institution,” Hopper stated.

In fact, Hopper said the arts center is “writing the book” on operating without public funding.

“Most of the colleagues we have in the industry are surprised we are able to make a go at it the way we are. Most facilities have their staffing, and many have a significant portion of their facility, covered by public funds.”

Hopper is hopeful that study results will help pave the way for future funding discussions.

“We feel like we can make an even bigger contribution economically if we are able to staff adequately,” said Hopper. “We want to expand our programming to where it needs to be to have the full impact of a real world-class venue.”

To hear Hopper’s Town Talk interview in its entirety, please click the play button below. Listen live to WIZS’ Town Talk Monday-Friday at 11 a.m. on 1450AM, 100.1 FM or online at www.wizs.com.

Reminder: ‘Guys and Dolls’ Performances Begin This Weekend

100.1 FM / 1450 AM WIZS; Local News broadcasts M-F 8am, 12pm, 5pm

-Information courtesy McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center

The McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center, 201 Breckenridge St. in Henderson, will feature “Guys and Dolls” as presented by the Henderson Rec Players on the following dates:

Friday, July 5, 2019, @ 8 p.m.

Saturday, July 6, 2019, @ 8 p.m.

Sunday, July 7, 2019, @ 2 p.m.

Friday, July 12, 2019, @ 8 p.m.

Saturday, July 13, 2019, @ 2 p.m.

Part of the Rosemyr Corporation Henderson Rec Players 2019 Season –

“Guys and Dolls” tells the story of a couple of big New York City gamblers and the women who love them. With music and lyrics by Frank Loesser and book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows, this energetic show features the hit songs “I’ve Never Been in Love Before,” “Luck, Be a Lady,” and “Bushel and a Peck.”

Tickets may be purchased by:

DROP IN: 201 Breckenridge Street, Henderson, N.C. Monday – Friday 1:30 – 5:30 p.m

CALL: (252) 598-0662 (M-F 1:30 – 5:30 p.m.)

CLICK HERE: www.McGregorHall.org  (Use the eTix official site, online fees apply)

(This is not a paid advertisement)

Reminder: Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers to Perform This Sunday!

-Information courtesy McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center

The McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center will feature The Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers on Sunday, June 9, 2019. Show starts at 2 p.m.

A Part of the Music at McGregor Series

The Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers, founded in 1998 by Joel F. Reed, promote choral artistry by modeling the highest quality choral standard and performing a breadth of literature, including music from the southern Appalachian region.

The McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center will feature The Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers on Sunday, June 9, 2019. Show starts at 2 p.m. (Photo courtesy the McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center)

The Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers are currently 25 singers who rehearse monthly in preparation for the ensemble’s performances. Many of the members are professional musicians, working in public and private schools, colleges and churches. Others are professionals from the business and medical communities who reside in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, and are, for the most part, alumni and retired faculty of Mars Hill University.

The ensemble has performed regularly in the North and South Carolina areas including conferences of North Carolina American Choral Directors Association and National Association for Music Education.

Tickets may be purchased by:

DROP IN: 201 Breckenridge Street, Henderson, N.C. Monday – Friday 1:30 – 5:30 p.m

CALL: (252) 598-0662 (M-F 1:30 – 5:30 p.m.)

CLICK HERE: www.McGregorHall.org  (Use the eTix official site, online fees apply)

(This is not a paid advertisement)

Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers to Perform at McGregor Hall – June 9

-Information courtesy McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center

The McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center will feature The Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers on Sunday, June 9, 2019. Show starts at 2 p.m.

A Part of the Music at McGregor Series

The Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers, founded in 1998 by Joel F. Reed, promote choral artistry by modeling the highest quality choral standard and performing a breadth of literature, including music from the southern Appalachian region.

The McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center will feature The Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers on Sunday, June 9, 2019. Show starts at 2 p.m. Photo courtesy the McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center.

The Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers are currently 25 singers who rehearse monthly in preparation for the ensemble’s performances. Many of the members are professional musicians, working in public and private schools, colleges and churches. Others are professionals from the business and medical communities who reside in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, and are, for the most part, alumni and retired faculty of Mars Hill University.

The ensemble has performed regularly in the North and South Carolina areas including conferences of North Carolina American Choral Directors Association and National Association for Music Education.

Tickets may be purchased by:

DROP IN: 201 Breckenridge Street, Henderson, N.C. Monday – Friday 1:30 – 5:30 p.m

CALL: (252) 598-0662 (M-F 1:30 – 5:30 p.m.)

CLICK HERE: www.McGregorHall.org  (Use the eTix official site, online fees apply)

(This is not a paid advertisement)

Henderson Rec Players Announces Summer Show Auditions

-Information courtesy McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center

The Henderson Rec Players, now under the umbrella of the McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center, announces its summer show auditions will be held Saturday, May 11, 2019. Auditions begin at 10 a.m. and will be held at First Baptist Church of Henderson – 205 W. Winder St. (across from McGregor Hall). 

Audition for a role in “Guys & Dolls,” “Disney’s The Lion King Jr.,” and Neil Simon’s stage play, “Rumors.” All those auditioning will be asked to read lines from the script. No prepared pieces will be necessary.

“Disney’s The Lion King Jr.” is part of a summer theatre camp experience for rising 3rd – 11th graders. Click here for more information on the Summer Theatre Camp for Kids.

“Guys and Dolls” will be performed July 5-7 and 12-13 under the direction of Jo Ellen Nowell. “Disney’s The Lion King Jr.” will be directed by Cindy Clark and performed July 15-28.

“Rumors” will round out the Henderson Rec Players 46th summer season with performances August 9-11. The show will be directed by Betsy Henderson.

To learn more about auditions and the upcoming shows, please visit https://www.mcgregorhall.org/auditions.

The Henderson Rec Players Summer Series is proudly presented by the Rosemyr Corporation.

 

‘A Tribute to Sammy Davis, Jr.’ by David Hayes Coming to McGregor Hall

-Information courtesy McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center

The McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center will feature “A Tribute to Sammy Davis, Jr.” by entertainer David Hayes on Friday, May 10, 2019. Show starts at 8 p.m.

A Part of the Heritage! Series

A Tribute to Sammy Davis Jr. STARRING DAVID HAYES.

“That was the best singing impersonation of me that I’ve ever heard.”

David Hayes was the subject of this compliment from Sammy Davis Jr. after Sammy saw David perform in Atlantic City.

The McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center will feature “A Tribute to Sammy Davis, Jr.” by entertainer David Hayes on Friday, May 10, 2019. Show starts at 8 p.m. (Photo courtesy McGregor Hall)

David has been performing as Sammy Davis Jr. since 1991. He sings like Sammy, tap dances, plays the drums, does impersonations and also looks like Sammy. He sings all of the songs made famous by Sammy, including “Once In A Lifetime,” “Old Black Magic,” “What Kind Of Fool Am I,” “Candy Man,” “Birth Of The Blues” and many more. David has performed at Harrahs in Lake Tahoe, The Venetian, Harrahs and Caesars in Las Vegas, as well as major theatres across the US and some of the biggest cruise lines in the world.

He brings to the stage many years of show business experience as an accomplished comedian, emcee, actor, singer, and musician, as well as being an accomplished visual artist. He has earned the title, in Fun & Gaming Magazine, of “Best Performer in a Production Show” four years in a row, followed by “Best Act.” David is a unique, multi-talented performer who also regularly appears as Sammy in various Rat Pack tribute shows across the country. He has earned several glowing newspaper reviews performing in this show.

“David not only captures Davis’ look but he’s got virtually every stage mannerism of the late performer and measures up to Davis’ distinctive vocal style.” 

– Atlantic City Weekly

“David sounds closest to Sammy and puts across the sharp dance gestures of Davis impeccably.” 

– New Haven Register

“David Hayes does a superb job as Sammy in regard to his vocals and some fancy tap-dancing.” 

– Now That’s Entertainment – Parent World

When you watch David Hayes perform you think you are watching the real Sammy Davis Jr. — without question, he is one of the best tribute artists in the world.

Tickets may be purchased by:

DROP IN: 201 Breckenridge Street, Henderson, N.C. Monday – Friday 1:30 – 5:30 p.m

CALL: (252) 598-0662 (M-F 1:30 – 5:30 p.m.)

CLICK HERE: www.McGregorHall.org  (Use the eTix official site, online fees apply)

(This is not a paid advertisement)

Reminder: Eichner to Perform at McGregor Hall Friday Evening

-Information courtesy McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center

A Part of the Classical and Chamber Performance Series

Pianist Solomon Eichner will be performing at the McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center in downtown Henderson on Friday, April 19, 2019, at 8 p.m.

Declared by the American Liszt Society as “A sensitive pianist, Solomon’s playing is poetic, beautiful and moving with deep feeling.” Equally at home with solo, chamber and concerto performances, American pianist Solomon Eichner has established himself as an exciting versatile artist known for his commanding interpretations of the romantic keyboard repertoire.

Solomon performed for the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz in April 2018 alongside Cellist Amit Peled and Violinist Yevgeny Kutik at the Krakow Philharmonic Hall in addition to a solo recital at the Krakow Jewish Cultural Center.

Pianist Solomon Eichner will perform at the McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center in downtown Henderson on Friday, April 19, 2019, at 8 p.m. Eichner’s performance is part of McGregor Hall’s Classical and Chamber Performance Series. (Photo courtesy McGregor Hall)

Solomon debuted at Carnegie Hall in April 2016 after winning the “GoldenKey Debut” International Competition in New York City.

Solomon won 2nd prize in the 2016 Miami Music Festival’s Concerto Competition resulting in his Miami debut recital at the Steinway Piano Gallery Coral Gables.

Solomon participated in the 2017 Hastings International Piano Competition in England as well as the Virginia Waring International Piano Competition in Palm Springs, California.

Solomon won 2nd prize at the 2013 Liszt-Garrison International Piano Competition and 2nd prize and Chinese Award in the 2013 International Young Artists Competition at Catholic University in D.C.

Originally from Baltimore, Solomon studied privately in Maryland with Irene Kreymer, Reynaldo Reyes and Virginia Reinecke. Solomon graduated with his Bachelor of Music degree from the Manhattan School of Music having studied with Arkady Aronov and Master of Music degree from the Peabody Conservatory studying with Alexander Shtarkman. Solomon received his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of South Carolina in May 2017. He held a position as staff accompanist with a full scholarship. Solomon studied with Dr. Marina Lomazov and Dr. Joseph Rackers. Solomon’s dissertation is on the Jewish Soviet repressed pianist/composer Samuil Feinberg.

Solomon and his wife Becky recently relocated to Raleigh where he is on staff at Campbell University.

Website: www.solomoneichnerpianist.com

** Originally, this concert was to feature Pianist Gregory Knight, but due to unforeseen circumstances, Mr. Knight will be unable to perform.**

Tickets may be purchased by:

DROP IN: 201 Breckenridge Street, Henderson, N.C. Monday – Friday 1:30 – 5:30 p.m

CALL: (252) 598-0662 (M-F 1:30 – 5:30 p.m.)

CLICK HERE: www.McGregorHall.org  (Use the eTix official site, online fees apply)

(This is not a paid advertisement)

Dance Competitions Economic Boon for McGregor Hall, Vance County

Mark Hopper, chair of the Embassy Cultural Center Foundation, was on Wednesday’s edition of WIZS’ Town Talk program to discuss the local economic impact of hosting dance competitions at McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center in downtown Henderson.

With nine weekends of national dance competitions scheduled this year, crowds of 1,800 to 2,700 per event are expected to converge on McGregor Hall and Vance County, according to Hopper.

“These are Friday afternoon through Sunday evening stays that involve a traveling team and their family members in much the same way as traveling athletic teams,” said Hopper.

Ultimately, this weekend of travel means the dancers, their family members and friends support the local economy by purchasing hotel accommodations, meals, gas, entertainment and more.

“We had one of the dance competitions a couple of weeks ago and two hotels in town were completely full because of the competition,” Hopper said. “We’ve heard anecdotal stories of downtown restaurants that literally ran out of food on that Saturday night because they had so much business.”

Such an economic impact is just what McGregor Hall’s forefathers hoped for when planning the venue.

“The primary mission of McGregor Hall is one of economic redevelopment. Part of Sam Watkins’ dream was to improve life in the community by bringing people in to spend money in Vance County, particularly in downtown Henderson,” Hopper explained.

The second part of that mission, to provide an outlet for young people to practice their art on stage while also providing entertainment for the community is the “vehicle that drives the economic redevelopment vision.”

Hopper said the affordable rental fees coupled with the personal service provided by McGregor Hall staff, and the Henderson business community as a whole, are a major part of the reason the venue has gone from booking two dance competitions last year to nine this year.

“Matt Nowell, the technical director and point person for rental events at McGregor Hall, knows how to make people feel welcome. He’s a hometown boy and he’s exactly what we want as far as encouraging our best and brightest to stay here to contribute to make Vance County a better place.

When people come in and they get treated well and pay less, then naturally we’re going to get a lot of business.”

Hopper also had high praise for the work Pam Hester, director for the Vance County Tourism Development Authority, has done and continues to do to support the community and McGregor Hall.

“Pam has been a fantastic friend to us and has worked diligently as a partner in everything we’re doing.”

Phil Lakernick, a former director of downtown development, and dance studio Ballet Arts were also mentioned as being “instrumental” in making McGregor Hall a contender in the dance competition game.

“Phil has been an indispensable partner to us since the day we opened and was very influential in helping us get the nine companies lined up for these events.”

Community partners working together to network and make economic opportunities like this a reality demonstrate that Vance County is committed to revitalization, according to Hopper.

“We truly are all in this together: from businesses, to tourism, to government, to volunteers; we are committed to this dream.”

To hear the Town Talk interview with Mark Hopper in its entirety, click here.