Stephanie Crisco invited me to her office to share wonderful news! Stephanie’s been director at Charles Mack Citizen Center for 12 years, and she now wears the hats of impresario, producer, and promoter of the newest and most exciting entertainment in Mooresville—Our Town Stage. While she gave rave reviews of the performers she’s booked for the first season, it was all I could do not to rudely pull out my iPhone to enter dates into my social calendar. You will be impressed with the lineup!
SIX-PERFORMANCE SEASON OPENS IN SEPTEMBER
You’ve seen the posters and heard the scoop about Our Town Stage. “Our lineup is very diverse, with something for everyone,” Stephanie told me, “A world-class Broadway review, jazz and soul, two amazing—and very different—dance companies, Latin music that bridges the Americas, and our finale is magic! The shows are family friendly, so everyone can enjoy the music right here in downtown Mooresville.”
O Sole Trio will perform on September 22. Their story reads like a dream come true: to become world class performing musicians—a feat these New York City based musicians have achieved—with sell outs at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Redlands Bowl in California, Ronnie Scott’s in London, and another 200 venues in the US, Canada, and UK. Soprano Erin Shields and baritone Guiseppe Spoletini are joined by David Shenton on piano and violin. David is likely the world’s first, maybe the only, musician who can play violin and piano simultaneously. “They are known as Bravissimo Broadway,” Stephanie continued, “and their innovative renditions of familiar tunes will have you tapping your toes.”
Yolanda Rabun takes the stage on October 27. “We want to showcase North Carolina talent, and while Yolanda graduated from a famous Atlanta performing arts high school, she records here. She’s been performing since she was a kid,” explained Stephanie. “She’s versatile, performing any style—straight-ahead and contemporary jazz, blues, folk, pop, gospel—but favors jazz and soul. Once you see Yolanda, you’re a fan for life.” Her recordings include Stanley Baird’s 2007 hit, “I Want 2 Love You,” “So Real,” “Hold on To Your Dreams,” and much more. She has a natural storytelling gift, endless energy and passion, and, of course, her powerful voice. She’s opened for and sung with Jennifer Holiday, Howard Hewitt, Ron Isley and the Isley Brothers, R&B singer KEM, and the world-renowned drummer, Sheila E.
Houston-based Soul Street Dance Company mixes it up on November 2. “This is the music kids today listen to and you’ll be amazed at the talents—acting, athletics, wit, music, and song—of these energized dancers,” Stephanie shared. “These guys are world-class.” Soul Street Dance represented the United States in the State department’s Arts Envoys international touring program, and have recently completed tours of Eastern Europe, holding workshops with young dancers in the former Soviet Union countries. They’ll soon represent the US again in Haiti. The four-man troupe garners goodwill all over the world with open hearts, creative minds, and clean family friendly fun. Through hard work and lots of talent, they’ve earned their reputation of Rock Stars of the Educational Theatre World—something everyone, young and not-so-young, will appreciate.
Let me share some fun details about Our Town Stage:
BUILD YOUR SEASON PASS
You can go online or use the app (Our Town Stage at Google Play or Apple App Store) and create a season pass that suits your taste and schedule. Stephanie explained, “We want to include everyone so single tickets start at $10 and season passes start at just $72—the more shows you choose, the better the price. You can select your seats for the entire season, too.” Plan to enjoy Last Call Courtyard after the shows when the energy keeps going while you hang with friends, meet new friends, partake of five-star rated On the Nines’ cash bar and a couple food trucks, all while listening to local performers whose music compliments the show you just saw. The courtyard after-party’s big bar games—think Jenga, cornhole, chess—add to the mix. This is one party that you will want on your after-the-show calendar.
MOORESVILLE’S PERFORMING ARTS
Angel Wright-Lanier sparked the fire for Our Town Stage. Angel is Mooresville’s deputy town manager. She oversees Cultural & Recreation Services and Charles Mack Citizen Center. “It was easy to get the commissioners on board, because they recognize the value of the arts here,” Angel said. “Our goal is to engage people in interesting and exciting cultural programs and bring people in from all over the region. Our Town Stage will showcase our Citizen Center and our beautiful downtown. We want people to shop, eat, and stay here in Mooresville. Everyone is excited.”
Our Town Stage is the perfect complement to Mooresville’s other popular art and music programs: One Moore Fest, on September 15 at Charles Mack Citizen Center, will showcase international performing and visual artists. Education and cultural outreach are the focus, offering the opportunity to taste cultures and foods from around the world. Music on Main, the free outdoor concerts managed by Alli Goods, program and marketing coordinator for Parks & Recreation Department, presents this season’s finale, The Lilly Brothers, on October 5 on the lawn at Mooresville’s Town Hall. Mooresville Community Children’s Theatre opens this season with five performances of The Addams Family Musical on October 18. Look up these fun events, too, while you’re online!
ACT TWO – THREE MORE SHOWS!
Our Town Stage wouldn’t be right without a Christmas show. Carol of the King is a mesmerizing Irish dance Christmas spectacular not to be missed. Led by former lead dancer from Michael Flatley’s Lord of the Dance, this traditional Irish Christmas story of love and salvation is told through music and dance by 20 of the world’s most talented Irish dancers and musicians. The original orchestral soundtrack features many holiday favorites. Your family’s Christmas spirit will be set afire on December 19—this show will sell out!
Gina Chavez, an exciting multiethnic Latin pop songstress and a nine-time Austin Music Award winner, received Musician of the Year and Album of the Year recognition in 2015. Her Spanish-language anthem, Siete-D—which won the 2014 John Lennon songwriting contest grand prize—tells the story of her experience volunteering in a gang-dominated suburb of San Salvador. The Boston Globe wrote, “Most striking is Chavez’s ease as she moves between social and love songs, between North American and Latin genres, and even between languages: When she passes mid-song from English to Spanish and back, it’s the most natural thing in the world.” Tell your friends about Gina Chavez!
Illusionist Arthur Trace is billed as The Artful Deceiver and is one of the most unique acts in the world of magic today. He is the eighth magician to be awarded The International Brotherhood of Magicians Gold Medal and is a world-champion performer several times over. Arthur has appeared on television in seven countries, toured China with the WuQiao Circus, performed for Prince Albert II of Monaco, aboard The Queen Mary, at the legendary Wintergarten Variete Berlin, and The House of Magic in Macau. This exciting April 5th show is perfect for all ages.
MOORESVILLE HAS SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE
The Town of Mooresville is to be commended for their innovation and diverse selection. You really want to check this out. OTS app users can sign up to win free tickets, along with dinner at On the Nines and an overnight stay at Towneplace Suites, both sponsors of the series. I suggest getting your tickets or season pass today…tickets will go fast!
Our Town Stage
(704) 799 4220
Charles Mack Citizen Center
215 North Main Street • Mooresville