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Things to do

The ‘Lollapalooza summer of rock musicals’ is here — Charlotte, get ready.


This is not your typical “return to the theater” season announcement.

This is Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte bursting out of the COVID-19 quarantine gates with a game plan guaranteed to rock the city — in an outdoors, socially distanced sort of way, of course.

The team has decided to launch Season 33 with an outdoor summer series: “Rock The Barn”.

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“We don’t want to hurry back indoors, so we’re going to do our first three shows outside. And what a beautiful place to do a show, it doesn’t get any better than this. Charlotte in the summertime, in the fall, it’s gonna be beautiful out here,” Chip Decker, ATC executive director, told CharlotteFive in May.

We’re talking three — high-energy — shows: “Rock of Ages”, “Head Over Heels” and “Rocky Horror Show”.

“It will be like a Lollapalooza summer of rock musicals,” said Shannon Reichley of ATC.

Held at “The Barn at MoRA” at 8300 Monroe Road near McAlpine Park (yes, there’s an actual barn and silo, built in 1932 on a Levine family property), the Actor’s Theatre team actively worked with the MoRA neighborhood group to make this happen for us all.

The Barn at MoRA rests at the bottom of a naturally slanted field, perfect for viewing live performances. Alex Cason Photography CharlotteFive

Here’s how it will work:

“Everybody is at the part where they are chomping at the bit to do something, to get out and have fun, also to be a little social distanced,” Decker said. “People are still a little apprehensive about getting pushed into a dark space indoors. So we thought, what better way to kick off the return of theater than to go outside, have a great time, be safe and socially distanced and rock out to a great summer musical.”

The last four shows of the season will be back in the Hadley Theatre at Queens University, which has been dark since February 2020 due to the pandemic.

Rock The Barn schedule (Season 33, Act 1)


by Chris D’Arienzo

July 28-Aug. 21

Per ATC: “Shredding guitar solos, fierce vocals, and monster ballads set the stage for this energetic tribute to classic 80s rock. It’s gonna be ‘Nothin’ But A Good Time’ and you’ll be riding high on nostalgia and hairspray.”

Tickets: Tickets go on sale May 28. Pro tip: If you sign up for the Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte email newsletter or become a member, you can buy them early on May 27. If you make a donation to ATC, you can buy tickets on May 26.


by Jeff Whitty and James Magruder

Sept. 1-25

Per ATC: “’We Got the Beat!’ And so does the kingdom of Arcadia in this unconventional fairy tale love story set to the iconic hits of The Go-Go’s. ‘Get Up And Go’ get your tickets!”


By Richard O’Brien

Oct 6-31

Per ATC: “Set to a blistering rock score, two young lovers try to survive a night in the castle of a manic genius with an insatiable libido. This classic tribute to science fiction, B movies, and fishnets is everything your mother warned you about!”

Hadley Theatre, Season 33, Act 2

Starting in January 2022, Actor’s Theatre will be back inside Hadley Theatre with the following shows:


by John Cameron Mitchell & Stephen Trask


by Diana Burbano


by Idris Goodwin


by Mark St. Germain

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Rock the Barn

by The Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte

How to get there: The address is listed as 8300 Monroe Road, but don’t be fooled: It’s actually a block off of Monroe Road on McAlpine Park Drive. This Google Maps link will get you there; look for the barn and silos and you’re in the right spot.

A large field near an old dairy barn in MoRA will become the location of three outdoor rock music performances by the Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte. Alex Cason Photography CharlotteFive

This story was originally published May 14, 2021 6:30 AM.

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