HICKORY COMMUNITY THEATRE INC

Rating: 5 stars   17 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture

Location: 30 Third St NW Hickory NC 28601 USA

Mission: Hickory Community Theatre provides the venue for creative exploration in drama, music, dance and visual art to the citizens of Catawba County and the entire Unifour area.
Results: We sell over 15,000 tickets every year to shows and special events put on by over 200 volunteer performers and staffed by over 400 community volunteers.
Target demographics: We serve people from all walks of life, at all income levels, regardless of race, color, social status or any other factors, throughout a five county region and beyond.
Direct beneficiaries per year: 15,000
Geographic areas served: Catawba, Caldwell, Burke, Alexander. Iredell and Lincoln Counties
Programs: 1. Mainstage theatre season: a season of five family-friendly plays and musicals chosen for broad audience appeal; produced with community volunteers. 2. Contemporary series: a season of three modern plays chosen to challenge audiences and actors by their content and subject matter; also produced with community volunteers. 3. Youth Theatre Academy: Experienced theatre professionals working with young people up to age 18 and teaching them the craft of theatre and performance.

2010 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

The Hickory Community Theater is a wonderful place for actors of all ages to come and hone their talents. It is filled with wonderment for the youngest theater lovers with their Rug Bug plays offering a venue for the youngest actors to bring their talents to the stage. It is also a place where you can come and relax knowing that you will leave with a sense of fulfillment in the entertainment you have been provided with. It is affordable and gives us the charm of an old style theater. We are blessed in this area to have something that we can go to and take in a little culture.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

Hickory Community Theatre is a wonderful place to nurture your talents and creativity in a welcoming and caring community. The staff has a magical way of bringing out the best of those who want to develop their talents or discover a skill you did not know you possessed.

I have met the most welcoming and warm people at this place and am so glad that our community has this treasure in its' midst.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

none...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

My daughter really loves the Hickory Community Theatres RugBug Shows. They are for a young audience but all ages enjoy the show alike. This is the only theatre I know of that offers a youth theatre. It’s a great opportunity for children and to learn about acting drama, and speaking in front of an audience.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Web designing and marketing and development.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Change nothing.

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Hickory Community Theatre is a jewel for the area that is worthy of community support. The professionalism and creativity of the dedicated staff at HCT constantly amaze me. The paid staff at HCT is small in numbers but huge in talent. Each year a wide variety of plays are selected ranging from drama to comedy to musicals that challenge the actors and staff to stretch their talents. The programs are chosen to include young children, teens, adults and seniors. Although there is a wealth of incredible talent in this area of NC the artistic directors continue to accept and work with people new to the stage wanting to learn and experience what live theatre is all about. As someone new to the area, volunteering has given me the opportunity to meet so many fun, caring, and kind people. I enjoy observing the audience as they leave the theatre after a performance. I have seen people singing and dancing as well as being moved to tears. As a member of the Guild I have been welcomed into the HCT family and been privileged to support the theatre with our activities and fund raisers. Although some work is involved, we have great fun in the process. As a former Board member I have witnessed the difficulty of a non-profit community theatre being dependent on donations to continue. In spite of these challenges HCT continues to provide spectacular productions.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the outstanding performances that rival professional theatre. I have observed the dedication of all the staff to providing quality theatre.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

First the pleasure of being entertained with every performance I see. Next the wonderful friends I have made by being involved. And of course the pride of being involved with such a dedicated group of people.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

dedicated, passionate, innovative and creative. Many have become best friends.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

There is so much that could be done. They are working from an old building and constantly have to put bandaids on problems because there are not the funds to fix them properly. Extra funds could also help the Endowment Fund that will secure their future

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Growing up near NYC afforded me the opportunity to see Broadway productions on a regular basis. Never, in my wildest dreams, did I expect to find a community theatre - with entire casts made up of volunteers (e.g., soccer moms, doctors, lawyers, and high school students) - that afforded me the same enjoyment. Dramas, comedies, musicals, large productions and small - all display an exceptional level of professionalism and delightful entertainment.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the entertainment they provide, year after year, production after production. Also in the friendships that have I developed in conjunction with my volunteering, and the exposure to other art-based organizations in the area.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

not want to change the staff at all, but the physical plant could use some upgrading - if only there were funds to do it!

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

aside from the obvious entertainment value, the people I interact with on a regular basis are just delightful! This includes both staff and actors, other volunteers and theatergoers.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Exceptional - warm and welcoming, highly talented and dedicated.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

not be any better than it already is. Seriously, if the HCT had more money, it could make improvements to the facility, but I really don't think they could hire better staff or actors, or put on better productions.

Ways to make it better...

the Theatre had more funding for the physical plant so the Guild would not have to use its limited resources for basics and could do more enhancements.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Budget, budget, and budget!

One thing I'd also say is that...

If I haven't made it clear, I think that John Rambo, Pam Livingstone, Christine Stinson, and Clay James do an awesome job!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

9 people found this review helpful

I have enjoyed the theater productions for years and the past few years as a volunteer for the theater and member of the HCT Guild.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

working with the HCT guild and with the fund raising projects.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the friends I have made and the joy in doing something to help keep this special community theater here for my family for the years to come

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

The entire staff of John Rambo, Pam Livingstone and Christine Stinson are excellent and the HCT Guilde's members are so important to the organization

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Renovate and improve the theater, yet keep it's historical appeal

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

6 people found this review helpful

I have been involved with HCT for about 12 years. First as the parent of child actors who were heavily involved, and later as a volunteer, actress, and board member. I can honestly say that this organization does a fabulous job of putting quality theatre on it's stage on a regular basis. They recently received the top honor for a community theatre by the NCTC (North Carolina Theater Confrerence) when they were awarded the NCTC "Community Theater of the Year" for 2009. What an honor to have this theatre recognized as a leader in our state. We are blessed in Hickory to have an organization that isn't afraid to put on shows that are new to some theatre-goers worlds, not just the old standbys. Luckily, some in our community have come to trust the quality at HCT and generally will attend even shows they aren't familiar with. Now if they could just get more friends to come with them. . . . LIke all non-profits, HCT is always on the edge financially, but the staff works hard to contain costs and still put on great theatre. If you've ever been involved with theatre, you know that everyone is welcome to get involved - HCT offers opportunities for the youngest in their RugBug Theatre, to the most experienced in their "Senior Theatre". This institution is a community gem that helps Hickory sparkle.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

sometimes being a part of, and sometimes watching from the audience as theatre "magic" is created and presented.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

start a capital campaign to renovate the building, while still keeping it's historical feel.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

experiencing professional-quality theatre on a regular basis right here in a small town in North Carolina.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

professional, creative, and passionate about what they do.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

put on shows that truly rival Broadway productions in look and feel, more outreach to those that don't attend theatre, and updates of the facilities.

Ways to make it better...

the building (heat, AC, seating, bathrooms, etc.) were updated.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Funding in the current economy.

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

6 people found this review helpful

I have had contact with the staff, volunteers & performers of Hickory Community Theatre on a weekly basis for more than three years. As a transplanted, long-time NYC resident with experience in theater, film & television, I have been delighted, and often thrilled, by their productions. HCT is brave enough to produce contemporary plays & musicals and savvy enough to mix in just the right type & number of classic plays & musicals to please & entice a broad section of the area's population. For example, their productions of THE PRODUCERS, CHICAGO, DOUBT & TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE brought thought-provoking & high-energy entertainment to a public who might not have had a chance to experience it otherwise. They are also educating very young people with their youth productions, RugBug Theatre. These children will now grow up understanding the value, need & the sheer fun of theatre being a part of every day life. I cannot say enough good things about the positive impact of HCT on this community. They set a high standard not often found in community theatre, and yet being in the audience or cast of a show at HCT has always been a warm & illuminating experience for me.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Smart, dedicated & determined to do the best job possible with each production.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Teach acting, movement, voice, playwriting, stage craft, costume design, directing, lighting design. HCT could run productions all year long, pay their permanent staff more & volunteer actors a stipend.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

I have been a volunteer and season subscriber since the 70's. HCT is Hickory's finest asset and produces plays with a professionalism that far exceeds the typical community theatre. The plays run the gamut from Shakespeare to comedy to musicals to serious drama. One of my guests ho winters in Florida commented that the quality of the plays at HCT actually exceeded that of some of the professional plays in the Ft. Myers area. I am immensely proud of our staff, our board, our guild and our volunteers, including the amazing talent that graces our stage. Kudos to Hickory Community Theatre.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My enjoyment and apprec iation of live theatre. My encouragement haas resulted in both my daughter and grandaughter being actively invole=ved in the community theatre in their city. I haave made many friends through activities there also.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The feeling that I can make a difference by being a strong supporter.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Super great! They donate hours and effort beyond anything I have witnessed elsewhere.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Pay our wonderful staff whet they deserve and provide adequate insurance and other benefits. Replace aging equipment and facilities as needed.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-1-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

5 people found this review helpful

I have been involved with Hickory Community Theatre in a variety of "roles." One of the most cherished is the pleasure of being friends with the Jeffers family for almost 60 years. My first memories of an HCT are of my father in some type of follies. I remember laughing until I cried as he walked on stage with a wooden barrel hanging over him. That was the beginning of a long love affair with HCT. You see, we share the same birthday year - 1949. As a child, HCT was always a magical kingdom. Once inside, nothing else existed except life on the stage. That hasn't changed. The magic never went away. HCT offers more than a play or a production – it is LIFE, on the stage. It never matters what the show is – all are excellent. The professionalism – the extreme talent, direction, choreography, sets, script –it all comes together and makes me feel as if I am on stage with them. Many years ago, I was in Annie Get Your Gun and Where's Charlie. I was quite young and nervous and knew even then that any future involvement with HCT would not be as an actress! I've seen a lifetime of shows on the HCT stage. The talent is off the scale, professional, and at times leaves me speechless. And just when I think that Pam Livingstone has pulled out all the stops in directing a show, she delivers another award-winning production. Everyone is top-notch - the many actors, Pam, Charles Jeffers, Clay James, John Rambo. From the mid-1980s to 2003, I photographed every show on Mainstage and many in the Firemen's Kitchen for an area newspaper. I felt the raw emotion, the energy and love for acting and was so busy trying to capture it on film, that I always went back to see the show - without a camera. I continue to feel that raw emotion, energy and love. During a three-month period of lay-off from work, I was in Guys and Dolls. I cannot act or sing or dance, but I had the time of my life at a very crucial turning point personally. I was welcomed into a new family of 30+ friends at a time when I most needed support. I cried through the last performance, and went through a "withdrawal" period of several months. My husband and I served as a volunteers, and he continues to photograph the shows. I know how critical volunteers are, and HCT is blessed to have many. I'm sure there are never enough. Especially in tough times economically - volunteer services are essential. But, so is money. And, I learned about the business side of HCT. I served on the Board of Directors and know the painful experience of sitting at that table - trying to stretch dollars. I fully realized then how remarkable HCT is – to continue to operate such an award-winning community theatre, with top-notch productions, talent, sets, direction, music – on very little money. My wish is that every person has the utter joy of experiencing and loving HCT as I have had and continue to experience. My life is richer because of HCT. Every time I walk into the lovely foyer, and into the depths of that stately "old girl," so full of history, I transcend to another place. After seeing each show, I walk through those doors a better person. On the bleakest of days, when things aren't going as expected, I leave HCT with a smile and a song in my heart.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

being made to feel a part of the HCT family in any area I'm involved in. But, especially, I enjoy the fact that HCT continues to offer top-notch shows that touch my life and enrich my life immeasurably.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-1-01

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