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Charlotte, North Carolina

Charlotte Arts: Art Scene in Charlotte

The largest city in North Carolina, Charlotte is situated halfway between the Atlantic Ocean and the Appalachian Mountains.  The “Queen City” is brimming with artistic life, boasting everything from art museums to theaters, including noteworthy institutions like The Light Factory Contemporary Museum of Photography and Film and the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture.

Charlotte Arts Information

Art Museums

Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

Named for the Swiss family who donated their impressive modern art collection to create this intimate museum, the Bechtler (that’s pronounced “Beck-ler”) is dedicated to works of the mid-20th century in various media. The collection is comprised of 1,400 pieces (Picasso and Warhol are among the artists represented), and many of these are accompanied by photos and letters that reveal the Bechtler family’s personal connection to these artworks. ...more...

Mint Museum of Art

Mint Museum of Art

The Mint Museum of Art gets its name from the days when it served as a U.S. Mint, coining millions in gold in the mid-19th century. The building was saved from demolition; in 1936 it became North Carolina’s first art museum.

The museums’ broad collection has pieces spanning 2,500 years in the Ancient and Native American Collection, paintings by American artists John Singleton Copley and Gilbert Stuart, works by Hudson River …more…

The Light Factory Contemporary Museum of Photography and Film

The Light Factory Contemporary Museum of Photography and Film

One of only a few such museums in the country, The Light Factory is dedicated to promoting the power of image, through photography, film, and other media. Fans of these disciplines can enjoy the museum’s frequent and free film screenings, video installations, and photography exhibits.

Classes are offered at various levels, so students of these arts can study subjects like Digital Photography, Photoshop, Portraiture, Lighting, and Developing Your Personal Style. The …more…

Theater

Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte

Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte

Few theaters are as dedicated to producing contemporary plays and musicals as the Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte. Each season includes an eclectic slate of mainstage productions, special presentations, and invited shows; some are new productions of exciting shows recently seen on or off Broadway, others are regional premieres of new works. And if you truly want to get in on the act, ATC offers acting classes as a part of …more…

Carolina Actors Studio Theatre

Carolina Actors Studio Theatre

Carolina Actors Studio Theatre is the place for Charlotte theater lovers to go for “independent theater” that is exciting and experimental. CAST’s most recent 8-show season could be described as quaint (A Tuna Christmas), contemporary (Stephen Adley Guirgis’s Our Lady of 121st Street), culturally diverse (Real Women Have Curves), kid-friendly (How the Grinch Stole Christmas), and bizarre (Marat/Sade) all at once. If you want to take a trip off the beaten …more…

Children's Theatre of Charlotte

Children’s Theatre of Charlotte

Founded in 1948 by the Junior League of Charlotte, the Children’s Theatre’s earliest productions were in school auditoriums and starred volunteers. Eventually CTC moved into an old VFW club, where it flourished into one of Charlotte’s finest theater companies. The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte is now in residence at ImaginOn, a unique center that brings together the resources of a public library with the fun of live performance in one …more…

Classical Music

Charlotte Symphony

Charlotte Symphony

The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1932 and today plays approximately 100 performances a year. These concerts include orchestral works from the late Baroque period to the present, entertaining pops concerts (Ella Fitzgerald, Bernadette Peters, Tony Bennett, and James Taylor are some of the CSO’s past guests), family concerts that help introduce children to the wonders of symphonic music, and summer concerts. The symphony is frequently joined by its …more…

Opera

Opera Carolina

Opera Carolina

In 1948, the Charlotte Music Club sought a performing outlet for the area’s talented young singers. The group raised $125 to found the Charlotte Opera Association, which produced Francesco Maria Veracini’s Rosalinda for its initial offering. The company proved more than a one-shot wonder, eventually presenting four operas every season.

In 1986 it merged with North Carolina Opera to become Opera Carolina. Now with an operating budget of well over three million …more…

Dance

North Carolina Dance Theatre

North Carolina Dance Theater

The oldest professional ballet company in North Carolina, NC Dance Theatre is a thriving organization with 22 professional dancers in its company and a dance school that has an enrollment of 600 students. Productions include classical ballets and the works of greats like Alvin Ailey and George Balanchine, while also taking dance to the next level with contemporary showcases such as the annual “Innovative Works”. Children are invited into the …more…

Venues

Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture

Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture

A 35-year old institution, the Afro-American Cultural Center was recently re-named the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture in honor of Charlotte architect, philanthropist, and civic leader Gantt (“a designer of structure and a builder of communities”). The Center, situated in the city’s central business district, celebrates the impact that Africans and African-Americans have had on this nation’s culture with gallery exhibitions, performances, activities, lectures, and even …more…

North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center

North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center

With 10 arts organizations in residence, the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center is at the heart of Charlotte’s performing arts scene. Concerts, operas, dance shows, and theatrical productions all fill the six stages at the Blumenthal PAC.

The center also has a number of “Affinity Clubs” – for students, young adults, gays and lesbians, and educators – to enhance the theatergoing experience with free pre- and post-show mixers and social activities.

North Carolina …more…

Art Museums

Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

Named for the Swiss family who donated their impressive modern art collection to create this intimate museum, the Bechtler (that’s pronounced “Beck-ler”) is dedicated to works of the mid-20th century in various media. The collection is comprised of 1,400 pieces (Picasso and Warhol are among the artists represented), and many of these are accompanied by photos and letters that reveal the Bechtler family’s personal connection to these artworks. ...more...

Mint Museum of Art

Mint Museum of Art

The Mint Museum of Art gets its name from the days when it served as a U.S. Mint, coining millions in gold in the mid-19th century. The building was saved from demolition; in 1936 it became North Carolina’s first art museum.

The museums’ broad collection has pieces spanning 2,500 years in the Ancient and Native American Collection, paintings by American artists John Singleton Copley and Gilbert Stuart, works by Hudson River …more…

The Light Factory Contemporary Museum of Photography and Film

The Light Factory Contemporary Museum of Photography and Film

One of only a few such museums in the country, The Light Factory is dedicated to promoting the power of image, through photography, film, and other media. Fans of these disciplines can enjoy the museum’s frequent and free film screenings, video installations, and photography exhibits.

Classes are offered at various levels, so students of these arts can study subjects like Digital Photography, Photoshop, Portraiture, Lighting, and Developing Your Personal Style. The …more…

Theater

Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte

Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte

Few theaters are as dedicated to producing contemporary plays and musicals as the Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte. Each season includes an eclectic slate of mainstage productions, special presentations, and invited shows; some are new productions of exciting shows recently seen on or off Broadway, others are regional premieres of new works. And if you truly want to get in on the act, ATC offers acting classes as a part of …more…

Carolina Actors Studio Theatre

Carolina Actors Studio Theatre

Carolina Actors Studio Theatre is the place for Charlotte theater lovers to go for “independent theater” that is exciting and experimental. CAST’s most recent 8-show season could be described as quaint (A Tuna Christmas), contemporary (Stephen Adley Guirgis’s Our Lady of 121st Street), culturally diverse (Real Women Have Curves), kid-friendly (How the Grinch Stole Christmas), and bizarre (Marat/Sade) all at once. If you want to take a trip off the beaten …more…

Children's Theatre of Charlotte

Children’s Theatre of Charlotte

Founded in 1948 by the Junior League of Charlotte, the Children’s Theatre’s earliest productions were in school auditoriums and starred volunteers. Eventually CTC moved into an old VFW club, where it flourished into one of Charlotte’s finest theater companies. The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte is now in residence at ImaginOn, a unique center that brings together the resources of a public library with the fun of live performance in one …more…

Classical Music

Charlotte Symphony

Charlotte Symphony

The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1932 and today plays approximately 100 performances a year. These concerts include orchestral works from the late Baroque period to the present, entertaining pops concerts (Ella Fitzgerald, Bernadette Peters, Tony Bennett, and James Taylor are some of the CSO’s past guests), family concerts that help introduce children to the wonders of symphonic music, and summer concerts. The symphony is frequently joined by its …more…

Opera

Opera Carolina

Opera Carolina

In 1948, the Charlotte Music Club sought a performing outlet for the area’s talented young singers. The group raised $125 to found the Charlotte Opera Association, which produced Francesco Maria Veracini’s Rosalinda for its initial offering. The company proved more than a one-shot wonder, eventually presenting four operas every season.

In 1986 it merged with North Carolina Opera to become Opera Carolina. Now with an operating budget of well over three million …more…

Dance

North Carolina Dance Theatre

North Carolina Dance Theater

The oldest professional ballet company in North Carolina, NC Dance Theatre is a thriving organization with 22 professional dancers in its company and a dance school that has an enrollment of 600 students. Productions include classical ballets and the works of greats like Alvin Ailey and George Balanchine, while also taking dance to the next level with contemporary showcases such as the annual “Innovative Works”. Children are invited into the …more…

Venues

Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture

Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture

A 35-year old institution, the Afro-American Cultural Center was recently re-named the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture in honor of Charlotte architect, philanthropist, and civic leader Gantt (“a designer of structure and a builder of communities”). The Center, situated in the city’s central business district, celebrates the impact that Africans and African-Americans have had on this nation’s culture with gallery exhibitions, performances, activities, lectures, and even …more…

North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center

North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center

With 10 arts organizations in residence, the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center is at the heart of Charlotte’s performing arts scene. Concerts, operas, dance shows, and theatrical productions all fill the six stages at the Blumenthal PAC.

The center also has a number of “Affinity Clubs” – for students, young adults, gays and lesbians, and educators – to enhance the theatergoing experience with free pre- and post-show mixers and social activities.

North Carolina …more…