It doesn’t matter if you’ve been in Charlotte for two years or for twenty, chances are you know where the Neighborhood Theatre is. Charlotte’s NoDa community is home for the Neighborhood Theatre but make no mistake, they’re in critical condition right now.
Everything looks a bit different right now. Restaurants don’t have patrons sitting on the patio, breweries only have a table up to serve to-go cans, and concert venues are collecting dust. Live music was one of the first things to go back in March when Gov. Cooper started preparations by limiting the number of people allowed in a public group setting. Pretty much eliminates the possibility of concerts. March 12th was the day that changed everything for the music industry. Your big-name celebrities and your big stadium venues are hurting, but ultimately they’ll be okay. Very similar to chain restaurants and your big box stores. They’ll be okay. It’s your local venues, your local restaurants, your local boutiques that are taking this hit. It is no different for the music industry.
Charlotte’s Neighborhood Theatre owner, Greg McCraw, says “Over the 24-year history of Neighborhood Theatre, there have been several crisis moments when the public was concerned the Theatre would close…this moment is the direst I’ve experienced.” He adds, “We all know restaurants have been hit hard but venues can’t do ‘take-out music.’ We were the first the close and will likely be the last to reopen. We have zero revenue. That also means that we have no work for the approximately 25 staff members who depend on (the Theatre) to provide all or a portion of their livelihood.”
The bright side of this pandemic is you get to see what people are made of. The Theatre group has had to become more creative to find ways to stay open. They started a Patreon site to provide membership benefits to music fans who attend concerts. They are also selling t-shirts. A GoFundMe page was also created in the last week with a goal to raise $50,000. In the first 24 hours, they had met nearly half of their goal. Read more about the Neighborhood Theatre here!